Author Matt Peel - Chesapeake Pursuits field staff
Dog training series - Part I
It's opening day of duck season, you’ve waited months for this one morning, not only for the thrill of the hunt and enjoyment of time in the field with a good friend but this will be your new duck dog's first hunting season. You and your favorite hunting partner have gone through countless preparations awaiting the sun rise on this one morning. You rigged decoys, got all your camo, waders, and shells ready. Took the duck boat for a tune-up, brushed blinds and scouted for that perfect piece of marsh or shoreline that the ducks will surely pile into hand over fist at first light. Annoyed your wife and neighbors practicing your calling and even went and shot a round of sporting clays just to “get the kinks out” of your swing. You even spent all summer throwing bumpers for your new puppy and working on his manners. But are you fully prepared?
With the truck loaded up and the duck boat in tow you and your buddy head off to that perfect spot; Fido snoozing in the back seat. You put the boat off and be-line to the blind. Set decoys ever so perfectly, sure to attract even the wariest of black ducks and wait as the sun starts to creep over the horizon. Just after legal shooting light three mallard drakes are seen flying high headed in your direction. You and your buddy start throwing down some of the best calling you can muster and it pays off. They lock up just outside the decoys, fully committed. “Wait... wait... TAKE UM!!” Four shots and all three drakes are belly up in the decoys. After some celebration you send Fido for the retrieve thinking he surely will impress, especially for his first real hunt.
As Fido leaps from the bank in that beautiful stride only a Lab can achieve he lands smack dab in the middle of the decoys. No problem... right? In all your preparation for the season you missed one key aspect, all Fidos retrieves have been in an open pond or field. He as never laid eyes on a decoy and this situation could go one of two ways. Fido could decide to start retrieving decoys, not knowing any better OR he could get tangled in the lines and weights and now you really have a problem on your hands.
This situation can easily be avoided in a few short training sessions. After Fido is crazy about retrieving and you’ve gone over blind manners and things are going smooth don’t forget to train a hunting dog in actual hunting scenarios. Take Fido out for a training session. Preferably a field or even the back yard but this time throw in an extra distraction. Take a dozen or so decoys and set them in two groups leaving a path down the middle. Practice your retrieves with Fido having to retrieve down the path between the two groups of decoys.
Once this scenario goes off without a hitch start closing the gap between the decoys until Fido is confidently navigating the decoys without as much as a second look.
Once Fido is doing this consistently on land then move the scenario to the water but start from the beginning. We began on land to take out the decoy line factor causing an issue with the original introduction. Keep in mind if at any time you reach an issue or things get confusing for Fido head back to a previous step, only moving forward as things are mastered. If you put in your time on land this should go over smooth as molasses!
Good luck this waterfowl season and check back in for continuing articles at Chesapeake Pursuits.com
It was a weekend of ups and downs for Chesapeake Pursuits. But everyone left with a great smile and time well spent with family. Alex (14) was able to connect on his 3rd turkey and his biggest yet. 9.250" beard and 3/4 spurs. The AvianX decoys and ThermaCELL were two keys in getting this bird close.
Sat eve youth day.
Raw emotions and truth. Its not all fun there is mentorship and growth while developing the youth. Saturday eve I had the pleasure of going along with Rachel and Eric for her youth hunt. She had her first shot on a gobbler but he got up and flew off. Here Eric consoles his daughter, obviously upset, that it happens! You'll get em' Rachel!!
This past Saturday J.O. Spice held their " Grand re opening" of the new store front with many new items available. You'll find all kinds of neat jewelry, apparel crab supplies and biggest of all- the best seafood seasoning in the business. More times than not when you eat steamed crabs commercially its JO'S!!
Great company and great friends of ours at JO Spice!
Click on logo to left to see website
Jason and Kari went to the grand opening to show support and pick up new cool stuff! JO's has state of the art engraving and wood burning equipment too. Custom crab mallets are a great addition to any get together! Check them out and tell them CP sent ya.
Here are some of the pics we took while there
Its on the April calendar! JO Spice, Under Armour, and Just for Does ( all the way from Kansas)are the guests on Chesapeake Pursuits trolling for rockfish on the Chesapeake Bay! Chesapeake Pursuits Mike Moss is the captain aboard the Game Changer Sportsfishing. Pictured is last years pull. Always a great time!
What great outdoor images Chris Watson produces and we had the pleasure of getting in some camera time here in Dorchester county with him. Go check out his fine work @ Watson outdoor Studio on Face book!
Get your new Red, White and Blue CP colored shirts.. T's $15 Long Sleeve $20 and hoodies are $32… Go to the Market page here to order thru Paypal..simple.
Or order your own Custom color CP for the back like this one here in PINK for the ladies!
What a BLAST!! Eric and Jason took their kids Rachel and Alex on the youth waterfowl hunts. The morning was hosted by Al Dagger, Kenny Kershaw and the Avery Outdoors staff. The morning hunt was on a private impoundment near Bombay hook refuge , DE. What a morning. The kids had the hunt of their lives with the mallards committing all morning to the flooded corn. There were 3 gouts with kids in different impoundments and that kept the action rolling!
Eric and Jason then drove 2 hours back to Marylands Eastern Shore on the Chesapeake and set out a diver rig in hope of some fast flyers! The evening hunt took off right the morning ended. Fast paced action.. and there were nice birds mixed in. Alex was able to finish his days limit with his first great looking drake BULL Canvasback and beautiful drake bluebill. Rachel ended her day with a nice Bufflehead and bluebill of her own.
What a great day to spend with the family. Jason , Kari and 6 yr old Brooklyne climbed up and sat for sika Christmas afternoon. With half hour left in the hunt and plenty video light a hind showed her way across the deadfall and needlgrass marsh. Kari ( 5 months preg ) put a great shot on it at 65 yards.
Merry Christmas everyone and Happy New Year!
What a great opening week! Up and down temps ranging from the 90's to the 40's but hey thats MD and its September!
Jason videoed Kari killing her first stag with her Mathews last Monday. Great start the next volume of media.
After work this week Kari grabbed the camera for the first ever. She has seen enough and been in the shooters stand enough to know what to do . It was just a matter of fine tuning the focus etc. She did great. She got to capture some unique footage and great sika stag and hind stuff too. We had this 5 point come swimming across he creek and walked the marsh to 25 yards...