Special Hunting Pictorial
(Straight from the Journal)
                        Daisy's Goose Daze

     Oct 21 (morning) Daisy, Kooly and Taffey ran 150 yard cold blind with a 9 pound goose (the ATV sure makes
                planting the blind a lot easier = all three ran very nice initial lines & Daisy two whistled it, after the
                blind "roaded" 3 miles with the ATV
                         note: trained at BT's, goose unthawed from freezer (road kill by the golf course)
(left click on thumbnails for full view)
                     goose blind

    Dec  6 Today was Daisy's first true goose hunt...,,,.....hide, snow and all. She was terrific!

             We arrived at the bean field at 6:30 am and set out only 12 flocked shells along a row of un-harvested
             soybean plants. It was about 80 yards from the area broken up by my ATV a couple of days ago.  Daisy
             was tucked into the hide and everything was covered with two white sheets. I  wore my white field
             trial jacket over my "camo".  Geese started arriving about 7:30 am, but they were landing down near
             the pines about 200 yds away and too close to the road. Two other small groups "buzzed" over once
             and disappeared. With more to show, I passed on one long shot.

             More geese were heard and then again nothing. Glancing to my right, I could see the "decoys". Wait
             a minute those aren't my decoys.......they are walking south about 70 yards away. I moved, and they
             flew off with no shots. About a half hour later, there were more geese sounds behind me and then
             nothing. Sitting up and turning around, I spotted several heads sticking up from the rise behind us.

             Crouched down on my knees and dressed in white, I inched forward.......very slowly. They didn't seem
             to notice me until about at 50 yards a sentry stretch her neck up. She jumped and then everyone
             jumped. Why did I opt for improved cylinder today? I dropped the sentry (barely).  She was angry,
             lively and running, but 11 inches of snow slowed her down some. 

             Calling Daisy out of the hide (where she stayed nicely during my sneak), she came flying. I cast her
             toward the goose........but now she was just standing there in the snow. Daisy must have thought it
             was a decoy because she ignored her.  She kept looking for a bird. Each time the goose moved or
             ran, Daisy was looking elsewhere, and each time the goose stopped she'd look over (at the "decoy").
             It would have made a great cartoon. Finally, she ran when Daisy was looking and the "light went on".
             Daisy bowled her over and soon brought the goose back.

             She was banded!  One more goose wouldn't make the day any better........so we quit. The geese can
             feed the rest of today, and more dropped into the field as we were leaving.

             update: The he was changed to she when the USGS Banding Certificate arrived.
                          female hatched in 1998 or earlier & banded July 1999 at Thunder Bay, Ontario  
             note: At 3:30 pm (this afternoon) about forty geese were feeding right where we
                      had set-up.                                     
(left click on thumbnails)

                goose shell set-up
           first banded goose
         Lab pointing band
               band certificate

   Dec 10 set-up early farther south in the field, with two groups of mallards (18 and 12) up on the high part and
               goose decoys in two families down lower (left a 100 yards between them) and put layout up from the
               geese with plenty of room for another "family group" to set down I placed lot of decoys on their "bellies"
               with no stakes to look different. The geese liked the mallards so much that they were determined to
               land farther up in the field..........decided to move the layout position. As I stood up, 15 - 20 geese
               committed to the duck decoy area and were starting a swing. They must have been so mesmerized by
               the "duck deeks"...they never saw me. At twenty yards out and only about 20 yards high, they were
               coming straight to me. I picked one out and shot. No need to pick out another one....two dropped. I was
               done and Daisy had two retrieves. More geese kept landing as I tried to get out of the field as quickly as
               possible. The original plan was to have a group target my position by putting decoys "everywhere"
               worked. These are not "migrators", educated and feed in families. Therefore, they are looking for their
               own space or "landing zone" (in theory).
  note: Daisy was just perfect....again quiet and patient. One goose put up a fight (which she
                                     enjoyed). Afterwards while I was picking up, she got away with chasing off a
                                     bunch & gave me the "How come you aren't shooting?"................look.
note: left house at 6:30 am, set-up by 7:44 am and really sweating, home
                                     at 9:30 am, no issues with left fingers
                             note: last day of deer in Wisconsin, afternoon drove up to Steve's and
                                      finished the day in a tree........nothing was moving
 (left click on thumbnails)

                             geese to the left
                 geese to the right
              geese over there
                             geese get'n away
                 geese love these
                geese up high
                            goose steppers?
               Daisy's First Two'fer 
               one shot (mine too)
                   The Chase
                                                                             How come no shots?

    Dec 12 Kwick goose hunt in the bean field with Daisy. The snow was going fast and with the fog, they'd be
               coming in really low. Threw three decoys down and sat in what little snow was left wearing one of
               my Tyvak stickmen "suits" (the one with Doc-E on the back). Geez, it was muddy, so I walked in light.
               The plan was changed after a couple of "familes" checked out the decoys and only made one swing.
               Not sure but just three decoys must have not been very inviting.

               So I left the decoys where they were and moved up the rise to another small patch of snow. The new
               plan was to take advantage of the "swing". The next group approached the field at 60 plus yards up,
               but when they started their swing they flew to "being right in range" on the rise. The rise made them
               unwittingly drop down and it worked.

               A good rule for hunting pheasants is "You only have to fool them once". I guess it applies to geese, too.
               After "whacking" this one for Daisy, we left and didn't educate any more.
 (left click on thumbnails)

                                                                       three goose spread
              "doing her thing"

   Nov 14 (morning) Daisy - goose hunt at the Square Pond = two geese by 8:30 am, went to well supply house
               and picked up another 10 bags of granular bentonite, had that down and covered with clay by
               10:00 am on the front of the dam
                         note: Daisy was very quiet and patient again in her hide, waited to be
                                  sent for the each goose
                         note: did some practice with goose retrieving on land later at home
                         note: field goose hunt invite this Saturday - Daisy goes 
                         note: next turn hunting is Taffey's - ducks (Rock River or Horicon Marsh)
                              (left click on image to view)   

                         "Shooter's View"
    Avery Pro -Grade
    FB Goose Decoys
                         "Daisy's retrieve"
         "2nd goose"
       "1st goose"
                             "Final Shot"
       "Daisy has it"
   Nov 16 (early morning) goose hunt at the Square Pond with Daisy = similar setup as two days ago, but added
               three sleeper goose decoys and put five full body mallards up at the end of the pond to focus the
               attention of the geese
                       note: much colder with frozen ground down near the pond and skim ice out about 3-4 feet into
                                the water
                       note: small flock came in about 8:20 am dropped two = one in the water clean and the other
                                crashed into the corn field, Daisy wanted the one in the water first, but whistled her off that
                                to get the cripple (which died before she got there)
                       note: The goose in the water was banded
Daisy did a great job on both geese = grabbed
                                them and never changed her grip all the way to hand, the extra "front yard" work showed
                       note: Daisy was really good in her hide!
                       note: "unbagged" 18 FFD Lesser decoys at 11:00 am....."good" FeDex truck      
 (left click on thumbnails)
                                Setup  - Day 2
              "Goose from the Corn"
             "Across the Pond"
                                 "Go" Goose
                  "Poison" Goose
               "Out of the Ice"

                               "We got Bling!"
                 "her second band"
                 Daisy's Geese
                2nd Band Certificate

   Nov 27 (morning) goose hunt with Daisy - last one on the pond as the cold is going to lock it up tonight - good
               skim of ice on the east half and Daisy busted through that for a nice retrieve of our fifth goose this year
               off the pond (only one shoulda' today) - better shooting would have resulted in two geese.....still not
               very adept at sitting up and shooting out of a ground blind even though today's setup was designed to
               maximize my "good side"
                       note: put big "looker" right next to me and a feeder at my feet to distract the "guests" away from
                                directly looking at the blind and hide, six fully flocked lesser decoys were setup to look like
                                they were walking toward us, a dozen Avery full body mallards were placed the other side
                                of the pond to 1) distract the geese and keep them from looking at us and and 2) "push" them
                                closer to our side of the pond
                       note: the geese came in from the east (as planned) and wanted down
                       note: each day the look has been different - five days of hunting spread out over about two weeks
                                has just about exhausted the number of "uneducated" groups that like to use this pond, with it
                                freezing over the timing is just right, when the corn fields close to the many roosts in this
                                area are "used up", this corn field will begin to get active 
                       note: the areas around Taffey's eyes  are healing up quickly & her paw (slight slip on right front)
                                looks good, no more limping

                                                                                                         (left click on thumbnails)
                              "first skimmed ice"

           "busting it good"
             "one last lunge"
                                 "piece 'a cake"
             "All  Attitude"
           "blinds & lessers"
                              "geese & mallard"
             "hide & blind"  
    Dec 10 (morning) setup in the corn field - no Daisy (not comfortable with the ice situation on the pond, not
               close...but) ready by 8:30 am, zero geese until 10:06 am with three in first bunch = got one (should
               have finished out), two came in about 15 minutes later = "should have" waited for one more pass,
               waited about 30 minutes and then about 12 came in, one shot and done
                      note: If I had taken two out of those first two small groups, the 12 would have been there
                               tomorrow. arrrggh!
                      note: scouted the field later in the afternoon = at least 100 geese feeding, major ice storm
                               forecast for tomorrow, this field WAS going to get hot for awhile 
                                    "blind setup"
           "lesser decoys"