After Zeke and Piper were bred, it was time to play the waiting game. We knew there wouldn’t be any obvious signs of pregnancy for a while, but that didn’t stop me from reading into all of Piper’s behaviors. Was she extra tired? Extra clingy? Extra…maternal?
Feeling pretty excited about our rookie success on Dusky Grouse, we headed back over the mountains at our next available opportunity. We retraced our steps to the areas we’d found birds and focused our efforts on identifying likely habitat and resting spots.
We made it a goal this year to really focus on early season grouse hunting. With Piper being pregnant, we wanted to take advantage of as much of the September and early October hunting opportunities as possible. Here in Washington, that means forest grouse.
While Zeke (Bolt vom Coraschatten) was staying with us for breeding purposes, we took advantage of the opening of Washington’s grouse season to stretch his legs and to learn more about his hunting abilities. I was thrilled to have the opportunity to hunt behind the sire of our future litter; in addition to getting to know him in our home, I’d also get to know more about his hunting style and handling of birds.
We welcomed a very special visitor to our home earlier this week: Bolt vom Coraschatten, known as “Zeke”, flew to Seattle from Denver to (hopefully) breed with Piper. We opted to have him come a little early so that we could get to know him better, have him get settled in and comfortable, and to err on the side of caution when trying to identify the right time for breeding.