Thursday, November 18, 2010

Mythical Beast

Photo: Dr. Shawn Wayment, DVM
For more years than I'm willing to admit, I've been pursuing scaled quail here in Colorado.  I've had to surrender to the little gray bird for several seasons, simply unable to pattern their daily routine or figure out where the damn things live and thrive.  Growing up in Missouri, and having hunted Gentlemen Bob successfully more than a few times, I've kept a steadfast image in my head that if I remained diligent, perseverance would eventually reward me with a bird, or at the very least give me a chance to perhaps see one.  I mean.... they're both quail, right?  How much different could they actually be?  What a sorry state of mind that turned out to be.

Last season I again took a day off of doing battle with my arch enemy, the pheasant, to pursue these noble birds in what I had been lead to believe was their natural habitat.   Now I ask you, have any of you reached a point in your hunting pursuits when you started out the day already defeated?  You know... where you woke up at dark-thirty in the morning and knew you were probably in for a serious bout of burning boot leather that would likely end in disappointment and an empty bird bag?  Well pilgrims, that's how low I had sunk.  Self fulfilling prophecy's being what they are, I got exactly what I anxiously expected - nothing.

Resolving myself to defeat, as well as a creeping suspicion that scaled quail may not actually exist, I determined that if I was ever to chase these birds again, with hat in hand, I would have to engage a professional.  Then I started this blog, and along the way I met some good friends and learned a lot about the pursuit of all things feather, fur and fin.  As good fortune would have it, I also stumbled across a quail man, Dr. Shawn Wayment, DVM, from Setter Feathers and Groused Tales.  After helping me to solve a dog injury, the result of my over exuberant idiot puppy, I confided in Shawn my inability to find scaled quail.  Confident he could do so, he immediately offered to help me remedy the situation and we made plans to meet on the prairie shortly thereafter.

After a good bit of walking the mythical beast was finally tamed, thanks to Shawn's highly skilled and wonderfully patient dogs, and a stray bee bee or two.



Scaled Quail country is large, impressive and intimidating
Industrious, methodical, and a never say quit attitude wins the day
Is there anything more beautiful?
Be prepared to walk .... well... all day
It's well worth the effort though.  Thanks Shawn, for a terrific memory!
Photo: Dr. Shawn Wayment, DVM

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2 comments:

  1. Gary,
    What a lovely bird! How fortuitous that you had the good Doctor's assistance.

    BTW I found you via your comments on Chad's blog, and I will be including you in this week's TROC Rodeo!

    Best Regards,
    Albert A Rasch
    The Range Reviews: AGI Armorer's Course Colt 1911

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  2. Congratulations on a nice bird and some great dogs!

    I feel the same way about mountain quail. If you've never hunted them, I highly recommend it, but contact the post office, because your mail will pile up...

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