Tuesday, February 23, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Idiots On Parade

Although you are going to think this just another Uncle John gallows humor story, it is all quite true. 

By John Simeone 

Although I'm never at an end to find something to talk about, my advise to the upcoming outdoor writer, whether you think you need advise or not, is when you are suffering from writers cramp, talk about idiots. That's right, you can always find a complete book of idiots just by being observant. Now Louisiana is a place to find all you want so for a time, instead of being a Bird Watcher like my buddy Pat, I have become be an idiot watcher. Now we all do stupid things from time to time so the occasional laps into the realm is not what I'm talking about, unless it deals with world class stupid.

Like the classic one time only bird brain that illuminated the nipple end of a .54 Hawkins rifle with a cricket lighter while looking down the muzzle to see if it was loaded, well it was.

Now my favorite idiots are drunk hunters because they are epidemic around here. I once observed an old pick up driving itself down a back road appearing to be without a driver. I followed for a good distance and realized there was no one at the wheel. It was going real slow so I parked quickly and ran on foot to catch up. I found the driver slumped over clutching his loaded deer rifle drunk as a lord and passed out. He had gone about half a mile like that.

Now here is one that just happened recently. Just while passing by a somewhat crowded trailer park I noticed this complete moron out in the yard burning tires, this was his chosen pastime on Valentines

Day, while every one else choked on the billows of Black smoke. This guy has got to be the model for the country song, “Bubba Shot The Juke Box.”

There are plenty of female Bubbas out there too. When on a mission to see about the purchase of a deer hound the search found us in a remote trailer park on the infamous Savage Fork road, in no mans land in Western Louisiana. My partner got out to talk to the occupant of the trailer who owned the dog. Considering the unkept environment of the area I decided to stay in the truck. It was very hot in the summer and I noted they didn't have air conditioning as the doors and window were open. There seemed to be a lot of flies buzzing around as well as a buzzard roost in a nearby tree, that also gave me a hint to stay in the truck. I then noticed a rather leathery old gal standing at the entrance to the trailer, and there was a hint of an invitation which I tried to ignore as she puffed on the cigarette hanging out the corner of her mouth. My attention was averted to “Baby Bubba,” a toddler walking about on the bare ground saturated with trash and broken glass. He was being tormented by a horde of cow flies, attracted naturally to the fact he had filled his pamper probably hours before and seemed quite miserable in the summer heat.

I just couldn't take it any more, I had to say something. “Excuse me Mam,” which gave her the attention she was looking for from me obviously, as she smiled an almost toothless grin. “Pardon me for asking, but don't you think its about time to change that baby?” She answered with that same smile very politely and with the skillfulness of a concerned mother, “Oh no, I read the directions on the box of Pampers, it said 16 to 18 pounds, he couldn't have more than three or four there.”

A few years ago a Japanese car manufacturer came to the Shreveport area to discuss a car plant in the area. However when they saw how trashed out the roads were, they declined saying such people could never build a car to their standards.

A lot of people blame hunters for trashing out the roads but I have found this not to be the case. It would seem that just about every rural road in Western Louisiana is trashy in some degree, mainly from joy riders at night driving drunk. Although they do the same thing in broad daylight at lunch time cold sober. You can tell this by all the fast food wrappers.

I'm going to have to put more littering blame on the fishermen than the hunters. Toledo Bend Lake is absolutely beautiful, but a close look finds it trashed out like the rest of the place. This is due to the high alcohol factor in boating and fishing as compared to hunting, although this doesn't let the hunters completely off the hook. Some how when people start drinking in the field or the lake they lose their outdoor manners (if they had them in the first place) and start trashing out the place..

You wont see this in quail or grouse hunting I suppose due to the gentleman protocol involved, but dove and duck hunters have a drinking problem in my area. Recently I spoke to a father who was attending his son's funeral the next day, who was killed in a duck hunting accident. Evidently one was standing up to shoot from the duck blind while the other one was sitting down. It doesn't take a forensic examiner to figure that one out. As the man knew I was both an outdoor writer and a retired criminal investigator he asked me some questions and wanted my opinion. My first question was had they been drinking. He related they had the night before, but couldn't imagine how that could relate to such an accident.

As a range master at a shooting range I get to see a lot of just plain fools. Sometimes you just can't get to them in time to save them. The worst idiot I ever saw at a range was a soldier shooting a semi-automatic pistol. He looked like he knew what he was doing and fired the whole magazine and the slide locked to the rear, without looking in the chamber he let the slide go forward and pointed the muzzle to his head and pulled the trigger. At the click sound I comensed the ass chewing from hell upon him that would have made R. Lee Ermy cringe. I still have nightmares over that one.

I saw a dove hunter give his six year old a shotgun and sit next to him on an Ice chest drinking beer. I don't think he looked at that kid all day as they both shot at doves. Nothing happened that time but there was certainly a danger potential. Nothing against the kid or his age, it was the beer factor. If you are training a new hunter let him do all the shooting and you supervise. This anti-mentoring will in fact get you in trouble.

I had a senior game warden tell me the two things I would never do is get the crossbow legalized in my state or ever be able to do anything about drunk hunters. Got the crossbow legalized the next year later but did not pursue the alcohol issue due to further contemplation. You see, I figure it is a scientific phenomenon dealing with Darwin's theory of natural selection. Some how, some way, there must be a hidden moron or idiot genome in random humans that no matter what the intellect level of the individual it kicks in randomly to thin out the population through natural selection.

I point this out to student idiot watchers, who immediately see the scientific factor and are in total agreement. The lesson is simple so if you feel in a touchy, feely, liberal mood you may want to try to save a would be victim of his own stupidity, but don't spend too much time at it. This is due to the resistance factor associated with being an idiot, they never listen, and they may take you with them. So perhaps it is just better to sit back with your digital camera like I do and wait for the moment of truth because this is just nature taking its course and there is not much you can do about it. Pass it on 
Thursday, February 18, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Turkey Hunting With a Kid




The Wisconsin 2010 youth hunt will take place April 10 and 11th. It's a great program that cuts some of the red tape that keeps young hunters out of the woods and gives them first crack at a wild turkey.
Wednesday, February 17, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Deer Management In Wisconsin: A Complex Challenge

Deer Management In Wisconsin: A Complex Challenge

Pro Staff Member Chris Larsen takes on the topic of deer management in Wisconsin. This is sure to be a great debate. Join us!




Tuesday, February 16, 2010

PostHeaderIcon The Real Threats To Hunting - Taking A Second Look

“When making you aware of who the real threats are to the hunting world, you find it is all about brainwashing, fanaticism, and money.” 

By John Simeone

My first experience with an anti-hunter was bazaar indeed. While lecturing at the Alaska Wildlife Museum at Fort Richardson, I was escorting two full Army Cornels through the exhibits. We were all dressed in our Dress Green uniforms after a monthly inspection so I felt proud to address these two high ranking officers. Our pride trophy was the “Harry Swank Ram,” the world record Dall Sheep, which also held the coveted Sagamore Hill Award, as one of the best of the best of all big game trophies in the Boone and Crockett Records.

While giving the lecture, one of the Cornels could no longer contain himself and blurted out, “What kind of an ass would kill a beautiful animal like that?” The other Cornel instantly responded, “I don’t know how the hell you became a Cornel in the Army and not like guns.”

Evidently the first full bird had no problem with killing humans and attacked the second with a vengeance. Of course I was only a Spec-4 at the time, but that MP badge I was wearing superseded these two gentlemen at that very moment so I hauled them both out the door and they continued the fight in the hallway. I locked the door to protect the exhibits and called a back up, that was the last I heard of the incident. I wonder to this day if they are still at it.

Somehow about a million mallard ducks congregated right in the middle of the Fort Richardson impact area, probably most of the ducks of the Pacific Flyway. It was 1978 and my assignment was to keep the grizzlies from eating the professor from the University of Alaska. He was there to conduct a survey of the ducks and see how many had died of lead shot ingestion. I didn’t quite understand the problem.

He told me that anti-hunters in house, as part of the Game and Fish Commissions and other politically motivated groups, were about to impose a ban on all lead shot for waterfowl hunting. “Why?” I asked. It is part of a slow process to do away with all hunting was the answer. (Here comes the brain wash.) They are going to say the ducks eat the lead shot that falls from hunter’s guns, and then die of lead poison. “Well do they?” was the next question.

We plodded through a million ducks, for the next three days, who were in a molting stage and couldn’t fly, looking for the evidence. We found many fox kills and saw one Grizzly at a great distance. Then, low and behold, we found a dead duck. In my excitement and elation I inquired to the postmortem results. The duck died of old age, and no lead shot was found in any other duck tested.

I found out other things. They said then after the lead shot survey they would try to outlaw lead bullets, making up some cock and bull story about it poisoning the California condor, if they found a bullet in a gut pile. That was in 1978, it is now 2009, and here we go with the lead bullet ban in California. They were even keeping us from field dressing our deer one year at Ft Polk to see if the deer were eating the bullets from the rifle ranges (that were there since WWII). Do you see a trend here? Deer don’t eat bullets.

Just for the record it only took Australia 10 years to ban all waterfowl hunting and it started with a steel shot program, then they banned semi-auto and pump shotguns, and then there was the final ban on duck hunting as they said society would no longer stand for it. Well, so much for Crocodile Dundee.

You know we let them do this to us and never say a word as hunting is taken like sheep to a slaughter. Sometimes we do it to ourselves in a worse manner and think we are doing the right thing.

Lets look at just a few ways we the hunter put the screws to our own sport and see who the real bad guys are. I intend to take off the gloves this time, so if I rub someone raw out there, consider yourself rubbed.


Canned Hunting: Now here is a real good one for the record books as far as being an entrepreneur, but as far as hunter ethics, it is pure manure. Theodore Roosevelt would turn over in his grave if he knew about, deer so tame they have to hire ranch hands to go out and shoot at them because they are so over cultivated they are not afraid of humans. Penning up cultivated bucks in a small enclosure just large enough to be legal, or large enough to convince the bucks they are on open range. But later you find there are no does in the area so the bucks run around in the rut all the time, affording rich hunters a chance at several large bucks, at about 30 Grand a shot. Or perhaps the fact that pheasants are shot flying from towers after being raised in pens and never released into the wild. Who cares they are only birds like chickens and officially they are not native to America.

It gets worse of course when big game is placed in areas so small they can’t possibly have a chance to escape, but the law says it’s legal so somebody cashes in on all the fun. Am I siding with the anti-hunters here, oh no, but like Roosevelt I won’t shoot a tethered or penned game animal. It’s all in the rules of fair chase if you care to study.

Over Cultivation: Now it might not be possible to completely tame a deer, but you can get so close they will eat right out of your hand. So now we have found a way to scientifically make super deer. Or is it Super Stupid Deer? Some so large they can easily beat any record, if you put stock in such things. I suppose the egg heads learned all that breeding cattle to alleviate world hunger, and line their pockets. Is it all about money, you tell me. Do they turn any of these animal loose on public land, of course not? But then they created Cronic Wasting disease to insure that doesn’t happen, or did they. Did CWD really wipe out the American Deer heard, well not in my neck of the woods.

Of course there are people so obsessed with this trophy collecting some will secretly buy a buck and have it released right in front of them on some public hunting ground to say they shot an all time record. Hey it happens, but it is kinda hard to catch them. The same bunch will be the first to call some good old boy a liar if he happens to get lucky and bag a real wild trophy.

This big buck mania has caused another problem. Not everyone has a chance at something so spectacular so they try to grow their own. It just doesn’t work the way it is advertised every time. But still you have a group of pious trophy hunters scolding the everyday deer hunter every time he harvests something other than the “Awesome Buck.” Of course they have the “Management Bucks” for us peons, while they always get the big ones on the outdoor shows. Another brain wash perhaps, what ever happened to the old deer camps where folks from all walks of life just went hunting, and the motto was “You can’t eat horns.”

Commercialization: Got to have the latest in outdoor apparel, go camo first. As you know you can’t kill an awesome buck if he sees you. I remember in Arkansas all the men wore their hunter orange caps all the time, they were proud to be deer hunters. Now you don’t see it any more, but camo is very popular. I wonder what they are hiding from.

Now I like my laser range finder, my GPS, illuminated crosshairs in my scopes, my carbon arrows, my climbing deer stand, my sent proof ground blind, my inline muzzle loader, and my little orange deer pee bottles. I have to have all that stuff because I write about it and that’s how I pay for all that stuff. You don’t think they actually give this to outdoor writers do you? It works too. I don’t know how I ever climbed Mt Magazine with a 30-30 iron sighted rifle and a Case pocket knife and shot my first deer without all the other stuff. I do wish I could read a good article in an outdoor magazine without thumbing through at least ten pages of ads per article.

Liberal Media, Celebrities, and Corporations: One of the best ways to sell a movie or a new pop hit in music is to go on a “Save the Critters Campaign,” while demonizing hunters along the way. Then we have large corporations that support and donate to anti-hunting activities while actually having hunter customers by the thousands, as one huge insurance company is known to do. It is not hard to find out who they are as lists are available of who does what and who you should do business with. But few folks really know the deal. So take a second look.

One of the reasons I write for this company was the fact that my 6 year outdoor newspaper column in a state known as the Sportsmen’s Paradise, was cancelled due to an anti-hunting corporation that took over the newspaper, they kept the fishing guy..

Cannibals: Now these folks are the worst of all, and are the main cause of infighting in the hunting world. I know of one turkey bunch that got in a big beef with some wheelchair guys, oh heaven forbid, didn’t get the whole story on that. Then there was the guy that said the AR-15 was a weapon of terror and should never be used for hunting. That caused a little ruckus in the hunting world, only to reverse and cause an upswing in hunting with the AR-15. Sometimes I wonder if it was all just planned that way. Then I read an advertisement for broad heads that said 50% of turkeys are lost to hunters using brand X, if you use our arrow heads you will kill them all, really. Now there was a real threat to bow hunting, thank you very much. That’s telling every non hunter in the country that all Bowhunters do is wound animals.

It’s not just individuals; it can be whole outdoor associations at each others throats, as well as big companies going for the cash. D.U. and D.D. was there a problem there, ever? Do gun hunters like bow hunters? Do bow hunters like gun hunters? How about traditional black powder hunters against In-line muzzle loaders. There is quite a feud going on between still hunters and dog hunters in Louisiana, which may lead to a loss of a traditional style of hunting. Of course you can’t get anyone to ride the 4 wheelers in an orderly manner, so if it is legal they will find a way to run wild and aggravate everyone else. Cannibals, jealousy, bad manners and infighting really help the world of hunting, making us our own worst enemies.

But the really bad one was the direct assault of the NABC against the American Crossbow Federation. Starting as a summit meeting in Missouri to protect Bowhunter’s rights from anti-hunters, the first and only thing I could tell that they did was turn ninety degrees and attack the crossbow hunters until you would have thought them the “Children of Israel.” To quote Dan Hendricks, “It’s like a lung cancer patient that won’t quit smoking.” We have to stop attacking ethical forms of hunting that we don’t agree with, and just quit all the bickering.

Know Your Enemy: If you have studied any form of strategy you know of Sun Tzu’s “Art of War.” Yes if you know your enemy you will win half your battles, now we have looked at ourselves a bit to see if we can eliminate some of the in house problems that make us our own worst enemies, and we know who the real enemies are.

But don’t think for one minute it is not a war. We all know the main anti-hunter groups (I won’t give them the honor of being mentioned) and many times rule them out as whackos and fanatics. Well that’s just exactly what they are. Some others however are just innocent city dwellers attempting to do something that feels good to them as they haven’t a clue. Then there are others.

I have known for years that within every Forestry group or DNR there are anti-hunters sitting right at the desks. These are the ones you have to keep an eye on. It’s the person who got the government job in the office and suddenly they realize they are in a position to through in a monkey wrench in the whole system in such a subtle manner it may go unnoticed. Let’s not rule out political influence either when it comes to those jobs.

Then I would invite you to make a personal study of Eco terrorism just for the enlightenment to see how far some of these individuals will in fact go to save Bambi.

What can you do about it? When it looks good it probably isn’t. Always take a second look and engage that analytical part of your mind to sort out the truth, question everything for good answers with long lasting effects. Ask what the long term results will be when something doesn’t look and feel right to you.

Above all sportsmen must keep clean. That means don’t advocate alcohol in the camps, or poaching. Read the game regulations as if it were the Bible and don’t let your buddy make a mistake just because you don’t want to interfere. Go by the rules.

When forming an opinion on hunting make sure it doesn’t cut into the ethical practices of another. By all means take the time to do like David and Lisa Gunter of Pitkin, Louisiana and teach and inspire their 10 year old girl Tracey. Yes the Tracey Gunter Buck is just as important as the Harry Swank Ram, as it sends a clear message to the people that hunting is a good way of life. If we are lucky and watch every step as we “Tread Lightly” as they say, the American Sportsmen may just be around a little while longer to …Pass it on.
Friday, February 12, 2010

PostHeaderIcon SPRING TURKEY HUNTING/TACTICS

SPRING TURKEY HUNTING/TACTICS

By: Greg Kuper

Hunting turkeys in the spring has different challenges than in the fall. It’s not better or worse, just different. The turkey hunting season in Wisconsin is April 10-May 23 this year. The following suggestions are geared for spring hunting, but a lot of the same tactics can be used in the fall, as well:

  1. Setting up decoys is important to do right. If you do it wrong, a tom might stop at a distance to wait for the hen to come to him. Place yourself right in-between the turkey you’re calling and a fake hen decoy. To do that, stake it about 20 yards past where you are calling from. That way, if he stops to wait for the hen to come to him, you will be very close, and be able to get off a good, clean shot.


  2. Decoys work the best in open areas such as food pots, open fields or clearings, logging roads or under electric wire clearings. That way, the turkeys can see them clearly from a distance. If the turkeys aren’t responding to your calls, just set up the decoys and wait. It is important to set up three decoys, two hens and a jake. The best to use are Carry Lite, they are foam and easy to carry. These decoys will spin around in the wind and catch a turkey’s eye. The reason you want two hens and a jake is because an older tom will see this and think the jake is moving in on his territory (the hens) and run in to attack him.


  3. Putting a gobbler to bed is an old but effective trick. It is almost a guarantee to get a turkey. To do this, you go into the woods at dusk and listen for turkeys gobbling. Even if they don’t gobble or make any other noise, you may be able to hear their heavy wings flap. Now that you know where they are roosting, you know exactly where to go the next morning. To make it work, you absolutely have to be in position before it gets light and set up around a 100 yards away or so (Make it a good spot-good cover). Then, you wait for a tom to roar and then give him your best call. BUT remember one important thing…you very well may set up in the wrong spot. In other words, where you are may not be where the tom will go once he is down on the ground. There are no guarantees, but this is a pretty good odds trick. At the very least, it won’t hurt anything to try.


  4. Hunting times are hard to gauge. Mid-mornings are the hot times to hunt for turkey. The biggest reason is because other hunters will usually go in after nine, or they have to go to work. Great! Better for you when there are less guys out there. The best reason is because spooked turkeys from bad calling hunters have settled down and you can move in. Also, different weather conditions can affect when and if turkeys are active and so can a million other different factors. Usually, the woods are quiet for about two hours after daybreak. This is because the turkeys are busy breeding, or trying to breed. Oh, they will strut around, but they won’t gobble much if at all. Then, the hens will go to lay their eggs. This isn’t exact, but it is usually around 9ish. In the spring, toms want to be around hens at all times, so when the hens are gone, toms are looking for new hens to court and their search begins almost immediately. The younger guys gobble their heads off in the attempt to attract a new hen, but the older guys will strut and drum very intensely. Use this to your advantage. This need for a hen’s company makes them easy to call in.



    This is a good time (9 a.m.) to walk on some foot trails, logging roads, clearings, etc. and make a few calls. Once the woods calm down, turkeys get back into their normal routine. In the spring, turkeys are all wound up and you may be able to solicit a shock call at the very least. If a turkey answers a crow call, that is a good time to set up and let out some soft hen calls. It is a good idea to tone down the calls late in the season. Less frequent, softer cutts and yelps are more effective.

    There is some great action in the afternoon. The peak is from about 2 to 4 p.m., but from noon to dusk (roosting time), toms have been all but deserted by hens and will very likely gobble at your hen cuts and locator calls. BUT, don’t expect turkeys to gobble as much in the afternoon as they do in the morning. You may get one gobble, two at most, so you have to make your call and listen for even the faintest return call. Be ready, they will move towards your call quickly and quietly during this time of day. After you get an idea of where they are, move in and listen for other sounds, like a turkey walking in the leaves. Late in the day, right before dusk, a tom may run over to check out a hen call before he flies up to roost. Get ‘em.

    Good hunting.
Thursday, February 11, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Turkey Hunting Weather Conditions


Did you know that turkey hunting when it is raining is good? I had no idea, but it's true according to turkey guide Phil Schweik of Hooksetters Guide Services!

Check out the complete article:



Tuesday, February 9, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Subtle Turkey Decoy Tweaks For Trophy Toms

Where you place your decoys can make a big difference between a successful hunt and a boring day in the woods. Pro Staff member Chris Larsen gives some great tips and advice in this article on different set ups for decoys and when to use them. If you hunt turkeys with decoys check out this post.

Read The Article: Subtle Turkey Decoy Tweaks For Trophy Toms



Monday, February 8, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Rifle Power- Knocking Things Down

Rifle Power- Knocking Things Down

In combat and hunting when you pull the trigger you expect the end. Confidence in the a firearm is measured in the knowing when you pull the trigger the battle or the hunt is over.
Tuesday, February 2, 2010

PostHeaderIcon PETA wants to replace Groundhog‎ with robot


Happy groundhogs day everyone. Today PETA announced that they would like to see the worlds most famous groundhog Punxsutawney Phil replaced with a robot. I guess Bing (The Search Engine Didn't get the message in time so I've taken the liberty of mocking up a new home page for the occasion.)  For those of you that live in a hole (Like this ground hog) PETA is an animal rights organization that is Very Anti Hunting.  I don't have an agenda with this post other then to remind hunters that these types of organizations exist and every day they are spreading their anti hunting message.  If you value hunting and the outdoors it's important for you to get involved in promoting the sport.  Take A Kid Hunting Today, Get Involved In A Pro Hunting Organization Like Pheasants Forever Or The NRA.  Remember when you are out in the woods you are our sports ambassadors!  

Happy Ground Hogs Day- Oh and by the way, the little rat saw his shadow so 6 more weeks of good coyote hunting!

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