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Fall is my favorite time of year, with the leaves changing color to brilliant yellow and crimson red and those frosty clear mornings that give way to comfortable, 60-degree days. It never gets old and it never lasts long enough. With fall comes a change of temperature and weather. It’s no secret that this has a big impact on whitetail deer activity.
After years of studying Boone and Crockett harvest data, I've been able to pattern certain trends in temperature and deer activity. Regardless of the region you hunt or time of year, here are some interesting facts about how temperature affects deer activity... [ Read Full Post ]
Last week we talked about wind direction, wind speed and their effects on deer activity. With that in mind, we can now apply cloud types. We will keep it simple and talk about the most common ones. These are divided into low, middle and high cloud types. Each one is affected differently by the wind.
Let’s start with low, which run from ground level to around 6000’. Stratus and Nimbostratus my personal favorites, both resemble fog and are sometimes accompanied by drizzle or light rain! With an east quadrant wind it will rain, with a west quadrant it will be overcast. Both are excellent for whitetail hunting. The common middle clouds, lets say 6000 feet to more than 12,000 feet above ground are altocumulus and altostratus again wind direction affects the incoming weather. [ Read Full Post ]
You've probably heard about the massive wildfires happening in Texas right now. The fires, which some people are calling the most destructive in Texas history, are being spurred on by heavy winds and bone-dry drought conditions. The blazes have destroyed hundreds of homes near Austin, and thousands of people have been evacuated. What you might not have heard, however, is that the same drought conditions that make the landscape prime for fires might increase human-rattlesnake encounters in the state as well.
It's a simple formula: The drought conditions make food scarce. And if food is scarce, the snakes can't get the abundance of fat storage needed to make it through hibernation. So, what do the snakes do? They resort to traveling beyond their normal hunting spots in search of rodents, birds and other edible creatures.
This could conceivably lead the snakes closer to human populations, where water (and, as a result, small rodents) are more abundant. [ Read Full Post ]
We all know the importance of wind and its role in deer movement and how and where to set up. Simple rules that we all apply are set up downwind or at least crosswind. But there’s a lot more to this game than trying to stay down wind of a big buck.
Let’s look at two wind change factors and their effects: direction and speed. [ Read Full Post ]
Photo courtesy of Nasa
Much of the Eastern seaboard, still rattled from the unexpected and rare earthquake on Tuesday, is now bracing for the impact of another force of nature—Hurricane Irene. Many eastern Governors have declared States of Emergency due to the imminent Category 3 Hurricane, which is expected to make landfall in North Carolina on Friday night.
Hurricane Irene is predicted to first hit the coast around Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, on Friday night and slam into the rest of the mid-Atlantic region by Saturday night and early Sunday morning. Evacuations have been ordered in many mid-Atlantic coastal areas and barrier islands like North Carolina’s Outer Banks. Some areas are expecting severe coastal flooding from waves up to 15 feet tall (expected path of Irene).
Irene is predicted to weaken some as it travels up the coast, but this Category 3 storm is still expected to deliver winds of 50 to 70 mph when it reaches New York City on Saturday. This will be the first hurricane to hit New York since September 6, 2008, when Hurricane Hanna struck Long Island with winds up to 52 mph.
New York City’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg has ordered nursing homes and five hospitals in low-lying areas evacuated beginning Friday, and said he would order 270,000 more people moved by Saturday if the storm stays on its current path. [ Read Full Post ]
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For the coming week I’ve decided to rate the regions by a combination of precipitation and temperature forecasts. Of course, these are an overview of the whole week and individual areas and days may vary. While it's nice to be able to pick your days to hunt, most of us have to deal with busy work schedules which means weekends are the only option. If this forces you to hunt in rainy and cool weather, find roosting birds and set up as close as you can, to increase your odds. [ Read Full Post ]
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As we enter into May I’ve decided to take a look at the top 20 typical NWTF record birds and the dates they were killed on. Eight of the top 20 were taken after May 1st. On this week's map I’ve marked the states and dates of harvest as a reference. I also looked at the calls used, I was little surprised to see 14 of 20 were called in with a diaphragm.
The top state was Iowa (with 5 entries) followed by Missouri (4 entries). Four record birds were harvested before April 15th, eight were taken between April 15th and April 30th. May 1st to the 15th yielded 6 entries and there were only two after May 15th. [ Read Full Post ]