Fighting Back – A Bobwhite Quail Film from Project Upland…

Fighting Back – A Bobwhite Quail Film by Project Upland

Bobwhite quail are not one of a America’s conservation success stories. Over the last 30-40 years, their populations have collapsed throughout the south and across the southwest. Fortunately, some people, and some state agencies and working hard to try and these birds back. I hope they’re successful.

“For many, the bobwhite quail is a symbol of their youth in the South. Small game is often where many cut their teeth in the hunting world. Adam Keith, wildlife consultant, ventures back into his past to take a journey into the public lands of Missouri with state biologist Frank L. Loncarich and Kyle Hedges.” WatchFighting Back – A Bobwhite Quail Film by Project Upland now.

Fighting Back – A Bobwhite Quail Film from Project Upland...
Fighting Back – A Bobwhite Quail Film from Project Upland…

Good gun alert: 28g Gamba Principessa SxS …

Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock
Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock

Here’s what I call a can’t-go-wrong double. It’s a Renato Gamba Principessa 28 gauge built on a rugged Anson & Deeley action. It weighs six pounds and it looks pretty much new. Price — a very reasonable $1599.

Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock
Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock

Renato Gamba is Italian maker better known in the US for their Daytona OU target guns than their SxS game guns. I’ve seen a few of their boxlock SxSs. Each one has been a nice double, and I’m sure this one would be a great upland gun.

Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock
Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS Boxlock

Renato Gamba ~ Principessa ~ 28 Gauge SxS BoxlockExcellent condition overall. Price: $1,599.99 
Manufacturer: Circa: 1981
Caliber: 28 Gauge
Chambers: 2 3/4″
Metal Condition: Excellent
Wood Condition: Excellent
Bore Condition: Excellent
Barrels: 26″ Blued Steel with Tapered Rib
Triggers: Single Non-Selective Trigger
Stock: Checkered Deluxe Walnut Straight Grip Butt Stock
Stock Dimensions:
DAC: 1 1/2″, DAH: 1 3/4″, Cast off: 3/8″, LOP: 13 1/4
Fore End: Checkered Walnut Semi-Splinter Fore Arm
Butt Pad: Leather Covered Butt Pad
Weight: 6 lbs.
Sights: Single Bead
Chokes: Fixed: Modified & Improved Cylinder

I don’t care about no stinkin’ ribbons. Until I think we might win one…

Northern NH Bird Dog Club 2018 Annual Trial, Stark, NH
Northern NH Bird Dog Club 2018 Annual Trial, Stark, NH

Only one thing sucks more than planted quail: cold, wet, planted quail.

In the best conditions, planted quail prefer running to flushing. When these birds are cold and wet, they’re as likely to fly as a frog or groundhog.

And cold, wet planted quail, plus a handful of well-trained bird dogs, is what Lexi and I faced off against at the Northern NH Bird Dog Club 2018 Annual Trial.

This trial ran from April 27-29. We were in Sunday’s Amateur Shooting Dog stake. It was a cold, cloudy day. Rain shifted back-and-forth from drizzling to pouring.

 

Lexi was in the third brace (there were only 4 in the entire stake). She had a great run, stayed in the pocket the whole time, handled perfectly, and, as you can see in the videos, the didn’t let those lousy quail throw her off her game (or make her break point). By the time we finished the course, I thought for sure we would be taking home a yellow ribbon.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t meant to be. While I was disappointed, Lexi didn’t mind. She just had fun chasing birds.

A furious flush of wild quail…

A Hifive Kennels success story: Thornapple Cody, Runner-up CH 2017 ABHA North Country Walking Shooting Dog Championship
Hifive’s RU-CH Thornapple Cody

I love videos of pointing dogs and wild quail.

This is another from Hifive Kennels, and it features a setter named Ginny.

If you hang around the coverdog field trial circuit at all, you probably know Hifive. Located in Beulah, MI, they’ve been breeding, training, and trialing dogs for 20+ years, and they’ve produced a long list of great dogs.

You’ve got to see these wild quail flush…

Hifive Kennels, CH Titanium's Jacksin. Pic from hifivekennels.com
Hifive Kennels, CH Titanium’s Jacksin. Pic from hifivekennels.com

I’ve always wanted to hunt wild bobwhites. Watch this video to see on reason why.

Check out hard these birds bust cover and how high and fast they fly. Notice the handler doesn’t need a flushing whip or a Cocker spaniel to get them up and going.

That great-looking pointer is Hifive Kennels’ Champion Titanium’s Jacksin. Hifive is well-known kennel out of Beulah, MI. They’ve been breeding, training, and trialing dogs for 20+ years, and they’ve produced a long list of great dogs.

The State of Quail: A video by Texas Parks & Wildlife …

The State of Quail: A video by Texas Parks & Wildlife ...
The State of Quail: A video by Texas Parks & Wildlife …

Everyone knows quail populations are falling across the U.S.

Texas is trying to reverse this trend. In this video you can learn a bit about what they’re doing to help these little gamebirds.

Check it out. There’s lot of great footage of all types of quail plus prairie chickens and other game.

Video: Hunting Arizona Mearns’ Quail with Randy Newberg …

 

Video: Hunting Arizona Mearns' Quail with Randy Newberg ...
Video: Hunting Arizona Mearns’ Quail with Randy Newberg …

As it says on his website, “Randy Newberg is a hunter” and “…the voice of the public land hunter in America.” It looks like he also a bit of a TV star and a popular podcaster.

In this video, you can go along with him as he and his buddies do some quail hunting in AZ. As one commenter said “The cussin in these videos makes it so funny. So real. I love it.” I agree. It’s well done, and worth checking out.

Let’s go wild quail hunting in Texas ….

Quail Coalition
Quail Coalition

Here’s something I’m dying to do, and with quail numbers up, I think it’s time for me to head west and check it out. I’ve never hunted quail — wild or pen raised. From this video, the experience looks awesome. The video was produced by the Quail Coalition. They did a great job.

Wow – what a quail gun: 28 gauge Joseph Manton / Purdey SXS …

Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28" barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28″ barrels

Joseph Manton was one of the finest gunmakers of the 19th century and one of the most influential gunmakers in British history. His work set the standard and the course for the 180+ years of Best quality gunmaking that came after him.

A handful of men who worked for Manton– including James Purdey, Thomas Boss and William Greener–followed his standards and founded some of the most important makers in the British gun trade.

Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28" barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28″ barrels

Joseph Manton work was so good that  Colonel Peter Hawker, the 19th century sportsman and writer, is said to have called Manton ‘The greatest artist in firearms that ever the world produced.”

Unfortunately, other than its name and the traditions it carries on, the double you see here has no connection Joseph Manton or to the Manton family. Instead, it was made in the 1980s by a team of British craftsmen, one of whom owned the rights to the name Joseph Manton.

Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28" barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28″ barrels

Regardless, it’s not the name on the gun that matters, but rather skill that went into building it. And from what I can see, a tremendous amount of skill went into building this side-by-side.

(BTW: Since this gun was made, the name Joseph Manton name passed to other owners. You can find out more about the guns they’re building here.)

Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28″ barrels: 2-3/4″ chambers, auto-ejectors, choked tight improved cylinder and modified (.009/.016).  London proof 1986.  Narrow tapered raised game rib.  Built on a finely scaled Purdey-type self-opening action.  Extensively engraved with a bold foliate scroll and vibrant case color hardened finish.  Single trigger, auto-safe.  Straight hand stock of classic French walnut with contrasting grain and black and gold fiddleback measures 14-1/8″ to a checkered butt, splinter forend.  The diminutive size is reflected as this little gun tips the scale at a mere 5 lbs, 3 oz.  The 28″ barrels give this gun a forward bias and truly lively feel in the hand! Simply outstanding!  Cased in lightweight leather trunk case. Price: $57,000

Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28" barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28″ barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28" barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28″ barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28" barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28″ barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28" barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28″ barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28" barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28″ barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28" barrels
Joseph Manton London 28 gauge, Sidelock, Shotgun, Purdey Action, 28″ barrels

Power duo: Quail hunting with a Pointer and a Cocker …

Here’s something I’ve always wanted to try. From what I’v read, this is how folks hunt quail on a lot of the plantations down south.

This video just shows a great looking Pointer doing what these dogs do so well.

Great dog work: Caladen’s DaVinci owns a covey of quail …

Running birds can really frazzle some bird dogs. But not this one. Caladen’s DaVinci handles this can’t-stay-still covey of quail like a real pro — not bad for a long hair.

It’s nice to see a handler that lets the dog work, too. There’s no screaming of commands, just confidence and total faith in his four-legged partner.

Wow – great video, awesome quail hunting at Sinkola…

Image @ Sinkola Plantation, Thomasville, Georgia.
Image @ Sinkola Plantation, Thomasville, Georgia.

Sinkola Plantation is one of Georgia’s legendary quail plantations. Located in Thomasville, it still offers wild bird hunts in the traditional Southern style. This video does a great job of capturing what that experience is all about.

Congrats to Miller’s Dialing In: The 2015 National Champion…

Miller's Dialing In. 2015 National Champion. Owned and handled by Gary Lester. Photo by Jamie Evans.
Miller’s Dialing In. 2015 National Champion. Owned and handled by Gary Lester. Photo by Jamie Evans.

The 116th running of the granddaddy of all field trial — the National Championship – started last month on Monday, February 9, 2015, at the Ames Plantation in Grand Junction, TN. Forty eight dogs were nominated to run this year — seven setters and forty one pointers, and when the trial was over, one rose to the top: Miller’s Dialing In.

The National Championship for Bird Dogs was first run in 1869, and it has been held at the Ames Plantation since 1915.

See videos from the 2015 National Championship here.

See pics and videos of the 2015 National Champion Miller’s Dialing In here.

In this video you can see a beautiful double point with Touch’s Adams County and handler, Randy Anderson (R) and Raelyn’s Skyy backing as handler Andy Daugherty looks on. Watch those quail fly.

Touch's Adams County and handler, Randy Anderson (R) and Raelyn's Skyy backing as handler Andy Daugherty looks on
Touch’s Adams County and handler, Randy Anderson (R) and Raelyn’s Skyy backing as handler Andy Daugherty looks on

 

In this video, you can see Audubon Americus on his first find with handler, Rich Robertson. I think you can hear another handler “singing” to his dog in the background.

Audubon Americus on his first find with handler, Rich Robertson
Audubon Americus on his first find with handler, Rich Robertson

 

This one shows Caladen’s Rail Hawk on his second find with handler, Dr. Fred Corder. Again, watch those birds bust out of there.

Caladen's Rail Hawk on his second find with handler, Dr. Fred Corder
Caladen’s Rail Hawk on his second find with handler, Dr. Fred Corder

 

In this last one, you can see 2015 National Champion Dialing In on his second find in the Horseshoe. A big, healthy covey flushes above Dialing In and Gary.

Dialing In on his second find in the Horseshoe. A big, healthy covey flushes above Dialing In and Gary.
Dialing In on his second find in the Horseshoe. A big, healthy covey flushes above Dialing In and Gary.

Answering the Call: Virginia’s Quail Recovery Initiative

Lynn Bogue Hunt Quail painting
Lynn Bogue Hunt Quail painting

I encourage you to check out this piece about attempts to restore quail populations in Virginia.

Upland game bird populations are in trouble in many parts of the country. Programs like these are one way we can help.

I added this video just for the fun. This award-winning quail caller can make some amazing sounds just by whistling. Uncanny. Hold on until the end to hear to get a covey of quail to attack you.

A great looking .410 by Francotte, in super nice condition…

August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26" bbls
August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26″ bbls

Here’s a nice little double. This Francotte is a 14E – one step up from the company’s field grade Knock About model. It’s looks all original, and I bet it would be a fantastic quail gun.

August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26″ bbl: 2 1/2″ chambers, m/f, 14 1/8″ LOP, 2 5/8″ DH, 1 3/8″ DC, 4lb. 2oz., hand rubbed oil finish. All original, untouched, unmolested gun. Manufactured in 1925, with letters and other documentation from Griffin & Howe, the authority on Francottes. Stamped Francotte Choke Bore. Gun is in about 90% condition, no cracks, dents, gouges or deep scratches in wood. BBl retain most of their original color. Metal is in excellent condition with about 85% blue remaining. Engraving is also excellent. Price: $9750

August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26" bbls
August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26″ bbls
August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26" bbls
August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26″ bbls
August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26" bbls
August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26″ bbls
August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26" bbls
August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26″ bbls
August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26" bbls
August Francotte 14E SxS Shotgun .410, 26″ bbls

Trying to end the decline of Bobwhite Quail in West Texas…

Texas used to be the last stronghold of wild bobwhite quail – especially the western part of the start. Unfortunately, it looks like the bird’s numbers are falling there just like they’re falling throughout the US. Sporting Classic Daily posted this video about one group trying to turn things around for Gentleman Bob.

Operation Idiopathic Decline is the largest disease and parasite study every done on quail. It’s trying to figure out why west Texas’s quail population is collapsing, and they’re trying to find a way to stop this decline.

Good gun alert: a .410 Piotti King No. 1, 28″ bbls…

.410 Piotti King 1 Double Barrel Shotgun, 28" bbls
.410 Piotti King 1 Double Barrel Shotgun, 28″ bbls

Armi Piotti is one of Italy’s best known gunmakers. Founded in the early sixties by brothers Araldo and Faustino Piotti, the company has earned a reputation for top-quality doubles at reasonable price (reasonable when compared to new British doubles, that is).

I think “Used” is the best way to buy them. If I were in the market for a real small bore, I would take a long look at this King No. 1 sidelock .410.  It caught my eye for three reasons:

.410 Piotti King 1 Double Barrel Shotgun, 28" bbls
.410 Piotti King 1 Double Barrel Shotgun, 28″ bbls

1.) The 28″ barrels. Most of the .410s you see out there are weare shorter tubes – usually 26″. But when it comes to little guns like this, longer is better. Those two inches may not seem like much, but the birds will hate you for it.

2.) The long-ish stock. With a 14 3/8″ LOP, this double will fit a lot of guys right out of the box. With a pad, it could fit even more.

3.) The price. While this gun isn’t cheap ($19,750), it costs less than 1/2 its replacement cost.

Here’s more about it from the seller:

Piotti .410 King No. 1 In outstanding Condition: In Makers Case. Granetti Engraved. 28″ Mod/Full With 3″ Chambers. Double trigger with articulated front. Gun Weighs 5Lbs. 2.5 Oz. File Cut Taperd Solid Rib. 14 3/8″ LOP. 1 1/2″ – 2 1/8″ To Checkered Butt. Cast Off. Price: $19,750.00

.410 Piotti King 1 Double Barrel Shotgun, 28" bbls
.410 Piotti King 1 Double Barrel Shotgun, 28″ bbls
.410 Piotti King 1 Double Barrel Shotgun, 28" bbls
.410 Piotti King 1 Double Barrel Shotgun, 28″ bbls
.410 Piotti King 1 Double Barrel Shotgun, 28" bbls
.410 Piotti King 1 Double Barrel Shotgun, 28″ bbls

Training tip: Does your bird dog like you – or respect you?

Puck pointing a woodcock
Puck pointing a woodcock

Respect, like success, is something you have to earn. The first time I sent my pointer to the trainer, I visited her every weekend. But when I showed up it was play time, not work time. We went for runs, tossed a ball around, and goofed off. I was her buddy, and she treated me like an equal.

This worked for a while. But the first time I took her in the field, the flaws showed right away. Instead of following commands, she did what she wanted. If that meant coming when called, she did it. If it didn’t, I could blow and blow on my whistle. She wasn’t going to listen.

I talked to my trainer about the problem and he explained the issue: she liked me, but didn’t respect me. I had to earn her respect. Once I did, everything changed.

Martha Greenlee noticed a similar lack of respect when e-collars came into use. Read how it showed itself, and learn what she did to correct it:

Using Physical Correction, by Martha Greenlee @ Steady with Style

“There are two basic ways to correct your dog during formal training. One way is with stimulation from the e-collar and the other is using physical correction. Physical correction was the primary form of correction to teach the steadying process until the late 1980s when Tri-tronics came out with a variable intensity e-collar. Unlike the “hot” single button e-collars that were the norm, this new e-collar had low, medium, and high buttons and five intensity levels. For the first time, you could adjust the intensity level of the e-collar to fit the situation and use it around birds without causing blinking problems.

As trainers experimented with these new e-collars, articles began appearing in some of the sporting magazines on how to use them in formal training. I really liked the idea of using a variable intensity e-collar and decided to buy one. At first, it was almost too easy to teach a dog to stand birds and not chase. After I’d taught a couple of dogs to be steady with the e-collar, I realized something was missing in their training and that something was respect. My dogs didn’t respect me. By relying solely on the e-collar and foregoing any type of physical correction, my dogs had learned to respect the birds but not me….”

Learn more — reading the entire piece now.

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