A day or two after my last post it snowed here in Northern New Hampshire and lasted for a couple of days. Then I went out to Wisconsin to help my daughter celebrate the completion of her PHD. Got back Sunday night to find that all the quail in the Johnny house had been killed by either a Fisher or a raccoon. We’ve set a trap in hopes it returns. The last few days Tony and I have been running dogs on a nearby farm where we’ve been rained on both Tuesday and today. Stokely’s Ginger B has been on the bench in anticipation of having puppies but we learned Monday when we took her to the vets that there are no puppies — a big disappointment. This is the annual Mother’s Day weekend trial of the Maine bird dog club followed by a US Complete regional trial on the same grounds the following week. Spring is running early which means the black flies ought to be out in force this weekend and next. After these two trials, we will start working on our habitat projects in our training covers. All signs report to a good bird year, we hear drumming grouse almost everywhere we go. Let’s hope for some good weather at the end of May and early June as that is the critical time for the grouse chicks. Considering how early the woodcock started coming back this spring there are probably chicks already hatched out. We stay away from known woodcock and grouse nesting cover until July.
Looks like I’ll have plenty of time to get the young dogs going before we start on wild birds. I’m going to be reviewing Martha Greenlee’s new book Training with Mo which presents a really straight forward plan for working a pointing dog using first a checkcord, then a checkcord and a spike collar, then the addition of an e-collar. Click on the Field Trial Magazine over on the right sind of the blog and order a trial subscription to get the full review and see what else the magazine has to offer.