The buck that ran away

Posted November 20, 2014 at 11:27 am

I missed the son-of-a-buck… I can’t figure out how but it wasn’t my fault. It was dark because of the snow clouds and he was behind me and he was walking in some brush and I wasn’t at all accustomed to the rifle I was using. So he’s out there somewhere and I have to keep on hunting all this week. Well, something good comes from every bad situation, if you look for it, but really I think I’d druther be hunting ducks this week.

I missed him and I guess confession is good for the soul because too many of my readers think I never miss what I shoot at and that all my fish are lunkers. Those of us who write about the outdoors too often skip over the times we goof up and fall

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    When hunting keep these tips in mind

    * Safety is always the most important aspect to keep in mind. Nothing matters more than firearm and tree-stand safety. And ALWAYS identify your target as a legal deer before putting your finger on the trigger. Never consider shooting at sounds in the brush.

    * Talk to landowner about deer patterns and locations. He probably knows where the deer travel and gather.

    * Always wear a safety belt or harness while in a tree stand, and never climb into a tree with a loaded gun.

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    Conservation Corner

    Bald Faced Hornets

    If you spend much time in the woods you can begin looking for bald-faced hornet nests.

    This year it is not too early but as a rule, you should wait for the first cold spell. These large gray nests are familiar from their frequent use in natural history displays. Built in trees and shrubs, each was begun in spring by a single overwintered queen.

    These wasps chew wood, mixing it with starches in their saliva and use this substance to construct the

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    Firearms opening-weekend deer harvest tops 91,000, up by 30,000 from 2013

    The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) reports that hunters checked 91,460 deer during the opening weekend of the 2014 November Portion of Firearms Deer Season this past weekend. Top harvest counties for the opening weekend were Franklin with 1,839 deer checked, Howell with 1,793, and Callaway with 1,791.

    In area counties, hunters in St. Clair County checked 1,367 deer: 654 antlered buck, 189 button bucks and 524 does. Vernon County was next with 880 deer checked; 461 antlered buck, 101 button bucks and 316 does. Cedar County hunters checks 796 deer: 389

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    Order native trees, shrubs and woody vines from MDC State Nursery

    Native trees, shrubs, and woody vines can help improve wildlife habitat and soil and water conservation while also improving the appearance and value of private property.

    The Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) George O. White State Nursery near Licking offers Missouri residents a variety of native seedlings for reforestation, windbreaks, erosion control, as well as for wildlife food and cover.

    Orders can be placed until April 15, 2015. Orders will be shipped or can be picked up at the State Nursery from February through May. Quantities are limited

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    The last bass

    It was early October of 2010, and the first falling leaves were floating along the river beside us. Uncle Norten and I had enjoyed a great day of fishing. The bass had been hitting, and I marveled at how well he could cast and fish at his age of 87.

    He had begun to have trouble remembering how to get to the river, but he had no trouble remembering how to fish a spinner-bait, or bounce a jig

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    Deer hunting, then and now

    I remember what deer hunting was like back when I was a boy. I am utterly amazed at how it has changed. Some very good hunters regularly visited Dad’s pool hall where I worked as a kid. Most of them were rural people who knew all about deer and how they moved. At that time in the mid-60′s I would estimate the Ozarks of southern Missouri had about 10 to 20 percent as many deer as we have today. In those times, if I remember right, the season was only a few days and

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    Fish biting at night

    Lake Stockton Report

    by Michael Weis

    Stockton State Park Marina

    A couple of guys brought in a lot of crappie the last couple of nights. They said they were using lights.

    The crappie were keepers, but not much bigger than keepers.

    We have a few crappie beds throughout this area.

    People have been bringing in a steady amount of catfish. They are using perch on trotlines and jugs. The cats run up to 10 lbs. a couple of blues but mainly flatheads.

    Bluegill

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    Walleye bite in August in Canada

    It was hot last year, too, the first week of August.

    We wondered what the weather was like in Canada. Sondra Gray, who is the editor of the Lightnin’ Ridge Outdoor Journal which I publish, loves to fish, and her husband, David, had a vacation coming up. Gas was high, about 2.59 a gallon, if I remember right, but a display company in Minneapolis had asked me to build an old time wooden johnboat about 10 feet long and they would pay my expenses for delivery. So

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    Regular spring turkey harvest totals 40,447

    Hunters checked 40,447 turkeys during Missouri’s regular spring turkey season, up by 2,120 from 38,327 last spring, or about one percent. The harvest of 4,319 turkeys during this year’s spring youth weekend, March 31 and April 1, brought the 2012 spring turkey harvest to 44,766, up about one percent from 2011. Youth hunters harvested 3,893 turkeys during the 2011 spring youth weekend for a 2011 spring total of 42,220.

    Top harvest counties during the regular 2012 spring turkey season, April 16 through May 6, were Franklin with 852, Texas with 803 and

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