Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Land Blinds

Oaks Area 3

After a hard work-out yesterday, today the dogs just had a short session.

SERIES A. Triple land blind (Laddie, then Lumi)

The first blind (duck) was to the right at 100 yards. The line to the first blind slanted across a downhill slope and went thru a diagonal keyhole formed by trees.

The second blind (duck) was in the center at 210 yards. The line to the second blind slanted across a downhill slope and then traversed several rises and drops in the terrain.

The third blind (chukar) was to the left at 50 yards. The line to the third blind passed close to a stand of trees on the left that had the potential of acting as a wrap, drawing the dogs around behind it, and also went thru higher cover than today's other blinds.

Both dogs are showing excellent responsiveness on whistle sits these days, and are becoming increasingly accurate on their casts. Laddie still tends to have too much latency on his sits, and Lumi still tends to scallop rather than carrying some of her casts. Those are things we have to keep working on.


In the past, I've tended to have the dogs run blinds in the order shortest to longest. The intent of running the 50-yard blind last today was to counter that usual practice. I had several reasons for that:
  • To introduce an element of surprise, making the session more entertaining for the dogs.
  • To help the dogs learn not to assume they could predict where the bird is, making them less confident they can guess, and making them more responsive to the whistle as the most reliable way to get to the bird as quickly as possible.
  • To move in the direction that running a long, difficult blind predicts running a shorter, easier blind, rather than the dogs always finding that after any blind, a longer, harder one is coming up next.
However, I inadvertently worked against that third goal in today's setup by using a week-old chukar as the blind. The chukars were less pleasant than the ducks used for the other blinds, so in today's session, my goal of having the most pleasant blind come last was defeated by that mistake.

20090902 Blind #1
Series A Blind #1 — 100-yard blind slanting downhill and thru diagonal keyhole

20090902 Blind #2
Series A Blind #2 — 210-yard blind slanting downhill and across rises and drops in terrain

20090902 Blind #3
Series A Blind #3 — 50-yard blind past wrap and into high cover

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