(1) Accurate marking, or memory of “falls’’ is of paramount importance. However, this does not imply that dogs which excel in marking shall not be severely penalized, or even eliminated, for deficiencies in, or a lack of the other required “abilities.’’ However, in Derby stakes the ability to “mark’’ is all-important and dogs that are handled on a mark in a Derby Stake shall be eliminated. Even in our most exacting stakes, tests are usually so devised that “marked’’ birds constitute a large percentage of the retrieves by which each dog’s performance is judged.
Ability to “mark’’ does not necessarily imply “pin- pointing the fall.’’ A dog that misses the “fall’’ on the first cast, but recognizes the depth of the “area of the fall,’’ stays in it, then quickly and systematically “hunts- it-out,’’ has done both a creditable and an intelligent job of marking. Such work should not be appreciably out-scored by the dog that “finds’’ or “pinpoints’’ on his first cast. However, a dog which consistently, i.e., during an entire stake, marks his birds in a closer area, hence, more accurately than another dog, should be judged
What precisely constitutes the “area of the ‘fall’ ” defies accurate definition; yet, at the outset of every test, each Judge must arbitrarily define its hypothetical boundaries for himself, and for each bird in that test, so that he can judge whether dogs have remained within his own concept of “area of the ‘fall,’ ’’ as well as how far they have wandered away from “the area’’ and how much cover they have disturbed unnecessarily. In determining these arbitrary and hypothetical boundaries of the “area of the ‘fall,’ ’’ due considerations should be given to various factors: (1) the type, the height and the uniformity of the cover, (2) light conditions, (3) direction of the prevailing wind and its intensity, (4) length of the various falls, (5) the speed of individual dogs, (6) whether there is a change in cover (as from stubble to plowed ground, or to ripe alfalfa, or to machine-picked corn, etc.) or whether the “fall’’ is beyond a hedge, across a road, or over a ditch, etc., and, finally, and most important, (7) whether one is establishing the “area of the ‘fall’ ’’ for a single, or for the first bird a dog goes for, in multiple retrieves, or for the second or the third bird, since each of these should differ from the others.
Twice in the open my young dog marked a flier that curled back behind the guns and was shot,where received a no bird.Three dogs later he gets a good flier ,yet goes behind the gun where he marked the no bird....nothing there , goes straight to the flier and gets the retireds nicely.They dropped him on one, and called him back on the other. Just another thing that happens on fliers.
Not trying to high jack thread but, can the size of the AOF change as the test progresses?
'I make my practices real hard because if a player is a quitter, I want him to quit in practice, not in a game.' - Bear Bryant / Alabama
Nope, its pretty much set in stone....each Judge must arbitrarily define its hypothetical boundaries for himself, and for each bird in that test, so that he can judge whether dogs have remained within his own concept of “area of the ‘fall,’ ’’ as well as how far they have wandered away from “the area’’ and how much cover they have disturbed unnecessarily.