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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Deer Search's Annual Dinner

On Sunday, March 30, the Founding Chapter of Deer Search held the Annual Dinner at Copperfields, Pleasant Valley, NY. According to my count, 29 people attended, and some members traveled from as far as New Jersey and Pennsylvania. It was truly great to see everybody. I don't attend regular meeting of Deer Search any more as their schedule collides with meetings of New Scotland Beagle Club, where I am a treasurer. This was a great opportunity to see my good friends. Deer Search was formed 32 years ago so there was a lot of collective blood tracking experience gathered in the Copperfields dining room!

Penny Hickman, our President, welcomed everybody and encouraged us to attend the Annual Meeting that will take place on April 1. At present Deer Search is dealing with some important issues and members' active participation is critical.

Bill Siegrist, Chairman of the Blood Tracking Committee, reviewed the 2009 tracking season and thanked all the trackers for their hard work and dedication. Unfortunately, Tim Nichols who took the highest number of calls, 61, could not attend the dinner as he has been sick with Lyme disease. Tim - get better really soon! All in all, members of the Founding Chapter went on 324 sorties, and they recovered in total 72 wounded deer, bear, moose and bobcat. Bill reminded us about upcoming DSI Blood Tracking Competition, that will take place on April 17-18.

Barbara Schmidt, our Secretary, presented new Certified Handlers with their certificates. Deer Search has a certification program for both, handlers and dogs. In 2009 three new handlers were certified, and they fulfilled their certification requirements in one year. This is a great accomplishment. The pictures above show Beth Shero and her husband Gentian Shero, who both got certified. It was recognized that Beth is a third-generation Deer Searcher. Her Grandmother Faye Robinson is a Deer Search member and a dedicated dispatcher. Beth's Father, John Robinson, a former Presient of Deer Search, is still an active tracker.

Marc Niad is the only tracker we have in Westchester County, and he has been a great asset to our organization. Marc's tracking partner is Dakota, a Jagdterrier, and to read more about this team click here.

The only dog that was certified in 2009 was our FC Billy von Moosbach-Zuzelek, who was handled by John Jeanneney. John, at 75, is the oldest member of our chapter, and he took the 2nd highest number of calls - 35. Congratulations to John and Billy!

It was good to see old friends and to make new ones. Above you can see Fred Zoeller, Roger Humeston Jr and his friend Debbie, Pete Martin with his girlfriend, Gentian Shero, Andy Bensing, Rich Stollery, Darren Doran, Ray Hickman. Below: John Robinson, Faye Robinson, Ray and Ruth Hickman.

To be able to participate in the DSI Blood Tracking Competition, dogs have to be pre-tested. The pretest line must be from 20 to 24 hours old, 500 meters long, and 125 ml. (1/4 pint) of blood must be laid on the line. The pretest line must have two  90 degree turns, and the bloodline must be laid by the pretest evaluator.
After the dinner was over, three dachshunds who are going to compete in the Blood Tracking Competition, socialized in the parking lot. They just passed their pretests. These were Andy Bensing's Eibe and Beth and Gentian Shero's Mae and Mariel. We wish best of luck to the handlers and their dogs.

Mariel is a good eample of the correct FCI-type wirehaired dachshund. She was bred by Dale Clifford, and is a granddaughter of our Sabina.

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