Monday, November 26, 2007

In My Dreams

Today everywhere I looked seemed to have a deer of one shape or another occupying the space. I am wondering if it is because they feel safe here after the bow season has been going on for so long and the anterless season which ran over the weekend finished up last night. People have been using the south side of our property for their personal use without permission. Most evident on our return from the Thanksgiving holiday when we had time to survey things Saturday morning. Caught someone leaving after dark when I was returning from a grocery run Saturday evening. They were intending to come down the hill from the other side but I was blocking the way. As I started their direction the exit through the cornfield was the escape of choice. Will continue to make more runs down that direction to keep them on guessing. My mail excursion happened shortly before 3:00 today. What was unexpected were the 2 bucks and 2 does feasting west of Hubby's runway . Later,working on putting a few Christmas decorations up I glanced outside. My eyes grew wide as saucers, not unlike those of a child in awe of new sights. Feast your eyes on what I saw and know what will be in my dreams,to focus on , in order to get ready for the shotgun seasons beginning at the end of the week.

Iowa Bobcat Season Closed

The conclusion of the first Bobcat season in Iowa came on Monday, November 19th. Reaching the quota number of 150 ended anymore hunting and trapping of the animal for this year. Initially the season was set to run from November 3rd, 2007 - January 30th, 2008. It appears that the population of the elusive cat is more prevalent than most people are aware of. As the hunt was limited to the southern tier of counties this year it might indicate how large of a group that is already active there. Trappers, hunters, and drivers, still need to report any accidental killings, traffic collisions, or sightings to the Iowa DNR in order to keep current on movements anywhere within the state.

Everybody Up!

The deer have started the familiar schedules I have seen in the years past with the daylight influences. On Sunday, the 25th, as the rays were barely perceptible there was one doe feeding in the field as I went to the car to drive to town after a paper. In front of the house, in a sheltered area, two more young deer were roused from their bed. Coming back from town about a mile from home I saw a buck and doe still in bed by a local creek. It was frosty out so the circulation probably was not moving very quickly...I likened it to those cold mornings when we don't feel like getting out from under the blankets. Arriving back home I was met by the "Welcome Deer Band". It was a sight to see them all turn and run as I pulled up, big and little alike. This Monday morning after 7:00 the doe and fawn in the backyard joined the others in the pasture in deciding to checkout of the hotel to start the day...Time for an acorn or two, with a side dish of grass that has not yet gone completely dormant. Continued assurances were exchanged that they all would be back for their room later.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Observations at Timber Life

Walking fence perimeters during our mild temperatures revealed nothing but what had been around when you weren't looking.
Trail Evidence
Living in a timber as I do you would think that it would constantly be teaming with animal life everywhere you look, all the time; not necessarily so. Some days the timber appears absolutely empty. Continuing to the interior of what we call the south side brought more deer paths resembling interstate thoroughfares and secondary highways. In evidence were new scrapes and rubs that had just been done a short time before my arrival. The purpose for my rambling was to listen for possible location of turkey, pheasant, and to observe deer present at the late after-noon hour. I was only able to get information on the latter. Scared up two, year old does, sent them scurrying across the ravine, running as fast as they could to get away. Moving westward along the trail I eventually found one nice buck with other does and family groups. Headed back to my transportation to sit and observe longer. The deer family groups kept vascillating between the tree line that extends in between two cornfields and the heavier timber being so willingly seeded by the Black Locust and Cottonwood trees.
Between the Fields
I cannot say I see the difference between walking and not walking the trails,making a human scent presence. The only difference I see is after any gun season starts. More on other observations about differences in animal activities from this year to past experiences at a later time.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The Ghost of Pheasant Past?

Late yesterday afternoon, after communicating with my sister-in-law for an hour and a half via Yahoo Messenger, my eyes were drawn to the cornfield. I caught a sight reminiscent of the last day of pheasant season in January. I can remember pulling out my new Remington 870 Youth Express and squeezing off a couple of shots.( just to see if it would work mind you;) ) At 3:40, a rooster pheasant had made himself a visible target, must have gotten beyond the jitters of the opening day of the current pheasant season. Could it be the same one I didn't get in January?!? Like always at this time of year my gun was sitting beside the front door ready to pick up and go. The gun being a pump action I wanted it to be ready to fire when I got outside. My mistake was moving back and forth in front of the door. Blasted bird seemed to be watching me with his head cocked to one side. Went into a bedroom to pull the chamber closed and add more shot cartridges. ( if you're going to shoot be prepared!) Slipped on my boots, headed out to an adjacent field since he wasn't anywhere to be seen by this time. Guess I really should get a clue, and keep my shoes on to be ready ...Once again re-hashing some previous self-analysis from earlier experiences. The search was brief since I didn't send anything into flight. Returning to the house to reflect for a time - my thoughts brought a smile to my lips...As the long shadows gave way to darkness "The Ghost of Pheasant Past" has come back to haunt me....; )

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Bobcat Hunting in Iowa

Iowa is having it's first Bobcat hunting season which runs from November 3, 2007 thru January 31, 2008. The Iowa DNR has estimated numbers of the elusive animal at 3,000 - 4,000, possibly higher . Reports say the heaviest concentrations exist over 2/3rds of the state, mainly in the southern tiers of counties and in the southwest area of the state know as the Loess Hills. However, sightings have been recorded in all 99 counties at this time. Bobcat population expansion in Iowa has been directly associated to the Missouri group moving northward by wildlife officials. Limit for this year has been set at 150 . They can be taken by either by trapping or firearm. A specific fur harvester's license is required whether or not you already hold a regular small game license. Each license entitles the holder to take one animal. As of November 9th, the state quota was already well on it's way to being filled for this season, 56 have been taken. Updates to numbers are posted at the IowaDNR website, or by calling the main office. Officials state that only 2 out of the 52 bobcats that have been radio collared for tracking were among the animals being reported as killed so far. None of the 12 tagged individuals had showed an appearance as of this writing. Public assistance has been requested in southern Iowa by Iowa State University to get an idea of how visible the Bobcats have become. The results of this year's hunt will give DNR officials information about how to proceed for future management decisions.

How Many Days Left?

How many days left for what you muse? Well yes, we have Thanksgiving coming up next week. One of the nicest holidays we can share with our family and friends. For Hubby and me, we are off to North Dakota to visit our daughter, and her husband. This time we are going to travel with our oldest daughter, and her family. The first time they have been able to go visit up North for a holiday. I still get to cook. ;) So, to answer the question ,"How Many Days Left?" Click below to find out how long we have left 'til the holiday we have set aside to bestow on others our heartfelt desire to give of ourselves...
Countdown to Christmas

Monday, November 12, 2007

Bobcat or Lynx?

Darrell over at presented his readers with a picture of a member of the cat family. He and a friend found this animal while they were out on a Turkey hunt. Made me curious after I assumed it was a Bobcat ; being aware they have growing populations in the southern Missouri area from previous research. However, the suggestion of the possibility it might be a Lynx by Kristine sparked a need for me to look further. When I started the search for more information I found an animal control company located in Sarcoxie, MO., west of Springfield, on Interstate 44. Both Bobcat ,and Lynx, were included in the list of pests they were licensed to handle if they become a nuisance. Looks like we can draw from that, both populations do exist simultaneously in that part of the country. Maybe ,with more of us visiting the woodlands, we will have more chances to catch animals like this unexpectedly, as their presence expands throughout the country.

Monday, November 5, 2007

A New Gadget Alert

Ankeny, IA inventor Steve Ugolini, has developed a method to assist hunters and shooters to be more accurate. Mr. Ugolini recently got the patent on his product called an AccuScope, it uses math calculations to analyze how to chart adjustments for firearm mounted scopes. He theorizes that "sighting in" can be expensive if people go through ammunition by trial and error, spinning the dials without getting the target in the cross hairs. The chart is supposed to help the hunter/shooter by allowing them to input measurements and match them with the shooting distance. On the chart below the shooting distance is the number of clicks the hunter/shooter should turn the scope dial for windage or elevation. Reports have it that Mr. Ugolini has worked out calculations on two charts that covers three different types of scopes. What makes it handy is that it fits in your pocket. The listed price is $9.95 plus whatever taxes your state would tack on. If you find yourself needing some extra help in homing in on the target - Look for this little gadget from theSportsman's Guide, from Casey's General Store through November 30th,and last but not least the company website...