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Quail Hunting

Back in ‘the day’, I bought a seven week old Pointer pup with a severely dislocated elbow joint. The vet took this pup, built a brace around her leg, and six weeks later, she was as good as new.  I trained Cindy to point using some live quail I had purchased and kept in a cage in the garage. That dog loved  to run and hunt!  This is my indirect tribute to Cindy and all the experiences she brought me, hunting quail in Texas.

Now whether you’re hunting for sport or for meat,
   there’s nothing as tough as a quail.
They’ll wear a man down – put an ache in his feet,
   and a sag in his weary dog’s tail.

All you do for a dove is to sit still and look.
   See, here comes one flying real low!
You could even learn how by reading a book,
   And seeing how fast they can go.

Men hunt deer from a tree, and ducks from a blind.
   There just ain’t much effort in that.
But a quail hunt is tiresome work, you’ll find,
   and you gotta be quick as a cat!

First, your dog runs off, and you call her back in,
   You tell her, “Hunt close in here now!”
You cover one side of the valley and then,
   You get chased by some mean ol’ range cow!

Your dog comes in limpin’, and you bend down to find
   cactus all stuck ‘tween her toes.
‘Bout the time you get ’em all out, you notice
   there’s some on the tip of her nose.

So you doctor her up, then get back to the hunt,
   Walking miles between every bird.
When you’re thinking your dog’s the litter’s runt,
   She locks down on a whole quail herd!

You tell her to “Whoa”, she’s holding them tight,
   Her tail’s like a flag in the air.
You step forward to kick up some birds on the right,
   And then they explode everywhere!

You gotta be quick! Pick one out and then SHOOT!
   If he falls, then pick out another.
If you drop this one, watch where he falls to the ground,
   Then you go look for his brother.

Your dog beats you to him. “Good girl – BRING HIM BACK!”
  “I said, GET OVER HERE NOW!”
You finally get the bird, and you put him in the sack,
   and the sweat’s running all down your brow.

After miles of walking for hours on end,
   You and your dog’s dragging slow.
But a hard day’s work for a man and his friend,
  Was nothing but fun, don’t you know!

Frank Knight