Di-Lane Plantation Wildlife Management Area (WMA) is considered a premier quail hunting destination. When you visit the 8,100 acre wildlife management area in Waynesboro, you’ll notice something a bit macabre about the property. It’s hard to miss with the iron bird dog standing watch. The atmosphere is mostly the same of any other cemetery. Live oaks draped in Spanish moss provide a picturesque scene over headstones engraved with the names of loved ones. But these aren’t just ordinary loved ones. The names belong to the beloved pets and faithful bird dogs of former owner, Henry Berol.
All of Berol’s former companions are entombed here. The headstones belong to horses, cocker spaniels, mules, a cat, and 122 bird dogs. Every headstone is engraved with epitaph in remembrance of the animal’s character: Brownie of Berol was a “Great Pal, Greater Hunter, and Greater Sire.” Berol Lodge Drummer Boy was “a clown” and lived a long life of almost 13 years.
This may all seem bizarre until you remember that Waynesboro is in fact, “The Bird Dog Capital of the World.”
Henry Berol was the heir to the Eagle Pencil Company in New York. He purchased the Davis-Kilpatrick Plantations in the 1950’s and later renamed it Di-Lane after his daughters Diane and Elaine. His dream was to develop it as a bird dog training area and run first class field trials that would test the talent and training of bird dogs. He was successful, and yearly field trials were held at the plantation until 1978. Ten years later, the trials returned and continue to be held every year.
Di-Lane Plantation WMA is now part of a cooperative research project between Georgia DNR and the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources at The University of Georgia. Researchers and biologists are currently studying how rabbit hunting at Di-Lane impacts the behavior and population of northern bobwhite quail. The study will wrap-up within the next year and will provide results after it concludes. One observation is obvious though. The research pays homage to the bird dogs and the sport that founded the roots of Di-Lane Plantation.
Want to visit?
Just buy a hunting or fishing license and come out and see this property for yourself! Di-Lane isn’t just for hunters either. There’s plenty of things to do from primitive camping to equestrian trails. Or grab a pair of binoculars and enjoy watching wildlife.
Important Dates of Di-Lane Events
|Game||Quota Application Deadline||Dates|
|Dove||August 15||Youth: Sept. 1
General Sept. 1
|Deer||September 1||Oct. 11-13 and Oct. 25-27|
|Quail||October 15||Youth: Feb. 2
General: Dec. 1, 5, 8, 12, 15, 19, 22, 29 and Feb. 6
|Turkey||February 15||Youth: Mar. 23-29
General: Mar. 30-Apr.5 and Apr. 6-12
A general rabbit season is held from November 17 to February 28.
Bird Dog Trials
The Georgia Derby Championship trials will begin on January 2, 2019 and is followed by the Georgia Quail Championship. The Georgia Field Trial Association also host the Georgia Open Shooting Dog Championship and the Georgia Derby Classic. For date information on these events, please reach out to the Georgia Field Trial Association.