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Folks, I don’t mean to brag, but I’m so excited about how today’s mushroom hunt went that I’m itching to share it with somebody who might care . . .

Huge flush of black trumpets in northwest Wisconsin right now after some big rains. I’m hunting glacial till with oak/maple forests; typically, we’re finding them associated with red oak, near the many bogs and swamps that dot the hummocky landscape. I went out hoping to find some mushrooms, and hoping to set up a very simple training session in the field to see if Mo could alert on the wild shrooms. Had a teaball in my pocket ready to go if needed, and I had essentially zero expectation that at this point Mo would be able to perform in this environment.

At the first clump he stepped right over them several times, and I dropped the teaball amongst the wild mushrooms. He alerted on the teaball, I removed it, and I pointed right to the wild trumpets. He alerted and I loved him up, then let him romp in the woods and swamp while we started to pick.

The next time I set up a little trainer for Mo, he alerted right on the trumpets. He got pretty excited to see how pleased my mushrooming partner and I were with his behavior, and he subsequently started alerting spontaneously on the mushrooms as we gathered! Good boy!

He did eat a few, so that might be something to watch out for–he seems to like them. But if that behavior amplifies I’m sure there will be ways to deal with it.

In about two hours–much of which was spent watching and handling Mo, or simply chatting idly in the woods–two of us collected about eight pounds! We were never more than a quarter mile from the car.

  • This reply was modified 8 years, 9 months ago by Curt. Reason: added photos