The curly was bred as a wildfowlers dog, the waterproof, thick curly coat protecting them from the freezing marsh.
The curly still enjoys the water, but works just as well on land. They can be quite headstrong, thinking they know better than we do, questioning a command "Are you sure it's over there? I think it went over here," and sometimes they are right.
This is the reason they are not popular with 'proffesional' working people, who when they say, "jump," they expect the dog to say "how high" and not, "are you sure?". This said the curly is a very good picking up, or rough shooting dog.