Puck and I finally found some time to get out and chase some woodcock. The birds have been back in the area for a several weeks now, and finding a few them always marks the start of spring for me — even if it was in the freezing all weekend.
Puck is eleven now. We’ve spent ten hunting seasons together. It amazes me how well she did today. Her passion for the chase, and her drive in the field, are still thrilling to watch.
Woodcock crack me up. They’re such odd little birds, so determined in their ways, so accommodating to me and my dog, always easy to find, and always a joy to see. They’ll be back in my coverts in a few weeks and Puck and I will be happy to see them. These videos show a couple of males “peenting” out their mating call.
Go here to learn more about woodcock and listen to some audio of them.
It’s grouse season now in New England. The woodcock are long gone. They’ll be back in March, and as they arrive, Puck and I will in the field to greet them. Until then, we can watch videos like this and think of next season.
Habitat loss and declining bird numbers — it’s a sad story that’s being played out across North America. It’s also a story that involves woodcock. Eahc year, as forests mature and housing developments expands, these birds loose more of their home turf. The Woodcock Task Force is fighting to stop this.
Read more about their efforts here and find out what you can do to help. When you’re done, check out the video below for some great footage of woodcock and woodcock hunting in South Carolina.