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#21 glenway

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Posted 23 May 2017 - 03:28 AM

The Master B reference was a bit confusing, I must say.  The "B" only meant that there were so many in the Master class that it had to be divided into A and B.  That way, we could get through the line without taking all day.  Sorry for misleading anyone, but there was another hunt test being conducted simultaneously.

 

It really isn't hard to drop them at all.  The real trick was to drop them all in the same place, and like I mentioned, we had a few that didn't read the manual or sign the memo of understanding. 

 

As far as being seen, and possibly distracting any dogs, the portable blind does the job of hiding things.  After shooting, we had to hunker down and sit still so as not to upset the balance of fairness when the dogs came searching nearby.  Heck, I don't know why some dogs don't actually come into our blind where all the ducks are caged.  But, we were shooting in front of the top class, and I suspect they'd never get to that level, if they made such blunders.

 

My 12-gauge is not so mighty when loaded with anemic 1-ounce loads of steel 6 shot, although they were listed as 1340 fps.  Seems the officials don't want the birds messed up too much, so that's what they gave us.  I would always let Joe shoot first; if he missed, I'd follow up.  So, it gets a bit tricky to keep every one of the dog owners happy.  Hit 'em but not too much; miss 'em and you cost them $16 each time.  We tended to err on the side of over-kill rather than to have one fly off.  But, I can tell you that after having watched other shooters, before I ever got involved, missing is more common than it should have been.



#22 Larry

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Posted 23 May 2017 - 05:13 AM

Tell the club if they ever need an old experienced gunner and will pay for gas and motel...Ill come and sit with you. I understand what you mean by getting the bird in the same spot each time. But that is one reason why AKC Hunt test are poor in my mind. Its one thing to judge dogs against each other fro elimination on how straight of line they take and can step on a bird during a mark .

 

But these are hunting dogs judged against a score they should show a little nose to find the bird. In fact I used to expect it.

 

Same thing with blind retrieves. If the dog doesn't take a good line and has to be bumped a little with a whistle, no one should care as long as its concise and their are no refusals. In fact trainabilty is one thing you judge for. How can you judge trainability if a handler line's up a dog.....it takes a straight line steps on the bird and comes back. Hows is that trainability? How do I know the dog can stop and take hand signals as all Master Hunters should with out hesitation.

 

Guess that is where I got in trouble when judging some test. Because I would use the Larry Elbow blind. You would send the dog straight. Stop it and cast to the left or the right where the bird was. Now I could judge train ability. Many people frowned on my judging because old field trailers think a line is a just that a line the dog should run for 300 yards with no stopping. Thats fine for elimination from one dog to another, but it sure does not demonstrate trainability. 

 

Hey Glen how many of these dogs had to run through decoys or swim through them at the test? 

 

They forget this is called a AKC Hunt test and my job as a Master judge is to make sure if the dog is out hunting it doesn't disturb the hunt. That means when it leaves the line/blind its superbly under control 100% of the time and it has a nose to find birds that get lost along the backs or tree lines. But heaven bird if a master dog hunts these days, all judges will drop them. 


COYOTES CANNOT FLY

 

THOUGHT FOR THE MONTH> Every coyote caller understands coyotes have their own language,  but less than 0.01% can speak yote effectively. 


#23 glenway

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Posted 23 May 2017 - 01:06 PM

Wow!  Lots there, Larry.

 

They'd never go for your proposal, but the lunch ain't bad.

 

From what I've seen of other shooters, they never did as well as we have.  No brag.  Just fact.  I saw plenty of clean get-aways, the first time I ever went to watch and learn.  So, if they can miss, they can't make a bird fall in the same spot anyway.  And, that's why they have no room to bellyache.  Heck, we are volunteers, and one thing I've learned over the years in many capacities of volunteerism:  Don't yell at the volunteers.  We couldn't have heard them anyway.

 

The first bird had them fuming, though.  Understand Joe's and my jobs were to shoot - nothing else.  But, the young Michigan State Student and ROTC member said he knew how to sling the birds in the launcher.  Trouble was, they were starting and nobody told us, although I could see some gathering back there.  (Apparently, we were supposed to have a two-way radio, but that didn't happen.) 

 

Next thing they yell, "Guns up!"  The kid was feverously trying to get the first bird caught, loaded and slung but when he pulled the trigger, the bird immediately fell about 7 feet in front of us.  It got shot, but not correctly.  Turns out the kid didn't know how to set up the bungees.  Now we're in a mess.  So, they sent another person out to see what was wrong and he couldn't believe we had no radio, let alone any clues as to what was supposed to happen and when!  I'm glad the man came out so we could tell them what had happened.  But he told us there was some serious clamoring.  It all boiled down to some lame management, that's all I can say.  We never really screwed up after that. 

 

Bottom line is there is a lot of pressure on those people.  Not so much for the volunteers in my book.

 

All dogs had to run through decoys.  Some decoys on the ground and some in the water.  But, understand the actual water retrieving was to be conducted later in the day.  In our event, a dead bird was slung into the water and/or shoreline vegetation protruding high above the water for the first mark and that's was it.  Our live bird was next.  Then another dead one slung out in another location.  And, finally the blind retrieve, while the dog was fetching the third bird.  The very best dogs did it impressively.  Others got the boot and we had to pick up the birds.

 

My neighbor's got a top-level Master and he's getting the pond, if he lives that long.



#24 Larry

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Posted 24 May 2017 - 05:29 AM

Next time you Gun ask around about what a Swamp Collie is.  Myself and a FBI friend like to think we invented the term back when hunt test started in 1988 I believe.  You see we started noticing many people would show up with their high priced show dogs to get another addition to the pedigree. AS easy way to do that was the Junior test. Simple single mark, dog has all day to the find the bird and drag it back to the line. 

 

Of course the breed was a Golden Retriever.  One lady showed up and her dog had just had its nails blackened she said and also she spent $150.00 at the groomers in preparation for a the show ring in a week.  We looked at each other and both commented the water test was next. That comment was followed with a devious grin, especially knowing the dog arrived in the front seat and not in a dog crate. 

 

We looked the are over and saw what we were looking for. The dog would start on land go down a short bank into the marsh and then swim for 15 yards and pick up the bird on the bank that was very visible.  It was a July test and the temps were in the upper 80's and most ducks shot the day before were pretty ripe. 

 

The show lady came to the line. She had just brushed fee-fee and he looked pretty spiffy. The bird was thrown. Fee-fee walked to the swampy are and the lady started yelling fetch it up, fetch it up. Fee fee tested the mud in the swamp with his paw and lunged in. Then he found the water foundered like it was his first swim and came out on the bank. He had a tad bit of trouble with the ripe duck. We figured it was because its didn't smell like a rubber doggy toy. He would not pick it up. He was out. We told the lady to get her dog. Well in her white tennis shoes and designer clothes she stood on the line while Fee Fee started rolling on the duck. We asked the gunners to pick it up. Yelling and Yelling heal, heal heal and blowing on the biggest whistle I ever saw, Fee Fee started his way back. Well you see about 8 other dogs had brought the bird back on the trail Fee Fee was using through the cattails. He smelt there birds and decided to start rolling again. Needless to say after some more yelling and blowing on the whistle, Fee Fee finally had a leash around it. Quickly the towels came out and we heard.....Fee Fee I love you, you such a pretty boy. Then the lady went asking if anyone had any towels. As most people had crates she was out of luck. Fee Fee was loaded into the front seat of her Volvo station wagon and off they went. 

 

The FBI man looked at me and said " remind me to never get a Swamp Collie" they sure can carry allot of water and mud in that long coat! Thus after that the term Swamp Collie stuck and spread through out the AKC hunt test world. 


COYOTES CANNOT FLY

 

THOUGHT FOR THE MONTH> Every coyote caller understands coyotes have their own language,  but less than 0.01% can speak yote effectively. 





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