The Sportsman Channel Showcase is an exclusive behind the scenes look for readers of AmmoLand Shooting Sports News where we get to know the personalities behind some of the most watched Sportsman Channel programming. This week we talk to Chad Belding, host of Dead Dog Walkin'.
By Ryan Nolan
New Berlin, Wis. –-(Ammoland.com)- How did you get started in the hunting and the TV industry?
I had the burning desire to be the best duck and goose caller I could be after hearing my hunting partners calling and communicating with the birds. I began entering and winning calling contests across the US. As word spread of my success I was approached by some guys to film hunts for Ducks Unlimited DVDs. After my personality and calling skills were showcased on these DVDs, as was approached to make a television show. I immediately intrigued by the idea and produced a pilot for the Fowl Life!
In it’s beginning The Fowl Life had coyote hunts mixed in with the waterfowl hunts, as the success of the show grew, I knew the next step for us was to produce a predator hunting show…now we have Dead Dog Walkin’
What is the biggest mishap that has happened while filming an episode?
Dead Dog Walkin’ filming has actually been really smooth, but filming for the Fowl Life has definitely had some mishaps. The biggest mishap had to be on the Snake River in Idaho. While on a duck boat waiting for some mallards to work, I turned to my right to call at a group of birds, and knocked a $3500.00 HD camera full of footage into the river and completely ruined it! I was upset about the camera loss, but equally upset at the footage lost to the icy waters!
Can you tell us about the funniest moment of your hunting career?
While filming season 2 of The Fowl Life I entered a bet that result in my chest and back being waxed on film and aired! I bet my partner in Montana that he would not shoot another mallard before shooting hours were over, within 10 minutes of the time a lone mallard came in and was taken. I was waxed on national television, funny to say the least!
How do you like to spend your time when you are not hunting?
I love spending time with my wife Melanie and daughter Alyssa! I travel a ton, so when I am home being around my family is awesome! I also enjoy live baseball games, and working to build the Banded Brands!
What is your most memorable hunt?
My last goose hunt with my dad in December of 2006…We had a ton of fog over us, I could hear the birds above and softly called at them, as soon as they heard the call they would drop out of the fog into our spread! I did not know at the time, but it would be my last goose hunt ever with my dad.
What is something most people do not know about you? (Something people are surprised to find out about you.
I love to cook, and I am good at it! Nothing better than cooking up ducks and geese fresh from the field for my friends and family!
What are you most proud of, or what is your biggest accomplishment?
I am most proud of starting and building the Banded Nation, and Banded family of brands! I love the outdoor television and product industry and am very thankful to be pursuing my dream and creating a strong brand in this amazing industry!
If you could hunt any place in the world and any species where and what would it be?
I would hunt mallard ducks on the Snake River in Idaho! It may not be the craziest most exotic hunt in the world, but I truly love it! Mallards over the water is like nothing else, I love the boat ride in, the scenery and the thousands of birds this area holds!
What is something that viewers would be surprised to learn about filming an episode? Or what was surprising to you when you first started filming?
The sheer amount of work involved in filming is staggering! I thought and I think a lot of people think it is as easy as setting up cameras and filming the animals, this is not the case! We spend hours preparing to film, and countless hours producing what we have captured in the field!
What one tip can you give your fans to a successful hunt?
Scout! So much of hunting comes down to your homework, find the animals before you hunt! Coyote spots that you know produce, and have places to hide are key! Fields and water ways that birds are using normally will produce the best hunts!
What is your favorite meal including wild game? Any good recipes?
Mallard duck stir fry! There are many ways to prepare it, and it always tastes great!
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