Georgia Hunting Land For Sale South Carolina Hunting Land For Sale North Carolina Hunting Land For Sale Hunting Land and Recreational Property For Sale

Small Game opportunities

Pete Rogers with a brace of squirrels


Most outdoorsmen and women are just that – outdoorsmen and women. They are hunters, campers, anglers, and trappers. They enjoy hiking, scouting, scavenging for artifacts, and any other reason to be outdoors.

Few hunters are only deer hunters. By far, the majority of the outdoorsmen I know, and one hundred percent of the ones I associate with like it all. They love hunting whitetail deer, but they also love hunting turkeys, squirrels, rabbits, quail, ducks, geese, doves and add in the feral hog, predators and crows – they are hunters. The same can be said for the other seasons, angler’s I know like to catch largemouth, crappie, bream, catfish, striped bass, white bass, and the occasional trout. Saltwater anglers chase them all – inshore and offshore. This list can go on, and on.

When asked, (which I do often) most hunters cut their teeth on small game – squirrels and doves in particular. My totally unscientific research has shown that roughly 90% of the outdoorsmen polled all started hunting for squirrels and fishing for bream.

I too fall into that group. I remember well they day when as a fourteen year old, hunkered beneath a large cedar tree beside a long abandoned homestead in the piedmont of South Carolina, my first squirrel was introduced to a load of #8 shot form a single barrel 16 gauge. Today, I still love hunting squirrels and will spend many days afield hunting them. Property owners who purchase land for hunting doesn’t need to overlook the small game opportunities that exist.

    Hardwood draws that we hunt for deer are a mecca for squirrels. Native warm season grasses we plant for cover are ideal habitat for rabbits and quail. Food planted for turkeys will also feed these same animals. And there is little in the way of excitement than setting up over a food plot and calling in a murder of crows for exciting shooting action.

Many landowners and managers want it all. If you are one, then when you are planning your land management practices you need to consider the benefit and impact on small game as well as the bigger game we pursue. While the big game with giant headgear or long spurs gets all of the press. A bulging game bag with a brace of squirrels is hard to beat for fun, excitement and challenging.

While it’s true that hunting squirrels isn’t rocket science as woodsmen we can make it as challenging as we want. Don’t misunderstand me, I love nothing more than sitting in a winter woods with a .22 in hand shooting squirrels. But to hone my overall hunting skills I like to stalk squirrels. Change the weapon to increase the difficulty and really make it challenging. Hunting squirrels with a .22 handgun is one way to up the ante. An open sighted .22 will definitely make you a better stalker and a better shot.

Hovey Smith with a black powder squirrel (Traditions .32 cal)

One such hunter who like to increase the challenge is none other than Hovey Smith from Georgia. Hovey is a primitive weapon expert if one ever existed. His book, “Extreme Muzzleloader Hunting” is testament to the types of game he has taken with all sorts of primitive weapons. Percussion cap, flintlock, cap and ball, and some that I had never heard of all victim to his primitive weapons. Hovey also likes to hunt squirrels with a .32 caliber percussion cap muzzleloader. “The challenge of getting close and making that one good shot count is what it’s all about.” Smith says. “I like to hunt the way our forefathers hunted.” He continues.

Longbow and Squirrels

If muzzleloaders isn’t your thing for squirrels and you don’t have a small caliber handgun, try archery hunting for squirrels. Many years ago, I began hunting squirrels with my longbow. Couple this with a half dozen flu flu arrows and some small game heads and few things meet the challenge of getting a squirrel with a primitive bow. While some may see this as extreme, those who hunt squirrels with a bow understand that the day will not end with a limit of squirrels. Getting shots is first, and connecting is secondary. Hunting squirrels with my bow gets me into a different zone. I must stalk perfectly, read the woods and animal accurately, and get to within ten to fifteen yards, draw the bow and make a perfect head shot to kill the squirrel. Many days end empty handed, but the thrill is still there. I learn from every experience and understand that when I am stalking for deer, if I spook squirrels, I am moving too fast – getting to within ten yards of a squirrel and making a perfect shot is about as exciting as it gets.

A landowner I spoke with recently who was considering the investment into recreational properties said; “I want to enjoy my land and everything it has to offer.” I believe many landowners in North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia agree with his sentiments. Land is expensive to purchase and to maintain, maximize your opportunities by hunting small game when you get the chance.