It’s supposed to be in the high 80s this afternoon, so we started a little earlier than usual this morning. We met at the gate at 5:45 and broke away the first brace at 6:05 when it was 50 degrees. The first brace was Jack and Thuddy in sections 1 & 2. Jack had to dig deep as the 3 woodcock and one brood of grouse were all right on the edge between the alder and other brushy cover and the spruce forest beyond. Little Thuddy had backs on the woodcock and got one of the grouse brood for himself. The woodcock are definitely using our rototilled patches as most of them are perforated with borings. As is usually the case in this cover the grouse broods seem to be transitioning out of the area. The chicks may be far enough along that they are switching from a diet consisting of mostly to insects to one with more vegetive matter. We walked up one woodcock in section two.
The second brace in section three had LJ and Trash combining for a woodcock find each, a single grouse, and a brood of grouse where they had separate birds pointed. The single grouse was an interesting piece of work as LJ seemed to have the bird pointed but I couldn’t get it up in the spruce thicket he was pointing into. Trash was baking and when we sent them on LJ went about 50 feet and slammed into a nice point. Trash backed and then when I walked in on him a woodcock got. When we released them Trash had a stop to flush on the grouse. We also walked up a woodcock.
The third brace ran in section four which is a jungle. Frankie and Trip combined for three woodcock finds. For a total 10 woodcock, a single grouse, and two broods of grouse. Tommy called me when I was my way home to report that he had run Veronica in another of our covers and had 9 woodcock finds and four grouse. I guess getting on early is well worth it.