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Thread: Use of public lands

  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Default Use of public lands

    How acceptable to retriever use are public areas that you are familiar with? I know some are off limits, some allow limited use, while others go out of their way and give special allowances for retriever training/events.

    If areas restrict use for other activities, but allow for retriever use......how and why?

    John

  2. #2
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    As far as I know in WI - Madison 2 trials, 2 hunt tests a year has it's own land (3 forty acre parcels plus a 22 acre parcel), WAFTC has two parcels a world class property and clubhouse plus Hosea property, Manitowoc has two properties and water plus building a new clubhouse, Blackhawk has Unbehaun, Curtis, spangler, plus the Parrot property, West Allis has its own --- Wisconsin is blessed!!!!
    trog

  3. #3
    Senior Member EdA's Avatar
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    National Wildlife Refuges were once widely used for retriever field trials until the early 90s when, I was told, The Audubon Society exerted significant political pressure to the USFWS to cease the practice. Until on or about 1990 the following NWRs were used regularly for field trials: Bombay Hook NWR in DE, Bosque del Apache NWR in NM, Las Vegas NWR in NM, Quivara NWR in KS, Tischomingo NWR in OK, Alamosa NWR in CO, Hagerman NWR in TX. These are just the ones I remember and/or ones on which field trials I attended were hosted. I am sure there are others that I have forgotten or am unaware of. To my knowledge there are no field trial events held anywhere in the USA on USFWS refuges.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Karen Klotthor's Avatar
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    We use property owned by the Corp of Eng. The Bonnett Carre' Spillway is on the Mississippi River outside of New Orleans. The corp has set up sections for the retrievier people and another section for ATV's.
    Several FT clubs have their trials there and Pontcartrain HRC has both the HRC and AKC hunt on those grounds. They are very nice grounds and they change monthly.

  5. #5
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    In our area the two largest areas are the Bong Recreational area (West Kenosha County Wisconsin) 7 square miles with a special use zone and Class one and two areas for hunt test and field trials. Another about 40 minutes North at Eagle Wisconsin are the Ottawa Field Trial grounds (mostly pointers use). The Bong grounds held four National Retriever events in the 1970's. A HRC club has been instrumental in trying to maintain the area with mowing etc. There are two HRC events, and I think four AKC HT events on the grounds, plus daily training, DNR permit, can shoot flyers etc until hunting season, Waterfowl and Stocked upland hunting. 25 minutes from my front door so don't complain too much, water could be better.
    Earl Dillow

  6. #6
    Senior Member Keith S.'s Avatar
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    Our game and parks commission(Nebraska) use to be very good to our club and give us the keys to a large WMA and give us free range for our tests. I am not sue what happen but they changed their position on that and now we can't drive in the grounds. There are no areas we can use within walking distance from the roads so we now use all private grounds.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Good Dogs's Avatar
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    SC has H Cooper Black Memorial Field Trial and Recreational Area. 3,500 acres of woods, fields and ponds. Several nationals there, innumerable weekend FTs and HTs and the MNRC in 2015. Also bird dog trials and nationals. Certainly the nicest public facility of which I'm aware. Miss being an hour away from the grounds where you could train any time first come first served or reserve your own spot. The Park Service keeps getting their budget cut by the nitwits in Columbia but local clubs have stepped up to fund maintenance and improvements.
    Other grounds we've been lucky enough to play on, the Cattle Ranch in Demopolis, AL, now part of the state's "Forever Wild" program; Busch wildlife preserve in St. Louis; and Iroquis Wildlife Preserve in western NY. In VA we have the forestry center in Powhatan which has picnic and clubhouse facilities and is great for club trials and picnics. Used to have HTs but that seems to have gone. No other public grounds that I'm aware of though several folks and VA clubs have created training grounds leased through the Va Retriever Benefit association.
    Bottom line, grounds are getting harder and harder to find and unless we all keep pressure on the politicians the few we have are easy targets for budget cutters.

  8. #8
    Senior Member IowaBayDog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EdA View Post
    National Wildlife Refuges were once widely used for retriever field trials until the early 90s when, I was told, The Audubon Society exerted significant political pressure to the USFWS to cease the practice. Until on or about 1990 the following NWRs were used regularly for field trials: Bombay Hook NWR in DE, Bosque del Apache NWR in NM, Las Vegas NWR in NM, Quivara NWR in KS, Tischomingo NWR in OK, Alamosa NWR in CO, Hagerman NWR in TX. These are just the ones I remember and/or ones on which field trials I attended were hosted. I am sure there are others that I have forgotten or am unaware of. To my knowledge there are no field trial events held anywhere in the USA on USFWS refuges.
    I just had a conversation with a worker at the NWR by our house. No pets allowed anywhere on it at all. Claimed it was "to not disturb nesting birds". I asked what he thought the cutting and bailing of the 100s of acres of grass on the refuge did to the nesting birds in July? "Those are the rules" was his response. He didn't strike me as being in a position of much authority and was not a jerk about it so I left it alone. Seems a waste of beautiful grounds though.
    ________________________________
    Dan Cram
    No longer live in Iowa but I have a new Bay Dog!!

    Skywatcher Salem Orchard Hard "Cider"

  9. #9
    Senior Member badbullgator's Avatar
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    We have been offered the use of several public grounds. The problem is they don't allow gator control and without it most of those public grounds have the densest population around. The pointer folks have a few nice places down here including one that has stables and camping facilities. They don't worry so much about gators, although they do lose some dogs to them.
    Also, a few of the grounds we have been offered are less than desirable for testing or training. Obstacles like being walk in ares only make it difficult to train. Hiking a few miles with wingers, blinds, dogs, birds... is not all that.
    There is a movement with one of the large brig dog clubs to get more use and they claim that our agenda of alligator control is part of their request. We will see
    Views and opinions expressed herein by Badbullgator do not necessarily represent the policies or position of RTF. RTF and all of it's subsidiaries can not be held liable for the off centered humor and politically incorrect comments of the author.
    Corey Burke

  10. #10
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    We are blessed to have the use of West Kentucky Wildlife Management Area near Paducah, Ky, maintained and improved by Tim Kreher. My hats off to Tim and his group of workers there. We hold 2 ft for Bluegrass RC, 2 ft for Lincoln Trail RC, and 2 AKC ht put on by Central Ky. RC each year plus the grounds are open to training to the public. Blessed to have the continuous use of these grounds for Retriever ft and ht sports since the mid 70s
    Brooks Gibson

    Bad things happen when you ask common dogs to do uncommon things.

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