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Across the Campfire
November 2004

(November 29, 2004)

IT WAS A very good year for some Nevada hunters. One of our readers reported that their party, which had 17 tags, had 100% success in Nevada this year. According to our reader, "The bucks believe it or not are getting bigger each season. The biggest buck this year was 32" 5x4. Some of the hunters had to leave early this year and I don't have a group picture with all of them. I do have one group picture with about 10-12 bucks." He said he will send pictures soon. When we get the pictures we will share them with you.

(November 27, 2004

THEY GET SO dumb during the rut that you would think these bucks are not even the same animals you were hunting during the early fall season. I took the picture below of a buck a few years back just a week after Thanksgiving. I had been goose hunting between Auburn and Grass Valley, California and had just started my drive home when I came around a corner and saw this buck on the side of the road. I pulled over, got my camera out and snapped a few pictures. This nice 3x4 was hard to find during hunting season but was so interested in the does he was chasing that he didn't pay attention to the vehicles coming down the road.

I have seen bucks so crazy into the rut that even when a hunter had shot one low in the front leg that the buck still continued to chase the does on three legs until he was finally taken by another hunter.

So, if you find yourself driving in deer country at this time of year, be sure to watch the road for deer and slow down a bit so you don't ruin a buck's day and your's too!

(November 23, 2004

THOSE DARN COYOTES — Just yesterday I got a note from Jerry Wilkinson, past president of the California Deer Association. He owns property in the mountains west of Interstate 5 in Central California near Coe State Park. He relayed information that was disappointing to hear. He said, "I did see two sad sights. On two separate occasions I saw three-point bucks with their whole hind end ripped away by coyotes."

At the time he saw the deer, they were still alive. I guess it goes to show you the coyotes are doing just fine in California — wish I could say the same for the deer herds.

(November 22, 2004

INTEREST IN THE BLM looks like it is changing. Recreation receipts brought in more money than grazing this year for the first time in the history of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). For fiscal year 2004, the BLM collected $13.5 million in recreation receipts compared to $10 million for grazing. Plus, the agency estimates that 93 percent of its contacts with the pubic are now related to recreation.

(November 21, 2004

BANNING BOWHUNTING IS the top priority of a new combined anti-hunting organization expected to announce the merger of the Humane
Society of the United States (HSUS) and the Fund for Animals tomorrow. With total assets of 97 million dollars, this newly merged anti-hunting group will present a challenge to all hunters in the United States. Just like in the past, lots of money means they can communicate lots of misinformation to the public. Click the following link for more of the story Antis Merge.

(November 14, 2004

PHEASANT SEASON OPENED this weekend in California along with the fall turkey season. Early rains in October along with an extra soaking from a late Friday night rain before the opener made it wet going for those taking to the fields. In addition, on Sunday some areas got their first morning fog of the season making it an interesting drive to the hunting areas. At least it wasn't raining during hunting times and many sections of California experienced sunny afternoons on both days.

Brian Bartch (left) and Carol Landes show of a fast flying pheasant that had its flight cancelled while Bartch and Landes pushed excellent pheasant cover on a property managed by Wildlands, Inc. near Sacramento, California. Editor, Jerry Springer, joined Bartch and Landes on this hunt and found the birds to be fast and strong flyers. It took a heavy load and a good eye to drop a bird on this property.

NEVADA MULE DEER populations are directly related to the amount of summer rain fall according to a recent study released by the Nevada Department of Wildlife. For more information on this report and a graph showing the population trends click the link below.

Nevada Mule Deer Study

(November 10, 2004

A WHOPPER BUCK was taken in Nevada this year. It looks like this might be the new Pope & Young Record Book mule deer taken with archery equipment. Although this is not the best angle to see the size of the rack, it still looks big. For a larger photo and the story click the link below.

Nevada Record Book Buck

(November 7, 2004

A NEW WATERFOWL hunting opportunity is being provided by the California Department of Fish and Game on a portion of the 6,285-acre Eden Landing Ecological Reserve in Alameda County. Applications for the first hunt must be received by November 19th. For more information on this hunt and how to apply click on the link below.

Waterfowl Opportunity

(November 6, 2004

A CLIFF HANGER buck is what John McGannon had on this hands this year when he took his Wyoming buck. McGannon runs WILDEATS Enterprises at wildeats.com which specializes in items to make that game a great meal after the hunt.
Look for John's story about his hunt in the next issue of WesternHunter.com

(November 5, 2004

SHARING THE TRADITION, is a junior deer hunt program sponsored by the California Deer Association, Tejon Ranch, Bushnell Performance Optics and Winchester Ammunition. Below I share the exciting moment after Kyle McKenna from Sacramento, California took his first deer on this special junior hunt. Ten lucky junior hunters were drawn for guided hunts on the Tejon Ranch this year. Five juniors, including Kyle hunted last weekend and all took a deer. Five more juniors are hunting this weekend. None of the juniors drawn had every taken a deer. The guides at Tejon Ranch, Ron Gayer, Darrell Francis and Bron Sanders knew how to make this truly a special hunt for the juniors and the adults who accompanied them. A special thanks goes to Don Geivet, Wildlife Manager and Lana Van Meter of the Tejon Ranch. The complete story of this junior event will appear in the California Deer Assocation January 2005 publication, California Deer, plus in upcoming issues of WesternHunter.com.

(November 4, 2004

ARNOLD MOVES FAST, in fact the California Governor was on the move so fast on Monday that when he enter the small room my daughter and I were in, at the campaign headquarters for California state senate candiate Gary Podesto, that in just a couple of minutes he posed for a few quick pictures and then he was gone. Like going after an old trophy buck I waited a second to long to make my move to speak with him about offering my help the next time anti-hunting or anti-gun bills crossed his desk. Just like deer hunting, there will be another day for me to make my move again.

Good news in Alaska and Maine! Anti-bear hunting bills were voted down on November 2nd.

California deer hunters have a new newsletter covering deer hunting in California. The first 16 page issue of California Bucks is off the press and you can get a one-year subscription to this quarterly publication by sending $20 to:
California Bucks
P.O. Box 9007
San Bernardino, CA 92427

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