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Monday, April 13, will be our last meeting of the semester. John Eaton, the professional huntsman for Shakerag Hounds, will be coming all the way from Athens, Georgia to speak to us. John has a lifetime of hound experience and to top it off, he gets to hunt for a living. This is a great opportunity for us. I would reallly like to see as much of The Houndsman’s Club membership there as possible. The meeting will be in room 2217 of the Forestry and Wildlife Building at 7pm.

To learn more about John and about Shakerag Hounds, visit their website at: http://www.shakerag.com

Thanks to everyone for your support and interest in the Houndsmen’s Club!

Walter Cheatham
President

On Tuesday, April 7th, the Auburn University Houndsmen Club  will welcome Mel Stewart, American Kennel Club Executive Field Director for Hounds, to the Auburn campus.  Mr. Stewart  has 40 years of experience training and handling beagles in both hunting and field trial scenarios. 

Mr. Stewart will address club members (as well as interested alumni, faculty, staff, students, and community members) at 7:00 p.m.  in the School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences, Room 2217.   He is expected to discuss the history and background of the modern beagle, and to share tips on management, handling, training and breeding.

If you have questions or would like additional information, please contact club president, Walter Cheatham at cheatwb@auburn.edu or faculty advisor, Graeme Lockaby at lockabg@auburn.edu.

Field Trial Grounds being Developed in Alabama
article by Mel Stewart, Field Director of Hounds for the AKC

In the winter of 2005, Mr. Larry Dillard, Mr. Taylor Gilbert Mr. Roy Holliday, & Mr. Mel Stewart talked with Mr. M. Barnett Lawley, Commissioner, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources about a recreational facility for field trials in the State of Alabama. Thanks to the leadership of Mr. Lawley and the Forever Wild Land Trust that was created in 1992 to purchase and manage unique lands for public use, 3,800 acres of the Farquhar State Cattle Ranch was purchased from the Alabama Department of Corrections for the purpose of holding field trials. Located eight miles east of Greensboro in Hale County, the ranch has been a working prison farm since its purchase in 1940 by DOC, raising beef cattle and catfish. The State facility under DOC has received some limited public field trials use in past years, but now a direct effort is going forward to develop the grounds for field trials. Not only will the facility be available for beagle trials, but also retriever trials, bird dog trials, and others.

DCNR has formed a user group committee and had their first meeting recently to receive input from the various groups and to form a working relationship. The beagle community was represented by Larry Dillard, Taylor Gilbert and the bird dog was represented by Rick Stalling Dane Harris and Jerry Champion.

All cattle have been removed and an aggressive fescue grass eradication program has begun to allow the Black Belt native prairie grasses to return. Other management efforts will include removal of interior fencing. DOC and DCNR have a Memorandum of Understanding that will keep some inmates on the grounds for routine labor and management on the area. DCNR also announced that Mr. Bill Mason, DOC employee at the Alabama State Cattle Ranch, has been employed by the DCNR and will be the manger for the new field trial area. Bill’s experience with the area and with field trials will facilitate a smooth transition and be a great asset to us all.

The American Kennel Club appreciates the vision of the State of Alabama in creating the Forever Wild Land Trust and the leadership of Commissioner Lawley to spearhead this project and make it happen. Many generations of participants will benefit from their foresight.

Those interested in finding out more about the use of the property for dog related events may contact Mr. Lawley�s office at 334-242-3486, or contact Mr. Greg Lein at 334-353-7998 or Mr. Cris Smith at 334-242-3409. The mailing address for the Alabama Department of Conservation & Natural Resources is 64 North Union Street, Suite 468, Montgomery AL., 36130

daisy-and-deaconI hope that everyone had a wonderful Christmas break and I hope that there was plenty of hound music in the woods despite the unseasonably warm weather.

We will be having our next meeting on Tuesday, February 3rd in 2217 of the Forestry and Wildlife Building on Duncan Avenue at 7pm. Dr. Robyn Wilborn from Auburn University’s vet school will be speaking on hound breeding and reproduction. I will also have the T-shirts there for those of you who still haven’t picked yours up and for those of you who have decided that you really did want one after all. Oh, and there will be food.

Walter Cheatham

Walter Cheatham, President of the Auburn University Houndsmen's Club thanks Walter "Bud" Pidgeon for his time and interaction with club members and guests.

Walter Cheatham, President of the Auburn University Houndsmen's Club thanks Walter "Bud" Pidgeon for his time and his interaction with Houndsmen's Club members and guests.

On Tuesday, October 28th, the AU Houndsmen’s Club welcomed Bud Pidgeon, President and CEO of the United States Sportsmen’s Alliance (USSA) to campus.  Dr. Pidgeon addressed about thirty-five members and guests, describing the role of USSA in addressing current legislative threats to hunting and fishing.  He challenged members to become more active defenders and advocates for traditional sporting and hunting activities in order to protect an irreplaceable legacy of outdoor recreation for generations to come.  To learn more about Dr. Pidgeon and his work with USSA, visit their website at: www.ussportsmen.org

Just wanted to remind everyone that this Friday and Saturday, the Horseshoe Bend Beagle Club will be hold a field trial (small pack option) in Dadeville, Alabama.  Members of the AU Houndsmen’s Club are invited to watch and/or to enter. 

To enter, beagles must be registered with the AKC as gun dogs.  Small and large males will be run on Friday. Small and large females will be run on Saturday.  Dogs may be entered beginning at 5:00 a.m. Trial will begin at 7:00 a.m.

Anyone interested?  If so, contact Walter Cheatham at cheatwb@auburn.edu  or, contact Larry S. Dillard, .

Horseshoe Bend Beagle Club Event Secretary, at (205) 988-0658

To get to the club grounds, take 280 West from Auburn to Dadeville.  In Dadeville, take Highway 49 North (Right) for approximately 7-8 miles.  Turn Left on Rock Springs Road.  Go about 200 yards and look for signs.  Turn left through a pasture, and follow the pasture road around to club house.

The Auburn University Houndsmen’s Club is pleased to welcome guest speaker, Bud Pidgeon, president and CEO of the United States Sportsmen’s Alliance to campus on October 28th at 7:00 p.m. in room 2217 of the Forestry and Wildlife Sciences Building. The United States Sportsmen’s Alliance (USSA) is a national organization devoted to protecting the rights of hunters, fishermen and those who have a vested interested in enjoying the outdoors.  USSA is home to the Sporting Dog Defense Coalition, a nationwide organization of dog clubs and individual houndsmen in regular contact with state and federal legislators in an effort to prevent the passage of laws that would threaten or eliminate hunting with hounds.  Alumni, faculty, staff, students, and members of the community are welcome.  If you have questions or would like additional information, please contact Walter Cheatham at cheatwb@auburn.edu.

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