Thursday, August 6, 2020

A Georgia Political Dynasty Is Selling Its $26 Million Hunting Preserve



Mark Taylor, a former two-term lieutenant governor of Georgia, was born into an entrepreneurial family.
His late father Fred founded the Fred Taylor Co. in the 1960s “with $95 and a $2,300 loan from my grandfather,” Taylor says. Today, the company has a truck leasing company with 17 locations in two states and owns or manages 1.2 million square feet of warehousing space. “He built something up from nothing,” says Taylor of his father, who died in 2011. “He was just a tremendously successful businessman.”
It was somewhat out of character for the elder Taylor when, in 1994, he purchased a 3,200-acre tract of land called Chokee Farm, with a few partners and no intention of making money.
“I think the genesis of it was that he loved farms and wanted to acquire one for himself,” Taylor says. That love snowballed into a passion. Four years after the initial purchase, Taylor bought out his partners and began to expand the holding by buying adjacent tracts until the property measured more than 5,100 acres. “He threw a tremendous amount of personal time into creating it—or rather, recreating it, in his vision,” Taylor says.
Today, Chokee is a vast gentleman’s quail-hunting estate that has hosted a string of local and national political figures, including governors and U.S. attorneys general.
Taylor says his father made improvements to the land until his death; Taylor and his sister have since continued to update the property by building an elegant new lodge for guests, renovating other buildings, and continuously upgrading the land.
Now the family has decided to sell the property, listing it with Jon Kohler & Associates for $26 million.


Tuesday, February 4, 2020

South Caroline Quail management seminar registration open

The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will host the 31st annual Wild Quail Management Seminar at the Webb Wildlife Center in Hampton County on Thursday March 12 through Friday March 13,. This seminar is designed for landowners and land managers interested in improving their skills in managing habitat for native populations of bobwhite quail.
Seminar topics will include:
Habitat Manipulation including demonstrations of prescribed burning, firebreak establishment, brush control, discing for natural foods and food patch planting
Presentations on wild quail management by DNR wildlife biologists
Field Trips on the Webb Wildlife Center demonstrating habitat management practices,

Guest Speakers from the South Carolina Forestry Commission and Natural Resources Conservation Service
Research Update (Tall Timbers) on recent projects in the southeast
Continuing Forestry Education Credits (TBD)
There will be evening activities, so please plan to be available. Submit registration form with a check ($85/person) payable to HARRY HAMPTON WILDLIFE FUND. (We do not have credit card capability.) Slots will be filled on a first-come, first-serve basis, so send your registration form and check as soon as possible. The registration fee includes overnight accommodations (bunkhouse-type accommodations - rooms will be shared by 3-6 people (there are no private rooms)), meals and seminar materials.
The deadline to register is Friday February 28. For more information call (803) 734-3609.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019


Rare bird, believed extinct in the state, has shown it can live at Pinelands site after small shipments from Georgia

It’s looking like the northern bobwhite quail may get another chance to come back in New Jersey.
The secretive and formerly abundant bird with its distinctive onomatopoeic call is effectively extinct in the state but small flocks from Georgia, where it is more numerous, have been captured and moved to a site in the Pinelands over the last four years.
Naturalists from the state’s Division of Fish & Wildlife, New Jersey Audubon, the University of Delaware, and Tall Timbers Research station, a Florida-based land trust, have been studying whether the approximately 300 birds that have been “translocated” to the woods on a Burlington County cranberry farm have been able to survive and thrive 800 miles from home.
The good news, the scientists say, is that the quail have shown that they can breed, feed and elude their many predators — which include hawks, foxes, snakes and raccoons — in sufficient numbers to suggest that the New Jersey population could recover to a sustainable level if a larger number of the birds are shipped in and their habitat is carefully managed.
Conditions on the 14,000 acres owned by the Pine Island Cranberry Co. near Chatsworth look suitable for a bobwhite population to re-establish itself, said John Parke, Stewardship Project Director and head of the bobwhite program for New Jersey Audubon. He predicted that 800 to 1,000 of the birds a year will be released by the New Jersey Division of Fish & Wildlife on a portion of the farm starting in the next few years but that the timing will depend on when or whether other states are able to supply a lot more birds than New Jersey has taken so far.


Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Pitchfork Ranch 8830 acre lease Quail, Whitetail Deer, Turkey, Dove, Hog Near Waurika, OK In Jefferson Country

Pitchfork Ranch 8830 acre lease Quail, Whitetail Deer, Turkey, Dove, Hog Near Waurika, OK In Jefferson Country

Located east/southeast of waurika, ok and south of hwy 70 in jefferson county.  Has never been leased.  Excellent trophy whitetail, quail, turkey, hogs, varmints, dove, waterfowl.  Gently rolling terrain with heavily wooded bottom land.  Lots of ponds.  Many locations for custom food plots.  Very easy hunting and access.  We would prefer that these pastures be occupied by a single lease group.  These properties are subject to oklahoma department of wildlife conservation hunting rules and regulations

Property Details

Size8,830 Acres
GameWhitetail Deer, Turkey, Dove, Hog, Quail, Duck,Predator
WeaponArchery, Rifles, Shotguns, Pistol, Muzzleloader
LocationJefferson, 73573, Texas
Nearest TownWaurika

See the full details

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Improving habitat for quail seminar March 2019 in South Carolina

The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources is hosting its 31st-Annual Wild Quail Management Seminar on March 7-8 at James W. Webb Wildlife Center and Management Area (1282 Webb Ave., Garnett, SC).

This will be the only seminar about wild quail offered in 2019 by SCDNR. The registration fee is $85 per person, which includes meals, overnight accommodations and seminar materials. The deadline to register is Friday, Feb. 22. For more information, contact the SCDNR Small Game Program in Columbia at (803) 734-3609, e-mail Patty Castine or visit

Field demonstrations and classroom instruction will focus on habitat practices including firebreak establishment, prescribed burning, forest management, brush control, discing for natural foods and supplemental food patch plantings.

Presentations will be given on wild quail natural history, biology, diseases and parasites, predation and other factors that may be contributing to the population decline.

An update on current research will also be presented. Speakers will include wildlife and forestry professionals from state and federal agencies.

Bobwhite quail populations in the Southeast, including South Carolina, have been declining steadily over the past 60 years due to major land use change and reduction in suitable habitat. The 31st Annual Wild Quail Management Seminar is designed to instruct landowners and land managers in the proper techniques of creating habitat that will support native populations of bobwhite quail.

"The annual quail management seminar is a great place to meet and learn from many experts in the natural resources field," said Michael Hook, SCDNR wildlife biologist and Small Game Project supervisor. "So if you have any interest in creating better habitat for bobwhite quail and the other assorted species that use these early successional habitats, this seminar is for you."

Around 1,500 people have attended the seminar since its inception in 1987. These sportsmen and sportswomen have positively affected thousands of acres across South Carolina by applying basic techniques to improve habitat on their lands.

Monday, August 13, 2018

The Problem with Pen Raised Quail A Study

Written by Shelby McCay, Texas A&M University, WFSC 15 and MNRD ’19
Edited by Amanda Gobeli, Extension Associate, Texas A&M Natural Resources Institute
Edited by Dr. James Cathey, Associate Director, Texas A&M Natural Resources Institute
Edited by Dr. Dale Rollins, Statewide Coordinator, Reversing the Quail Decline Initiative

The history and practice of releasing pen-raised quail is almost 100 years old. It began in the 1930s as an attempt to bolster declining populations throughout the southeastern U.S., and it was an attractive option for both wildlife biologists and landowners searching for a simple fix to the quail decline problem.  Tens of millions of pen-raised quail were released by state wildlife agencies, with some even building their own hatcheries in the belief that it would take many years for wild populations to recover (Gerstell 1938, Anonymous 1942, Hern├índez et al. 2012, Whitt et al. 2017).
An example of a state quail hatchery. Photo: California Department of Fish and Wildlife.
However, it soon became apparent that no matter how many quail were released, their survival rate across most areas and habitat types within their U.S. range was abysmally low (Buechner 1950).  In a radio-telemetry study in south Texas, researchers found that half of their pen-raised birds perished only 9 days after release; by 12 weeks, all of them had died (Perez et al. 2002).  But why don’t these pen-raised quail last in the wild?  There are two main theories—let’s explore each further.

One theory is that pen-raised quail are not as genetically vigorous as their wild counterparts due to inbreeding.  Research has shown this is not the case.  A study conducted by Ellsworth et al. (1988), found that the genetic variability in pen-raised bobwhites was not notably deficient, and they did not display high levels of inbreeding compared to wild quail.  But even if pen-raised birds are not lacking genetic diversity, could wild quail have some unknown genetic advantage?  Two studies examined this question by crossing pen-raised quail with wild ones, producing what is known as F1 offspring, and comparing their survival to purebred pen-raised quail.  Both studies found that the survival rates of F1 and pen-raised birds were almost identical (Roseberry et al. 1987, Perez et al. 2002).  It seems there is little evidence for genetic differences causing low survival in pen-raised birds.

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