Wild Bird Hunting
We are Lynn Dee Galey and Mike Sheffer: we are passionate about wild bird hunting and occasionally breed a litter from our best bird dogs. We travel thousands of miles across the country for hunting and dog breeding but our homebase is in rural northeast Kansas. Mike has had Brits, American and French, for over 25 years. He raises and breeds Epagneul Bretons under the name Flint Hills Epagneul Bretons. Lynn Dee has had Setters for over 40 years and breeds ryman-type English Setters, now under the name Firelight Setters. Lynn Dee’s roots are in New England where she hunted partridge and woodcock. LD also showed dogs for many years and has participated in and judged Hunt Tests. Mike is from the Midwest and has hunted a wide variety of upland birds. In 2012 we joined forces and will continue to occasionally offer thoughtfully bred puppies and started dogs for the serious hunter.
Our Philosophy: “Quality, not quantity” and “Wild Birds”
We keep a small number of dogs (6 – 8) in our kennel and home so that we can give each dog plenty of individual attention and can hunt each one extensively to evaluate their natural abilities before considering them for breeding. We believe that there is no substitute for lots of wild birds in the development and assessment of a hunting dog: we do not use any pen raised birds, we simply take our pups hunting when the season opens. All of our photos and videos are the dogs on wild birds; what you see in our photos is what we expect from them and what you can expect from a dog from us. We hunt 100+ days a year across multiple states so that all of the dogs have the opportunity to prove themselves on a wide variety of habitats and bird species. From experience we have come to know that good bird dogs are able to adapt to and handle a variety of species.
Training is simple everyday obedience and we have 2+ acres of fenced native prairie grasses where the dogs spend the days running and exploring together. We are ‘old school’ and do not use electronic shock collars in our training or hunting and although we acknowledge that they can be useful tools, we personally want dogs that respond and work for us without such devices. We let the birds teach the steadiness lessons and just like the wild birds, we do not tolerate busting or “ripping” birds once a dog is no longer a puppy. We expect our dogs to staunchly hold birds until we arrive and we then flush and shoot. When hunting, we expect them to handle easily and to check in with a simple call or whistle. Don’t misunderstand this to read that the dogs are underfoot in the field, we want them to adjust their range according to where we are hunting. In open country such as in Montana grasslands this means that the dogs will roll 100-400 yards out. But when we hunt in the north woods for ruffed grouse, or thick brush and timber for bobwhite quail in Kansas, the dogs should close in appropriately. Are they always obedient and handle birds perfectly? Heck no, but then again, their owners and gunners aren’t perfect either but the dogs seem happy with us anyway and we are with them.
We value the relationship we have with our dogs and the only thing we enjoy as much as watching dogs do what comes naturally to them in the field is meeting other people who share the same pleasures. We invite people who are interested in a puppy to join us in the field to see our dogs work and decide if it matches their own preferences. All of the photos on our site have been taken by us while hunting: we usually carry a pocket camera to stop and take photos before walking in to flush the birds, no need to rush. LD will also occasionally leave her gun in the truck and carry the DSLR to shoot better photos or video.