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USA Hunting : Wyoming Game and Fish Department to Hold Bear Spray Giveaway

on 2017/9/6 11:41:54 (720 reads)

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CODY, Wyo. (AP) — The Wyoming Game and Fish Department will give out 100 cans of bear-deterring spray to hunters at the regional office in Cody.

The Cody Enterprise reports ( ) that in the two previous years of holding the event, the department has given away all cans of the spray in less than an hour. The cans are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis on Wednesday.

To receive a can, people must show a current hunting or fishing license and take a survey about bear awareness.

The department's Bear Wise Community Coordinator Dusty Lasseter says hunters who pick up the spray also have the opportunity to talk with bear biologists and practice using the spray with training cans.


Information from: The Cody Enterprise,

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. ... -hold-bear-spray-giveaway

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USA Hunting : Senate Passes WILD Act

on 2017/7/4 19:46:21 (711 reads)

“Conservation is not a partisan issue,” as the Committee on Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Sen John Barrasso (R-WY) and ranking Member Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE) describe the motivation behind the WILD Act.

This bipartisan act would not only fund conservation efforts for endangered species, but it would also drive innovation for new methods to overcome current issues such as poaching, trafficking and the management of invasive species.

On his webpage, Sen. James M. Inhofe (R-OK) gives details of the bill:

Reauthorize and fund the Department of the Interior’s Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program until fiscal year 2022;
Require federal agencies to implement strategic programs to control invasive species;
Reauthorize legislation to protect endangered species such as elephants, great apes, tigers, and others;
Establish the Theodore Roosevelt Genius Prize competitions, which will award monetary prizes for technological innovation in the following categories:
the prevention of wildlife poaching and trafficking,
the promotion of wildlife conservation,
the management of invasive species,
the protection of endangered species, and
the use of nonlethal methods to control wildlife.
The Environment and Public Works Committee discovered that invasive species threaten the recovery of around 40 percent of endangered species. The Act will involve the protection of species such as Asian and African elephants, rhinoceros, marine turtles, great apes, tigers and marine turtles.

The Act was sent to the House on June 12.

Sources: U.S. Congress, U.S. Senate, The Hill

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USA Hunting : Hunters need to be aware of bogus forwarded emails

on 2014/8/25 17:57:01 (3282 reads)

Some time ago, I received an email from a well-meaning, but ill-informed, individual. (I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt.) It was headlined – "Save your lead – Last lead smelting plant closed by Obama and the EPA."
The forwarded email had no date or original author, which is usually the case with this type of propaganda. It went on to detail that Obama was responsible for closing the last lead-smelting plant in the United States, and that this would lead to dire consequences for shooters, and hunters ("back-door gun control") and the entire U.S. economy.
A few quotes from the email: "Obama and the EPA just shut down the last lead smelting plant in the US. They raised the EPA regulations by 10 fold and it would have cost the plant $100 million to comply. You can own all the guns you want, but if you can’t get ammo, you are out of luck."
"All lead for bullets will have to come from overseas!"
"There are numerous alarming reasons why the US government and the military have been buying up all the ammo. Here’s one of them. The military’s obsession with ammo was related to security and supply. They knew this was coming, too, so they bought up all they could get before the plug was pulled."
"This move will also make the cost of low lead aviation fuel UNAFFORDABLE."
"Guns will be plentiful but ammo will be another story. How does $3.75 a round (that’s for one bullet) for a 9mm work for you? Box of 50 would only cost you $187.50."
I was taken aback by this email. How could I have missed this?! While researching my article about the .22 ammo shortage, I had recently spoken with representatives from three ammunition manufacturers and the National Shooting Sports Foundation – there was not a single mention of this "big news."
So, I did a little research. I encourage you to do the same. and several other websites clearly and factually detail the story – with links and references to company news releases, ammo makers, the National Rifle Association and the National Shooting Sports Foundation. Other than the fact that the smelting plant closed – nothing in the forwarded email (that originated in December 2013) proved to be true.
The Doe Run, Missouri, plant closed in December, 2013. As the company had announced the closing in 2010, this is not really "news" anymore. According to a company news release, "Doe Run supplied 8 to 10 percent of the U.S. demand for lead ...." Almost all of it was used for making batteries - not bullets!
According to several ammunition manufacturers and Sierra Bullets, the closing will have no effect on ammo availability or cost because most bullets are made from recycled lead, which is less expensive.
Why not blame Obama – everyone else does! What led to the plant's closure was a lawsuit by a Missouri environmental group, in response to lead dust in homes and elevated levels of the metal in yards and children’s blood. The action actually started when George Bush was president. Maybe the writer thought, What's a little lead in our children's blood if we can have bullets.
It has now been over six months since the plant's closure and jet fuel and ammo prices remain about the same. Why does this email continue to circulate? Take your pick:
A. The sender actually believes it.
B. The sender hates Obama and the EPA and does not care whether it is true or not.
C. It is a calculated effort by someone to discredit Obama and the EPA.
D. It is an effort by ammo makers to cause hoarding – which drives up the price.
The email that I received went on to declare, "There has not been a peep about this in the major news outlets ..."
This statement alone should be an alert to all thinking sportsmen and sportswomen. If no one in our very diverse media picks up the story – there must not be a story.
Digital media is wonderful, but it can provide an inexpensive and anonymous way for lies to be spread. These lies could be about hunting, trapping, wildlife management, fishing, shooting, or in this case, the supply of ammunition.
Please, if you get a forwarded email about anything, take time to check the facts before you send it to all of your friends. Doing otherwise just makes you part of the burgeoning problem and only hurts our outdoor sports.
Read more: ... f-bogus-forwarded-emails/

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USA Hunting : Madison: Remington Arms announces voluntary recall affecting Model 700 and Model Seven rifles

on 2014/4/16 13:10:25 (3707 reads)

Click to see original Image in a new window Remington Arms Company, on Friday announced a voluntary recall of Model 700 and Model Seven rifles with X-Mark Pro (“XMP”) triggers, manufactured from May 1, 2006 to April 9, 2014.

In a press release, Remington said that its senior engineers determined that some Model 700 and Model Seven rifles with XMP triggers could, under certain circumstances, unintentionally discharge. In the interest of safety, Remington said, the products are being recalled.

Remington’s investigation determined that some XMP triggers might have excess bonding agent used in the assembly process, which could cause an unintentional discharge. Therefore, Remington is recalling all affected products to fully inspect and clean the XMP triggers with a specialized process.

Remington has advised customers to immediately cease use of recalled rifles and return them to Remington free of charge. The rifles will be inspected, specialty cleaned, tested, and returned as soon as possible.

The press release urged owners to not attempt to diagnose or repair recalled rifles. Remington established a dedicated website and toll-free hotline to help consumers determine whether their Model 700 or Model Seven rifle(s) are subject to recall:

• Website
• Toll-Free Hotline: 1-800-243-9700 (Prompt #3 then Prompt #1) Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EDT.

The website and hotline provide guidance on returning recalled rifles free of charge.

“Remington takes safety extremely seriously,” said Teddy Novin, director of public affairs and communications. “While we have the utmost confidence in the design of the XMP trigger, we are undertaking this recall in the interest of customer safety, to remove any potential excess bonding agent applied in the assembly process. We have established significant safety and technical resources to determine which rifles are affected and to minimize any risks. Our goal is to have every recalled firearm inspected, specialty cleaned, tested and returned as soon as possible.”

“We’re putting our customers and their safety first by voluntarily recalling all potentially affected rifles,” Novin concluded.
To read more:

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USA Hunting : Cincinati: Female Sumatran rhino dies, none left in US

on 2014/4/7 14:08:49 (3410 reads)

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The death of the Cincinnati Zoo's lone female Sumatran rhino has dealt a blow to a breeding programme aimed at saving one of the world's most critically endangered species.

The rhino, named Suci, was one of only 10 in captivity worldwide and died on Sunday after showing symptoms of a disease that killed her mother, although zoo officials say it will be months before the final results of a necropsy are available.

The zoo's breeding effort to mate Suci with a sibling followed a crisis summit in Singapore where conservationists concluded that as few as 100 of the two-horned, hairy rhino might remain in forests in their native Indonesia and Malaysia.

The species has become endangered through loss of forests and poaching, which are believed by some Asian cultures to have medicinal properties.

"Suci was a symbol of hope for her entire species, one that is quickly losing ground in the wild, and her absence will leave a hole in our hearts", Terri Roth, director of the zoo's Lindner Centre for conservation and research of endangered wildlife, said in a statement on Monday.

Suci was born in 2004 and was one of three Sumatran rhino calves born at the zoo to mother Emi and father Ipuh. Emi died in 2009 and Ipuh in 2013.

Keepers had hoped to mate Suci with her younger brother, Harapan, who is now the only Sumatran rhino in North America. Andalas, the other male born at the zoo, was sent to Sumatra in 2007 to bolster a breeding programme there and has fathered a male calf with a wild-born rhino.

Cincinnati Zoo staff had to wait for Harapan to reach breeding age, but Suci began losing weight several months ago and staff began treating her for hemochromatosis, also known as iron storage disease.

Zoo scientists, keepers and veterinarians had been treating Suci with a therapy used on humans and African black rhino and her behaviour and appetite had improved. But her condition rapidly deteriorated on Sunday, Roth said.

Zoo officials could not comment yet on specifics of their breeding plans for the future, although they say they remain committed to working to save the species.

"We are just trying to get through this right now", zoo spokesperson Tiffany Barnes said.

The zoo has been a pioneer in captive breeding of the species, and Roth said last year that there was a lot of urgency in getting Suci pregnant.

"If we don't act quickly and boldly, the loss of this magnificent animal will be among the great tragedies of our time", Roth said in Monday's statement.

To read more: ... s-non-left-in-US-20140401

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USA Hunting : Legs for wolf-hunt moratorium?

on 2014/3/31 14:51:00 (3585 reads)

St. Paul — A Senate committee last week approved a bill that would temporarily suspend wolf hunting and trapping in the state, though its future is unclear.

The Environment and Natural Resources Committee approved SF 2256, authored by Sen. Foung Hawj, DFL-St. Paul, on an 8-6 vote (it failed on the first vote, 6-6, but was reconsidered after the arrival of two senators who’d been absent for the initial vote).

The committee is the same one that passed a wolf hunting and trapping moratorium last year. That bill didn’t go anywhere, and indications are this year’s version may not, either, though it did pass out of the State and Local Government Committee earlier this week. It now goes to the environment finance committee, where the moratorium stalled last year.

Sen. Matt Schmit, DFL-Red Wing and chair of the Game and Fish Subcommittee, voted in favor of the bill in the environment committee. But he doesn’t believe there’s traction for it in either the Senate or the House.

“As far as I’m concerned, the issue is settled for the year,” he said.

The bill would require the DNR to close the wolf hunting and trapping season “in order to study the outcomes of the wolf hunt on the wolf population and to implement the wolf management plan.” It would require creation of a new task force to review the plan on an annual basis, and have the DNR collect a variety of data, including a study of public sentiment about wolves.

It also would prohibit baiting – which is legal for hunting and trapping wolves – within 10 miles of tribal lands where taking wolves is prohibited.

The DNR opposes the bill for a number of reasons, including the baiting provision. Such a ban would affect more than 10 million acres of land in the state, of which about 9.6 million acres is in non-tribal ownership, said Bob Meier, DNR legislative affairs director.

Representatives from the Minnesota Farmers Union and Minnesota Farm Bureau spoke in opposition to the bill, as did the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association and Minnesota Outdoor Heritage Alliance.

Schmit, in an interview after the hearing, said the state can do better in terms of how it authorizes wolf hunting and trapping. He doesn’t believe the bill is necessarily “the right remedy for the wolf hunt in Minnesota.”

Schmit looks at the bill as a vehicle for continuing the conversation about state wolf management.

“I don’t know if we’ve struck the right balance yet,” he said. “But I don’t think drastic change is necessary.”

Schmit, who is carrying the Game and Fish Bill (SF 2227), said he’s not open to amending the wolf hunting and trapping language on there.

“It’s not appropriate to put it on the Game and Fish Bill,” he said.

Outdoor Heritage Fund

The bill that carries the recommendations of the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council – HF 1926, authored by Rep. Rick Hansen, DFL-South St. Paul – continues sailing through the House.

The bill last week passed the Legacy Committee, and could be on the floor by later this week. The bill retains funding for a controversial project Fond du Lac Band of Chippewa project, but in last week’s hearing, funding for aquatic invasive species was the primary point of contention.

Some groups would like to see more money – and tighter timelines – in the fight against AIS. The bill includes more than $4 million to evaluate AIS-prevention strategies.

Hansen noted that last year, the debate was about whether it was appropriate to spend money from the Outdoor Heritage Fund on AIS.

“We’re no longer debating whether (Outdoor Heritage funds) should be expended on aquatic invasive species,” he said. “We are debating how and who, and probably where. But the why is no longer there.”

To read more: ... for-wolf-hunt-moratorium/

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USA Hunting : Gobbler shells: Wild turkey seasons begin soon across the country

on 2014/3/12 20:28:06 (3376 reads)

Although it doesn’t feel much like it yet, we are drawing ever closer to the spring, and better yet, the turkey seasons that arrive with it. While there isn’t much to do in the way of blind setup or scouting, there is one thing you can do to ensure you have the best chance of filling your tag and that involves your shotgun.

Most hunters will buy a box of expensive turkey shells, pattern them once and call it good. That’s OK, but longbeards are notoriously tough and big, which makes them a prime candidate for being farther away than you think when you pull the trigger. Their inherent toughness, along with the fact that sometimes they are 45 yards away instead of 35, means that without the right shotshell you might watch your season run or fly away after sending a harmless pattern into feathers and dirt.

Over they years I’ve messed around with quite a few different kinds of shells and have developed a system for how I load my 12 gauge each spring with 31/2-inch shells. I load my gun so that my first shot will send a load of lead 6s out of the barrel. The first shot I take at a turkey is going to be my best shot most of the time and I try hard to make sure it’s the only shot I need to take. Should I need a second shell, it will almost always be lead as well, and will be filled with either 4- or 5-shot. This is a just-in-case shell with a bit more oomph should my first shot didn’t do the job.

My third and last shell will be either 4s or 5s, and will consist of the tungsten-alloy shotshells that deliver maximum penetration. Each of these shells will deliver a tight pattern out to 50 yards, which is something I establish long before my season. This might seem like overkill, and not completely unnecessary, but I’ve shot enough birds to know that believing in forgone conclusions can be a mistake.

If you’re looking to maximize your spring time in the woods and find something to do this preseason, consider messing around with some new shotshells. It’s a bit expensive at first, but will seem well worth it when a mature gobblers struts into 40 yards and stares down your decoys this spring.

To read more go to: ... -soon-across-the-country/

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USA Hunting : QUINCY: Changes coming to 2014 Illinois deer hunting season

on 2014/2/18 16:14:08 (1791 reads)

QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) - The Illinois Department of Natural Resources say 41 counties in Illinois have low deer populations, and that's prompting officials to consider some changes during deer hunting season.

The DNR proposes lowering the amount of permits and tags allowed in the next deer season to try and bring the population numbers back up. Butcher Block owner Dan Veihl says the lower deer population had already made an impact on his business and it's forcing him to focus more on other services it provides.

"It stems back actually to this year because it did affect our business this year," Veihl said. "We were probably 30 percent down in deer that we process anyway. So it already has started to do that. What it does for us though is deer season isn't our main core of business. So it makes us get better at what we should be doing on a 365 day a year thing anyway."

Veihl says only 5 percent of his business comes from processing deer. Farm and Home Store Manager Leon Obert says though it may hurt business at first he thinks it will help down the road.

"I think the Illinois Conservation Department definitely is taking a hard look at it and maybe it is great to have it regulated a bit over the next couple of years and then hopefully bring the numbers back up to where they were," Obert said. "It's definitely a sport we rely on very much as far as being vital to our business."

Obert says they have expanded their hunting selection in recent years, but thinks this will preserve hunting for the future. He thinks it will allow more hunters to get a kill. He says if it just limits the amount a single hunter can shoot, than it allows every hunter a chance to get something.

To read more go to: ... inois-deer-hunting-season

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USA Hunting : US lifts ban on hunting trophies from Zimbabwe

on 2017/7/12 9:30:00 (867 reads)

The United States of America has lifted its ban on hunting trophies from Zimbabwe, allowing the country to resume exports later this year, the environment minister said today.

On April 4, 2014, the US Fish and Wildlife Service announced an interim suspension of imports of sport-hunted African elephant trophies hunted in Zimbabwe, which it later extended to 2015 and “indefinitely into the future,” because the government’s measures to protect the animals did not enhance the survival of the species.

The decision was challenged by the US Safari Club and the powerful National Rifle Association but a US District Court upheld the ban.

Environment, Water and Climate Minister Oppah Muchinguri- Kashiri said that according to the provisions of the waiver, Zimbabwe would start exporting the outstanding trophies in the second quarter of 2017.

“All the trophies which were being held in the country will be exported this year but under strict conditions. We have been given an opportunity to export again into the US,” she said.

The US ban preceded the controversial killing of the hugely popular Cecil, a 13-year-old male lion which lived in Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park, by Walter Palmer, a US trophy hunter in July, 2015.

The killing led to calls for tighter controls on hunting trophy imports by mainly western countries.

Zimbabwe hosts hunters from various countries including Russia, the United States, Hungary, Spain and Germany who pay to shoot animals such as lions, elephants and leopards, earning the country millions in revenue.

United States provide the bulk of the hunters and the existence of the ban has had negative effects on hunting revenue.

Bookings for the 2017 hunting season, which runs between April and November each year, are up 20 percent from the previous year’s $70 million, despite the embargo by the US.

The 2016 hunting season was depressed as most hunters stayed away due to uncertainty over proposals by some Western countries to impose stricter hunting controls on elephants and lions by mostly African countries. ... g-trophies-from-zimbabwe/

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USA Hunting : At South African hunting reserve, US bow hunters lie in wait for antelope and other wildlife

on 2015/9/2 17:20:00 (2339 reads)

OLIFANTSVALLEI, South Africa – One American bow and arrow hunter who traveled with his wife to a South African wildlife reserve worked as a state trooper for decades. Another hunter went alone after his closest friend, who was going to join him, died shortly before their date of departure from the United States.
The two retirees, who ended a 10-day hunt in August, operated separately in the dry winter scrub. They waited in concealed positions near watering holes or mineral licks for hours and, in adrenaline-fueled instances, killed wildlife with compound bows. By night, they dined on the meat of elands, impalas, warthogs and other animals in an African safari experience.
"I don't want to shoot animals that are young or that are of producing age. I'm looking for the older, more mature trophy animals," said 59-year-old Steve Schultz, a former law enforcement official from Park Falls, Wisconsin who chafed at negative views of hunters stemming from the July killing of a lion named Cecil that was lured out of a national park in Zimbabwe.
The "trophy" hunting industry in Africa has come under greater scrutiny since an American dentist shot Cecil, who wore a GPS collar and was being monitored by researchers, in an allegedly illegal hunt.
Stewart Dorrington, Schultz's South African host at Melorani Safaris, skipped euphemisms such as "harvesting" while describing where to shoot an animal so it dies quickly.
"You want to get into the chest cavity, that's where the vitals are," Dorrington said while escorting an Associated Press writer and photographer on a dirt-track drive around his 5,000-hectare (12,000-acre) reserve. He acknowledged detractors would find his choice of words "horrendous," but suggested critics should not gloss over the slaughter of farm livestock for food.
"I shot a nice red hartebeest," Jerry Emhoff, a resident of Watervliet, Michigan, said of one day's hunting. "It only ran a short distance and fell."
Emhoff, who used to sell and repair garage doors and gives hunting safety classes to children, meant that the animal's suffering was relatively short.
He turned 62 years old on Aug. 21, a bittersweet occasion because his longtime hunting companion, Larry Janke, died just before their planned trip to South Africa. Emhoff considered canceling the hunt, but Janke's wife and sister urged him to go.
Most of the thousands of foreign hunters who travel annually to South Africa are American, according to a national hunters' association based on the outskirts of Pretoria, the South African capital. Hunting with a bow and arrow was illegal in South Africa until the late 1980s, but its rising popularity in the United States spurred the South African market, according to Dorrington.
In 1986, the landowner turned his family's cattle ranch, a three-hour drive from Johannesburg, into a wildlife area. He hosts about two-dozen bow and arrow hunters a year. The business helps control the wildlife population and client payments contribute to the conservation of the herds, he said.
There are no lions, leopards or elephants there; it is illegal in any case to hunt elephants with a bow in South Africa.
Clients typically stay 10 days and shoot an average of six or seven animals whose parts may be shipped to their homes. European hunters tend to only mount horns while Americans often prefer the whole head as a wall trophy, according to Dorrington. He said Schultz and Emhoff just wanted the horns, a cheaper alternative.
Melorani Safaris clients pay a daily rate for lodging, the help of a professional hunter and other services. In addition, they pay $350 if they shoot a warthog and various prices for antelope species ($2,450 for a kudu and $7,500 for the rare sable). A buffalo goes for $12,500. The reserve also has zebras, giraffes and ostriches.
Clients pay a fee if they wound an animal. About 10 percent of animals are wounded in a hunt — some are tracked and killed while others recover from their injuries, Dorrington said.
Schultz's wife, Sharon, has joined her husband on hunts, reading, photographing wildlife and occasionally pointing out an animal that he might want to shoot. The couple runs a bear-hunting operation in Wisconsin.
Emhoff hunted in Africa with Janke in 2007. He was glad he went again despite initial misgivings after his friend's death.
"I can just hear him," said Emhoff, imagining his friend's voice. "'You've got to go, you've got to go, Jerry.'"

For more information read original article at: ... in-wait-for-antelope-and/

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USA Hunting : Wisconsin hunter bags five-bearded turkey

on 2014/5/16 16:30:00 (3266 reads)

Ever shoot a gobbler with a beard measuring 31 1⁄8 inches?

Odds are way better than even that no Wisconsin turkey hunter has ever done that.

However, Ryan Tichenor, of Sparta, did shoot a gobbler with five beards that totaled 31 1⁄8 inches.

That happened April 23 during Wisconsin’s second turkey season in Monroe County and Zone 1. Tichenor was hunting alone that day when he shot the five-bearded bird at 2:30 p.m., but he had been in contact with that gobbler and three others all day long.

“I had four turkeys gobbling all day long – from 7 a.m. on. At about 11 a.m. a tom came in strutting, saw the decoy, and ran away,” Tichenor said. “Later, a jake came in, then a jake with a hen and the five-bearded tom. I watched them for about a half hour. That’s how long it took them to get into range.”

As Tichenor watched the gobbler come into range, and even right after he shot it, he didn’t realize the tom was sporting five beards. That discovery came after he walked up to the bird and noticed a second beard as he tagged the gobbler.

“I had no clue until after I shot it. I saw the second beard, tagged him, walked back to truck with the bird, and then saw four beards. When I separated the feathers and beards, I saw the fifth one,” he said.

The five beards reached a total of 31 1⁄8 inches with the following beard lengths: 10 1⁄4 inches, 6 1⁄8, 6 3⁄8, 4 1⁄2, and 3 7⁄8.

The bird weighed 20 pounds and had 3⁄4-inch spurs – likely a 2-year-old bird.

This is just Tichenor’s fourth year of turkey hunting. A family friend took him out when he was 16, the same age at which he tried hunting deer with a bow and gun.

“It had been 12 years since I had gone (turkey hunting) again because of work and school. I started again a few years ago. This is only the second turkey that I’ve called in and shot,” said Tichenor, who works for Handishop Industries, a nonprofit business development organization.

“I might buy a couple of extra tags for the fourth and fifth seasons,” he said.

So, at first glance, a person might think that 31 1⁄8 inches of beard should set some sort of record, right? Not so.

The National Wild Turkey Federation charts typical and nontypical turkey records by weight, beard length, and spur length. Any turkey with more than one beard is considered a nontypical bird.

The longest total beard length record belongs to a Wisconsin bird that also ranks as NWTF’s No. 1 nontypical record.

Wisconsin’s John E. Fryatt shot an eight-bearded bird in Richland County on April 19, 1989. Total beard length was 70.8750 inches. The bird weighed 22 1⁄4 pounds and had 1 1⁄2-inch spurs. Fryatt’s bird scored 194 total points and still stands as the No. 1 NWTF nontypical bird.

The most beards? That would be nine, and also from a Wisconsin bird. Steven D. Bock shot a nine-bearded Sauk County bird on May 11, 1995 that still ranks No. 2 on the NWTF nontypical list at 193.75 points. Total beard length was 72.6875 inches. That bird weighed 24 pounds; its spurs were 1.25 and 1.1875 inches.

To Read more: ... ter-bags-five-bearded-tom

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USA Hunting : Virginia: Last Shipment of Elk from Kentucky to Virginia Furthers Reintroduction Efforts

on 2014/4/16 12:59:17 (3509 reads)

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Last week, a group of 45 elk arrived in Virginia’s Buchanan County. The pack was the last transit of the animals from nearby Kentucky as part of Virginia’s Elk Management and Restoration Plan, which has a short-term goal of raising the state’s elk population to 400 individuals.
“Always when we get this close to getting them, we get excited,” Leon Boyd, a volunteer with the local chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF), told the Bristol Herald Courier. “Now that the weather has been better, folks want to get out and look for shed antlers, and we have noticed that counties want to bring kids from the school system over to see them. It’s always exciting to see other counties getting involved.”
The restoration program, which is funded by the RMEF, initially called for 75 elk to be relocated from Kentucky when it was launched in 2012. This latest group of elk to reach Virginia is by far the largest transported across state lines in the last three years, and will be joining a herd of about 30 animals already living in the state. Wildlife biologists are now keeping a careful eye on the elk, who have mostly stuck to the several thousand acres of of private and public land in Buchanan County allotted for their use.
This is not the first time that the state has tried to reintroduce elk. Virginia wildlife officials imported elk to 11 counties back in in 1916 in an attempt to restore a native population, but those releases failed. By 1926, only two small herds remained and managed to eek out an existence until the 1970s. By that time, disease and extreme isolation drove the elk once again out of the state.
Virginia used to be home to a vast number of elk, but habitat loss and unregulated hunting caused the species to become extirpated in the late 1800s. Drawing inspiration from successful restorations in Kentucky and other states, biologists are hopeful that this attempt will have lasting results.
The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries is considering bringing in elk to other counties as well. Wildlife officials say they are aiming for a sustainable population large enough to facilitate hunting within four years of the last release. Proceeds from the sale of hunting permits will go back into conservation efforts for the elk.
“What we’re going to do now is manage them,” Boyd said. “One way to do that is make elk meadows, where we actively plant forage that’s attractive to them and then they’ll tend to stay in that area [...] Our management of elk will be more focused on habitat.”
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USA Hunting : Minnesota: Bois Forte opts against 2014 moose hunting; no decision from DNR yet

on 2014/3/31 15:50:00 (3598 reads)

Despite aerial surveys that produced a moose-population estimate in the northeastern part of the state that was similar to 2012, it remains unclear whether the animals will be hunted this fall.

Last year, neither the state nor the three Indian bands in the northeast held seasons, decisions that came after aerial surveys resulted in an estimated moose population of 2,760 animals.

While the population estimate rose to 4,350 this year, officials don’t believe that reflects an increasing moose population. More likely, they say, was the population was undercounted last year.

But at this point, the DNR isn’t ready to say a season won’t be held.

DNR Wildlife Section Chief Paul Telander said the agency has met with the bands at the biological level, but consultations at the government level are ongoing.

“We won’t be making any decisions until the consultation with the bands is complete,” Telander said.

One of the three bands – the Bois Forte band – announced last week it wouldn’t hold a moose hunt this fall. However, it’s not clear if that applies only to the band’s reservation, or to the 1854 Treaty area as a whole.

Bois Forte officials didn’t return calls for comment earlier this week.

According to an Associated Press story, the Bois Forte Tribal Council decided not to hold a season after consulting with tribal elders. In that report, Tribal Chairman Kevin Leecy said the tribe wants to be careful until the causes of the long-term decline in the moose population are better understood.

Officials with both the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa and the Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa say their bands haven’t made decisions yet on whether to hunt moose this fall.

In 2012, state hunters killed 46 moose, while tribal hunters from all three bands killed 36. State hunters killed 53 moose in 2011, while tribal hunters killed 31.

Jeff Lightfoot, DNR regional wildlife manager in Grand Rapids, said officials would like to see multiple years of an increasing moose population estimate.

“When we closed the season last year, it was to be conservative and do what we saw as the right thing with this declining population,” he said. “None of that has really changed.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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USA Hunting : North Carolina: Hunter bags 500-pound wild hog

on 2014/3/17 16:15:03 (3789 reads)

Click to see original Image in a new windowA North Carolina hunter says he'll feed his family for a year after he bagged a 500-pound wild hog in the woods of eastern North Carolina.
Jett Webb shot the 8-foot-long animal near the Indian Woods on land leased by the White Oak Ranch Hunting Club, reported.
"It was very surreal," Webb told the station. "It was a shock. It was very humbling to say the least, when you walk up on a beast that big and you say, 'Oh my gosh. I had no idea that there could be something that big running around the woods of Eastern North Carolina.'"
The animal had been seen on trail cameras years but baffled hunters.
"The Mohawk down the back,” Webb describes, “the tusks really lean, the muscular big front end. This is far from a domesticated docile pig that we're used to."
Webb said he’s going to use the hog to provide food for his family.
"We’re not going to waste anything,” Webb said
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USA Hunting : Wolves, crossbows on tap at Capitol

on 2014/3/12 20:10:00 (2691 reads)

Click to see original Image in a new windowSt. Paul — The controversy about wolf hunting and trapping has become one of the issues at the forefront of this year’s legislative session, which kicked off last week, but lawmakers will have plenty else to occupy their attention, too.

A number of bills related to conservation, fishing, and hunting had been introduced as of earlier this week, and hearings on some already had been set.

Among the bills that have been introduced:

• Sen. Foung Hawj, DFL-St. Paul, has introduced SF 2256, which contains a number of provisions related to wolves. Rep. Jason Isaacson, DFL-Shoreview, has the companion in the House.

The bill would require the DNR to conduct an annual wolf census; create materials aimed at reducing conflicts between wolves and humans; and creation of a task force to review the DNR’s wolf management plan every year.

The DNR also would have to close federally recognized tribal lands to hunting and trapping wolves, if requested by tribal leadership. And baiting for wolves would be prohibited within 10 miles of tribal lands where wolf hunting and trapping is prohibited.

Finally, the bill would suspend the wolf season for an unspecified period of time. Among other things, the DNR would have to “provide comprehensive, publicly accessible data of all known wolf deaths and illnesses in the state …” The agency also would have to “conduct a study of public sentiment toward wolves, including issues related to intolerance.”

• SF 2137, introduced by Sen. Tom Saxhaug, DFL-Grand Rapids, would appropriate $2 million from the Game and Fish Fund for cost-share grants to local recreational shooting clubs. Clubs that receive grants would have to be open to the public “at reasonable times and for a reasonable fee on a walk-in basis.”

Rep. Rick Hansen, DFL-South St. Paul, will carry the bill in the House, said Gary Botzek, executive director of the Minnesota Conservation Federation. The MCF is pushing the bill.

“Every organization that I know of – including MCF – is trying to get kids out of the house, off the couch, or off the computer, and get outside,” he said. “What’s better than a shooting range scenario, where they’re being guided by high school coaches?”

Indeed, much of the impetus for the bill is from the tremendous growth the Minnesota State High School Clay Target League has experienced.

• Sen. Matt Schmit, DFL-Red Wing, has introduced the annual game and fish bill, which is SF 2227.

The bill contains a number of provisions – many technical in nature, or the elimination of unnecessary words in state statute – but it also contains some items that would have a more immediate impact.

The bill, for example, would greatly reduce the cost of lifetime spearing licenses. For people between the ages of 16 and 50, for example, the cost of a lifetime license would drop from $372 to $100. Also, people would not be allowed to remove a fox from a den, or trap foxes within 300 feet of a fox den, from April 1 to Aug. 1.

• Hansen has a bill, HF 2628, that would result in the use of weigh stations and rest areas for “watercraft decontamination and other activities to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species.”

• SF 2018, introduced by Saxhaug, would allow people over the age of 60 to “take deer, bear, turkey, or rough fish by crossbow during the respective regular archery seasons.”

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