In 1988, I spent quite a bit of time exploring. One of my biggest curiosities was turkey, but along the way I ran into quite a few valley quail. I’ve looked through my notes to see if I recorded my quail hunting at Tehema Wildlife Area off highway 36 just east of Red Bluff. I haven’t found my notes.
However, my recollection of one hunt is fairly clear. I remember arriving at TWA about midday and I had Tubbs, my super bird hunting hound dog, with me. I’m sure Tubbs would have preferred to hunt something with fur, but she learned that it was fowl that I wanted. On this day I parked near the top of a not-so-tall ridge with a lot of flat ground at the top.
It looked like a lot of other ridges at Tehema WA, so I believe it’s not important to tell you which one. Somebody (who was probably interested in quail) had created many brush piles on that ridge. As we walked, I didn’t hear or see any quail. Typical of California Quail, these birds there were very secretive and I had no idea what I was in for – until Tubbs’ tail began to wag as she approached one of those brush piles. Out shot a couple quail and I don’t recall if I hit either of them. What I do recall is hunting quail much longer than I had anticipated and bagging at least a few.
This was an idea quail-hunting locatin. The hiking was relatively level and the habitat was just right. I’m not sure if 1988 was a good quail year, but I was certain that this was an ideal quail hunting location.
Since that time I’ve hunted Tehema WA and also Tehema Refuge 1G for Turkey. I’ve come close to bagging a turkey, but never succeeded. Had a very large black bear walk past me at Tehema 1G while I sat by a tree yelping for turkeys. The refuge has it all – even pigs. It doesn’t look like much, but don’t underestimate your chances here.
Here’s a link http://www.dfg.ca.gov/lands/wa/region1/tehama.html