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TAS Country : April 28th 2011
Friday, April 29, 2011 Tasmanian Country 9 2011 All set to make a splash EAGER: Scott Castle's Labradors, Black Pearl and Briley, go to get their dummy at training. Picture: KAROLIN MacGREGOR PROUD: Scott Castle with his two gundogs. KAROLIN MacGREGOR WHEN members of the Tasman- ian Gundog Trial Association get together for monthly compe- titions, it is not just the owners who are having a lot of fun. The association holds trials across the state that are open to all gundog and hunting breeds. The association's public re- lations officer Scott Castle and has been involved with the group for about eight years. He and his wife Deborah breed dogs at their Cascott Working Labrador stud near Longford in Tasmania's North. He said a top working Labra- dor had to be structurally sound, trainable and obedient and have a good natural ability for hunting and retrieving. ''We only breed with dogs that have been proven,'' he said. ''They need to be structurally correct because there's no use spending years training a dog if it goes lame because of a leg problem.'' Mr Castle said they performed a few initial tem- perament tests on puppies when they were a few weeks old. He said they needed to have a willingness to be with their hand- ler, but also enough confidence to go out on their own and work. ''You need a dog that nat- urally wants to please you, but you also want them to have quite a bit of confidence.'' Initial training begins when the puppies are a few weeks old with basic obedience, and gets more advanced until the dogs can find and retrieve items from quite a distance away and also out of the water. Mr Castle said that at the top competition level, Labradors were often the preferred breed. The dogs in competition are judged on obedience, their ability to find items and how they move from and back to their handler. During trials the dogs are required to retrieve dummies, sometimes with feathers or a rabbit skin stuck to them, or dead pigeons, all sent out into the field using a catapult. Top dogs may be required to retrieve three different items in a specific order, including one they did not see planted. The dogs must sit next to their handler until they are given the signal to retrieve. Mr Castle said trials were often set up so the dummies land behind trees, over a hill or in the water or reeds. He said it was vital to be able direct the dogs from a distance. Mr Castle said some competi- tors used their dogs for hunting, while others lived in urban areas and liked to give their dogs something fun to do. ''To do well they have to love it and some of them will do it all day if you let them,'' he said. ''That's what they've been bred for, so their instinct to retrieve of fairly strong.'' 1122 Eleventh Ave KING CARAVANS COME AND SEE OUR HUGE RANGE OF CARAVANS BE SURE NOT TO MISS OUR DISPLAY OF BOAT AND BOX TRAILERS AS WELL! FIND US AT AGFEST SITE 521 FIFTH AVENUE King Caravans Corner Amy St & Main Rd. Moonah 6273 4666 King T owbars and Trailers 5-9 Florence St, Moonah 6228 0317 King Towba JAYCO CONQUEST & OPTIMUM MOTORHOMES JAYCO WORK & PLAY FOR THE FUN SEEKER Camper Trailers Discovery & Sterling Series Pop-Tops & Caravans On road & off road models available OUTBACK OUTBACK Campers 2077507-110429 2011 Starcraft Pop-Top & Caravans In June this year, approximately 175,000 Agricultural Census forms will be mailed out to agricultural business all over Australia. The Ag Census is run every five years. Information will be collected on characteristics of Australian agricultural businesses such as production, land use and management practices. This underpins our understanding of the contribution Agriculture makes to local communities and to the national economy. Information from the Ag Census provides Australia s most detailed picture of what is happening in Australian agriculture at the regional level, so it will be used to inform decisions that will affect your industry and your region. If you own or operate a farm or other agricultural business, keep an eye out for your Ag Census form in June 2011. AGRICULTURAL CENSUS 2011 www.abs.gov.au/agcensus2011 2023125-110429 INVESTMENT PTY LTD Irriland Hard Hose Irrigators and Pump Sets see the range at AGFEST Site 430 Phone: Philip or Ruth Paterson 0428 583 320 www.moretonhill.com
April 21st 2011
May 5th 2011