Finding bird dog training supplies in 2021
Throughout a normal pheasant season, I’ll throw some of the feathers from our roosters into a zip-seal bag. If my little girls don’t want them, I find someone else to give them to like a fly-fishermen who spends the winter months tying up a summer’s worth of flies.
This year that bag is staying with me.
In fact, I’ve got three gallon-sized bags packed with pheasant wings and tail feathers from last season. With a new puppy coming some time this spring, I don’t want to find myself without some training supplies.
My pheasant stock is high, but I didn’t keep anything from the ducks, grouse or woodcock that Luna and I managed to bag in the early-season. I wasn’t committed to a fresh recruit then, so I didn’t sock away the feathers. Now I wish I had.
It’s too late for that, of course, but I am looking for opportunities to find a few more training options that I can’t buy in any random big box store. Recently, that has involved pigeons. I’ve got a buddy who has an old turkey farm, and while the pigeons have largely moved out, there are a still a few stragglers hanging around.
Luna and I have been working on adding a few to the freezer for the pup, and it has been just what we needed to pass the time this winter. It’s a far cry from pheasant hunting, of course, but a heck of a lot more fun than working on home-improvement projects. And it nets me a few gun dog necessities that will come into play some time this summer.
If you’re on a waiting list right now for a new hunting dog, you might want to consider your options as well. If you feel like you’ll need some hard-to-find training essentials, dig into how you’ll source them now. Some you might have to ask around for, while others might be cooing away in a barn loft somewhere just waiting for you to load up the shotgun and grab a handful of target loads.