trial hunting ranges

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trial hunting ranges

Post by Trekmoor » Wed Mar 05, 2014 5:00 am

Just heard about a field trial for pointers and setters held in the north of Scotland up in what we call "The Floe Country." This is a colossal and mainly flat moor of poor quality heather which means the grouse on it are few and are very widely dispersed. It is just about the only trial ground in Britain where the dogs can really run out to long distances as they need to do in order to find birds there.
A pointer called "F.T.Ch. Bold as Brass" did very well beating the three other F.T.Ch.'s it ran against . Bold was hunting out to distances of 900 yards or more to find birds. I have never seen such extreme distances in any British trial, we do not have the ground to give the dogs that sort of running and apart from that we never hunt pointers from horseback and do not like walking out to such long distance points. I'd like to have seen that trial but not if I was having to walk to see it ! I feel quite sorry for the judges !

Bill T.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by JKP » Wed Mar 05, 2014 7:36 am

Bill,
This can't be true. Trial dogs shorten up their range when you are on foot. That has been unequivocally established by the posters on this board. This can't be. Perhaps it only looked like 900 yds :wink: :lol: :lol:

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by slistoe » Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:16 am

That is why these are called hunting dogs JKP - they go where they need to to find birds. Just the thing for hunting behind to save all the walking. Dang trial dogs don't know enough to range out in open country to find birds when handled on foot.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by roaniecowpony » Wed Mar 05, 2014 9:37 am

I don't know about trial dogs, but I keep worrying my shy little pointer will shorten up too much as she gets more affectionate and used to snacking on exotic cheese, imported prosciutto, and being a house dog in the city. But she seems to dispel my worries. She's big and bold in the field. Last month in AZ, she opened up with the terrain to 500 yards on the gps and was still headed outbound when I turned her. Some of you trialers are likely competing with her littermates. I think my little dog was probably the runt. But there's a lot of fairly notable high octane blood in her that seems to defy her shy demeanor and size.

Funny...when I got the dog I worried about her ranging too big. Scared, is probably the most accurate word.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Trekmoor » Wed Mar 05, 2014 9:55 am

JKP wrote:Bill,
This can't be true. Trial dogs shorten up their range when you are on foot. That has been unequivocally established by the posters on this board. This can't be. Perhaps it only looked like 900 yds :wink: :lol: :lol:
Hi JKP, I was told about this trial by an Irish trailer who was present. Maybe he'd been on the potcheen but I don't think so. :lol: These sort of distances from any breed of dog just aren't seen here in trials .... unless the dog is out of control and maybe chasing a hare !

It is the flat(tish) landscape that allows this trial to show off the dogs that like to run wide .... and remain under control, the handlers and the judges can still see the dogs. I have never owned a dog that ran that wide and to be honest, in my state of health, I don't really want to own one ! :lol:

Bill T.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by DonF » Wed Mar 05, 2014 10:38 am

Trekmoor wrote:
JKP wrote:Bill,
This can't be true. Trial dogs shorten up their range when you are on foot. That has been unequivocally established by the posters on this board. This can't be. Perhaps it only looked like 900 yds :wink: :lol: :lol:
Hi JKP, I was told about this trial by an Irish trailer who was present. Maybe he'd been on the potcheen but I don't think so. :lol: These sort of distances from any breed of dog just aren't seen here in trials .... unless the dog is out of control and maybe chasing a hare !

It is the flat(tish) landscape that allows this trial to show off the dogs that like to run wide .... and remain under control, the handlers and the judges can still see the dogs. I have never owned a dog that ran that wide and to be honest, in my state of health, I don't really want to own one ! :lol:

Bill T.
At 900 yds I doubt any dog is under control. Ever try to hear much of anything 900 yds off? I got bodie to acknowledge me one time at right at 600 yds. Took a bit and several long whistle blows but he turned and looked and came in. I know because I was tracking him on a GPS. It occurred to me that what happens is if the dog can hear you, it could well move behind something before the signal get's there. Also, to reach a dog that far out require's a very strong blow on the whistle. And of course the route to the dog that the sound takes will end if the dog is not in a position to hear it. Dog get's behind a rock, sound doesn't get there. It was very interesting watching him at long range and looking for a response to the whistle.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by roaniecowpony » Wed Mar 05, 2014 10:44 am

Don
I've trained in 2 beeps on the low volume tone of my Alpha to turn my dog. No more worries about sound of a whistle getting there.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by RayGubernat » Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:01 am

Guys-

Big running dogs without e-collars on, may come when you call, but that is not really the reason they come in from those kinds of extended ranges. The dog comes in because it WANTS to. For whatever reason, the dog is choosing to hunt with you. Same reason a dog will come in from out of sight when you get quiet...because it wants to stay in touch with you.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by crackerd » Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:17 am

Nicely said, Ray, lovely to see in execution.

MG

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by slistoe » Wed Mar 05, 2014 12:03 pm

DonF wrote: At 900 yds I doubt any dog is under control.
If you NEED to be in CONTROL of your dog, you will never be comfortable with a dog at 900 yards.
If you have an harmonious relationship with a dog that wants to work for and with you, you will be comfortable with your dog wherever it may be.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by ultracarry » Wed Mar 05, 2014 3:26 pm

slistoe wrote:
DonF wrote: At 900 yds I doubt any dog is under control.
If you NEED to be in CONTROL of your dog, you will never be comfortable with a dog at 900 yards.
If you have an harmonious relationship with a dog that wants to work for and with you, you will be comfortable with your dog wherever it may be.
When mine range that far I'm very happy I don't have to go there unless there is a bird.... Just let's me know to take a different route, stay in contact (yes they can hear you), and keep working with the dog to find birds. At 900 yds I can still see the dogs boots and collar pretty well while she is working draws and hill sides. Which means she can still see me and my direction dictates her direction.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by ezzy333 » Wed Mar 05, 2014 5:20 pm

At 900 yds I can still see the dogs boots and collar pretty well while she is working draws and hill sides. Which means she can still see me and my direction dictates her direction.
I think this could easily be disputed. A dogs eye sight is a lot different than ours.

Ezzy

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Wagonmaster » Wed Mar 05, 2014 5:26 pm

Well, another thing that is my favorite issue, is COMMUNICATION. So people who have dogs that have no style, like to claim that style is unrelated to hunting, if a dog goes on point it does not matter what it looks like. I can tell you that when a dog makes a find on game that far out you will definitely appreciate that it stands tall and proud telling you in no uncertain terms that you need to walk your rear end out there and harvest some, rather than slouching and making you wonder, and then making you walk, and then there is nothing there but it was hard to tell so you went.

So about three years ago we were hunting pheasants in this long cattail slough on the prairie, not having alot of luck it was windy and the birds were scarce. The AA dog went up the side of the hill, over the top, and the Garmin converted from reading in hundreds of yards, to tenths of miles. You guys do know it does that at about 800 yards, the next thing you see is .9, then 1.0, etc., then it stops. It says "Point." I am old and don't like all that walking, besides the going in that slough had been tough and no birds, so I was mumbling to myself as I walked out of there, the basic gist of it was "You better have something." When I top the hill I see the dog, still a good half mile out, on a fenceline, tall and proud. That kinda put a little speed in my gait. Maybe ten minutes of walking across plowed stubble and I get to the dog. He is pointing on a patch of cover that we have never gotten to before. We have worked the ground from the east side, the north side, the south side, and now the west side, but never gotten to that patch becuase it was so small and so far out. And of course, he did, and that was where all the roosters had gone. No one ever walked out that far except that dog (well, he ran, not walked). In a patch of cover no more than 20 yards in dia. he had at least 50 roosters. I managed not to miss on the flush with my Beretta auto, so there were three down, one near me and two on the other side of the fence. I picked up the near bird and sent him through the fence. He brought back the first one. I sent him again and it took a little digging but he brought back the second. So that was a limit in one flush. That was not the first time he had done such a thing. Although that dog is now gone, I hope to find another as "uncontrollable" as he was.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by JKP » Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:00 pm

that you need to walk your rear end out there and harvest some, rather than slouching and making you wonder, and then making you walk, and then there is nothing there but it was hard to tell so you went.
From the posts her, it would seem that all 1000 yd dogs are perfect because FT makes them so!!! I have never heard anyone recount how they walked the 1000 yds and there was no bird....or the phez had run 2000 yds while the hunter walked 1000 yds...or that the sharpies lifted off 300 yds before you got there. I guess that only happens to me....or are we talking planted quail here...

In ND, in the grass, the dog that takes a line 1000yds quartered on the wind just ran by 80% of the grassland in front of me....and a lot of game too. What's wrong with the birds that are in front of me?? What you are describing is sport....ball room dancing....the ballet....the high wire...dock jumping...or flyball....models on the runway :wink:

See what I'm wondering is with all the unproductives from the best dogs in the country at the NC why I would want to spend my hunting time walking 1000 yds for a 50% chance game may even be there. You see, even with my slovenly 200 yd dogs, the chance after the first 2 weeks of the season that the sharpies actually sit tight until I get to gunning range even with the modified barrel is %50 at best. You must enjoy those long jaunts...

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Chukar12 » Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:17 pm

JKP wrote:In ND, in the grass, the dog that takes a line 1000yds quartered on the wind just ran by 80% of the grassland in front of me....and a lot of game too. What's wrong with the birds that are in front of me?? What you are describing is sport....ball room dancing....the ballet....the high wire...dock jumping...or flyball....models on the runway
So in the grasslands...(never been there) There are no objectives, tree lines, ridges, draws, rock outcroppings, springs, feed strips, etc..? Where I hunt chukars, valley quail, mountain quail and grouse there are very identifiable casts to be made depending on terrain and weather conditions. So even if you speak for a given situation with some assumed credibility you certainly aren't speaking for all of them or us. I hate arguments on yardage, it is about application...and sometimes application is about preference, point of view, experience, type of dog, so on and so forth... the ball room dancing comments are not clever in any argument it immediately dilutes credibility and they are soon followed by "I don't care what you think" comments.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by SCT » Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:57 pm

ezzy333 wrote:
At 900 yds I can still see the dogs boots and collar pretty well while she is working draws and hill sides. Which means she can still see me and my direction dictates her direction.
I think this could easily be disputed. A dogs eye sight is a lot different than ours.

Ezzy
It can be disputed, but I know for a fact my one female can see me from 900+ yrds. She proved it last week and has on other occasions. But, from that distance I need to be moving for her to see me.

I have walked to a few of those long points and the sage grouse will hold until you get there if you hurry. But, if they know the dog is there, they'll eventually get up and walk or fly away. I don't love walking 900 yards to a point, but I'm out there to see my dogs hunt at extreme ranges and have no problem scooting my butt over there if I have to. Maybe too far to go 10 years from now, but until then.......

Here's a close one...
Image

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by JKP » Wed Mar 05, 2014 7:26 pm

So in the grasslands...(never been there) There are no objectives, tree lines, ridges, draws, rock outcroppings, springs, feed strips, etc..?
Yup...a lot of the time....

Image
But, if they know the dog is there, they'll eventually get up and walk or fly away. I don't love walking 900 yards to a point, but I'm out there to see my dogs hunt at extreme ranges and have no problem scooting my butt over there if I have to. Maybe too far to go 10 years from now, but until then.......
Finally some honest talk...thank you..

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by jetjockey » Wed Mar 05, 2014 7:58 pm

Chukar12 wrote:So in the grasslands...(never been there) There are no objectives, tree lines, ridges, draws, rock outcroppings, springs, feed strips, etc..? Where I hunt chukars, valley quail, mountain quail and grouse there are very identifiable casts to be made depending on terrain and weather conditions. So even if you speak for a given situation with some assumed credibility you certainly aren't speaking for all of them or us. I hate arguments on yardage, it is about application...and sometimes application is about preference, point of view, experience, type of dog, so on and so forth... the ball room dancing comments are not clever in any argument it immediately dilutes credibility and they are soon followed by "I don't care what you think" comments.
Not always. There could be birds anywhere out here, and you never know when or where the dogs will find birds.
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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by mask » Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:00 pm

I hunt AA bred pointers and have for more years than some of you have had dogs. One needs to understand that a big running dog does not run by birds 100 yds. away to find birds 500 yds. away. They will range until they find birds or you turn them or they turn themselves. I expect my dogs to stand till I get there unless the birds flush wild. When birds move I want the dog to relocate. If there are birds stacked on top of each other you don't even need a dog. It is when birds are few and far between that a big running dog shines (and will save you a lot of walking). The bottom line is hunt dogs that have the run you like.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Soarer31 » Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:59 pm

That's the length of 10 football fields!
Personally I get great enjoyment watching my dog working and by his demeaner you can read what scent his picked up, his pointing style is diferant when his on hares or foxes. So about 400 metres max range is plenty for me

I just don't see the point of walking alone and the dog coming in and outa sight every 5-10 min a mile away and if he doesn't make an appearance in 15 min his probably on point some where to front and the search begins ,

But what ever floats your boat I guess

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Wagonmaster » Wed Mar 05, 2014 9:36 pm

mask wrote:I hunt AA bred pointers and have for more years than some of you have had dogs. One needs to understand that a big running dog does not run by birds 100 yds. away to find birds 500 yds. away. They will range until they find birds or you turn them or they turn themselves. I expect my dogs to stand till I get there unless the birds flush wild. When birds move I want the dog to relocate. If there are birds stacked on top of each other you don't even need a dog. It is when birds are few and far between that a big running dog shines (and will save you a lot of walking). The bottom line is hunt dogs that have the run you like.
That's it. That's the magic. There certainly are AA dogs that are built to run, then they stuff the course with enough birds, that dog stumbles onto one in the hour, stops, and therefore wins. Lots of people will call that the "true" AA dog. It is not. It is not a dog worth having, period, because that is the dog that will run by birds. The true AA dog will go as far as it needs to in order to find birds for you. That may be 10 yds., 100 yds., that may be 1000 yds.

No, it is not true that they never make mistakes. They make a lot of them especially when young. With experience, you see that and instead of fuming you just laugh, because you know that animal will make a dog. It takes 4-5 years to make a real AA, a dog that will find and actually hold birds for you at a half mile.

The same dog that hit that fenceline cover, we hunted many times in thick cattails, grass, areas full of birds, we would fill out and he would never feel the need to get more than 100yds. away. It was when you put him in a piece of cover and after some work, his nose told him it was empty. He would pull the string and go, but when you found him, how ever far away that was, he had found your birds for you.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Soarer31 » Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:24 am

When mine range that far I'm very happy I don't have to go there unless there is a bird.... Just let's me know to take a different route, stay in contact (yes they can hear you), and keep working with the dog to find birds. At 900 yds I can still see the dogs boots and collar pretty well while she is working draws and hill sides. Which means she can still see me and my direction dictates her direction.[/quote]

Question ;

Ok so you change direction, the dog sees that you've changed direction and moves across accordingly but still at 900+ yards ,so now you have an unhunted area of 900+ yards between you and the dog in that new direction which you've just taken, correct??
Or do you call the dog all the way in and re cast the dog in the new direction?

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by JKP » Thu Mar 06, 2014 7:45 am

One needs to understand that a big running dog does not run by birds 100 yds. away to find birds 500 yds. away.
Oh BOZ-WAH (as my father used to say...must be a New England expression). I swallowed that line until I went hunting with big running dogs and kept finding birds underneath them. Its just the style of hunting the
go cart jockies like....its OK...but lets call it what it is.

There's a Pointer out beyond my dog in this picture....running from one plum thicket (objective) to the next...I could have shot my limit twice by the time we caught up with the dog

Image
It takes 4-5 years to make a real AA, a dog that will find and actually hold birds for you at a half mile.
We we're told they were born that way....that you don't make AA dogs....that its genetic. So what takes 4-5 years...the run??.... or the honesty on birds???

Look...I have no problem with all this...but what this is really more about amusement....AA Pointer Fuelie Eliminations...takin the hot rod for a spin... :) :)

Jetjockey (proves my point!!)

BTW...nice training pictures...were the birds wild or liberated?...or maybe your state doesn't require hunter orange.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by fuzznut » Thu Mar 06, 2014 8:15 am

What is impressive about AA dogs is that they can do it! They have the physical ability and the mental stability to do it. Not many dogs can.

Does everyone want one? Does everyone need one? Nope.... but I do believe our breeding programs do. The raw athleticism, the desire, the trainability , the stamina, the mental toughness to live on the road traveling all over the country and still do it is amazing. It takes an extremely stable animal to live the life and be able to perform well year in and year out.

I know too many dogs who cannot adjust to new grounds, strange people, long car trips and running with different brace mates. Dogs who have to be treated with kit gloves, who need days to adjust.... those breeding programs certainly could use a shot of tough AA types of dogs.

I can certainly appreciate that there are a ton of hunters out there whose eyes glaze over when talks of 1000 yds or more is discussed! Heck, most of them don't have dogs trained to stand a bird for 5 min, much less 15 or more. They just want to shoot birds, they don't particularly care how it gets done. And thats cool.. I would just hope they could appreciate the extreme athlete and what they can do.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Wagonmaster » Thu Mar 06, 2014 8:29 am

The run comes right away, when they are pups you can only watch and laugh. If it has a nose, that will make a dog in a couple of years. Although there is often a period when they are first made broke when they will shorten up and you hope and expect that they will gain confidence and move out again. The honesty on birds takes time. It is one thing to be broke in a bird field on planty birds with the trainer right behind and a collar on. It is a whole other thing to stay honest on birds with a covey walking around in front, for a very long time, while the handler finds you and then catches up. We have lost dogs in trials and found them 45 minutes later standing on birds. Were they on birds for the whole time, who knows? I had a dog disappear on me once just before sunset, she had been working in sight within about 150 yds. I looked for her for a half hour and walked by her many times. I did not find her until it got dark and I could see a tiny red LED on a radio tracking collar I had on her. She was stuffed under cattails on a big rooster. Of course I missed the rooster, it was too dark to see the thing by the time I got it up.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by sdoliver » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:00 am

It doesn't get much sweeter than to let the dog out of the crate and have her take off up a waterway for 300-400yard then swing over and pick up a fence row and come down it for several hundred yards and meet you and the end of the fence. She has just covered maybe 1000 yards of cover and you have walked maybe a hundred. If you had a 50-75 yard dog you would have had to walked that 1000 yards of unproductive cover. As long as the dog is smart enough to run the down wind side and will hold her birds its pretty fun to watch.
My dad used to tell the story of two old boys that had a little setter they would let out of the car and she would take off down a hedge row and around a creek line and then back up the next fence row. They could see everything from the car so they wouldn't get out unless she went on point. They were up there in years so it still allowed them to shoot quail and not have to do a lot of walking.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by JKP » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:01 am

It takes an extremely stable animal to live the life and be able to perform well year in and year out.
heh Fuzz...boy did you pick the right year to be in Florida!!! Stability???....if the same dog can sit quiet in the duckblind for 4 hours, I'll call it stable!! :wink:

What's being presented here is the idea that when you see an AA dog 1000 yds to the front that all the ground between here and there is void of game...which of course is nonsense.
On one hand you hear that AA dogs are born....and that the next it takes 4-5 years to make one....that folks walk 1000 yds and birds are always there....that the 20% of NC dogs that go lost are actually on point two towns over and just not found...etc, etc, etc There seem to be endless explanations all circling the wagons in the attempt to hold up the dog on the horizon as the zenith of the bird hunter's dream.

This has NOTHING to do with hunting...its amusement...and I don't have problems with amusement as long as its not always presented as being perfect and the highest form of the art...while we hear how the rest of us just want to fill our zip lock bags with our bootlickers. Sorry...I have enough real world experience with the product of FT genetics to know that life ain't perfect in the Amesian Nirvana.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by jetjockey » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:06 am

Jetjockey (proves my point!!)

BTW...nice training pictures...were the birds wild or liberated?...or maybe your state doesn't require hunter orange.

Training on wild birds shooting blanks.

The entire argument is basically pretty stupid. I call BS when someone says a 1000 yard dog won't miss birds on it's way out to 1000 yards. heck, I've seen boot lickers miss birds on there way out to 25 yards. The reasons why are endless. Trials and hunting are asking two related, but slightly different things from a dog. AA Trial dogs are are asked to perform their task to the extreme in order to win, hunting dogs aren't. Because of that, a hunting dog that looks good hunting, might not have what it takes to run trials. I equate it to shooting lay ups in basketball. I could go head to head with Jordan shooting layups. But put us outside the 3 point line and it's a totally different story. IMO, A "good" AA dog isn't just a dog that looks great in a trial making 500 and 1000 yard casts. It's also adog smart enough to learn the game of hunting off foot as well. If a dog doesn't do both well, is it really that good? What made Jordan the best was his ability to dunk, shoot, defend, and play the entire game well. A dog that knows how to adjust to cover, run huge when it needs to, and shorten up as well, is the ultimate dog IMO. A "real" AA dog should be able to win in GA on a tight plantation one day, in the Prairies the next, and then get foot hunted a day after that. Like Chukar said, it's not just range, but application as well. However, a dog better have the range when it needs it. Because my lazy butt doesn't want to follow a 100 yard dog up and down those ridges I posted pictures of. I want the dog to hunt the ridges, valleys, and everything in between. Can a 200-300 yard dog do that? Not without you doing it as well.
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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by SCT » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:21 am

fuzznut wrote:What is impressive about AA dogs is that they can do it! They have the physical ability and the mental stability to do it. Not many dogs can.

Does everyone want one? Does everyone need one? Nope.... but I do believe our breeding programs do. The raw athleticism, the desire, the trainability , the stamina, the mental toughness to live on the road traveling all over the country and still do it is amazing. It takes an extremely stable animal to live the life and be able to perform well year in and year out.

I know too many dogs who cannot adjust to new grounds, strange people, long car trips and running with different brace mates. Dogs who have to be treated with kit gloves, who need days to adjust.... those breeding programs certainly could use a shot of tough AA types of dogs.

I can certainly appreciate that there are a ton of hunters out there whose eyes glaze over when talks of 1000 yds or more is discussed! Heck, most of them don't have dogs trained to stand a bird for 5 min, much less 15 or more. They just want to shoot birds, they don't particularly care how it gets done. And thats cool.. I would just hope they could appreciate the extreme athlete and what they can do.
Great post and 100% true. It really just comes down to personal preference, but thank goodness these dogs are available for their genetics.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by RayGubernat » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:31 am

JKP wrote:
So in the grasslands...(never been there) There are no objectives, tree lines, ridges, draws, rock outcroppings, springs, feed strips, etc..?
Yup...a lot of the time....

Image

There are PLENTY of objectives out on those supposedly featureless expanses of grass. they are just not obvious to us, probably because we suck as hunters, especially when compared to a real predator like a dog. We re just not able to figure out what and where they are. The better dogs do not seem to have that problem.
But, if they know the dog is there, they'll eventually get up and walk or fly away. I don't love walking 900 yards to a point, but I'm out there to see my dogs hunt at extreme ranges and have no problem scooting my butt over there if I have to. Maybe too far to go 10 years from now, but until then.......
Finally some honest talk...thank you..
But the good news is that if the birds walk out from under a point, once you release the dog, it will probably go right to them and nail them down for you. That indeed would be worth the walk.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by rinker » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:40 am

I am a bird hunter and small time weekend foot field trialer. I have pointers and I will never own a dog that isn't directly out of, or very close up to horseback all age dogs. I generally do not let my dogs make 900+ yard casts, I really do not have access to grounds where that would work well. I would imagine my dogs do run a little bigger than the average foot hunting dogs in my area. Like many others that have posted here, I absolutely live to see a big going dog running down a fence row cracking his tail with every jump, then he swaps ends and points several hundred yards away and by the time I get to him I'm completely out of breath and soaked with sweat, so I can step in front and flush and probably miss, if I'm shooting at all.

Now, do I think this is the only way to hunt and that everyone should agree with me, of course not. I fully realize that in certain terrain or conditions that a flushing dog may be the most efficient choice, or a close ranging pointing dog. I fully realize that my dogs are not versatile, and I know that is important to some. This topic gets beat to death on the internet, and right answer is that there is no right answer.

I think I'm fairly knowledgeable about pointers, and I think I know a little about E Setters, beyond that I am clueless. For the pointer and setter guys I do think that you have to admit that the extreme athletes, horse back all age dogs, are where the weekend hunting dogs come from. The vast majority of pointers and setters, even if they are close working dogs, are generally only a few generations away from horseback all age dogs.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by shags » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:47 am

JKP wrote:
It takes an extremely stable animal to live the life and be able to perform well year in and year out.
heh Fuzz...boy did you pick the right year to be in Florida!!! Stability???....if the same dog can sit quiet in the duckblind for 4 hours, I'll call it stable!! :wink:

What's being presented here is the idea that when you see an AA dog 1000 yds to the front that all the ground between here and there is void of game...which of course is nonsense.
On one hand you hear that AA dogs are born....and that the next it takes 4-5 years to make one....that folks walk 1000 yds and birds are always there....that the 20% of NC dogs that go lost are actually on point two towns over and just not found...etc, etc, etc There seem to be endless explanations all circling the wagons in the attempt to hold up the dog on the horizon as the zenith of the bird hunter's dream.

This has NOTHING to do with hunting...its amusement...and I don't have problems with amusement as long as its not always presented as being perfect and the highest form of the art...while we hear how the rest of us just want to fill our zip lock bags with our bootlickers. Sorry...I have enough real world experience with the product of FT genetics to know that life ain't perfect in the Amesian Nirvana.
This right here is an example of folks who don't understand bird dogs. They just don't get it, and probably never will. Their minds cannot comprehend anything beyond their limited experience. And that's OK, they get along great with what they have and are happy. They like what they like and nothing wrong with it. But they shouldn't expound on that which they do not understand.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Trekmoor » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:56 am

As I said earlier I have never owned a 1000 yard dog or even a 700 yards one. I am happy with much lesser distances .....if those shorter distances produce game. I think what goes wrong with many of Britain's HPR's (versatiles) is that their owners train too much of the stuffing out of them . The owners are a bit too frightened of the dog being out of control.

I like to see dogs that only hunt a hundred yards out , or less, if the cover is thickish or if there is quite a lot of game around. I also like to see those same dogs take the initiative if the ground is open and game is very sparse. Then I want to see those dogs open up and take in much more ground.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by JKP » Thu Mar 06, 2014 10:03 am

But they shouldn't expound on that which they do not understand.
PLEASE!! spare me the arrogance...

Here's a near 11 year old headed to the plum thickets...picture at 8X zoom. Its because I have seen and worked with both that I can unequivocally say that its all about amusement and has little to do with greater ability to produce game.
That's a Euro dog...from pig hunting lines...not an FT dog in the pedigree
Image

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by fuzznut » Thu Mar 06, 2014 10:26 am

looks like one of those useless runoffs! And look at all the birds he might have missed!!!

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by KCBrittfan » Thu Mar 06, 2014 11:10 am

JKP wrote: Here's a near 11 year old headed to the plum thickets...picture at 8X zoom. Its because I have seen and worked with both that I can unequivocally say that its all about amusement and has little to do with greater ability to produce game.
That's a Euro dog...from pig hunting lines...not an FT dog in the pedigree
Image
So your "Euro dog" with a non-FT pedigree can put some distance between you and him. Even my uncle's lab will wonder off a thousand yards to the neighbor's property when he is bored with what is closer to home. This doesn't make him an All Age dog. If your dog can hit the same number of objectives per hour that an AA dog can (even if long distances are needed to get there), and you're okay with that, then I'm truly happy for you.

A dog with a non- field trail pedigree can still have some AA tendencies because pedigrees are not guarantees. At best, they increase the probability of a certain outcome. Those probabilities usually work in the other direction where a dog with a strong FT pedigrees ends up with closer working tendencies. However, it doesn't surprise when I learn of a dog with natural range beyond that of its parents. When the sample size is large enough you are very likely to hit on some of the more improbable outcomes. Again, if you're happy with the outcome, then I'm happy for you. However, if you want to repeat that outcome, then looking towards bigger running parents would be your best bet.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by KCBrittfan » Thu Mar 06, 2014 11:20 am

Oops! I forgot to mention: There may be no Field Champions in a dog's pedigree; however, one of his ancestors could still have been capable of championship performance. A lot of big running dogs never get near a Field Trial. Its possible one or more of your dog's ancestors were big runners, and they just didn't prove it in a trial.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by DonF » Thu Mar 06, 2014 11:55 am

RayGubernat wrote:
JKP wrote:
So in the grasslands...(never been there) There are no objectives, tree lines, ridges, draws, rock outcroppings, springs, feed strips, etc..?
Yup...a lot of the time....

Image

There are PLENTY of objectives out on those supposedly featureless expanses of grass. they are just not obvious to us, probably because we suck as hunters, especially when compared to a real predator like a dog. We re just not able to figure out what and where they are. The better dogs do not seem to have that problem.
But, if they know the dog is there, they'll eventually get up and walk or fly away. I don't love walking 900 yards to a point, but I'm out there to see my dogs hunt at extreme ranges and have no problem scooting my butt over there if I have to. Maybe too far to go 10 years from now, but until then.......
Finally some honest talk...thank you..
But the good news is that if the birds walk out from under a point, once you release the dog, it will probably go right to them and nail them down for you. That indeed would be worth the walk.

RayG
The dog's job is to find, point,n accurately locate and hold the birds till the handler get's there. If that is not happening, the dog is not doing it's job. I greatly doubt in a hunting situation on wild birds that a dog can hold birds at even 500 yds most of the time. There come's a point where the birds get up the stones to try and escape. I seriously doubt that a dog can smell birds at 100yds. I hear about that a lot, mostly at 50 yds, but I have never see the dog that pointed at those kind of distance's and actually held a wild bird. The holy grail of the bird dog world is the AA dog. matter's not if it's useful as a hunting dog like that, it is a trial dog. As for saying a dog can see you at 900 yds, I doubt it. What the dog's does is see's a movement. And I greatly doubt the dog's ability to hear at those ranges. The idea that if you shut up the dog will come looking for you, maybe maybe not. If you spend your time yelling so your dog can keep track of you, your not gonna hunt with me. The dog should keep track of the handler, that is part of the dogs job. For myself, I have no use for most the all age dogs. I don't go hunting to hunt a dog! What is allowed in AA stakes is well beyond me, I would not want a pup out of about 99% of the AA dogs I've watched. I had some pointer's, Mississippi Rifle blood. You could not hunt them off foot! Not is was hard, you could not hunt them on foot. When you got into a place where you could actually see the dogs going, it was great watching them go but, I have never seen one hold a bird at those ranges, never! And for holding covey's at those ranges? Forget it, won't happen. You can tell me all about how you've see it many time's, I don't believe a word of it. Many years ago the Ama Field Trial Club of America said the developing a type of dog that is only useful as a trial dog is not their aim. Them they get on their horse and encourage these dog's and breed these dog's looking for one with even more range. So tell me, is a dogs ground race and it's identifying cover a part of the performance or not? How do you judge all those things if in a half hr or hour brace you don't see the dog for the vast majority of the brace? Those dog's win and place! That mean's that the majority of the brace is judged by assumption for the dog could not be seen! Those dog's are glorified! if you like you bird dog running like that, more power to you but, that is not what the overwhelming majority of hunter's want's. There is a reason that a lot of the continental breed's are becoming popular. But the thing you cannot do is say to someone that does like that kind of dog that you wouldn't let it eat your grocery's. It is why we keep hearing these claim's that these are the great dogs. I hear a lot that the greatest thing is coming over a hill and finding your dog on point. Sorry but I enjoy watching the dog all I can. A dog out of sight for a few min has earned a trip to the last place I saw it to find out what's going on. I grew up in and age where electronics were not used to find the dog or control the dog. The dog's today are better, I don't think so! Trial people are continually breeding for AA dogs. Seldom do they breed gun dogs. Wehle said of the dog hunting, he want's it well out there, the birds on his way he could kick up on foot and shoot without the dog. Why did he bother with a dog in the first place?

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by mask » Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:18 pm

:lol: This subject like many may be getting a little off track. What type of dog one owns very likely depends on what and where one hunts. As an example we hunt mostly chucker. Last season bird numbers were down to the point it was the poorest I've seen in 40 years. We were walking about 3 miles per covey. A close working to medium working dog would have found very few of those coveys and you would have walked farther in the process. Now before you ask, how would I know, I know because The few people I hunt with have close to medium hunters. Their dogs are good dogs in their own right. They are other breeds than pointers and spent most, and please note I said most, of the time backing. While I realize a lot of people know way more about dogs than I do, You don't know more about my dogs than I do. Hunt or trial what you like and have fun with all that goes with it.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by KCBrittfan » Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:58 pm

Sorry if it looks like my response was off track. I should've done a better job connecting the implication to what I posted. I was responding to the implication that because one dog gets far away and that dog has no field trial ancestry, then we don't need field trials to get distance.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by JKP » Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:14 pm

I have no problem with folks who want to walk 1000 yds to a dog on point....knock yourselves out...life is too short not to enjoy yourself. I just have problems with the whole attitude that these dogs find more game, handle perfectly, look better, and that the other 99% (of the non-competitive dogs) of the breed are still better than anyone else's hunting dogs. Jim Jones would have been proud of all of you.

I got to go run the "meat dogs" -- don't worry I got a 1/4 acre of ground here :wink:

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by ezzy333 » Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:50 pm

Amen Don

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Post by birddog1968 » Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:57 pm

If you've not had or seen a dog that can adjust it range to the task at hand or had or seen one that can go with you at long range you've missed having or seeing one of the great things in dogdom.

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Re:

Post by rinker » Thu Mar 06, 2014 2:49 pm

birddog1968 wrote:If you've not had or seen a dog that can adjust it range to the task at hand or had or seen one that can go with you at long range you've missed having or seeing one of the great things in dogdom.
+1

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by hustonmc » Thu Mar 06, 2014 2:58 pm

DonF wrote: I greatly doubt in a hunting situation on wild birds that a dog can hold birds at even 500 yds most of the time. There come's a point where the birds get up the stones to try and escape. I seriously doubt that a dog can smell birds at 100yds. I hear about that a lot, mostly at 50 yds, but I have never see the dog that pointed at those kind of distance's and actually held a wild bird.
Don................... This is the worst quote you've ever made.

This coming from the guy for the last 4yrs has said there are no more wild birds. When that same weekend I've found 18 coveys out your back door. These same years I'm finding 250 coveys in a season. I put 40+ days a year of boot leather and dogs on the ground and can without a doubt!!!!!!!! Say your above quote is wrong.

I've seen good dogs turn their head and catch scent and are over 200yds from that point when they lock up, sticking a covey of Huns to ground. If you didn't pop so many pigeons and let your dogs point the dang birds instead of stopping at first scent you'd see the same thing. And most of the time they'd still be there, rather 100yds or 1000yds.

You can seriously or greatly doubt all day, but your seriously and greatly wrong.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Elkhunter » Thu Mar 06, 2014 4:02 pm

hustonmc wrote:
DonF wrote: I greatly doubt in a hunting situation on wild birds that a dog can hold birds at even 500 yds most of the time. There come's a point where the birds get up the stones to try and escape. I seriously doubt that a dog can smell birds at 100yds. I hear about that a lot, mostly at 50 yds, but I have never see the dog that pointed at those kind of distance's and actually held a wild bird.
Don................... This is the worst quote you've ever made.

This coming from the guy for the last 4yrs has said there are no more wild birds. When that same weekend I've found 18 coveys out your back door. These same years I'm finding 250 coveys in a season. I put 40+ days a year of boot leather and dogs on the ground and can without a doubt!!!!!!!! Say your above quote is wrong.

I've seen good dogs turn their head and catch scent and are over 200yds from that point when they lock up, sticking a covey of Huns to ground. If you didn't pop so many pigeons and let your dogs point the dang birds instead of stopping at first scent you'd see the same thing. And most of the time they'd still be there, rather 100yds or 1000yds.

You can seriously or greatly doubt all day, but your seriously and greatly wrong.
+ one million!

I hear the same crap in Utah, there are no birds blah blah blah. Yet I go out time after time and shoot birds. Moved 9 coveys with a friend in under 3 hours. Ya there are no birds, just no birds that are easy to get to is more like it. And the large majority of the time, I dont think the birds have any idea my dog is there. And he has pointed birds from 100+ yards away more than once. I relocated him 4 times once before I finally got the birds to flush. Boots to the ground is how you see this stuff, not popping pigeons in the field next to your house.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by JKP » Thu Mar 06, 2014 4:03 pm

I greatly doubt in a hunting situation on wild birds that a dog can hold birds at even 500 yds most of the time. There come's a point where the birds get up the stones to try and escape.
Think of something that adds to the conversation or don't post
Editted by Ezzy

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by ezzy333 » Thu Mar 06, 2014 5:07 pm

I can't say how far a dog can smell and I doubt if any of you can either. I have had dogs point and when I get there the birds may be 100 yds away but it didn't appear they were when the dog pointed. But we will never know. I have seen studies done that says 75 yds is about max for a dog but there are so many variable we probably will never know. the ones that bother me more are the ones that are ten feet away and downwind that the same dog doesn't have a clue is there. It has also been pretty well documented that the best of dogs will average about 75% of the birds in the field will be found and that I am sure has to be close to right. But it is a rather silly argument to have since no one knows for sure, no one can prove it, and it doesn't change a thing because we all are going to keep on following the dogs and enjoying the hunt. And everyone of us can claim our dog is better than yours but you can't prove that either since everyone's standard of better is completely different. I pretty much agree with Don after spending over fifty years following those dogs but I also agree it is special to watch a dog that covers a lot of ground fast and slams into an intense point sometimes when in mid air. But I do want to see it and not walk over a hill and find the dog on point. that comes second in my book. Many of you here will criticize me for wanting the dogs too close, practically everyone I hunt with criticizes because I let the dogs range, and practically everyone I have sold pups to consider trial bred a detriment and are happy if I can show them a dog that will cover the area within 50 to 100 yds and when I let them go further they are not impressed.

Just different strokes for different folks and we all need to stop criticizing what someone else likes and wants and realize that our dogs are perfect for us and so is everyone else's. One isn't better than the next one if both satisfy it's owner. Quality of a dog is not governed by how far it will run or how far out it will hunt.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Vision » Thu Mar 06, 2014 5:29 pm

DonF wrote: I seriously doubt that a dog can smell birds at 100yds. I hear about that a lot, mostly at 50 yds, but I have never see the dog that pointed at those kind of distance's and actually held a wild bird.
When a dog dog does point a bird that far away, and I have seen it several times on wild birds, they indeed do hold the birds.

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Re: trial hunting ranges

Post by Grousehunter123 » Thu Mar 06, 2014 5:55 pm

I agree it's a personal preference.

I think folks take issue with the fact that the AA dog is "lifted up" as being the standard from which all others are measured against in bird dog discussions. The true AA dog is impractical for the vast number of hunters in many or most hunting venues.

The risk comes in when an unsuspecting new puppy buyer is looking to get into the upland hunting sport, enthralled with the AA CH. hype and pedigree, then winds up buying a pup he ultimately can't handle. Buyer beware.

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