Bob St. Pierre

Bob St. Pierre is director of marketing and public relations for Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever. A lifelong bird hunter, he chases upland birds each fall from Michigan to Montana with his German shorthaired pointer. He's often on the FAN Outdoors show, 6 to 8 a.m. Saturdays on 1130 AM.

Posts about Birding

KFAN Broadcasting Live from Minnesota Pheasant Summit

Posted by: Bob St. Pierre Updated: December 11, 2014 - 8:48 PM

“The Captain” Billy Hildebrand and I are taking Saturday morning FAN Outdoors radio show on the road.  We’ll be in Marshall, Minnesota at 6AM this Saturday to broadcast live from the Minnesota Pheasant Summit.

Created by Governor Mark Dayton, the summit will include hunters, farmers, policymakers, conservationists, and key members of the Governor’s Cabinet.  The focus will be on strategies to increase the state’s pheasant population, improve pheasant habitat, and ensure future generations of Minnesota hunters have the opportunity to enjoy one of the state’s most popular and iconic game birds.  

Our broadcast will be live from 6AM to 8AM on 100.3FM in the Twin Cities and on www.KFAN.com worldwide.  Tune in to hear a preview of the day’s discussion, along with some late season pheasant hunting tips and a little ice fishing conversation brought to you by our friends at Clam Outdoors

Minnesota Pheasant Summit Agenda

(on the campus of Southwest Minnesota State University)

8:00     Registration in Lobby

9:30     Welcome – Ron Schara, Emcee

9:40     Welcome to the SMSU campus – Connie Gores, SMSU President  

9:45     Comments by Leadership

9:55     Pheasants in MN – Nicole Davros, DNR and Matt Holland, Pheasants Forever 

10:25   Questions & Answers – Pheasant Biology, Habitat or Programs

10:40  Address by Governor Dayton – Building a Strong Conservation Future

10:50   Pre-Summit Survey Results – Tom Landwehr, DNR Commissioner  

11:15   Break-Out Session – Part I (Public Habitat, Private Habitat, Hunting)

12:30   Lunch

1:15     Break-Out Session – Part II (Public Habitat, Private Habitat, Hunting)

2:30     Pheasants and Farming – Dave Fredrickson, Dept. of Ag     

2:45     Post-Breakout: Establish Top Action Items

4:00     Closing Remarks by Tom Landwehr, DNR Commissioner & Ron Schara

Follow on Twitter at #PheasantSummitMN

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

Bird Dog Hunting Life List

Posted by: Bob St. Pierre Updated: November 24, 2014 - 8:32 AM
I had the opportunity to hunt with a wide array of bird dog breeds last week during this hunt in Kansas

I had the opportunity to hunt with a wide array of bird dog breeds last week during this hunt in Kansas

Invariably, every hunting trip shapes a new idea about how I want to do things moving forward.  During this year’s travels, I’ve come to realize hunting over different bird dogs gives me a greater appreciation for the unique talents of each individual and breed.  This got me thinking about how avid bird watchers keep a list of all the species of birds they’ve seen over their lifetime.  It’s called a “life list” and seems tailor-made for a bird dog-loving guy like me to put my own spin to . . . my own bird dog hunting life list.  While I’ve had the opportunity to admire all of the breeds listed below during Pheasant Fest’s Bird Dog Parade, I have only experienced the pleasure of hunting with half of them.

Here is my best recollection of the bird dog breeds I’ve shared a field or forest with in search of pheasants, quail and grouse so far in my life.

  1. Boykin Spaniel
  2. Brittany
  3. English Cocker Spaniel
  4. English Setter
  5. English Springer Spaniel
  6. German Shorthaired Pointer
  7. German Wirehaired Pointer
  8. Golden Retriever
  9. Gordon Setter
  10. Irish Setter
  11. Labrador Retriever
  12. Llewellin Setter
  13. Pointer
  14. Poodle
  15. Red Setter
  16. Small Munsterlander
  17. Vizla
  18. Weimaraner
  19. Wirehaired Pointing Griffon

List of Sporting Breeds I’ve yet to hunt behind include:

1.Airedale Terrier

2.American Water Spaniel

3.Chesapeake Bay Retriever

4.Clumber Spaniel

5.Cocker Spaniel

6.Curly Coated Retriever

7.Field Spaniel

8.Flat Coated Retriever

9.French Brittany

10.Irish Red and White Setter

11.Irish Water Spaniel

12.Large Munsterlander

13.Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever

14.Pudelpointer

15.Spinone Italiano

16.Sussex Spaniel

17.Welsh Springer Spaniel

18.Wirehaired Vizsla

19. Braque du Bourbonnais

Ed Howell with his Braque du Bourbonnais

Ed Howell with his Braque du Bourbonnais

How many breeds are on your bird dog hunting life list?

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

It’s Pointers vs. Flushers for Pheasants Forever’s 2014 Rooster Road Trip

Posted by: Bob St. Pierre Updated: November 7, 2014 - 10:22 AM

 

Pheasants Forever’s Rooster Road Trip — an annual pheasant hunting trip dedicated to showcasing public upland habitat and access — has added a new twist to the upcoming expedition. This year pits “Team Pointer” versus “Team Flusher” in a battle of bird dog supremacy. Follow the Pheasants Forever hunters and their bird dogs online November 3rd through November 12th to watch the friendly competition unfold as the two teams hunt only publicly accessible land in six states.

Once again, the Rooster Road Trip will visit lands Pheasants Forever has played a significant role in opening up to public access, either through land purchase, restoration, or legislation. The effort focuses on how important pheasant hunters who join Pheasants Forever as members are to creating and improving publicly accessible habitat. In fact, any follower who joins Pheasants Forever as a member online through the Rooster Road Trip webpage from the start of the trip until November 14th will receive an exclusive Browning bonus item (a different item each week) and be entered to win a new Browning Citori 725 over/under 20 gauge shotgun (in addition to the standard benefits of Pheasants Forever membership).

Team Flusher

Anthony Hauck, Pheasants Forever’s online editor, and his English cocker spaniel, “Sprig,” along with Andrew Vavra, Pheasants Forever’s marketing manager, and his Labrador retriever, “Beau,” will join up with Pheasants Forever chapter members and hunt in North Dakota on November 3rd followed by South Dakota and Minnesota.

Team Pointer

Bob St. Pierre, Pheasants Forever’s vice president of marketing, and his German shorthaired pointers, “Trammell” and “Esky,” along with Elsa Gallagher, Pheasants Forever’s state coordinator for Missouri, and her dogs “Rooster,” “Pike” and “Ginny” will hunt first in Colorado followed by Kansas and Nebraska. Team Pointer starts on Monday, Nov. 10th.

The good-natured competition will tally Team Flusher’s productive flushes against Team Pointer’s productive points. “It will be fun to stoke this age-old debate during this year’s Rooster Road Trip, but we already know the real winners – anyone who loves chasing roosters,” says Anthony Hauck, “This trip ultimately puts a spotlight on Pheasants Forever’s successful projects, just some of the more than 170,000 acres the organization has helped permanently conserve, a number we’re adding acres to every year.”

“The Rooster Road Trip is a fun way to illustrate the power of volunteer engagement in the cause of conservation,” added Vavra. “Last year’s Rooster Road Trip generated more than 500 new Pheasants Forever members and tens of thousands of sponsorship dollars for the organization’s conservation mission. We’re optimistic this year’s effort will be an even bigger success, ultimately leading to more habitat access for future generations of pheasant hunters.”

Follow Pheasants Forever’s Rooster Road Trip 2014 online at:

Rooster Road Trip 2014 / Facebook / Twitter / YouTube / Instagram (new!)

Rooster Road Trip 2014 Sponsors

Rooster Road Trip 2014 sponsors include Apple Autos, Browning, Federal Premium Ammunition, Garmin, Irish Setter, Leer, Zeiss, North Dakota Tourism, Explore Minnesota, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Nebraska Game and Parks, and the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism.

About Pheasants Forever

Pheasants Forever, including its quail conservation division, Quail Forever, is the nation's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to upland habitat conservation. Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever have more than 140,000 members and 700 local chapters across the United States and Canada. Chapters are empowered to determine how 100 percent of their locally raised conservation funds are spent; the only national conservation organization that operates through this truly grassroots structure.

My New Bird Dog and Puppy Potty Training

Posted by: Bob St. Pierre Updated: July 10, 2014 - 9:36 PM

I am proud to introduce Top Gun Escanaba v. St.Pierre, my new 10-week-old female German shorthaired pointer. My new bird dog pup, call name “Esky,” comes from the same bloodlines as my previous two shorthairs, Izzy and Trammell. If you are a frequent reader of this blog, you may remember my young shorthair Izzy died tragically last October. Izzy and Esky share the same dam, Top Gun Hope

Esky joined our family last Thursday after a trip to Top Gun Kennels in Iowa where we met a few of her siblings. The breeder, Steve and Jodie Ries, made my pup selection for me in advance. Steve and Jodie know me well, know my hunting style and know what attributes I was looking for in my new pup. There was no flipping over pups on their back to see which one fought me, or didn’t. There was no walking around the yard to see which one followed me, or didn’t. There was no chance of a pup having a good day or a bad one when I met them. I simply communicated my preferences and trusted them. This strategy of trust worked seven years ago with my first pup and I’ve kept returning to the same breeder ever since. 

Tip: I’ve found most gun dog breeders to be similarly dedicated to their client’s needs.  If you’re looking for a pup, ask prospective breeders for the contact info from some of their clients and make a few calls.  Speaking to owners from the same bloodlines you’re interested in will provide a tremendous amount of insight into both the breeder and the line.  It’s well worth the effort.

The Name Game

While I named my previous two bird dogs after Detroit sports heroes of my childhood (Alan Trammell and Steve Yzerman), I went a different direction with my new pup. “Esky” is the nickname of my hometown of Escanaba in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. I selected the name for a couple of different reasons. First, I’ve never met another bird dog named Esky and a unique name in the field is important to me. Second, Esky sounds similar to Izzy, which I like considering the circumstances of losing Izzy at such a young age. Lastly, growing up in Escanaba translated into my love for the great outdoors and bird hunting in particular, so naming my dog “Esky” seemed a fitting tribute to a place I love. 

Puppy Potty Training

Life with a puppy is a shock to the system and our normal daily structure. In fact, I spent my Fourth of July holiday weekend not sleeping. Ten-week-old puppies want bathroom breaks at 2AM and 4:30AM, and you’d best move quickly to avoid accidents.

Tip: Puppies need to go to the bathroom as soon as they wake up. Carry your puppy outside as soon as they awake to avoid an indoor accident. Put that puppy where you want them to learn “going potty” is acceptable. Say “go potty” until they go to the bathroom. Jump up and down like you won the Stanley Cup after the pup successfully goes to the bathroom.

And it begins again; the process of training a puppy and adapting to life with a new member of the family. Stay tuned for more posts as I go through the process of training my third bird dog.

Note: I’m hoping to contact the gentleman from the Maplewood/White Bear Lake, Minnesota area who has named his new shorthair puppy, Izzy, in tribute to my pup. I’d like to express my gratitude. Please email me at stpete@pheasantsforever.org. Thank you!

Related Posts:

Our Busy Izzy Rests

Updates: Izzy, Trammell & a Thank You

Birth of a Bird Dog Litter

Bird Dog Names, From A to Z

Wolters’ Gun Dog: A Great Place to Start for New Bird Dog Puppy Owners

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

Prevent Gunshy Problems in your Pup this Fourth of July

Posted by: Bob St. Pierre Updated: July 2, 2014 - 7:57 AM
Avoid exposing your puppy to fireworks - Graphic by Logan Hinners, Pheasants Forever

Avoid exposing your puppy to fireworks - Graphic by Logan Hinners, Pheasants Forever

Many folks pick up new bird dog pups in early summer. Count me among that group again this Fourth of July weekend. As you celebrate our nation’s independence this week, beware of two common causes of gunshy bird dogs.    

Fireworks

Bird dog puppies should be methodically introduced to gunfire in association with birds and a fun atmosphere. A step-by-step process helps prevent gunshyness, reinforces that a gunshot equates to a retrieve and helps connect the dots through the entire process of what you’re expecting out of that pup as your new hunting companion. Unfortunately, a fun family evening watching fireworks can seriously frighten a pup and create a fear of loud noises, and consequently gun shyness. While I have no doubt thousands of folks who read this blog will say their bird dog pup was exposed to fireworks and didn’t end up gunshy, in response, I’ll say it’s not worth the risk testing your luck at the expense of a new pup.

Parades

As a first-time owner of my very own bird dog pup in 2007 I’d been coached to avoid fireworks, but parades caught me completely by surprise. At 11-weeks-old, my shorthair accompanied my family to a Fourth of July parade in Rhinelander, Wis. As I recall, it was a beautiful day with lots of people and lots of other dogs for my pup to socialize. It was a wonderful scenario until the local high school band started to march down the parade route pounding on drums. I looked at my wife in panic, scooped up my puppy and yelled back to my wife that I needed to get “Trammell” away from the drums. Fortunately, I was able to get a few blocks away without any negative effects, but I still consider it a close call. 

Any pro trainer will tell you the training necessary to reverse a gunshy dog is a long, arduous exercise. It’s always the best plan to avoid it from happening in the first place. To read more on the topic, I’d suggested the following articles:

How to Prevent a Gunshy Dog by Brian Lynn of Outdoor Life

Keeping your Dog from Becoming Gunshy by Steve Snell of Gun Dog Supply

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

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