I really didn't think we would make the first day of the season for our shoot, but we did, thanks to our excellent shoot captain who allowed me to change sides and go with the pickers up.
There was no way that my knee would have coped on the beating line and as it turned out I was not the only one injured. One of the main Pickers-up had damaged there knee, so was unable to make it and another one was down with 'man flu'. In fact there was injuries everywhere, dogs and humans.
Next time I do picking up, there will be a picture of me with pad & pen in hand marking the birds down as they fall, he he he :)
My hat goes off to the regular Pickers-up' :)
I was marking the birds falling on one drive when two of the beating dogs broke out from the crop field and started pinching the fallen, one dog picking up a bird but then only to place it back down on the ground. That was it, my tiny little brain could not keep track of the positions of the birds being moved, the ones being pinched and still keep an eye on the ones still falling.
Jay-Jay was shaking like a leaf throughout but was totally silent and didn't move an inch from her spot, bless her heart. After 7 weeks of her being stuck in with me I was really pleased that even though her excitement level was hitting the roof (hence the shaking) and her being a beating dog therefore use to retrieving the fallen as soon as it has been shoot, managed to totally keep her composure waiting till the end of the drive.
I cannot tell of any amazing retrieves after runners etc as there wasn't any, most birds fallen at the guns feet, one shot bird nearly knocking the gun out, he he he.
There was only two runners that I know of, both unseen by us. We helped look for one with a chap and his pointer, who found the bird, which was lovely as we had just arrived in time see the point which the dog held wonderfully :))
After four drives though the knee was objecting, as you can tell from my face in the photo, so sadly it was time to go home :(
BUT we had managed to make the first shoot day and the knee had survived, so what more could I ask for :)
Many thanks goes to Gary as well for coming along and helping this poor old girl make it through the drives :)