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Bird Launcher & Training #8207074 03/18/21 09:33 PM
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BobbyWB Offline OP
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I am picking up some live quail this weekend to do some training with the dog.

He's an 18 month old Vizsla. Extremely high prey drive. He's a natural, but definitely needs training to put it all together...

I've done dummy training with scented quail decoys...basically just hiding them and letting him sniff them out & retrieve. I have also used dummy launchers that use a .22 cal cap (I think).

This will be the first time I've trained him with live birds. Hopefully he's not too old already to learn new tricks laugh

Questions:
- Any good videos/guides for quail training? I have seen a few videos where you hide the bird in a cage, let him bump it, then release the bird. I'm not sure if there are other things I need to focus on.

- Is a bird launcher worth it? If so, do you know of any stores in central texas/Austin area that I can buy one at?

Last edited by BobbyWB; 03/18/21 09:40 PM.
Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8207119 03/18/21 10:25 PM
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Yes remote launchers are worth it. Not manual. Pen raised quail are very poor flyers. Use pigeons instead. When you launch birds you want them to get up and out of sight. If birds just fly 30 yards and drop your dog will catch it . Thats what quail do

Training with Mo is an excellent book

He teaches the Bill West method. Facebook steady with style so you can chat with all the Bill West trainers, users

Last edited by blanked; 03/18/21 10:28 PM.
Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: blanked] #8207172 03/18/21 11:10 PM
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You are better off with pigeons because the dog can catch pen raised quail. Put the bird in the launcher, gett the dog downwind. Launch as soon as he gets scent--don't wait for him to point. Always best to start with pigeons. because the dog can't catch them. The idea is for the dog to learn that if he is too aggresive the bird will fly away. That is why you launch when he gets scent. Leading the dog to the bird and making him point often teaches the dog to get too close and gives him the impression that you are to tell him when to point. He has to learn to stalk and point on his own. Many dogs start pointing after a couple of pigeon launches. After he consistantly points you can shoot some of the pigeons. This way he learns that you are part of the team and will help him catch the bird. Save the quail for later. Preferrably after you have taken away the chase.

Last edited by Mundo; 03/18/21 11:27 PM.
Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8207179 03/18/21 11:17 PM
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Mundo for the win they have to be fully who broke before using quail.



Originally Posted by bill oxner
Originally Posted by bill oxner
I've had a few PMs asking about my training method. I did this on another forum, so I still have the pictures in my album, so here goes;

All bird dogs point. The breaking process teaches them to hold point. There are two ways to teach a dog to hold point, with dozens of variations. The first way is to let the birds train the pups. That generally involves launchers and pigeons, with some whoa breaking mixed in. It's very effective. I use the Delmar Smith method, substituting the e-collar for the bump under the chin. My dogs are completely whoa broke before I put them on birds. I use pen raised quail, because I can be done with them for the summer. I like to start in August, and finish in time for hunting season.

I start off on the whoa post. I introduce the e-collar the same day, that I introduce the whos post. Here's cracker on her first day with the whoa post;

[Linked Image]


I keep them on the whoa post only until I can get out in front of them, and then go to the yard for heel and whoa. Cracker tended to sit, so I had to start with the suitcase hitch. I go from the yard to longer walks. The pup has pretty well gotten it down after three weeks.

[Linked Image]


I then go from the walks to whoa in the field. Here's Cracker in the field in the field, before I put her on birds. This whole process has taken me around four weeks.

[Linked Image]


This is her first day on birds. I train alone, so I had to plant the bird, where I could wrap the CC around a bush. Notice the slack CC.

[Linked Image]


I kept her on the CC for three training days. She only went around on the bird one time. Here she is after 9 training flushes.


[Linked Image]


I started walking some of the birds out after a few days. Here you go;


[Linked Image]


A little side note. My birds were not recalling all that well, so I used Cookie to point them while I netted them;

[Linked Image]


A lot depends on the pup, and you have to adjust for each pup. Cracker has never taken out a single pointed bird or covey.


Editing in pictures from my Ipad. Photobucket has started charging again


Last edited by bill oxner; 03/18/21 11:27 PM.

Quail hunting is like walking into, and out of a beautiful painting all day long. Gene Hill


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Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: bill oxner] #8207189 03/18/21 11:25 PM
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Originally Posted by bill oxner
Mundo for the win they have to be fully who broke before using quail.

Pretty much. Occasionally you find a dog you can start with quail easily but pigeons are so much easier, more reliable and usally cheaper.
Most people don't understand that it is all pretty much about setting the dog up for success so they can teach themselves. For the most part dogs teach themselves how to hunt birds, your job is to get the dog into a situation in which they are most likely to learn.

Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8207221 03/18/21 11:49 PM
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BobbyWB Offline OP
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Thanks for the tips.

Now I gotta find a place to buy pigeons at... know anybody in central texas or the Austin area?

Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8207549 03/19/21 12:11 PM
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Cracker was a year old when I made that thread. Here she is on wild bobwhite quail in a pasture across the road at 4 months.

[Linked Image]


Quail hunting is like walking into, and out of a beautiful painting all day long. Gene Hill


[Linked Image]




Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8207623 03/19/21 01:28 PM
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Perfection kennels has a lot of training videos on their Facebook page, some of them using bird launchers.
I started my dog with pigeons, but use a lot more quail in launchers. It was just easier for me to find quail, than pigeons in my area.
If you're interested in joining the Lone Star Weimaraner Club, they have training days with Buck Henderson.
This is my Vizsla. She has been only amateur trained by me.

[Linked Image]

Attached Files 20210316_113648.png


Shopping with your husband is like hunting with the game warden.
Experience is what you get, when you didn't get what you wanted.


Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8207749 03/19/21 02:57 PM
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Let all feed stores know you look for pigeons, watch Craigslist for pigeons and post on Craigslist that you look for pigeons. Your Vizsla will have plenty of drive and your job is to get that energy focused and working like you want.
Homers are best as you can reuse and you probably do not have time so I would look for wild pigeons and they are easy to catch with fishing net on a long pole at night under bridges. Watch your step.

Good luck.

NOTE be sure you have a solid re-call on the dog as a Vizsla might take off out of sight. Not running away just hunting and can get lost.


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Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8207786 03/19/21 03:28 PM
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Here are some pics of him on some pigeons a few weeks ago.

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]

Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8207797 03/19/21 03:35 PM
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Great looking pup. You can free up your hand a little by using a blank handgun.


Quail hunting is like walking into, and out of a beautiful painting all day long. Gene Hill


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Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8208186 03/19/21 08:53 PM
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If you have access to roofs frequented by pigeons get a trap (they are much easier to trap on roops than on the ground as they are more secure.). Or, find a place where they roost at night and spotlight and net them. Also, you can get homers from pigeon racers in your area.
There are likely some around but they keep a low profile of the PETA types. Some racers will give you culls if they understand that you are going to recall them rather than shoot them. If you can get squabs established in a recall hutch you will have a good supply of reliable training birds. (Feral pigeons usually won't recall--they return to where you trapped them.) Shoot the ferals, save they homers. There is a guy on the upland page who rents homers--you launch them and they return to him. You might find a pigeon racer who will rent birds. Like Bill sez, you really need to have your dog whoa trained before you put him on live birds. I use the Smith whoa post method-- it takes time but works. A dog should know whoa, go with me and come before he is introduced to birds. I notice your pictures show the bird in sight. Much better if the dog can't see the bird. While sight pointing won't hurt--what we are really after is getting the dog to learn to stand at point when he scents birds.

Last edited by Mundo; 03/19/21 08:58 PM.
Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8208329 03/19/21 11:10 PM
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Work the dog crosswind of the planted pigeon in a launcher. Use a check cord. As soon as the dog turns his head you know for sure he caught scent. If he takes one more step launch the pigeon. Say nothing. Move onto the next one. 3 launchers are super nice. And no sight pointing

Last edited by blanked; 03/19/21 11:17 PM.
Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8208401 03/20/21 12:21 AM
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Turns out the only flying birds I could find this weekend are flight-trained pheasant.

I'll stick to the tips here unless advised otherwise with pheasant.

Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8208467 03/20/21 01:13 AM
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I would try to stay away from pheasants. Too many negatives to list.


Quail hunting is like walking into, and out of a beautiful painting all day long. Gene Hill


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Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: bill oxner] #8208505 03/20/21 01:44 AM
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Originally Posted by bill oxner
I would try to stay away from pheasants. Too many negatives to list.


Do tell...

Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8208774 03/20/21 02:12 PM
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Originally Posted by BobbyWB
Originally Posted by bill oxner
I would try to stay away from pheasants. Too many negatives to list.


Do tell...

Pheasants are a lot louder when they take flight, and are a meaner bird.
You really need to start with a smaller bird, until your dog gains experience, and is bold on those birds.



Shopping with your husband is like hunting with the game warden.
Experience is what you get, when you didn't get what you wanted.


Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: kindall] #8208791 03/20/21 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by kindall
Originally Posted by BobbyWB
Originally Posted by bill oxner
I would try to stay away from pheasants. Too many negatives to list.


Do tell...

Pheasants are a lot louder when they take flight, and are a meaner bird.
You really need to start with a smaller bird, until your dog gains experience, and is bold on those birds.


Yep.smell nor sight.


Quail hunting is like walking into, and out of a beautiful painting all day long. Gene Hill


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Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8208843 03/20/21 03:39 PM
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Makes sense!

Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8208934 03/20/21 05:38 PM
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I tried raising pheasants for training. The plus is the pen-raised birds are wilder than other species. The minus is they won't hold. Birds would run, dogs would get birdy and follow them but couldn't hold them. Birds would invariably run to the next ranch. This is especially true for pen raised birds that don't have a lot of confidence in their flight ability,

Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8209047 03/20/21 08:51 PM
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Cost of using pheasant is another big factor in more ways than one.


Quail hunting is like walking into, and out of a beautiful painting all day long. Gene Hill


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Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8209304 03/21/21 01:14 AM
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Well fellas, I just finished up with training for today. I got 5 feisty quail that really flew. I’m pleased with day 1 on live birds. Lots of work & learning to be done (for me).

I’ll update this thread with the details later, or maybe create a new thread since I need some advice.

Last edited by BobbyWB; 03/21/21 01:15 AM.
Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8209422 03/21/21 02:40 AM
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Originally Posted by BobbyWB
Well fellas, I just finished up with training for today. I got 5 feisty quail that really flew. I’m pleased with day 1 on live birds. Lots of work & learning to be done (for me).

I’ll update this thread with the details later, or maybe create a new thread since I need some advice.



Glad you asked for the advice, it sounds like you really learned something. Good luck with the dog.

Re: Bird Launcher & Training [Re: BobbyWB] #8209883 03/21/21 07:08 PM
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You should PM Rustbucket for the NSTRA schedule. They have amateur trials got green broke dogs.


Quail hunting is like walking into, and out of a beautiful painting all day long. Gene Hill


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