Having found our first truffles in 2018, then drawn a blank the following season, we were facing a critical test. Our concern was heightened when early forecasts were that the harvest would be dire, due to a dry, hot summer and a very wet late autumn, suggesting that any truffles that had been produced would have rotted. These forecasts proved to be all too true. Certainly the truffiÃ¨re was still very, very wet coming into January but we decided to test the water in mid month with Jicky, the Malinois or Belgian Shepherd, a veteran of several hunts here and the truffle hound who found our first truffles. Our fears proved correct; Jicky showed only modest interest even in what is now a magnificent brûlé in the north west corner. Slightly encouragingly he did have a thorough, but unproductive, dig around one of our most recent 2009 trees. The video of this is now in our YouTube channel.
Less than a week later we hunted again, this time with Ouma, a charming, young, female Lagotto owned by the (almost as charming) guy who runs the Syndicat des Trufficulteurs du Gers. Ouma too had a few minor digs but failed to find a truffle.
Photos of both Jicky and Ouma in action can be found on our Newsletters page.
While these two hunts were disappointing it would have been many times more disappointing had other truffle producers been wheeling the produce away by the wheelbarrow load. Some other reasons why my disappointment is only modest will be found shortly in another item on the Newsletters page.
Jicky Digging 14th January 2020
Truffle Tree Youtube Channel