Posts Tagged ‘ Waterfowl ’

Grouse Nirvana

After  a long week hosting the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies Conservation Ed Training Academy I took the weekend to head out west with my father-in-law to chase grouse.  We had a blast!  I think grouse hunting is just plain awesome and truly enjoy chasing these psychotic sandhill chickens.  You will walk a ton (like I need that kind of impact to my cholesterol level) but in some of the best scenery in the state.  Grouse can pop up at any time and give you little warning but when their numbers are large it is a blast (yes pun intended). 

Grouse can be a challenge for some and generally we have luck when the weather gets a bit cold and they tend to huddle up on the protected side of hills from the wind.  On warmer days, the shady side of hills is best.  They are not like pheasant and do not care for thick cover grass but rather favor more choppy sand hills with mixed grasses that have been thinned a bit by grazing.  Give it a trip or two and you’ll get the hang of it. 

We also enjoyed a bit of waterfowl in the sandhill potholes and of course had no intention of going through an entire pheasant opener without chasing them too!  Life is good!

Get Em’ Out There

Rawly

Last night of camp with a tired old dog (the lab was tired too)!

Did I mention I like a BIG fire?

Finally a critter he was familiar with

Every morning was a gift!

Not a lot of trees in them there hills...

Missouri River Outdoor Expo

Folks if you have made the short drive to Ponca State Park in northeast Nebraska for the Fall Expo you really owe it to yourself and family to get up there.  The largest Expo in Nebraska (and maybe the midwest) Ponca has something for everyone…from shooting rifle, shotgun,  muzzleloaders, archery, big game rifles, kayaking, Missouri River boat rides, fishing, bow fishing, camping, tree stand safety, outdoor villages, crafts, games, wildlife activities…you just can’t go wrong this weekend at Ponca. 

Jeff Fields and the team at Ponca have done an outstanding job, along with all the volunteers that make this huge program such a success.  And of course, just visiting Ponca State Park in the fall is a treat in itself.  The attitude amongst all the staff and volunteers just seems to foster a fun and exciting time for all who are fortunate enough to participate in this grand event.  Don’t miss out!  The Expo will run Saturday through Sunday this weekend only.  We’ll see you out there!

Get Em’ Out There

Rawly

Shooting is a big part of the Ponca Expo and is a lot of fun for anyone!

Wild Game, The Original Green Movement

Thousands of us nuts love to invest hundreds of hours each year chasing the wild turkey across all the haunts it calls home.  We do this for too many reasons to list here but one reason is because of the awesome culinary experience that wild turkeys, along with most wild game, give us.  They are tasty, nutritious, full of low fat protein and just fun to tinker with when inventing new ways to prepare them.  Their meat is lean,  and they are a part of the original organic movement!  According to the National Wild Turkey Federation, www.nwtf.org   game meat is richer in antioxidants and contains more of the healthy fats and less bad fats.  A report by the Mayo Clinic www.mayoclinic.com also suggests wild game contains lower cholesterol levels when compared to domesticated meats.  The table below from TNOutdoorsman www.tnoutdoorsman.com provides nutrition info for various wild game.

Of course, the ultimate reason we all chase wild critters is for the absolute fun, relaxation, time with friends and family, to be one with nature, develop our natural skills and be a part of a several thousand year old heritage.  The fact that all this is actually good for us just makes it all the better!

Get Em’ Out There

Rawly

Serving Size (3.5 oz)
Fat (Grams)
Cholesterol (Milligrams)
Calories
Turkey (Young Tom)
7.5
72
154
Quail (One Whole)
13.1
83
209
Pheasant
9.29
71
181
Goose (Domestic)
33.6
80
371
Duck
15.2
80
211
Dove (cooked)
13.00
116
219
Elk
1.5
55
111
Deer
2.4
85
120
Antelope
2
95
114
Wild Boar (cooked)
3.4
77
122
Bear (cooked)
8.3
98
161
Squirrel
3.2
83
120
Beaver (cooked)
4.8
117
146
Frog Legs
0.30
50
73
Turtle (green)
0.50
50
89
Rabbit
2.3
81
114
Beaver (roasted)
6.96
117
212
Muskrat
8.1
no data
162
Emu
4.03
69
134
Opossum
10.20
129
221
Serving Size (3.5 oz)
Fat (Grams)
Cholesterol (Milligrams)
Calories
Rainbow Trout
3.5
59
119
Catfish (Channel)
2.8
58
95
Crappie
.8
90
79
Bass
3.7
68
114
Carp
5.6
66
127
Drum
4.9
64
119
Walleye
1.2
86
93
Northern Pike
.7
39
88
Perch
.9
90
91
Sunfish
.7
67
89
Striped Bass
2.33
80
97
White Sucker
2.32
41
92
King Salmon (Alaska)
11.73
61
190
Mussels (blue)
2.24
28
86
Shad
13.77
75
197
Eel
11.7
126
184
Snails
1.40
50
90
Wild Game Nutrition Table

Waterfowl Migration

For some, the duck migration has been spotty.  Cold blasts in October got birds moving but then warmer temps caused a scattering of populations.  The same weather system that is blasting us as I write this has also impacted the Dakotas.  Snows and canada geese are moving down in good numbers and this weekend could be good.  Many ducks are still up north but are moving into the Missourri and will likely result in more massive flocks on reservoirs, refuges and better action on ponds and lakes in eastern, NE. 

Get out there this weekend and enjoy the show!

Get em…out there!

Jeff

Waterfowl Weekend

Headed out to a cold and frozen marsh Sunday, packed in all our gear over 1/4 mi on ice, pounded out a hole for the dekes and sat in ice water all morning.  My entire outer shell was frozen solid (really hard to walk in frozen waders) and the wind was howling.  I could not have been happier!  I think it strange that we hunters love to subject ourselves to that but I guess I see it as just enjoying all aspects of the outdoors!  We did play with a flock of snows but they picked us apart throughout several passes (as usual).   I did have the opportunity to hunt with some good friends, one being a 17 year old here in Lincoln who happens to be one of the best waterfowl callers I have ever met and one of the most die hard hunters to boot!   Beautiful cold blustery morning…hunters – 0, geese – 1.

I did lose my good flashlight in the turbid water under the ice but after the hunt, I went back to the hole for some deep sea fishing and would you believe, half frozen solid and half soaking wet, I was able to find that light at the bottom of the lake in the mud!  Now that is luck!   The best part…the light was still on 🙂

Get em…out there!