Getting out there. Winter 2013-14

Aled

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I used to start a thread of winter activities in the good old days, so will start one now.
Hope to get some rough shooting done over the Christmas period, and now have a fly tying station indoors (rather than the garage) so i can tie in comfort when TV gets too boring! I'm dog sitting twice in coming weeks so a warm up for my own in 2014. Rabbit numbers are very low, but pigeon are around and Woodcock should show up.
I also plan to get me walking boots on, and go outside a bit more, my son is showing an interest in the natural world, so hopefully he will see more wildlife to add to the woodpecker,he correctly identified last weekend.
Cheers
Aled
 

Springer

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I quite like the end of the fishing season Aled, it allows me to concentrate on other things I enjoy. Shooting is the other main thing for me and the dark winter nights mean rabbits with the lamp or more recently my new night vision. I like to go out with a mate for a few hours at least a couple of times a week, bags range fro 10-30 rabbits depending on whether we are on foot or in a vehicle and how much we need them. Nothing gets wasted, they are either eaten or used as fox bait. Im lucky to have a large area to shoot over with a good rabbit population so it never really an issue to shoot them hard on a regular basis.

Ive got a duck pond I havent shot yet this year yet although it has a good head of duck and Ive got plenty of winter rape on my different permissions so should get some pigeon shooting if it ever gets cold enough and they run out of acorns. Interestingly we are seeing quite a few dead pigeons who are apparently suffering from tanning poisoning from the bigger than usual acorn crops and such a prolonged diet of acorns.

Ive got a working cocker so we get out picking on the local commercial shoot a couple of times most weeks and I also pick up/shoot in a mates syndicate so all in all its not such a bad time of the year
 

Andy R

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Good thread, just a quick response before I put the eldest (2 and a half) to bed...

I too have a working cocker, generally though he likes to work in a different post code to me......

Andy
 

Aled

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Thanks gents. First off, i want a working cocker...and have put my name down for a suitable dog hopefully he/she will arrive in 2014, who looks after the dog during the working day, as we will have to leave ours for up to 2 two stints of 5 hours per week?
Secondly rabbits: Seen very very few in recent years, although i used to see a lot. Hope to get some rough shooting done, i am surrounded by Woodcock country, but it aint the same when you are dogless!
Cheers
Aled
 

Springer

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5hrs is nothing to leave a dog on its own Aled so long as you give them 5 mins outside first to do whatever business needs doing, most dogs successfully manage to hold things in for 8hrs every night. My dog is with me a lots, either in the house, the Jeep or outside working but I have no qualms leaving her at home for 8hrs during a day if it is unavoidable. If it was to be every day for a week then I get a dog walker to come for an hour around lunchtime but I honestly think that is to make me more happy than the dog really needing it. Of course they will be happiest with company but life doesnt always go that way every week, so long as you are a good loving owner when your around the home will be a good place for your dog.

I live in Northumberland and there are parts of it barren with regard to rabbits and generally I think there has been a decline in rabbit numbers, I dont see half as many road kills as I used to round here. Thankfully I have access to an estate not too far away which is teaming with them. :)

Only problem at the minute is the full moon :(
 

Aled

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Thanks for that Springer, we are a pretty outdoor family, so the dog will be taken outdoors a lot when we are home.
Tight Lines
Aled
 

gregm

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just one thing to remember with the cocker unlike a spaniel a cocker will hunt when he wants to. i had cockers for 10 yrs and they can try your paticence.remember they are slow to mature about 2.5yrs before they really come on.but when they do you will miss nothing with them their nose is much better than a spaniel.another thing is they get very cute if you tell a spaniel to go into cover he will do it to please you.if you tell a cocker to go and there is nothing in the hedge he will not go in he needs scent.also try work them on ground that has scent if not they switch off very easy.and when you have trained the dog and you bring him out and he dosent hunt just bite your lip put the lead on him and take him home.it will happen nothing sureer.its all part of the game.great little dogs cockers wouldn't have changed any of it for the world.
 

DAZ

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Sorry gregm but! - I don't agree with much of what you have written,It's Nothing like the cockers I know of.

their nose is much better than a spaniel.
And I certainly don't agree with this bit!!!!

Daz
 

Springer

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It has taken me a while to realise just how good my cockers nose is. In the early days I would want to hunt her into some cover, she would jump in and out just as quick and be looking to move on. I would pull her back into the same cover and out she would come out again, I really thought I had a dog that wasn't interested. Now I realise just how good here nose is and how fast she makes the right decision most of the time, rarely will anyone pick a bird after she has been through, it just doesn't look thorough because she works at warp speed and then bumps it up another couple of notches when things get tasty. ;)

As for hunting when she wants, yes she is keen but also obedient so I don't find it too much of a problem, then again no two dogs are the same. I dont find she need scent to work but once there is some the tempo of her work rate certainly rises.

We are out in the morning on a big commercial shoot, she will be busy most of the day and happy as the proverbial pig. :)
 

woodcockandsewin

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Sorry gregm but! - I don't agree with much of what you have written,It's Nothing like the cockers I know of.



And I certainly don't agree with this bit!!!!

Daz
Have to agree with Daz here...I've seen springers outperform clockers too often. They are both wonderful dogs with the right breeding and training. My current springers will walk past countless identical bushes, and all of a sudden will attack the next. That's their world, and we just need to trust them the way they trust us.

W&S
 

Springer

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I think trying to put the different abilities of a cocker or a springer against one and other is pointless, just within the same breed there are variations in working style and behaviour. They are both great breeds, they respond and work quite differently at times and similar at others. The whole springer, lab, cocker argument for me is pointless, one of each would make for a very versatile team although unfortunately Mrs Springer doesn't seem to agree. :eek:
 

Aled

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How many times, i've been sat in a pub, and listened to expereinced dog men, (of many callings, sheepdogs, hounds, terriers, lurchers, retirevers, spaniels, and on one occasion prison & police service) all of whom talk up or down various breeds i just sat back and listened. A few years ago a member of another forum said something along the likes of "if a dog answers your needs, works for you in the way you want it to, and acts the way it is supposed to around people, stock etc, and gives you pleasure does it really matter what breed it is??" have to say i aggrree.
Good to see passionate working dog people here.
Its a cracking winter day here in the Tywi valley, i would love to working hedges, and small woodlands, with a dog, sadly though i have my works Christmas do! So will be slurring, stinking of booze, and home in front of the TV with a cuppa by 7pm!
Cheers
Aled
 

gregm

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I wasn't putting down cockers I was just pointing out a fact through long experience with cockers. I had this problem with two dogs.it only happened a couple of times but always made me wonder.any bitches no problem hunt their heart out all day.spoke to other lads who had the same problem.anyway don't let anybody put you off owning a cocker.i was just giving you a heads up in case it happened to you.all the best for Christmas and new year.
 

Aled

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No probs gregm i was just joining in on the talk. We all know somebody who works something a bit different yet the dog answers its owners need. A good thing INMHO.
Cheers
Aled
 

gregm

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could you clear your pm box have sent a pm says box is full.thanks.
 

Aled

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Thanks gregm will do.
Had a few hour mooch yesterday, sadly it was not as long as we had hoped due to rain. Anyway saw 13 woodcock 1 bagged, 25 snipe 1 bagged, plus a bonus squirrel tail! Good to get outside.
Cheers
Aled
 
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