By Mike Toth
A guest post by Field & Stream Executive Editor Mike Toth
So let's pick up where I left this story yesterday....
The woodcock is a creature of habit. Anyone who has hunted them for a while knows that you can find woodcock in many of the same places, autumn after autumn. One fall, hunting the bottom of a ridge in northeastern Pennsylvania, I kicked up a woodie from a depression in the ground not much bigger than a utility sink. I missed the easy going-away shot. The next year, hunting the same bottom, another bird (maybe the same one; who knows?) flushed from the very same hole. Having had approximately 364 days to prepare for the shot, I managed to drop that bird.
Woodcock, apparently, are also slow to adapt to changes--changes such as a teeming city being built in the middle of an historic flyway. That’s apparently why, a year ago this week, I found a dead woodcock near the corner of Broadway and 31st Street in New York City--just a few blocks from the Empire State Building, and a ten-minute stroll to where one million cold and not exactly sober people celebrate the New Year every December 31st by hooting and cheering as a glass ball descends a spire in Times Square at midnight. If you missed Part I of the story, click here.