If you've been noticing a few changes on my blog-roll, there are numerous new additions and a couple of subtractions.
1) I added a couple of Drahthaar blogs -- Wingshooter's Journal and Drahthaar Addiction. While I haven't figured out why wirehaired dogs are a great match for hunting in UT, it's always nice to find blogs by folks who are commited to their dogs (and their fabulous mustaches). I made a nod to the breeding-through-performance commitment that's embodied in a Drahthaar in a post back in January.
Side note: on the topic of breeding-for-performance, Steve Bodio has a nice summary of the issues 'exposed' through the recent BBC documentary on the Kennel Club (and its promotion of genetic deformity) -- and I would encourage folks to read the comments, especially those from Mike at Living with Birddogs. Luisa at Lassie Get Help has her own, albeit similar, take on the predicament. In my opinion, it's too easy just to take a swing at either the AKC or at show-folks -- while the former does enable the worst of the latter, does anyone who really needs a working dog really start with a list of 'reputable' AKC breeders?
2) Brad McCardle has a nice blog out of Lewiston, MT, For Love of Dogs and Birds. And thanks to him I discovered that fellow Montanan, and legendary bird-dog man, Ben O. Williams has now put up the first sections of his own website.
3) I also found a couple of hunting-gathering food blogs which piqued my interest: Fat of the Land and Hunt Eat Live. For those enamoured of wild huckleberries, FOTL has a great post about gathering said jewels in the Indian Heaven Wilderness in WA.
4) I also found Norcal Cazadora's blog. Holly Heyser seems like an interesting woman -- a journalism professor who found hunting at age 41. Amongst other things, and whether entirely self-interested or not, she does gear reviews for women's hunting gear. The piece that caught my eye was this story about a pro-hunting group attacking the NRA for giving millions of dollars to members of Congress with bad records on conservation. It caught my eye because it does seem like a David vs. Goliath struggle -- however, as an umbrella organization (and like the AKC in this regard), the NRA is beholden to a wide-range of groups and as such must struggle with how to prioritize. However, the NRA has also done a fair amount to alienate those of us who don't believe in bazookas-for-all -- and the skeptic in me also likes to see giants wince, if not fall. The comments that accompany Holly's story are worth reading -- and I have yet to do my own due diligence on this.
In the meantime, here are a couple of Team Vizsla pictures from the weekend. At the top, here's the boys and Meg up at the watertower near Blue Lake. We hadn't been up there in almost a year -- and you can see how much Mr. Enthusiasm has grown if you go here. The bottom picture is of the boys in their Taj Mahal newly installed in the new Team Vizslamobile. We got this just over a year ago, too. It's one of the best investments you can make.
For all those who prayed for rust, Bob would like to thank you. His 2000 Tacoma needed a lot more searching, but Toyota is buying back his truck, too. Sadly, for now, he has to ride around in an F-150.