Posts Tagged ‘Bob St.Pierre’
Monday, February 11th, 2013
I’ve joked with friends that I’ve never met a dog owner who wasn’t an expert. While in jest, when it comes down to it, there’s nothing wrong with having extra confidence in your training and your dog if things are working for you. “The best dog in the world” phrase may be about as ubiquitous as “Best Dad” coffee mugs, but it’s all relative – as a shamelessly biased owner and utterer, I would know.
But what if you put aside partiality and emotion for a second, then what dog(s) stands out as the best you’ve ever seen. What friends or relatives had a pup that impressed you with its all-around ability – field work, obedience and personality? What dog made an indelible impression on you at a field trial or hunt test?
Here are four from my experiences that stand out:
“Lucy,” Yellow Labrador Retriever. Sam Cook is the longtime outdoor scribe at the Duluth News Tribune, and I joined him and his Lucy in 2011, touring some of western Minnesota’s first Walk-in Hunting Areas. Bird numbers were as low in this part of the state as they’d been in years, but if there was a ringneck in the field, Lucy found it. And what we did find were runners, but that’s where her ability to stop on a whistle came in handy, allowing us to catch up before the chase resumed. She retrieved to hand and, like any lab worth their weight in kibble, made you feel like their best friend.
“Teigen,” English Setter. Brad Mccardle is a bird bum living in Lewistown, Montana whose singular upland passion is hunting Hungarian partridge. Lucky for him, he’s got Teigen, a beast of a big-running setter bound with athleticism, drive, a nose and style. I hunted with Mccardle and a small group of pro-level dog guys – making me the odd man out – but even a relative novice like me could see a dog oozing with greatness. If I lived in open country, I’d want a dog like Teigen.
“Finn,” Black British Labrador Retriever. It’s practically a prerequisite for an outdoor scribe to have a good dog – see previously, Sam Cook – and Chris Niskanen, the former outdoors editor at the Saint Paul Pioneer Press, is no different. Niskanen hunted with my family and other members of Minnesota’s Lac qui Parle County PF chapter for a pheasant hunting season opening story a few years back. Already a decade-long veteran, Finn was the workhorse for a big group. And all the flushing and retrieving came in a compact British size, or about half your typical lab. I saw online this past autumn that even at 13-years-old, Finn was retrieving ducks in North Dakota for Niskanen, who is now the Communications Director at the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
“Trammell,” German Shorthaired Pointer. Regular readers of Pheasants Forever’s blog know of Trammell, who is dog #1 in Pheasants Forever Vice President of Marketing Bob St.Pierre’s family. I’ve seen her in the field enough to witness too many points to count, a few outrageous retrieves, but mostly I’ve seen quality performance after quality performance. There’s consistent and good, then there’s consistently good – that’s Trammell.
If you still end up listing your dog, consider yourself biased beyond repair. And that’s okay. Just know that you don’t have the best dog in the world…because I do.
Tuesday, March 8th, 2011
Every couple years, Pheasants Forever surveys members to gauge their thoughts and interests and to build an organizational demographic. As a member based organization, this feedback guides “The Habitat Organization’s” direction. Here’s a snapshot of the most recent profile survey. Just don’t let the word “average” fool you – there’s really nothing “average” about a Pheasants Forever member!
- Why join Pheasants Forever? The top reasons members listed:
- Pheasants Forever’s unique model where funds stay under local control
- Get info on pheasant hunting
- Receive the Pheasants Forever Journal
- Longtime Pheasants Forever Members
- 38% of Pheasants Forever members have been members for more than 10 years
- 11% have been Pheasants Forever members for 20 years or more
- The average Pheasants Forever member has been part of the organization for 8.1 years
- Wanted: Youngsters and Women
- The average Pheasants Forever member is now 52.2 years old
- 97% of members are male
- Public Land Habitat
- 52% of Pheasants Forever members don’t own land or own fewer than 9 acres, and 86% of members don’t lease land
- 85% of Pheasants Forever members rate habitat preservation projects on public land as a main benefit from the organization
- 78% of Pheasants Forever members say land acquisition projects with public access is a main benefit from the organization
- 90% of Pheasants Forever members hunt
- The average member hunts 22 days per year, including 14 days a year hunting upland birds
- Of those who hunt, 29 percent do so in the Dakotas annually
- Bird Dogs
- 65% of Pheasants Forever members own a dog
- Of those dog owners:
- 42% own a Lab
- 17% own a German Shorthaired Pointer
- 6% own an English Springer Spaniel
- 6% own a Brittany
- 5% own a Golden Retriever
- 4% own an English Setter
- 4% own an English Pointer
- 2% own a German Wirehaired Pointer
(Compare this list to the guesses Pheasants Forever’s Bob St.Pierre had in his blog entry What’s the Most Popular Bird Dog Breed in Pheasants Forever Land?)
Anthony’s Antics Afield is written by Anthony Hauck, Pheasants Forever’s Online Editor
Thursday, November 4th, 2010
There’s little doubt that Nebraska is over-looked in the world of traveling bird hunters. Year in and year out, it makes the top five lists of pheasant and quail states. Throw prairie chickens into the mix and the “Cornhusker State” has more going for it than a resurgent college football program about to enter the Big Ten.
Chief among the state’s progressive habitat programs and partnerships is the CRP-MAP lands initiative. The Conservation Reserve Program – Managed Access Program opens private land enrolled in CRP and managed for wildlife to public hunting. During our visit to Nebraska, we’ll focus on these public CRP acres with the hopes of adding a few bobwhite quail covey flushes to our adventure.
I have fond memories of my only hunting visit to Nebraska in 2004. I bagged my first bobwhite on that trip and missed my first prairie chicken later that day. I also connected on one of my best shots ever during that visit as a rooster tried to escape at 80 yards. He tasted especially good next to a side of mashed potatoes. When the Rooster Road Trip visits Nebraska next Friday, it will be Anthony and Andrew’s first time afield in the state.
- A non-resident small game license costs $81.00 plus a $20 Habitat Stamp equals a $101 total. The license is good through the end of the calendar year.
- The daily bag limit is 3 roosters and 6 bobwhites.
- Hunting opens daily 30 minutes prior to sunrise and closes at sunset all season.
- Nebraska has a little more than 1 million acres enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). More than 450,000 of those acres’ contracts are set to expire in the next three years.
- Pheasants Forever’s National Pheasant Fest 2011, the nation’s largest event for upland hunters, comes to the Qwest Center in Omaha, Nebraska on January 28-30, 2011.
Road Trip Recommendation
Boyt Gun Case: How many soft sided gun cases have you ripped with your barrel bead? I rip at least one every other year. I won’t guarantee that your bead won’t rip this case, but it’s about the perfect solution I’ve found merging quality and price.
The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.
Tuesday, May 25th, 2010
Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start of summer, and the official start of Obsessive Calendar Date Checking. As in, as of Friday, 95 days until dove opener.
Fellow Pheasant Blogger Bob St.Pierre was the mastermind behind the “Insomniac Bird Hunter?” post on Pheasants Forever’s Facebook page last week, and even though he didn’t consult me on that one, it’s as if he read my mind. I don’t know if there’s a classified somnipathy for that, but if not, there should be. Yeah, Doc, I can’t stop thinking about how I’ll distinguish between birds going straight away as opposed to slightly quartering from me. And it’s making me not sleep. But I’m normal, right?
First, understand bird hunters. Unlike enthusiasts of other pursuits, we are treated unfairly by the world, and it makes us a bit abnormal. Stretching it (with say, crow seasons), you could say we have six months or so for our favorite activity, but most will agree the classic wingshooting season takes place in just three or four precious months. There’s a lucky percentage that enjoy close proximity to gamebirds, but a majority of wingshooters have to travel hours even for a day-hunt. Oh, and it’s expensive. Throw in all major holidays for added stress during the peak of hunting season, and I’m convinced the Creator appreciates bird hunting, but could not possibly have been a bird hunter.
To me, summer is feeling like those long Fridays in school where I couldn’t wait for the weekend so bad that my eyes fixated on what seemed to be an almost stationary clock. Don’t look at the clock, it only makes things slower. Whatever. 95 days. I’m looking. I’m counting. And double checking.