May 9, 2008
Some details remain to be worked out, but as of late Monday night it is official: crossbows are now officially a legal hunting implement in New York State. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the bill into law that allows for the use of crossbows during at least part of the general archery season and through the entirety of the general firearms season.
It may not be everything many New York sportsmen and women asked, but is seen as a huge step forward by the New York Crossbow Coalition, which squared off with the New York Bowhunter’s association for years to get a season ratified.
“Today, crossbows have been awarded their proper place in the sporting community,” said Rick McDermott of the NYCC. [ Read Full Post ]
The worth of a securely tied knot is undervalued in these modern times of zip ties and superglue. I know this is blasphemy, but duct tape can’t always hold everything together. And it doesn’t have to. There are many tried-and-true knots that can make life easier on the hunt, in the woods, and around camp.
Illustrations by: Pete Sucheski [ Read Full Post ]
Wendell Ko landed a 506-pound blue marlin the hard way: with a speargun.
The avid spearfisherman was hunting two miles off the Kona Coast on Hawaii's Big Island on November 20 when he spotted the monster fish cruising the depths. Ko told KITV, "It's the first time I've ever seen anything that big in the water, a marlin in particular. It was hard to miss."
The 53-year-old nailed the 12-foot long fish with a single shot then finished it off with a few more shots. The event was captured on video by Ko’s friend and producer of the TV series "Hawaii Skin Diver" Kyle Nakamoto.
"I call it [Ko’s shot] the money shot," Nakamoto said to KITV. "I mean, it's so hard and you need to be at the right place at the right time." [ Read Full Post ]
Once bitten twice shy? Not so for Shelby, a husky-wolf hybrid who lives outside of Twisp, Wash. She’s survived two attacks in the last year, which are indicative of Washington state’s loose definition of “management” when it comes to apex predators.
Last March, Shelby was sleeping on her porch when a wolf attacked. The dog was saved, albeit torn up, when her owner and another dog jumped into the fray. About two weeks ago, Shelby was attacked by a mountain lion in her yard.
She survived and a depredation permit was issued for a houndsman to track and kill the cougar. Much like California, since hound hunting for cougars was made illegal in Washington, conflicts have become more common – especially this year. [ Read Full Post ]
Yeti announced its latest – and most expensive – product today: the Yeti casket.
The Texas based company, known for revolutionizing the cooler industry with Roto-molding technology, states on its website that the new Yeti casket will “last an eternity” and that “It doesn’t just close, it seals, protecting your loved one from the elements.”
[ Read Full Post ]
Spoilage. Remember that word from high school economics class? Spoilage refers to the goods or services we have but couldn’t or didn’t consume before they expired: the airplane that leaves the ground with empty seats or the hotel that lets a night pass with vacant rooms. It’s waste, like brown bananas in the produce aisle.
The access problem in the outdoors is caused by spoilage, not a lack of acres. I propose we call the problem “Latent Access,” and that we get busy fixing it.
“Access to quality hunting and fishing ground is the most significant challenge facing the future of hunting,” says Doug Saunders, VP of Marketing for the National Wild Turkey Federation. “Organizations like ours and government agencies can only do so much. The largest impact needs to come from private individuals sharing their access.” [ Read Full Post ]
Photos by Daymond Gardner
Abbie Eubanks was in trouble and she knew it. More than 180 feet below the surface in the Gulf of Mexico, using a giant oil-rig support leg for camouflage, she had just "stoned" a huge amberjack with her speargun. In a celebratory mood, Eubanks was taking her time heading for the surface when the 130-pound fish came back to life and was hellbent for bottom. Tethered to this runaway freight train, Eubanks reached 220 feet before she even realized what was happening. "I was way too deep," says Eubanks. "I became totally narced out." (Nitrogen narcosis is similar to being intoxicated. The diver becomes numb and can't think straight.) "It was strange. I was totally high and remember having a conversation with myself in the third person. I kept saying, 'Abbie, this is too deep.'" [ Read Full Post ]
From a standpoint of long-term survival, you need to know everything you can about the great outdoors. And as someone “living off the land,” you’d need to know how to effectively catch every critter under the sun, as well as camping, survival, and first aid skills. Even if you just want to know the outdoors better, there is much to learn. Thankfully, almost everything you’d want to know has been covered in one big brick of a book, the Complete Outdoors Encyclopedia. [ Read Full Post ]
Back in 2000, voters in my home state of Montana passed Constitutional Initiative 143, effectively ending the controversial business of game farming.
The catalyst for the initiative was the discovery of chronic wasting disease in a captive elk facility near Philipsburg, in the very heart of Montana’s wild-elk country. Elk in the facility were quarantined, then euthanized (shot by government marksmen), and later tested for always-fatal CWD, for which there is no cure and which is easily transmittable to wild deer and elk.
The months leading up to the vote that ended game farming was hugely polarized, with pro-business groups claiming that voters were improperly impinging a legitimate industry, while hunting groups mostly argued that a few poorly regulated operators were putting Montana’s publically owned wildlife—and the $500 million-a-year hunting industry—at inappropriate risk. [ Read Full Post ]
Big changes are in the works for bowhunting in Connecticut. Not only is bowhunting on the rise among the state’s hunters, but the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is also considering lifting the ban on Sunday hunting for deer hunters using bows.
Virginia recently decided to allow hunters into the woods on Sundays, and Connecticut wildlife officials are considering the same revision. If implemented, the legislation would permit bowhunters to pursue deer only on private land on Sundays, reports the Hartford Courant. Wildlife officials say the whitetail population is growing too large and an extra day would give hunters additional opportunities to take a deer. [ Read Full Post ]
If you're new to fishing with baitcasters, a big part of the learning curve is setting the casting controls properly. Set them too tight and you won't be able to get any distance, set them too loose and you'll blacklash the reel.
To get it right, you need to first understand the different casting control systems. Here, Todd Kuhn explains the basics. [ Read Full Post ]
The Tinder HOT Box Solar Fire Starter is a unique and functional product in that it is both a fire starter and a water-tight tinder box with a rubber O-ring seal. The puck-shaped box offers generous storage space, and its seal proved to be waterproof during the cold March showers experienced during testing. When the sun popped back out, we clipped the tinder bracket onto the parabolic mirror piece and had instant tinder ignition once we achieved the right angle to the sun. We easily lit the char cloth that was provided in the kit, as well as cattail fluff and tulip poplar bark tinder. [ Read Full Post ]
Back in 2011, when we published a downbeat assessment of deer trends across North America, we were called alarmists, pessimists, and even unpatriotic.
How could we dare challenge the notion that America’s whitetail resource was anything but renewable, robust, and ever-giving?
We were simply reading the tea leaves when we published “The Deer Depression,” a forecast of downward-trending whitetail signs that, looking back on it from this dismal year, seems especially prescient.
It’s worth revisiting the story to look at how quickly wildlife populations can cycle, and to remind ourselves that especially when we deer hunters get comfortable, disease, winterkill, land-use, and even our hunting regulations can quickly change the calculus. [ Read Full Post ]
Just 30 student athletes from three Minnesota high school teams participated in the Minnesota State High School Clay Target League in 2008. Six years later MSHSCTL has exploded into Minnesota’s fastest-growing high school sport.
This spring, the league will host 6,100 athletes from 185 high schools for its 2014 spring season, MSHSCTL announced in a press release Thursday. Starting in April, student athletes will work with 1,800 volunteer coaches to compete in trap shooting competitions at 106 shooting ranges throughout Minnesota. [ Read Full Post ]
My son Neil phoned me this morning with a winter kill report from one of his client’s properties. He has been walking the property for two days and so far he has turned up almost a dozen carcasses. He estimates this to be about 5 or 6 percent of the deer using the downstate New York property, which was hard hit with winter weather this year. Overall the habitat in the area is poor. Short of a few standing cornfields (which were cleaned up in January) and some greenfields (which were covered in deep snow), there was little food available through much of the winter. The area is also plagued by an overpopulation of deer; roughly 100 deer per square mile. They are lucky to only have lost that many. [ Read Full Post ]