Friday, October 29, 2010

Outdoors Friday Odds N' Ends

Given five days to accumulate material from all over the place it's a good time to pass it on as outdoors news-worthy snippets.

Here goes: During the recently concluded early muzzle-loading season at three designated areas, hunters shot 512 deer. Last year that figure was 474 deer, so there was a slight increase.

Broken down, the kill at the Salt Fork Wildlife Area this year was 255 animals and compared to the 271 deer shot there during the 2009 special six-day hunt. The kill was higher this year at Wildcat Hollow with 175 deer being shot and compared to the 159 deer shot there during the 2009 special season.

At Shawnee State Forest, hunters this year killed 82 deer; a big jump from the 44 deer killed there during the 2009 special early season.

The Ohio Division of Wildlife has added the newly opened Great Lakes Outdoors store in Madison Township as a deer check-in station. Hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., every day. The store's telephone number is 440-632-9151.

Previous estimates of the nation's hunters appear way off the true mark. A recent study funded by the National Shooting and Sports Foundation and conducted by Southwick Associates shows that 21.8 million Americans hunted at least once during the past five years.

Previous estimates have shown that 14 million Americans hunt each year. However, not every hunter goes afield each year; thus the smaller figure often used as the benchmark for hunter participation.

Also from Southwick: It appears that hunters and anglers continue to buy products they believe will catch more fish or bring home more venison.

Nearly identical figures between 2009 and 2010 show that hunters and anglers have not changed their buying habits regardless of the economy's current sorry state. About 40 percent of the nation's hunters and nearly the same number of anglers told Southwick that their buying habits have not dwindled.

Want to know what are the most likely items to be stolen from a recreational boat?

Perhaps not surprisingly Number One is electronics. That is why BoatUS recommends removing such devices after each boating day. If that is not possible then record ownership information that includes model and serial numbers.

Second are outboard engines. Thieves seem to gravitate to these power supplies. Either remove a small outboard daily and put it in a secure garage or shed or else add a lock for the larger outboard engines, BoatUS says also.

The third most commonly stolen recreational boating items came as something of a surprise. To me, anyway. That being, outdrives. We're talking about a heavy item that has to be unbolted and then lugged to an awaiting vehicle.

BoatUS's recommendation is to remove an outdrive during the winter and "store in a safe location" but also to record the machinery's serial number.

It look as if that wraps up a bunch of loose ends. Until next time.

- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn

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