Birds per year per dog

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Re: Birds per year per dog

Postby oldtimer » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:21 pm

Kiger2 wrote:Oldtimer,
I see what you are saying, but you need to break it down. How many different ways are there for a pheasant to move?

Once the dog has seen something, then the next time its easier and it learns less. Once a dog learns that ducks fall in the cattails, it no longer learns much from ducks falling in the cattails.
Next , we have no idea unless we see the dog work, how well it actually did.

If it took 10000 ducks to make a duck dog, very few would have an acceptable duck dog and i think we can both agree thats not the case.


I see what you are saying now. A dog can only have so many reps before he is as good as he will get. Totally agree. Years ago I knew an old man who hunted quail in MO in the 40s and 50s. There were birds everywhere then. ( not that I was there. :)) he said it took 300 dead quail to make a dog. Back then that was 1 year or less. Now it would take much longer. The more birds you get your dog into, the faster it reaches its potential. You end up getting more years with your dog in their prime, that is the advantage.
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Re: Birds per year per dog

Postby Kiger2 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:05 am

Oldtimer,
Yes. Except I think they are always learning, if they get something different, its just that that the curve gets pretty flat.

Here is a pretty obscure example. Shoot a chukar, dog has retrieved lots of them, but this one goes under a bolder the size of a volkswagen. Dog learns something new.

I take a new dog chukar hunting and it really only takes a few coveys to get it figured out. From then, its long cripples, birds running 600 yards, or under rocks to up the education.
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Re: Birds per year per dog

Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:20 am

When I was a guide in Idaho, the dog's saw an average of 200-300 ducks a year, over 100 geese and 80-100 pheasant. That is more birds than most dog's will see in a lifetime. I don't believe dog's ever stop learning, no matter how many birds. Most need multiple contacts to learn a behavior and those situations may come years apart. It's one reason that few dog's are as good on one bird as they are another. It takes a ton of money, a ton of traveling and a ton of time to make a dog like that. There are very few dog's and owners today that will ever be fortunate enough to be able to do that. No bird dog ever knows all there is to know unless it only hunts one bird, sometimes not then. Running pheasant are one prime example of a bird few dog's ever handle efficiently.
I just hate seeing birds die of natural causes unless I'm that natural cause.
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Re: Birds per year per dog

Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:21 am

Double
I just hate seeing birds die of natural causes unless I'm that natural cause.
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Re: Birds per year per dog

Postby stubblejumper » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:02 am

GONEHUNTIN' wrote:When I was a guide in Idaho, the dog's saw an average of 200-300 ducks a year, over 100 geese and 80-100 pheasant. That is more birds than most dog's will see in a lifetime. I don't believe dog's ever stop learning, no matter how many birds. Most need multiple contacts to learn a behavior and those situations may come years apart. It's one reason that few dog's are as good on one bird as they are another. It takes a ton of money, a ton of traveling and a ton of time to make a dog like that. There are very few dog's and owners today that will ever be fortunate enough to be able to do that. No bird dog ever knows all there is to know unless it only hunts one bird, sometimes not then. Running pheasant are one prime example of a bird few dog's ever handle efficiently.

I thoroughly enjoyed watching my pup learn last year. He was trained on planted birds that stayed put, and his very first pheasant on a hunt decided to run. The pup was locked up, but when I had my friend attempt to flush the bird there was no bird. Then I turned him loose and he locked up about 50 yards away, and again no bird. Then when he locked up again, I had my two partners go well out front of the pup and work towards him, and the bird finally flushed . I watched him after another runner a few days later, and this time the grass was short, and I could see the roosters head now and then as it ran , and it gave him quite the adventure until it finally flushed. Over the the next month or so the pup learned from these runners, and they weren't taking him on the long chases anymore. Then a friend brought his pup out that hadn't been on a running bird, and we were soon watching a repeat of what my dog had gone through a month or so earlier. Unfortunately my friend only gets out one day per week on weekends, so it's going to take his dog longer to learn what my pup did, by hunting four days per week all season.
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Re: Birds per year per dog

Postby woodboro » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:28 am

woodboro wrote:
oldtimer wrote:I got to wondering how many wild bird contacts/kills/retrieves people get throughout the country? I know living in KS, NE, WI, MO,and now ND, I have been blessed with outstanding advantages when it comes to developing dogs.I know this. ecause I have also lived where I had to make extensive trips in order to keep my dogs up. The reason I am curious is that I never owned a great bird dog until I moved to the plains/ upper mid-west. My point to all of this is two fold. One, move if you can. Honestly, relocate in good bird country. If you love bird hunting, you will never regret it. Secondly, if you have a young dog that is impressive with little experience d/t few bird contacts, you owe it to that dog to travel.

I am just old, and reflecting, but I say these things so younger people might think it through.

My dogs typically are involved in 300 pheasant kills, 50 sharpies, 300 waterfowl, geese, ducks, etc., and 30 -60 Ruffs.I cannot imagine how many points my dogs have in the summer on birds, but I know it is 4 digits per dog. I have seen many 200 point 3 hour runs when the pheasants and sharpies are still young. I am not trying to brag, I am just telling you what a difference it has made in my life with dogs.

I can only hope you eat what you shot , otherwise it is called wasting game.
I hunt 6 days a week in mid west (grouse and woodcock) and {some ducks (not enough to count)} :lol: , then a week out in the Dakota's for phez.
I average 70 birds a year , and have a wild game meal every Sunday. I love my meals , but if I had them daily , am afraid I may eventually get turned off.
Any big game , I tend to eat 3X a week , simple due to quantity of meat.
All of my harvested birds are my birds , not a buddies or gangs I hunt with. (I hunt by my self, with my dog)
I plan to start duck hunting more , and on average like taking 12-20.
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Re: Birds per year per dog

Postby oldtimer » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:04 pm

Kiger2 wrote:Oldtimer,
Yes. Except I think they are always learning, if they get something different, its just that that the curve gets pretty flat.

Here is a pretty obscure example. Shoot a chukar, dog has retrieved lots of them, but this one goes under a bolder the size of a volkswagen. Dog learns something new.

I take a new dog chukar hunting and it really only takes a few coveys to get it figured out. From then, its long cripples, birds running 600 yards, or under rocks to up the education.


To a point I agree, but my best dogs didn't get much better after their 3rd season. They may have improved by 10% after that.
I have had really high octane FT stock dogs that hit their pinnacle as a bird dog at 7-8, but that was because they started slowing down enough to put more birds in the bag. I owned a Brit and an EP that I used to "road" 3 miles at around 12 miles an hour before I hunted them. They hunted better and better the more energy they expired. After 3 days of hard hunting, they would finally be hunting perfectly.:)
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