Saturday, October 29, 2011

North Dakota and chasing Pheasant

That's Bobby Ferris (top picture) and Ace and me in the lower picture. This was the first day on the ground in Southwest North Dakota. the birds were hit very hard by the Spring weather- wet and cold. Estimates are a 60% die off. That's is probably true, based on what we are seeing. However, the birds are still available, with a good dog or two. It took us most of the day to harvest our 6 roosters, and we are seeing a lot of young birds from a second hatch. One very pleasant surprise (for a dog man) is the hunting performance of one of my young dogs, Cap! What a joy to watch and hunt over. He's bold, quick and thorough. When he points, it is intense and staunch. He listens and I can see the wheels turning as he looks for cover and thinks things through. I used to worry that he was too quick on the draw, that he was too bold. Now, even at 16 months, I see a little thread of thoughtfulness in him. If his development is parallel to his half-brother, Bandit, he will develop in to a wonderful bird dog. My wife would like me to say that Cap is HER dog and I am only borrowing him. I must admit he is the only dog that will "sit for a treat" in my kennels (WW III almost came about when I saw her asking him to sit with the house dogs for a bone!). Obviously, he isn't hurt by that at all- perhaps he's even more attuned to me because of it.
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