I've hunted with Joey O'Bannon for over 20 years. Out west, in Africa, and here in Florida. You won't have a better hunt for anything you seek than with Joey. The opportunities provided here in Florida range from great quail shooting to dangerous game. A water buffalo hunt here rivals a cape buffalo hunt in Africa.
I have hunted all over the world for difficult and dangerous game but one of my most memorable hunts was right here in Florida. I hunted wild water buffalo at J & R Outfitters with Joey O'Bannon using an eight bore muzzleloader. Difficult and dangerous were a given but Joey added a new dimension, "pure fun."
Joey's first comment after seeing the muzzleloader was, "All it needs is a wooden hull and sails." We stalked buffalo on foot and experienced a couple of mock charges by undersized adolescent bulls before getting into range of a "Dugger Boy" type animal. The rifle was charged and I placed a cap on the nipple. The sticks were set and careful aim was taken, the trigger was pulled and "pop" went the cap -- but nothing else. For a muzzleloader the term "Hang Fire" has concern, but let me tell you, with a 900 grain bullet on top of 400 grains of black powder, it adds a whole new dimension. The bull left at the pop and the 4500 lbs of energy tried to take my arms off. Joey's only comment was "No way am I shooting that thing, I'll stick with my little 470 nitro."
Later I was able to harvest a huge bull, but the fun has continued through numerous big game and bird hunts for the past 10 or so years.
I began hunting with Joey O'Bannon shortly after J & R Outfitters began – and have hunted with him approximately thirty days each year since that time. My primary passion in Bobwhite quail hunting is to develop and enjoy pointer bird dogs in action. (Over the years, I have been blessed with a number of superb pointers.) The habitat and the excitement of quail hunting at J & R continue to improve. From my vantage point, hunting in their preserve ranks at the top of any list. Many of the quail hunts that I have shared with Joey are chronicled in my book, A Quail Hunter's Odyssey, Safari Press, 2009.
Although quail hunting has been my primary hunting activity, when the opportunity arose to hunt Asian buffalo at J & R, I availed myself of the opportunity and killed three of these magnificent animals. In addition, with Joey as the primary professional hunter, I have hunted dangerous game in four African counties and have taken record book examples of the Big Five. As a professional hunter, he ranks among the best and has kept me out of severe trouble.
To recapitulate, twenty-five years of hunting Bobwhite quail at J & R Outfitters with Joey O'Bannon has produced a number of indelible memories. I will be forever grateful to him.