Thursday, January 29, 2009

One That Got Away

Where the hell are Terrierman and his little scrappers when you need them?
Late January, and the remaining fox squirrels are sure-enough survivors. Cate treed this one in a blackjack oak, but as I approached it jumped out. She almost caught it on the ground, but not quite.
The fox squirrels will be breeding soon. I'm starting to see signs of pairing up. I'd say this one is fit to pass along his or her genes.
We'll hunt this weekend, then leave them alone until May 1, when spring squirrel season opens.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A Texas-Sized Embarrassment

Compared to other parts of the country, Texas grows a modest amount of corn. Nevertheless, most of the State's deer hunters are obsessed with it. I suspect that without it, very few would know how to hunt.

Hats off to Wyman Meinzer and Texas Parks & Wildlife for saying so. Here's Wyman speaking the truth in his December 2008 article: is disturbingly true that fewer and fewer people are learning these once-essential outdoor skills. In this age of spacious and comfortably furnished elevated blinds, solar-powered feeders spraying their offering of golden delight at predictable intervals or video cameras offering the "hunter" a tantalizing array of super bucks for the taking at exorbitant prices, few incentives exist today to encourage our youth to hunt in a more traditional way.

Even on public land, where elevated blinds and feeders are illegal, people find a way to cheat. A few weeks ago, squirrel hunting on public land in far North Texas, I found various camouflaged homemade feeders strapped to trees. Late in the day, I passed two hunters getting ready for their afternoon hunt. Both were unloading bags of corn from their pickups. They made no effort to hide it. After all, they were deer hunting. That's just the way we do it here in Texas.

Read the rest of Wyman's article. I'm proud of TPW for having the guts to run it.