At Otamarakau we aim to breed top class game finders, who work 'with and for' their handler, in New Zealand conditions on New Zealand upland game.
A: Game finding ability
Nose, and the intelligence to use it correctly. To find, handle, and produce shootable wild birds is the desideratum of the kennel.
Everything else is secondary to this.
B: Mental Characteristics
A true working temperament. Intelligent, kind, biddable and responsive. Soft enough to accept training without harsh methods, strong enough to take training pressure. To retain what it has been taught without need for maintenance training. Intelligent enough that, with experience, it can predict the needs of the handler and act accordingly, ranging wide in open country and hunting closer in tight country and forests.
C: Working Characteristics
Early selection for 'early starters' as puppies. A flat topline during gallop, with high head carriage. Adapts range and speed to suit country, keeping good contact with handler. Positive on game, not dwelling on old scent or flagging. Easy to break to fur. Natural retrieving ability, and willing to enter water to retrieve.
D: Physical Characteristics
To maintain good working conformation, (good front reach and rear drive whilst galloping, good coats, durable feet etc). Although we
will never breed for conformation shows and always place performance first, we aim for an acceptable and pleasing appearance.
Any serious health issues or faults that arise to be culled without delay.
To achieve this, we plan to:
A: Breed on the female line, selecting sires to add to the bottom line.
B: Linebreed, where possible, aiming for a closed pedigree but with a low inbreeding coefficient.
C: Select sires from around the world that can contribute to improving the specific qualities needed to suceed in our hunting environment.
D: When breeding, to always retain at least one puppy from each litter until mature, applying the above selection.
E: To collaborate with sportsmen and women in New Zealand and around the world to further refine our goals and develop the kennel.