Although I’ve missed a number of days on the blog, I haven’t missed any days working dogs since my last installment here. Starting Monday I’ve been back in our summer training covers with all the adult dogs and the Tony’s been going out for the early runs the last three days. It’s extremely wet in the woods and the river is close to spring flood stage. The shore end of our dock is under water and it’s uphill to the float. Some drier weather ahead. We’re just starting to find some grouse in our covers and those number will continue to build as the hens move the chicks around to take advantage of various food sources. It’s tough to get brood counts early in the season as many times the little birds hunker down on the ground rather than fly. To date we have not seen any big broods but we are seeing chicks. All the dogs are getting wild bird contacts — some on their own and others in backing situations. The house grouse are still cooperating as the puppy Sam had two grouse finds Tuesday to earn dog of the day honors, while on Wednesday Brandy, another one of the puppies, got the honors by finding and chasing at least four different grouse. Today we tried an new place and Trash had a brood find with Maggie coming in for the back. When we tried the next spot Frankie put on a show with five woodcock on three finds and a stop to flush on a grouse. He was running with Max who got to back on one occasion and had a divided find on a woodcock as well. The woodcock were down in an area of spruce and fir that was especially wet — you could even call it a swamp.
Yesterday Ruby and Glo had a good run around the kennel and found a woodcock in a likely looking spot. It’s the first one I’ve found here at the kennel this summer.
One of the problems we’ve been having is that the air has been completely still and heavy in the morning making for tough scenting conditions. Today saw a bit of a change in the weather with it being a little hotter but drier. If this keeps up I may even be able to get the first mowing done here at the kennel.
It has also been too wet to carry either my phone or camera in the woods. When that changes I’ll post more pictures.