9 Birds That German Shorthaired Pointers Can Hunt

German Shorthaired Pointers are a wonderful breed of dog that thrives off of exercise and hunting. Bred to be hunting dogs, they’re happiest when chasing and locating birds. German Shorthaired Pointers are famed for their adaptability and versatility in the hunting community.

Here are nine birds that German Shorthaired Pointers can hunt:

  1. Quail
  2. Ruffed Grouse
  3. Sharptailed Grouse
  4. White-tailed Ptarmigan
  5. Hungarian Partridge
  6. Canadian Geese
  7. Ringneck Pheasants
  8. Ducks
  9. Woodcocks

In this article, I’ll delve into the characteristics of these birds and how German Shorthaired Pointers can help you hunt them. Let’s get started!

1. Quail

Quails are small birds that are a popular to hunt due to the challenge of such as well as their delicious flavor when cooked. They’re often found looking for food on the ground in areas with plenty to hide underneath. Quails are very quick on their feet and tend to fly when scared by a potential threat.

Having a good pointer dog can give hunters a significant advantage for successfully bagging quail. Quails are often found in coveys or a group of birds that stick together. German Shorthaired Pointers are excellent at flushing birds and can help hunters to kick the birds into flight in large numbers.

2. Ruffed Grouse

The Ruffed Grouse is one of the most commonly hunted birds in North America. They’re delicious to eat, relatively plentiful in certain parts of the United States, and fun to hunt due to the challenge their habitat and behavior present for hunters. 

Having a German Shorthaired Pointer can be a huge advantage when hunting Ruffed Grouse because they tend to camouflage well on the ground and hide in the snow during winter months. A German Shorthaired pointer is adept at flushing these birds in the natural setting.

3. Sharp-Tailed Grouse

The Sharp-tailed Grouse is larger than Ruffed Grouse, which is okay when hunting with a German Shorthaired Pointer. German Shorthaired Pointers have a long mouth and strong jaw good for carrying larger birds.

While Sharp-tailed Grouse used to be commonly seen in some areas of the United States, their population has decreased over the years. Because they’re not as plentiful as they once were, it may be easier to locate them with a good tracking dog like a German Shorthaired Pointer. Their short hair helps hunters find ticks or burrs that the dog may pick up in the Grouse’s habitat.  

4. The White-Tailed Ptarmigan

The White-tailed Ptarmigan is an elusive bird that’s very difficult to find, let alone hunt. They spend their time almost exclusively in high-altitude mountains, which makes hunting them challenging in its own right. 

They’re also small birds and entirely white in the winter, making them virtually impossible to see by the human eye. Check out this video at All About Birds to see them in their natural habitat.

German Shorthaired Pointers make excellent dogs for hunting White-tailed Ptarmigan because they can handle climbing the steeper altitude trails due to their physical prowess. These fantastic pointers are necessary for tracking such elusive birds. 

5. Hungarian Partridge

German Shorthaired Pointers are known for being good at hunting birds in various habitats. Hungarian Partridge is an upland game bird, meaning they’re not known for swimming or living right on the water. They tend to live in forests with plenty of ground cover that helps them hide from predators.

Hungarian Partridges, also known as Gray Partridge, are a commonly hunted bird in North America and Europe. They’re incredibly flighty birds known to detect a predator as far away as 60 feet (18 meters). For this reason, hunters must train their German Shorthaired Pointers not to run too far ahead.

6. Canadian Geese

Versatility is one thing that makes German Shorthaired Pointers such a famous hunting dog. They’re just as good at hunting waterfowl as upland game birds. One of the most popular waterfowl to hunt is the Canadian Goose.

Canadian Geese are large birds. Because German Shorthaired Pointers have such long and strong jaws, they can handle the length and weight of Canadian Geese. German Shorthaired Pointers are also excellent swimmers, so there’s no issue with retrieving waterfowl for these dogs. Learn more about German Shorthaired Pointer’s swimming abilities with this article I wrote – Can German Shorthaired Pointers Swim?.

7. Ringneck Pheasants 

One favorite bird to hunt for German Shorthaired Pointer owners is the Ringneck Pheasant. It’s possible to hunt Ringneck Pheasants without a dog, yet having a competent dog at both pointing and retrieving can make Pheasant hunting far more enjoyable and prosperous. 

Pheasants are typically found on the ground, so having an excellent pointer to kick them into the air helps. They often live in tall grass, which can be challenging for the human eye to see the bird in. 

Another reason German Shorthaired Pointers are good to have for Pheasant hunting is for tracking. The birds tend to fall in the same tall grass they live in when you shoot them, so it’s helpful to have a good tracking dog to find them.

8. Ducks

Since German Shorthaired Pointers are so good at swimming and love to do it, they make for an excellent dog for duck hunting. Duck hunting is a prevalent sport, but you need a boat or an excellent swimming dog to retrieve them, as they typically fall into the water after you shoot them.

A bonus with German Shorthaired Pointers is their very short coat, which allows them to dry off quickly and easily after retrieving the ducks.

9. Woodcocks

Woodcocks are a small upland game bird that are popular with hunters, especially with a good hunting dog. German Shorthaired Pointers are an excellent choice for woodcock tracking because they’re great at finding and pointing out this tiny bird in its wild habitat after it falls from the air.

One of the significant advantages of the German Shorthaired pointer’s coat is that you can get any burrs off of them more manageable than with a long-haired dog. You can also see if they suffered any injuries from the woods better than you could with other breeds to ensure optimal health.

Male vs Female German Shorthaired Pointer

If you ever wondered if you should get a male or female GSP for hunting, check out this article Are Male or Female German Shorthaired Pointers Better for Hunting?

Resources I Recommend For Hunting With Your GSP

Neoprene Vest – Some dog breeds dont have the best coat for swimming in cold water. You might want to invest in a neoprene vest for your dog, which will keep your dog warm without interfering with his ability to swim. I recommend the Browning Camo Neoprene Dog Vest from Amazon.com. This vest comes in multiple sizes, and you can trim it to fit your dog.

Duck Decoy – If you plan on training your dog to retrieve ducks, you’ll need to practice with decoys. I recommend the Pooch Buddy Duck Bumper Toy for Training Hunting Dogs from Amazon.com. This is a lifelike duck decoy that floats, and you can use it to teach your dog to retrieve a decoy at your command. As your Brittany gets accustomed to the sights, sounds, and smells of retrieving a decoy in the water, she’ll be prepared for the real thing. 

Dogtra Pathfinder TRX – If you are looking for a GPS/Dog Tracker, you are going to come across several different brands and types. After countless hours of research, my wife and I decided on Dogtra Pathfinder TRX Dog Tracker (Available on Amazon.com). Its a very reasonable price compared to most of the trackers out there. This PATHFINDER is built with a GPS e-collar and can be used concurrently with Google Maps in normal, terrain, and satellite view mode. It also has a range of nine miles, a tracking mode, and a two-second GPS update rate.

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