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My Golden Discovers what ice is....

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so i was hunting a WMA yesterday with two golden retrievers. One belonged to me and the other my uncle, but he couldnt go out for the day. After a poor shooting performance i finally dropped a nice rooster with 24 inch tail feathers. I put it in my vest and continued to hunt. about 30 seconds later a pheasant flushed and flew over the frozen slough/lake. i shot and got a piece of it (poor shot as i should have had it) the pheasant flew about 50 yards up the shoreline and landed in a finger of land that led out to the middle of the lake.

i had previously tested the ice and it was more than 3 inches on the particular area i was hunting. so my uncles dog and i are near the shoreline and the dog is checking some cattails as maybe the pheasant ran from the switchgrass into the cattails. we can't find the bird at all. but i noticed my dog was missing, so i called for her, but no sign.

next thing i knew about 200 yards up the shoreline i see a pheasant running on the ice and there was my golden in hot pursuit. the pheasant was just winged and in pretty good shape but couldnt fly. now a pheasant can dig into the ice and run at full speed over ice, a dog has pads. my dog would run after the bird and it would just move and my dog would slide past it. it took me a few minutes to get up to where the battle was happening and the whole time that pheasant stayed close to shore on the ice, but never went back to the cattails or grass. so my dog would make a run, slide way past the bird and continue. finally the bird decided to run up and over a muskrat house and my dog cut it off on the way down and made a diving stop and had the pheasant for me right when i got to her.

i was really pleased that she picked up that scent and followed it without giving up and also pleased that the ice was thick enough because a week ago that would have been a dangerous situation. anyway, i think it took me longer to get to her because i couldnt hardly stop watching the comedic performance she was putting on.

anyway, thats my rambling story. between the public land and permissioned land i hunted i saw more than 100 birds yesterday

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