I've never tried to break more than one puppy/derby per year. This year I have three, and with a busy work schedule it has been pretty rough. All three are coming along, but all three are so very different. Jim is smart, bold, and tough, and was a challenge to get to hold point. Pete is really smart and soft, and didn't like being set-up in yard work or the bird field. Jill is high-energy and a bit scatterbrained, but very athletic and smart. All three are bird-finders, have brains and style, but have taken different paths in the training/breaking process to get to where they are. It's important to be able to figure out what it's going to take to get your dog broke and do it so they keep their style and intensity on birds.
The next best thing to bird season is BBQ season! I actually dusted off the gas grill about month ago, re-seasoning it with fatty chicken thighs and a few varieties of sausage; stuff that puts a nice gloss on the stainless steel grill. Today I was rifling through the fridge, checking the "best used by" dates on condiments, salad dressings, and pickled goodies, and came across a not-too-old bottle of soy sauce; I instantly thought of BBQ teriyaki chicken. Transforming soy sauce to teriyaki is simple, equal parts of each: soy sauce, water, and granulated sugar. So today I combined 2-cups of each ingredient in a stainless steel bowl and whisked it until the sugar was dissolved into the liquid. Then I sliced half a red onion, chopped a bunch of green onion, and added them to the teriyaki. I let the teriyaki and onion combination marry a short time, then poured the mixture over the top of 12 chicken thighs I had placed in an porcelain baking dish. I'll let the chicken marinate a few hours on the kitchen counter before throwing it on the grill this evening. I recommend using indirect heat on your gas or charcoal grill when preparing teriyaki chicken.
During the summer flies become a big problem; they're dirty, aggressive, and can pass disease to your animals. For those of you out there having problems controlling flies around the dog kennels and horse turnouts, I have found these fly bags to be a great way to do some damage to the persistent little critters ever-multiplying numbers. The bags can be purchased at most hardware and feed stores, and have easy to follow instructions for use right on them. They are non-toxic and highly effective.The picture above shows a bag full of flies which I am replacing with a fresh bag. Proper husbandry; keeping manure and stool to a minimum in your kennels and turnouts, also keeps fly and health issues to a minimum; I make it a point to clean-up my kennels and turnouts twice a day.
Indian Head Intrigue (Jill) is the latest addition to the kennel. Jill was bred by Paul Wells; she was sired by CH Kelly's Rebel Louie and is out of Wells Fargo First Lady. Jill hasn't been introduced to birds yet, but has started her yard work which includes; heeling, whoaing, recalling, loading into the truck, and crating. Although she hasn't been introduced to birds in the birdfield, she has been run dry regularly in order to establish her ground game, which includes standing, releasing on the whistle, running to the front, and learning whistle and voice commands to bend and stay forward. She is intelligent and athletic, and has been fun to work with.
Indian Head Pistol (Pete) is 11-months old and coming along nicely. I acquired Pete from Diehard Gundogs of Janesville, CA. His breeding is Diehard Dirty White Boy X Diehard LuLu Jane. Pete is an intelligent dog and has responded well to his training. In the yard he is heeling, recalling, whoaing, crating, and loading into the truck on command. In the field he is hunting to the front, responding to voice and whistle commands, and pointing his birds with style. He is still breaking on the shot but has shortened-up his chase considerably. I expect to have him broke to wing and shot well before fall, and have a great 2018 season hunting over him.
Sage Grouse are congregating on their ancestral strutting/breeding grounds called "leks" throughout the Great Basin right now. The cocks have been on the leks since late winter awaiting the arrival of the hens. Now that the hens are arriving, the courtship ritual of strutting, fanning of tail-feathers, wing movements, and the inflating and deflating of brightly colored air sacs by the cocks will ensue. From this strutting display the females will then choose the most attractive male to breed with.The grouse pictured above were spotted on a lek in eastern Oregon.
Life is short Quit your job. Turn off the TV. Go outside and play.
The photo behind the title header was made by Clair Kofoed in NE Oregon several years ago - Jesse pointing, Huns flushing, and me thinking about the camera and shooting behind.
This century's quotes
"Over the long haul of life on this planet, it is the ecologists, and not the bookkeepers of business, who are the ultimate accountants."
- Stewart Udall, 1970
"Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end"
Ted is a from Crockett/Sunrise lines, with some Cover Dog blood from his dam's side. Ted has earned eight shooting dog placements in his career, and has a lot of wild birds shot over his points.
"Cody" - Wenaha Code Red
Cody is from Jetsetter X Johnny's Jewel. He has wins at the Western Open AA Derby Classic, the Oregon Shooting Dog CH AA derby, was R-U CH in the 2015 Pacific Coast CH and the 2015 California Quail CH.
"Andy" Wenaha Black Storm
Andy is 16 months old - a son of Tekoa Mountain Patriot X Iron Mistress - a daughter of Grid Iron.
"Buddy" - Wenaha Strongheart
Buddy is from Robertson's Kennel - a son of Audubon Americus X Sunrise's Last Hope - a direct daughter of Tekoa Mountain Sunrise. He was whelped in June of 2016. A really nice pup and I am having fun with him.
"L.J." Wenaha Little John
L.J. is by Cody and Crockett's Prairie Breeze, a daughter of Crockett's Deep Freeze. He is now living in Oklahoma and enjoying life as a family bird dog.