Monday, May 30, 2011

Looking out my kitchen window

The things you see looking out the window. The photo is poor quality, due to the light and camera, but the deer is real. He was one of four big boys that wandered through. I don't think he was harvested, because I would have heard about one this big!
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Monday, May 23, 2011

Randy's Cool as Gritz

Here's my little Gritzie dog in Wisconsin. What a bird finding sweetheart she was. I say was, because when she was 2 1/2 years old, she developed encephilitis. By the time it was diagnosed and we got her to the Auburn University Vet School, she passed away that night. You never want to lose a bird dog before his time, but this one was a special little dog. I still smile when I see her run.
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Friday, May 13, 2011

Blast from the past!

This picture was taken in 2001 at the Quail Unlimited National Championship in Bronwood, GA. The dog is Bo (Julia's Bocephus) and that's me as the handler. This picture was snapped very close to the gallery right after Bo found his 6th (and winning) bird. I'm not sure who was more focused. Bo is still with me and, as long as he wants to get in the box, he's got a place on my trips.
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Saturday, May 7, 2011

Bo on Arizona Quail

That's some big open country out there- a little on the mystical side..
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Thursday, May 5, 2011

Peaches and the Limit

Peaches and the limit- ND

Sorting through some old dog pictures.... This is Randy's Southern Peach or "Peaches" to those who hunted over the lady. Never flashy, always working, always on game, Peaches was the old, reliable, steady dog that loved her job. She was overshadowed by flashier, faster, and more stylish setters in the kennel, but when push came to shove, Peaches came out of the box and found birds for me. I remember, in Texas, watching her head up a draw in her signature lope. Just before she disappeared around the corner, I noticed just the slightest break in her stride- and then she was gone. After years of watching her work, I knew exactly what I'd find as I stepped around the hill- Peaches had a huge covey of Bob's pinned in a clump of shin oaks. I got a double that time- heck, I was shooting at 30 birds coming up at my feet! Another time, the wind was blowing hard in the panhandle of Texas (really?) and this was pre-Garmin Tracker. She was hunting with a bell and beeper and I could hear neither. I searched the draws and grass and waterholes and, after maybe 10 minutes, I saw the tip of her white tail above the blowing grass. I was filled with respect for this dog as I kicked around for a full minute before the lone, buried up Bobwhite blew out of the tall grass. He dropped and Peaches went after him, located him in the grass and brought him back to hand. She was a good one. There are parts of this country that I have a hard time hunting without a certain dog- all the memories come back as I load the shotgun, check the compass, and leave the truck. "This was Peaches' ditch....", I think to myself......

Teach Someone to Shoot

This is Rhys, from Wales. He was visiting, up from the University of Florida, where he is a student with Elizabeth. He wanted to learn how to shoot a gun. Since I know Elizabeth is a good shot, I figured I'd better teach him- to give him a fighting chance. Son of a gun! I guess better eyes and youth will make a difference. He was a natural!

Take a young person hunting, or take them with you when you run dogs or check your hunting areas. Let's not lose the battle, through complacency, to keep our hunting heritage !
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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

"Working on the chain gang, goin' down, down, down, Workin' on the chain gang.."

More table retriever training!  This is my little Ruby (about 14 mos.) learning about hold and fetch.  It's interesting to me how just altering the sequence in the tiniest degree will have one dog pushing ahead and the front dog lagging behind.  Ruby is now the one lagging.  She was quick to grasp the "hold" command and walk around with the items in her mouth.  Now, she's the one balking at the 'fetch' portion.  Little Cap is forging on ahead with the fetch and is wagging his little stub the whole time!  "Boss, this is great, but when do we get to the real thing?"  Ruby will catch on and happily complete the task at hand, I'm sure....I've got all summer...absolutely no hurry....