42 degrees

The outside temperature a little after 6:00 am Friday morning in Red Barn.
The cool August mornings made it really good for running dogs this past week and with high temps in the low 70s I’ve been able to run longer into the middle of the day.  We’ve developed about a four day rotation on our covers so we don’t put a lot of pressure on the birds in any one area.  Red Barn is back being very productive and Friday morning we moved somewhere between 20 and 30 woodcock.  I really did lose count.  We also continue to try new areas.  We’ve found numerous covers that hold birds.  Some we’ll not go back in until October and one cut we tried was just a little too dry and maybe 3 or 4 years past prime age and stem density.  With grouse and woodcock it’s all about stem density to provide them shade, clean walking at ground level, and protection from avian predators.  All the dogs are making progress as they find more and more birds on every outing.  Maggie and Brandy made big jumps today both allowing me to get to them on finds and flush the birds.  
The little puppies are continuing their collar conditioning both in the yard and out in the woods.  It’s none too soon either as a couple of them were pushing 200 yards on a couple of casts this week.  Next week I’ll be able to use the collar to keep them closer and steer them into birds a little better.  It’s interesting to watch the differences in the puppies develop as some continue to be more independent but all four of them are hunting hard and have no fear of attacking the cover even when they have to go through raspberry canes that are shoulder high on me.    

Sam being worked on a 50′ line as part of her collar conditioning
Peanut getting dressed like a big dog for a workout this week. 

Sam was the second one out of the truck.  In addition to the traveling to covers they are also learning to stay on the tailgate until it’s time to run.
One of the over grown fields that I worked the puppies in.  There are usually woodcock and the occasional grouse in the alders and woods in the old fields and around the edges.
I’m not sure who ate all these hazelnuts, but they are just one of many mast crops that are in abundance this year.  

Posted in Current News.

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