Storm and Thunder went out grouse hunting this weekend. The weather was just about perfect for hunting…hard freezes at night, and warm sunny days. Storm drew the late morning slot and had a terrific number of flushes, around 15, including flushing 6 at once that were tucked under a log. However, she was not a good hunting partner. She would flush the birds and then chase the birds. A big no-no while hunting. Once she took off after some birds and failed to return when called. Another big no-no while hunting. Hunting with a dog that is not under control just leads to missed birds because the hunter has to worry about where the dog is before shooting at birds or stop and wait for the dog to come back after it has run off chasing a bird. Storm knows what she is expected of her, so she got a refresher course on her role while upland hunting. In the end she got one bird, but probably should have had more.
I tried to get a picture of her with her bird, but she was not cooperating.
Thunder drew the late afternoon slot and had a few flushes, but there were no shots. There just never seems to be as many birds in the afternoon as in the morning. Thunder worked hard and quartered nice and close. If you don’t know what quartering is, it is when the dog uses its nose and works an area looking for birds. The dog basically zigzags out in front of the hunter trying to find the birds. You want the dog to work fairly close because if the dog flushes a bird too far out, the hunter will not be able to make the shot. Thunder did a good job flushing the birds but they were just not in a position for a safe shot. Drat!
The next morning Storm went out again. This time she was the perfect hunting partner which made for a much more enjoyable time. She had a lot of flushes and unfortunately there were a few missed shots. Some of the birds flushed too close to the ground and others were into the cover (which is still very heavy). Just bad luck and not Storm’s fault. There were also a couple of cripples that they looked and looked for, but could not find. They ended up with one bird and had a great time. Good job Storm!
Storm was even more cooperative posing for pictures.
While getting the items together to clean the bird, we put it on the woodpile. Of course that attracted attention.
Tonight will be grouse for supper (people supper that is ).