CONCORD — The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department's K-9 Conservation corps has a lively new recruit. "Cora" is now a 19-week old black Labrador retriever donated by Wes and Belinda Reed of Rise and Shine Retrievers in Barnstead. The donation was made through the Wildlife Heritage Foundation of New Hampshire.
Cora was just two months old when she was first presented to her new partner, Fish and Game Conservation Officer James Benvenuti earlier in September.
"Cora has been going to work with me every day and has already been exposed to turkey and deer kill sites," said Benvenuti. "Time is spent working on basic obedience, tracking and exposure to both evidence and fish and wildlife daily."
Along with Fish and Game's other canines and handlers, Cora and CO Benvenuti will be travelling for basic training at least once a month to the Vermont K9 Academy in Pittsford, Vt., until next summer. In July, the pair hit "boot camp" — the 36th basic canine patrol school, also in Vermont. The school was 544 hours and ran from July until November. Upon completion of the course, Cora and (Canine Officer) Benvenuti received certification in tracking, evidence detection (specifically gun powder and anything with human scent), and fish and wildlife detection (deer, turkey and fish).
Cora's name refers to the acronym for the Conservation Officers Relief Association (CORA).
Learn more about Fish and Game Law Enforcement's canine conservation teams at www.wildnh.com/law-enforcement/k9.html. A plan is in place to chronicle Cora's progress on this page as she trains to become a full-fledged Fish and Game Conservation K9.
You can help support the state Fish and Game Canine Conservation unit by sending a donation to the Wildlife Heritage Foundation of N.H. — Canine Fund, PO Box 3993, Concord, NH 03302, or donate online at nhwildlifeheritage.org/donate (specify Canine Fund).
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