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No Love For Charley

This time of year it seems bird guys are constantly waxing poetic about Spiller, George Bird and Gene Hill.  And, rightly so. They all have more hits in the grouse genre than Elvis.  Some of George Bird Evans' collectibles sell for upward of $200-300.  But, one of our personal favorites is Charles Waterman.  As did GBE, Waterman wrote perfect prose into his 80s, hunting nearly as long as he wrote.  Unlike the other better-known scribes, Charley was more diverse, hunting many species and also being an avid angler.  Similar to Ted Trueblood, Waterman's writing wasn't overly flowery, but was written as most people would speak.  No thesaurus needed.  Some of his more relevant upland titles worth a look are: Gun...

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Let Me Tell You About Range.......

  All Bird Dogs Should Work At About 125 Yards. Says your old roommate from college who hunts with spaniels. He also only hunts pheasants and only in fairly thick cover. Brad, the energetic, young gentleman you met in at the bar in Pierre, South Dakota feels that if his pointers aren’t out 800-1,200 yards in front, they are wasting the opportunity.  “Once the Tek 2.0 says he done lock up, then I load the pea-shooter and head that way.  Dexter held point for over 35 minutes last fall on some sharptail.” Plow-horse vs. race horse to some extent.   The discussion on how far a bird dog should range is similar to the best elk rifle caliber or the...

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The Hatch Is Everything - Almost

So, cross your fingers that the next two months are just what the doctor ordered. All upland species need some moisture, but not too much moisture or cold weather. Warm weather is good, but hopefully it isn't too hot and dry.  Insects are important for chick development, but West Nile can be transmitted by mosquitoes. So, there is a fine line.   And remember next fall, if the bird populations are strong, make plans to hunt more than ever. For many species, Mother Nature controls populations, not hunters.

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Buzzwords in the Bird World

Buzzwords. ESPN football prognosticators use them. “Skill set” is probably their favorite right now when describing an athlete’s athleticism. CNN and Fox News seem to be in competition to use the word “narrative”.  Business types maybe the worst as they recycle words and phrases that they heard in another meeting an hour earlier.  Remember “thinking outside the box” and “paradigm shift”? Those seemed to have been replaced by “in our DNA” and “kicking the can down the road” amongst other often used phrases. Good or bad, the wingshooting realm has an assortment of commonly used words and phrases that may or may not bother you.  Regardless, they have appeared in print more often than Steve Martin on Saturday Night Live....

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