Friday, May 31, 2013

Live! Delta Duck Cam

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                                                                           Source: Uploaded by user via Michele on Pinterest

All across the prairie each spring, a dramatic struggle of nesting hen ducks to protect incubating eggs and survive in a grassland habitat teeming with predators plays out.

Skunks, raccoons, foxes, opossums and other toothy critters looking for an easy meal threaten to destroy the nests. Ultimately, the drama boils down to a hen — literally a sitting duck — trying to hide her eggs and herself in the grass for more than three weeks to hatch a brood of fluffy ducklings.

Now, you can watch! The Delta Duck Cam, a streaming webcam placed near an incubating wild duck, is your live, real-time window into the life of a hen on a nest in North Dakota.

“What takes place on the breeding grounds of the Prairie Pothole Region — exactly what it takes to make a nest, raise ducklings and avoid predators — is a complete mystery to most people,” said Joel Brice, Delta’s vice president of conservation. “The thought has always been that, if we could just bring people here to see it for themselves, they’d be more passionate about the support they give to wildlife. Through this unique project, we can do that.”

The lead role falls to Pintail 004, a hen northern pintail that might have spent last winter in the rice fields of Arkansas or on the Texas Gulf Coast, but now is at her spring and summer home near Egeland, N.D. She is in the heart of the storied Prairie Pothole Region, an area encompassing the Dakotas and southern Canada where 70 percent of North America’s ducks are born.

Delta Waterfowl’s wildlife technicians set up the camera on May 16. Pintail 004 has eight eggs, and provided no marauding predator finds the nest, the ducklings should hatch around June 10. But the odds are against Pintail 004. Previous Delta research in the area has shown nest success to be about 5 percent.

Anything can happen.

Thanks to a sponsorship with outdoor apparel maker Sitka Gear, the Delta Duck Cam will broadcast her every moment, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Whether Pintail 004’s nest is destroyed, abandoned or hatches, Delta researcher Mike Buxton, who received a Masters Degree from Louisiana State University, will be first to the scene to relocate the camera to another viable nest. Because of the different timing of nesting for various duck species throughout spring and into summer, the Delta Duck Cam could potentially last through July. Although the camera currently is pointed at a pintail, viewers could see the nests of northern shovelers, mallards, gadwalls, lesser scaup and blue-winged teal.

From different ducks to plentiful dangers to the changing of the seasons, the Delta Duck Cam promises to shed light on a fascinating aspect of the duck world many people have heard about, but few have ever seen.

Stay tuned!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Ducks Unlimited Initiates Long-Awaited Coastal Restoration Project

conservation, wetlands, louisiana, du, dnr
                                                                      Source: via Melissa's on Pinterest

Ducks Unlimited and partners recently received a North American Wetlands Conservation Act grant for coastal marsh restoration efforts in Louisiana. The nearly $1 million grant will be combined with partner contributions of more than $2 million to improve more than 16,000 acres of coastal wetlands, including a long-awaited project on Liner's Canal in Terrebonne Parish.

"Terrebonne Parish has some of the most dramatic rates of wetland loss on the Louisiana coast," said Bob Dew, DU manager of conservation programs. "DU is pleased to work with our many partners from the public and private sectors to see the Liner's Canal project finally come to fruition."

The Liner's Canal restoration has been on the parish's desired projects list for several years, but a lack of funding has kept it from being completed. It will benefit hundreds of acres of fresh and intermediate marsh by increasing freshwater flow into an area severely threatened by saltwater intrusion.

"We respect Duck Unlimited's stewardship of wetland habitats in southeast Louisiana and we have witnessed – firsthand – the organization's commitment and professionalism in developing and managing restoration projects," said Michel Claudet, president of Terrebonne Parish.

Specifically, Ducks Unlimited will build a multi-bay water control structure to increase the freshwater flow through Liner's Canal by about three times. The structure will also prevent salt water from accessing freshwater marshes upstream.

While the structure and impacted marsh are privately owned by Apache Corporation, there are substantial public benefits of increased healthy marsh, including waterfowl, wildlife and fisheries habitat, storm protection and water quality improvement. 
"We are grateful to Ducks Unlimited for being the catalyst to get the project moving forward," said Tim Allen, general manager at Apache. "This project fits in exceptionally well with the other stewardship initiatives we implement on Apache property."

Additional grant projects include:

  • Permanent protection of nearly 6,000 acres of fresh to intermediate marsh habitat
  • Restoration of more than 3,700 acres of coastal wetlands in west-central Lafourche Parish
  • Restoration of approximately 6,000 acres of private lands across the coastal zone through the Louisiana Waterfowl Project program, which provides technical and cost-share assistance to landowners wanting to improve their property for waterfowl and other wetland wildlife
The projects included in this grant all address the changes in salt- and freshwater flows, which impact marsh vegetation and soil stability. By restoring freshwater inputs and installing water control structures to manage salinity and water levels within coastal marshes, land managers can increase the overall health and function of coastal marshes.

"The Gulf Coast is the continent's single most important wintering area for waterfowl, and it's being lost at a staggering rate," Dew said. "As such, protecting and restoring coastal marsh and prairie habitat is a top priority for Ducks Unlimited."

Coastal restoration isn't solely about ecosystems and wildlife, either. Economic benefits of coastal restoration include creating and retaining jobs, increasing recreational opportunities such as bird watching and boating and increasing fishing and hunting opportunities.

In addition to Ducks Unlimited, Apache Corporation and Terrebonne Parish, partners on the NAWCA grant include the Moore-Odom Wildlife Foundation, Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority and Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. 

Ducks Unlimited Inc. is the world’s largest non-profit organization dedicated to conserving North America's continually disappearing waterfowl habitats. Established in 1937, Ducks Unlimited has conserved more than 13 million acres thanks to contributions from more than a million supporters across the continent. Guided by science and dedicated to program efficiency, DU works toward the vision of wetlands sufficient to fill the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever. For more information on our work, visit Connect with us on our Facebook page at, follow our tweets and watch DU videos

Andi Cooper
(601) 956-1936

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Bison Found In River Did Not Die From Malignant Catarrhal Fever

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                                                                     Source: via Jill on Pinterest

Results from lab tests confirm that the first of three dead bison found in the Yellowstone River did not die from malignant catarrhal fever (results on the other two bison are pending and expected within one to two weeks). The exact cause of death could not be determined from tissue samples. However, there was no sign of disease. The only evidence of abnormality on the carcass – visible to FWP Wildlife Veterinarian Jennifer Ramsey – was trauma to the animal’s pelvis.
Within the past two weeks, three dead bison were spotted in the Yellowstone River. With two separate efforts, FWP crews were able to retrieve tissue samples from each bison: the first near Emigrant, and the other two closer to Gardiner. Ramsey also documented trauma to these other two bison in the form of broken ribs in one, and a fractured pelvis in the other. She believes these traumas to have been suffered before death. 
Given the recent introduction of domestic sheep in the Gardiner area, FWP looked into the possibility of malignant catarrhal fever in these bison. Malignant catarrhal fever is a viral disease which may be carried by domestic sheep without any symptoms, but can cause fatal infections in bison.

Appeals Court Upholds DNR Rulemaking on Wolf Season

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                                                                           Source: via Elizabeth on Pinterest

A court decision issued today by the Minnesota Court of Appeals has upheld the Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) authority to set wolf seasons. The following is a statement from DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr:
“This decision affirms that the DNR, as directed by the Legislature, set the correct and proper course in establishing last year’s wolf season. Furthermore, the recent Legislature clarified the rulemaking process for setting future seasons, affirming the DNR is using the correct season-setting process.”
The DNR used the same rulemaking process for the wolf season as it does for dozens of other game species. Landwehr said the DNR is committed to the long-term sustainability of the state’s wolf population, the largest in the lower 48 states, and the agency took a conservative approach to the inaugural season.
Plans are underway for a 2013 wolf season. The DNR will set the season this summer after analyzing data from the previous season and a wolf population estimate is completed.
Visit the DNR website to learn more.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Go Fishing for Free in Oklahoma June 1-2

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                                                                     Source: Uploaded by user via Carolyn on Pinterest

Oklahoma anglers can fish for free during Free Fishing Days June 1-2. During 
these days, a state fishing license will not be required for anglers to go fishing in 
Oklahoma, whereas in most other cases a license is required. 

The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation’s many communication 
outlets such as its free news releases, Facebook and Twitter accounts and weekly 
fishing reports are useful starting points for finding fishing information. Every week the 
fishing report provides a listing of lakes and the current state of angling success at that 
location. The Department also updates its Facebook page daily with current reports 
from its own personnel as well as its fans on a range of current outdoor activities.  

“If you stay connected with the Wildlife Department through these outlets, you 
are going to have a good, timely picture of what is happening in the outdoors across the 
state at any given time,” said Michael Bergin, information specialist for the Wildlife 
Department. “With biologists and game wardens stationed across the state, as well as 
more than 15,000 Facebook fans and almost 3,000 followers on Twitter, we stay pretty 
connected to what’s happening all over the state. If you connect with us, you’ll know 
what’s going on, too, because we’re constantly sharing photos and reports from our 
employees and friends who have been having current success. Free Fishing Days are 
sure to be a great time to snap some photos to share with us, too.”  

Oklahoma offers fishing in lakes and rivers, but also in urban waters designated 
by the Wildlife Department as "Close to Home Fishing" locations. Although state fishing 
licenses are not required during Free Fishing Days, anglers should note that certain city 
permits may still apply to specific fishing areas. 

Additionally, anglers fishing Lake Texoma should be aware that Free Fishing 
Days applies for all of the lake on June 1 but only on Oklahoma portions of the lake on 
June 2. 

Oklahoma was the first state in the nation to offer free fishing days about 30 
years ago and has since been followed by dozens of other states that have established 
similar days. 

The Wildlife Department is encouraging anglers to take a short video clip or 
photo of someone catching their first fish and send it to Department through Facebook 
or Twitter. The Wildlife Department's Facebook page can be found at On Twitter, search for the handle 

For more information about fishing in Oklahoma, log on to the Wildlife 
Department's website at 

Free Fishing Weekend in Colorado, June 1-2

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                                                                            Source: via Pam on Pinterest

The fish are starting to bite at waters all around the state. To give everyone an opportunity to get out and get some hits, Colorado Parks and Wildlife is inviting anglers of all ages to participate in its annual Free Fishing Weekend, June 1-2.
Each year, the agency designates the first weekend in June as the only two-day period that anglers all around the state are not required to have a fishing license. For the rest of the year a fishing license is required for anyone 16 years and older.
"The free fishing weekend is a great way to get outside with family and friends and take advantage of Colorado's extensive opportunities to fish for a myriad of cold and warm water fish species without having to worry about possessing a license," said Greg Gerlich, aquatic section manager for Colorado Parks and Wildlife.  "This is the perfect opportunity for anglers to introduce a friend, family member and, especially, children to one of America's favorite activities. If people are wondering where to go to fish, there are an abundance of publicly accessible waters across the state. But many people need look no further than our Colorado state parks."
A recent survey of resident and non-resident anglers revealed a high level of satisfaction with fishing experiences in Colorado. Anglers said they especially like to pursue the numerous trout species available in state waters. The majority of fish caught in Colorado are stocked by the agency, and each year more than 3 million catchable-sized trout and 14 million trout fingerlings are stocked into the more than 2,000 lakes, ponds and reservoirs around the state.
While fishing licenses are not required during free fishing weekend, all other regulations remain in effect. Anglers should consult the 2013 Colorado Fishing brochure for specific regulations and restrictions for the waters where they'll be fishing.
Fishing licenses can be purchased at any Colorado Parks and Wildlife office or from one of the more than 600 license agents across the state.  Licenses can also be purchased online. Anglers may also purchase a fishing license over the phone and receive a temporary authorization number allowing them to fish immediately by calling 800-244-5613.
For more information on state fishing regulations, the current Colorado fishing brochure is available at license retail locations and online. An interactive version of the brochure available on the web site provides links to maps and useful videos for beginning to experienced anglers.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife produces a weekly fishing report that includes information about fishing conditions and stocking activity around the state, and a fishing atlas about places to go fishing.  Find those at:
Colorado Parks and Wildlife manages 42 state parks, more than 300 state wildlife areas, all of Colorado's wildlife, and a variety of outdoor recreation. For more information go to

Friday, May 24, 2013

Duck Hunt & Duck Calls To Support Oklahoma Tornado Victims

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                                                                          Source: Uploaded by user via Jamison on Pinterest

Outdoor Channel Outfitters, Tallahatchie Hunts and Goey Hunting Calls have teamed up in an effort to help out those affected by the devastating storms that hit Oklahoma. Now up for bids on Outfitters Showcase Auctions, Tallahatchie Hunts, in Swan Lake, Mississippi has donated a 2 person duck hunt and 100% of the winning bid for this auction will be donated to the Moore & Shawnee Tornado Relief Fund to assist with the mid and longer term needs of those affected by this recent storm.

The hunt, to take place in Northwest Mississippi, is 2 day, 2 night hunt that includes meals and lodging for two hunters. You'll have opportunities to hunt in one of the Mississippi Flyway's premier destinations in fields, flooded timber or open water. Retail value of hunting package: $1,800.00 and the bidding will start at $1 at

In addition to the duck hunt, another way to help those in need is through Outdoor Channel Outfitters' partner, Goey Hunting Calls. Goey Hunting Calls will donate $25 of every $30 Swamp Sister sold to the Salvation Army Arkansas-Oklahoma Division to aid in providing food and shelter to those who could use the assistance in the wake of this disaster.

The Swamp Sister, a molded, double reed mallard duck call, is for sale on their website at After years of research and development, as well as countless days in the duck blind, the Swamp Sister arose from the marsh leaving all other calls in a dust of feathers. The uniquely shaped tone board and reed combination produces that raspy "mother hen" cadence that mallards flock to, as well as a pristine hail and rolling feed call.

About Outdoor Channel Outfitters

Outdoor Channel Outfitters is a superior resource for the millions of outdoor enthusiasts to find their next world class hunting, fishing or outdoor adventure. Certified Outfitters can tap into the resources of Outdoor Channel to promote and grow their businesses through an unparalleled online network. Through video galleries, photo albums, mapping features, weather information, and more, outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy countless hours of outdoor entertainment while searching for their next hunting, fishing or outdoor adventure.

For more information about Outdoor Channel Outfitters, or Outfitters Showcase visit or email

About Tallahatchie Hunts

Tallahatchie Hunts offers guided duck, goose and deer hunting on private lands in Tallahatchie County, Mississippi. There are several public and private game preserves that serve as resting areas that help us maintain large populations of waterfowl throughout the winter months. One of the most experienced guides in the Mississippi Delta, Mike "Catfish" Flautt has been hunting this area for over fifty years. Season after season, Catfish's clients can attest to his almost perfect success rate, as he does not hunt the heated pit blinds of deserted fields, but hunts "where the ducks are" every day of the season, no matter what the weather brings.

For more information about Tallahatchie Hunts, visit or email

About Goey Hunting Calls

Goey Hunting Calls is a company with the two backgrounds necessary to build quality sounding and reliable hunting calls. We have been in the machining business for over 20 years and have been hunting ducks and geese even longer. Our acrylic calls are 100% machined in house therefore we are able to achieve some aspects that other call companies can't by most common methods of production. We machine our acrylic calls, tone boards and even the wedges; we design and produce our own reeds with our own punches. By doing everything in house we are able to stay on top of our quality ensuring that every call is produced to the highest standards, 100% Made in the U.S.A.

For more information about Goey Hunting Calls, visit or email

Press Release found at the Outdoor Wire

Thursday, May 23, 2013

DNR Courtesy Boating Inspections Set During Memorial Day Weekend

South Carolina, dnr, game and fish, fishing, outdoors
                                                                              Source: via Marie on Pinterest

In an effort to keep state waterways safe during the upcoming Memorial Day holiday weekend, the S.C. Department of Natural Resources Law Enforcement Division will again be conducting courtesy safety inspections at some public boat landings.
The Memorial Day holiday weekend is one of the busiest weekends of the year on state waters.
DNR boating safety and enforcement officers will perform a quick, but thorough, inspection for items such as required safety equipment and proper boat and motor registration. Those who are not in compliance with safety regulations or registration requirements will not be ticketed during the complimentary inspections. Instead, they will be given an opportunity to correct the problem before they launch their boat. DNR officers will also be available to answer questions and give boaters tips on how to stay safe on the water.
To report boating violations such as reckless operation or an intoxicated boat operator, call the DNR toll-free, 24-hour hotline at 1-800-922-5431. For a Copy of South Carolina’s boating regulations, to find out about local boating safety Courses or to obtain a free float plan form Contact the DNR Boating Safety Office at 1-800-277-4301.
Courtesy safety inspections at the following locations and times:
  • May 25
    • Conway Marina Landing-Waccamaw River-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Horry Co.
    • Riverfork Public Landing-Lake Greenwood-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Laurens Co.
    • Dorn Landing-Lake Thurmond-10 a.m. to 12 noon-McCormick Co.
    • South Cove Park-Lake Keowee-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Oconee Co.
    • Lake Wateree State Park Landing-Lake Wateree-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Kershaw Co.
    • Easterling Landing-Lake Robinson-9 a.m. to 12 noon-Darlington Co.
    • Billy Dreher Island-Lake Murray-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Newberry Co.
    • Lake Murray Dam-Lake Murray-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Lexington Co.
    • Alex Harvin-Lake Marion-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Clarendon Co.
    • The New Peach Tree Landing-ICW at Socastee-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Horry Co.
    • Folly Landing-Folly River-9 a.m. to 12 noon-Charleston Co.
    • County Farm Landing (Leed)-Ashley River-9 a.m. to 12 noon-Charleston Co.
    • Remley's Point Landing-Wando River-9 a.m. to 12 noon-Charleston Co.
    • Wappoo Cut Landing-ICW south of Charleston Harbor-9 a.m. to 12 noon-Charleston Co.
    • Lemon Island Landing (Edgar Glenn)-Chechesse River-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Beaufort Co.
  • May 26
    • River Forks Boat Ramp-Lake Hartwell-2 p.m. to 4 p.m.-Anderson Co.
    • Galivants Ferry Landing-Little Pee Dee-3 p.m. to 5 p.m.-Marion Co.
    • Murrells Inlet Landing-Murrells Inlet/Atlantic Ocean-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Georgetown Co.
    • Pinckney Island Landing (C. C. Haigh, Jr.)-Mackay Creek-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Beaufort
    • Greenwood State Park-Lake Greenwood-2 p.m. to 4 p.m.-Greenwood Co.
    • Main Ramp-Lake Bowen-2 p.m. to 4 p.m.-Spartanburg Co.
  • May 27
    • Parksville Boat Landing-Lake Thurmond-10 a.m. to 12 noon-McCormick Co.
    • Gap Hill Landing-Lake Keowee-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Pickens Co.
    • Ebenezer Park Landing-Lake Wylie-12 noon to 2 p.m.-York Co.
    • Lake Wateree Clearwater Cove Landing-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Kershaw Co.
    • Billy Dreher Island-Lake Murray-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Newberry Co.
    • Lake Murray Dam-Lake Murray-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Lexington Co.
    • Alex Harvin-Lake Marion-10 a.m. to 12 noon-Clarendon Co.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

NASP Archers Surpass Their Own World Record 2013 NASP Nationals

archer, archery, archers,range, competition, nasp, easton, mathews, genesis
                                                            Source: via FieldDress on Pinterest

The National Archery in the Schools Program continues to break records!

Students from nearly 600 NASP schools across the United States just buried the world record they set just one year ago!  Additionally, the top male archer, Jericho Vannoy from Madisonville, KY tied NASP®’s individual world record.  Top teams shared the record-breaking frenzy as well.  Chatsworth, Georgia’s Woodlawn Elementary School and Cadiz, Kentucky’s Trigg County High School also broke two of NASP®’s three team world records.

The 2013 NASP® National Tournament was held May 9-11 at Louisville, Kentucky’s Exposition Center.   Our indoor archery range is the world’s largest at 1,350 feet because it had to accommodate the world’s largest gathering of archers at 9,426 students this year.  This was larger than the number that set the Guinness World Record at last year’s NASP Nationals with 7,804 4th-12th grade student archers.

Each of the archers released 5 practice arrows and 3 ends of 5 scoring arrows from 10 and 15 meters for a total of 40 arrows launched per archer.  “We are grateful students, coaches, and range officials did their part to keep unblemished NASP® ‘s safety record  of ZERO archery accidents,” said NASP® President, Roy Grimes.

No matter the archer’s grade, gender, or skill level, each used the same Mathews Genesis bow, Easton aluminum arrows and shot at the same Morrell targets at identical distances. Because every NASP® archer utilizes identical equipment, technique and form are the keys to performance.  When finished shooting every archer returned their bow to the BowTree bow rack and walked back behind the “Waiting Line” to await their next range instruction. 

To maintain a manageable, accessible and affordable playing field, NASP® is void of archery enhancements such as sights, stabilizers, or release aids.  In fact, the tournament format is exactly the same as taught to 2.3 million student archers in nearly 12,000 NASP® schools during the current school year.  “While tournaments are a small part of our Mission at NASP®, it seems this national tournament has become the culminating event for us as well as many students around the United States.  It is so motivational for us to see the sea of smiling faces as they enjoy the great sport of archery.  We especially appreciate the family connections; grandparents, parents, and siblings coming to watch their loved one(s) compete.” said Grimes.

In addition to sponsors mentioned above, other important contributors help out such as; Easton Foundations, National Wild Turkey Federation, Army National Guard, Archery Trade Association, Gordon Composites, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Safari Club International, The Block, Plano, Pope & Young Club, Electronic Awards, BCY, Brownell, Saunders, and Rinehart Targets.

The tournament was staffed by a record number of 261 volunteers from a variety of local archery clubs, schools, state NASP Administrators, and the Kentucky Dept. of Fish & Wildlife Resources.

One of the highlights of the Nationals is the awards ceremony which was held in Louisville’s Freedom Hall this year.  Before the awards ceremony could commence we first had to break 12 ties.  This was done by each archer shooting 5 practice arrows and then 5 for score.  It is exciting and nerve-racking for the audience and one can only imagine how it is for the archers!  Tymbrie Snoble from Bellevue, Iowa had this to say, 'The scholarship shoot-off is the cumulation of all the work, fun, and dedication put into your archery career by not only yourself, but your parents, coaches, and supporters as well. I just kept thanking God for giving me such an amazing opportunity, not only once, but two years in a row!'

Because NASP® is a school-based effort, we draw attention to education goals by conducting a thrilling scholarship shoot-off immediately before awards are presented. Thanks to the generosity of many NASP® sponsors, $50,0000 in scholarships were awarded. Winners of the scholarship shoot-off are listed below.  Many spectators noted that parents cheered for these scholarship shooters far louder (and with relief?) than their children!

Award Sponsor                                    MALE               Scholarship Winner
Gordon Composites -                             $10,000 ­­          Cameron Peyton           Lawrenceburg, KY
Morrell Targets  -                                   $7,500 ­­           Josh Ohlert                   Bellevue, IA
NWTF -                                                $5,000 ­­           Jericho Vannoy            Madisonville, KY
United Bowhunters of Kentucky             $2,500 ­­           Jared Cook                  Thorne Bay, AK
Award Sponsor                                    FEMALE
Mathews Inc. -                                      $10,000 ­­          Riley Mabe                   Henderson, KY
Plano -                                                 $7,500 ­­           Tymbrie Snobl              Alburnett, IA
Saunders Archery -                                $5,000 ­­           April Bartenschlag         Duncan Falls, OH
New Archery Products (NAP) -               $2,500 ­­           Maggie Melton              Henderson, KY

For the second year, with help from the Army National Guard, NASP designated it’s All-American Team.  This 2013 team will compete in the All-Nation All-Star NASP® Championship in South Africa the last weekend of July, 2013. Members plus chaperones from the U.S. include:
  • Jericho Vannoy,           Hopkins County Central HS,                               Madisonville, KY           298
  • Josh Ohlert,                 Bellevue Community,                                         Bellevue, IA                 297
  • Cameron Peyton,         Anderson County High School,                          Lawrenceburg, KY         296
  • April Bartenschlag,       Philo High School,                                            Duncan Falls, OH          296
  • Jared Cook                 South East Island School,                                 Thorne Bay, AK             296
  • Miles Wilson,               Alma Bryant,                                                     Irvington, AL                 296
  • Tyler Williams,             Alma Bryant,                                                     Irvington, AL                 296
  • Tymbrie Snobl,            Alburnett Community School,                             Alburnett, IA                  296
  • Chris Bee,                   Hartland High School,                                        Hartland, MI                  296
  • Clay Stevens,              Trigg County Middle School,                              Cadiz, KY                     295
  • Jake Macnab,              Trigg County High School,                                 Cadiz, KY                     295
  • Riley Mabe,                 Henderson County South Middle School,           Henderson, KY              295
  • Nathaniel Cook,           South Island School,                                         Thorne Bay, AK             295
  • Levi Staats,                 Ripley High School,                                           Ripley, WV                    295
  • Maggie Melton,            Henderson County High School,                        Henderson, KY              295
  • Ryan Long,                  Madison Central High School,                            Richmond, KY               295

    The average score of these All-Americans is almost 296 points out of a possible 300!

    Hotly contested Flying Eagle Spirit Awards for sportsmanship and enthusiasm went to Elementary and Middle Schools in Hartland, Michigan and Alaska’s South East Island High School.

    Many dozens of exhibitors displayed their archery, outdoor, and “kid’s stuff” throughout the event. Several interactive shooting exhibits were also provided: Archery Golf, 3-D, Pop-Up Targets, Aerial Shooting, Bow Fishing, Recurve Range, and Air Rifles ranges by the National Wild Turkey Federation and the KY Department of Fish & Wildlife Resources.

    Many of these national tournament archers will meet again at the 2013 NASP® World Championships to be held at the America Center and Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis Missouri on June 28th, 29th and 30th, 2013. They will be joined by NASP® peers from Canada, Namibia, South Africa, and New Zealand.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Americans Take Seven Medals at First World Cup Stage

world cup, shanghai, compound, team, medal
                                                                           Source: via Robin on Pinterest
The U.S. women's compound team of Erika Jones (Grand Island, Neb.), Carli Cochran (Willow Street, Pa.) and Jamie Van Natta (Toledo, Ohio) started the squad's race for medals on Saturday by clinching silver after posting a 216-231 score versus Korea in windy conditions. A strong U.S. compound squad won six of the team's seven medals at the first stage of the World Cup in Shanghai, proving its prowess despite a clear message from South Korea that it's determined to dominate in compound archery as it has in recurve. A strong performance from newcomer Carli Cochran (Willow Street, Pa.) also gave Team USA fans good reason to cheer.
Cochran, making her World Cup debut, commented: “I felt that I fit right in for my first time, and Erika and Jamie were great. We shot great in practice, [though] we didn’t have our best Team Round against Korea. We had an off match.”
Teammates Braden Gellenthien (College Station, Texas), Reo Wilde (Pocatello, Idaho) and Rodger Willett, Jr. (Gloucester, Va.) showed that they are still the dominant men’s compound team by clinching a medal of their own in the final – gold versus Italy, 236-228.
Adding to the team’s haul were the mixed team of Jones and Gellenthien, who then faced Korea once again in the compound mixed team gold medal match. With wind and rain still a factor, the U.S. stayed consistent enough to clinch the win, 155-154.
Jones then had her third match of the day with members of the Korean team, this time versus Korea’s Seok Ji Hyun. Both archers put up very strong scores, but Jones was unable to edge out her opponent, taking silver for USA, 143-147.
On the men’s side, the individual bronze medal match was an all-American smackdown between Wilde and American teammate Dave Cousins (Standish, Maine), who matched each other nearly point for point until the final end, when Wilde hit a perfect 30 to a 28 from Cousins, clinching the bronze.
The gold medal final between Gellenthien and Denmark’s Martin Damsbo gave Team USA another opportunity to shine, and Gellenthien took full advantage. Dropping only two points, Gellenthien shot a 148 to win the gold medal by three points, winning the USA’s third gold medal of the event.
In the recurve event, Team USA made their presence felt in the mixed team gold medal final, despite some tough early losses that prevented American men’s and women’s recurve teams and individuals from making the medal matches.
Khatuna Lorig (West Hollywood, Calif.) and Brady Ellison (Chula Vista, Calif.) faced a talented duo from India in the gold medal match – Deepika Kumari and Jayanta Talukdar. Ellison dropped just one point in the match, and with solid shooting from Lorig, the team was able to start with the lead and keep it to win the gold for USA, 154-146.
Also noteworthy was Cochran shooting her way to the compound women’s bronze medal match, an outstanding performance for a first World Cup appearance. Facing two-time World Champion Albina Loginova (RUS), she was unable to take the medal, but proved that she’ll be a force to contend with in future international events.
“I was nervous the first couple of ends, then I kind of settled down, and started nailing the tens,” Cochran said when asked how she felt about shooting in her first World Cup. “It was fun, I loved it.”
In discussing her match with Loginova, Cochran offered solid advice for newcomers: “because I was so new, I didn’t even really know who she was, to be honest. But then I was realizing that she’s ranked number one, and had all these titles. I would advise [other archers] to concentrate on what you’re shooting, and not worry about what the other person is shooting. There was a lot of pressure for my first time.”
Next cup for Cochran are the Easton Foundations Gator Cup and the World Archery Championships Team Trials, followed by the next World Cup stage, in Antalya. “I’ll start training even more, close to 100 arrows per day,” Cochran said. “My training will increase. I’m definitely going to practice counting down and having only twenty seconds to shoot.”
For complete results and photos, visit

Monday, May 20, 2013

Public Hunter Bags New Texas State Record Alligator

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                                              © Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

A young hunter who grew up with a fascination about dinosaurs and a dream of hunting what some call “living dinosaurs” has harvested the largest alligator ever certified in Texas. Braxton Bielski, an 18-year-old high school senior on his first alligator hunt, bagged the behemoth 800-pound, 14-foot, 3-inch gator during a recent public hunt on the James E. Daughtrey Wildlife Management Area.
Braxton and his father, Troy Bielski, were among 481 applicants vying for 10 alligator permits issued through the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s public hunting program for a five-day hunt at the Daughtrey WMA.
“He’s wanted to hunt alligators for years,” said Troy, a Houston police officer who has applied annually to TPWD’s special drawing hunts for the chance to fulfill his son’s dream. “We got selected one year to go on a youth hunt at the J.D. Murphree WMA, but I didn’t get the permit in on time. I remember Brax was very disappointed. This is the first year we’ve had to enter him as an adult and we got drawn.”
The coveted permit provides the only opportunity to hunt and harvest an alligator on Choke Canyon Reservoir, situated within the Daughtrey WMA boundary.
Each year, TPWD’s public hunting program provides access to some of the state’s high-quality managed wildlife habitat to about 5,500 hunters selected through random computer drawings. Wildlife management areas, state parks and leased private property are available for these supervised hunts for a variety of game, including: white-tailed deer, mule deer, pronghorn, javelina, alligator, exotics, feral hog and spring turkey.
Through an application process, hunters select from 29 different hunt categories, including eight specifically for youth only, and choose a preferred hunt date and location from hunt areas stretching across the state. There’s even a provision for hunting buddies to apply as a group — in some cases up to four hunters can apply together on one application.
This season TPWD processed 998 applications for 2,340 hopeful applicants in the alligator hunt category. The department offered 165 permits to go alligator hunting on five WMAs (Angelina Neches/Dam B, James Daughtrey, Guadalupe Delta, Mad Island, and J.D. Murphree).
Because alligator hunting in Texas is conservatively managed, most hunters selected for these public hunts are first-timers and many have never seen an alligator in the wild. For that reason, TPWD biologists go through an intensive orientation process and provide greater guidance than they would for more common hunts, like for deer or waterfowl.“We went through a two-hour orientation and it was very thorough,” Braxton recalled. “My dad did a lot of research online about alligator hunting and we asked a lot of questions.”
Troy said he knew some about the area they would be hunting, having done some bass fishing on Choke Canyon years ago, but with current low water levels, the landscape was completely different from what he remembered.
“We spent a lot of time scouting some of the pastures in the compartment we were assigned, looking for likely spots to set our lines,” said Troy.
At one point, the pair observed what they believed to be a large gator in a cove and decided to place their baited lines nearby.
“We didn’t pressure it, but while we were putting up our cane poles we could see it watching us 30 yards away,” said Braxton.
Choke Canyon has a reputation for holding some big old gators. Unlike the alligator populations along their core range in southeast Texas, these creatures are left alone to live to a ripe old age. A 14-footer is estimated to be between 30-50 years old, according to TPWD alligator program leader Amos Cooper.
“Choke Canyon has a larger size class than other areas because they have just began to hunt the area,” said Cooper. “A large alligator in Choke Canyon is not unusual but expected. You won’t see a lot of alligators on Choke Canyon but the alligators that you do see are relatively large.”
In the five years TPWD has hunted gators on the Daughtrey WMA, several huge specimens have been harvested, including two in 2011 measuring over 13-feet and another in that size class last year.
Living in Fort Bend County, Troy and his son routinely saw alligators while jogging but being able to judge their size was tough. “I had no idea,” he noted. “The WMA staff did a really good job of explaining what we needed to do. We knew this gator was big and wanted to be sure we set the bait high enough out of the water.”
Braxton chose one of the lines as his set; the other would be his dad’s. When the two hunters returned the next morning, they realized they had their work cut out as both lines were down indicating they had two alligators hooked. A hook and line set baited with raw meat is used to catch the alligator; only after it has been hooked can a gator be dispatched at close range with a firearm.
They weren’t the only ones having a successful first day. All the hunters participating in the hunt had landed gators, which proved equally challenging for the WMA staff.
“We only have 5-10 hunters out during these drawn hunts and most of them are new to alligator hunting so I try to stay in close touch with them,” said Daughtrey WMA area manager Chris Mostyn. “I tell them to have a strategy in place because they may have to haul a big one out. Turns out we had four gators taken that morning; it was wild. The Bielskis did a good job.”
Troy’s gator turned out to be a huge female measuring 10 ½ feet long, which, as it turned out was dwarfed by his son’s catch.
“If we had just caught the one, I would have been happy for Brax,” said Troy. “He’s the reason I was there.”
More information about TPWD’s public hunting program and the application process for special drawing hunts is available online at

Friday, May 17, 2013

NSSF Study Shows Lower-Than-Expected Rates of Hunting Among Recent Hunter Ed Graduates

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                                                                               Source: via Jessica on Pinterest

Filled classrooms at Hunter Safety courses are a good thing, but perhaps more important is the number of students that actually participate in hunting after they graduate.  A recent survey, funded by the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) and conducted by Southwick Associates, focused on participation levels of students in the years immediately following their graduation from hunter education class.  The survey revealed that a significant percentage of hunter education students do not buy a license after graduating.
Twelve state wildlife agencies supplied data for the survey, which profiled the subsequent hunting license buying habits of hunter education graduates from 2006-2011.
  • Just 67.7 % of graduates over the six-year period purchased at least one license.
  • While some graduates took hunter education with no intention of hunting, others needed assistance to make the leap to become an avid hunter.
  • After six years, only 44 % of graduates still bought licenses.
  • Graduates from highly urbanized areas showed the greatest dropout rates indicating a greater need for intervention efforts.
  • People graduating in warmer months represented the greatest percentage of graduates who never purchased a license.
  • In most states, graduates between the ages of 16 to 24 were less likely to buy a license six years after graduating, which showed the transient nature of young people.  This held true for college students and those in the military.
“This shows us that simply encouraging people to obtain their hunter safety certificate is not enough,” said Rob Southwick, president of Southwick Associates, which designs and conducts surveys such as,, and  “The hunting community needs ways to encourage new graduates to buy a license and go hunting. Whether that means more programs for state agencies to get people out hunting, private industry intervention, or simply more hunters taking their neighbor’s kid into the woods, remains to be seen. “
It is the belief of the NSSF that the results from this study will help the hunting community determine where intervention is needed to maintain hunting participation among newer hunters.
The full results from the survey can been seen in greater depth at click here
Southwick Associates helps the outdoor industry, management agencies and non-profit organizations understand the size of markets, sales and participation trends and the economic aspects of hunting, fishing and other outdoor recreation and conservation issues.