Clarification – Using or "Demanding" More Shining Time After Tree Is Scored

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Clarification – Using or "Demanding" More Shining Time After Tree Is Scored

Postby Jerry Moll » Mon Jan 31, 2011 4:33 pm

This question has been brought up many times over the years, “How long can a cast member keep the cast at a tree”? The simple answer is, only until the tree has been scored (or the eight minutes of shining time has elapsed) in accordance with rule #9.H. Scoring The Tree.

The point in time which the tree is considered “scored” is sometimes very black and white and other times not as cut and dried. Handlers MUST have and give a legitimate reason to continue shining if the majority of the cast or the non-hunting judge considers the tree to be "scored". If handlers want to continue shining in order to “burn up” hunting time or to keep other handlers “leash locked” these are NOT considered to be legitimate reasons.

Here are some examples of trees that handlers may not continue to shine:
•When a raccoon has been seen and scored plus by the majority of the cast in an Open Event or by a Non-Hunting judge under Pro Rules.
•When a tree has been scored minus (empty) by the majority of the cast in an Open Event or by a Non-Hunting judge under Pro Rules. In this case there is no place for a raccoon to be hiding.
•When off game has been seen and scored minus by the majority of the cast in an open event or a Non-Hunting judge under Pro Rules. In this case there is no place for a raccoon to be hiding.
•If handlers with dogs at the tree are satisfied with the scoring and ready to recast, but another handler wants to continue shining with nothing to loose or gain by finding a raccoon or off game.

Here are some examples of trees that handlers may continue to shine:
•When a tree has not yet been scored by the majority of the cast in an Open Event or by a Non-Hunting judge under Pro Rules.
•When a tree is about to be scored circle by the majority of the cast in an Open Event or by a Non-Hunting judge under Pro Rules and there remains possible places for a raccoon to be hiding.
•When off game has been seen and about to be scored minus by the majority of the cast in an open event or a Non-Hunting judge under Pro Rules and there remains possible places for a raccoon to be hiding.

9.H. Scoring The Tree -
After the judge has determined which dog(s) are showing tree and which dog(s), if any, are off tree, dog(s) should be leashed and the tree scored. Any dog coming in and showing interest in tree while scoring will be leashed. Shining time will be announced and started when the judge is in position to score the tree. The handler with the most to gain on a tree should be allowed to search the tree for the first two minutes alone at their option and then all handlers may search. Eight (8) minutes of hunting time may be used to search a tree up until the tree has been scored. No game may be scored prior to the judge starting the eight minutes or after the eight minute shining period has expired. Handlers may blow squallers, pull vines, etc during the entire shining period. No time-out may be called to search a tree, leading away from a tree, or between split trees. All dogs leashed at the tree must remain leashed until they can be released toward other trailing dog(s) or a fresh re-casting area if no dog(s) are on trail.

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