- pointers & setters -
Hunting - Fishing - Diving
This little eagle ray curiously came up to me and
looked me straight in the face before it shot off again.
Below I'm pictured with a stargazer, or when it's sold
for the table it's usually called monkfish. In Norway we
have a similar, larger variety called 'breiflabb' (directly
translated 'wide mouth'). This summer there appears
to have been more stargazers about in shallower
waters, as they're often encountered at depths where
they're out of reach for freediving spearfishos.
We're into the last remnants of summer in New Zealand.
A lot of time Aidan and I have spent fishing (boat, kayak, rocks)
and spearfishing. I've mainly let Aidan cut his teeth with a pole
spear and I guess he'll soon move on to a spear gun for the
more robust species. At one stage we were in the waters of one
of my favourite dive grounds, Aidan with the spear and I
following him with the catch bag (visions of how my wife through
the years has been following me with a catch bag). At one
stage he turned around, telling me he had just seen a shark.
Okay, not what I necessarily wanted to hear. Yes, if we swim
this way we might still see it again! Err no, I think we'll go this
way. The aspiring marine biologist later explained to me that it
was "just" a school shark. He's turning 13 in a couple of weeks
and is actually already old enough to get a scuba licence,
however we think he should wait a couple of years still with that.
Talking about marine life, the whole family recently went
snorkeling at the Goat Island marine reserve, which is always
worth a visit now and then. In the nearby township of Leigh I
saw the local fishing competition advertised, where the biggest
prize would be going to the most "average snapper". I think
that's a brilliant way of encouraging leaving the big breeders
otherwise so often seen lined up at competition weigh-ins.
I snapped the picture on the left of my mate Craig
coming up from a scallop dive. He has since stuffed
up both his fishing & diving this summer with a bad
shoulder injury whilst playing touch rugby.
I hate to say it but afraid it's our age..
This injury is also seriously putting his upcoming
hunting season in jeopardy.
Pictured above Finn and Aidan are pulling the net to catch piper (garfish) off Taurikura beach (where we used to live
and still regularly visit). The piper is good bait, often irresistible for Yellowtail Kingfish, and it's also a nice eating fish.
On the dog front, I'm happy to report that my mate Geir's pointer female Barentsvidda's Wind Cries Mary has got her
1st Open prize in the Norwegian winter trials, and consistently performing the way he wants his dogs to run; Big and
hard and with sharp and accurate bird work. She is by the Italian Grande Quete star Titan and Barentsvidda's Mafia.

In Australia a very interesting English setter litter is expected to be born in mid May. The sire is Runanset Desperado
(Wingfield Will - Northstream Alinghi) and the dam is Runanset Rodeo Rose (Upperwood Quailpoint - Northstream
Alinghi). It's a combination that I'm tempted by myself. It has close line breeding on "Woody", who is the sire of Will and
Alinghi and as well on Moulin, who's Alinghi's mother. Quailpoint also has some interesting dogs behind him including
his sire Archie Me Lad at Upperwood and grandmother Sally, a litter sister of the highly merited Irish dog New Edition.

Pictured below is Bella photographed exactly one month ago today. The day she turned 12 years old coincided with
the annual Paradise Duck shooting (culling) weekend. Normally in late February it's very hot and we'd get both
sunburned and dehydrated. Not this year, when it was bucketing down. Bella doesn't mind being wet though!
March 2016