OUTDOOR CONNECTION Back to the Basics Hunting for snapping turtles Hot patterns for cool walleyes
2-Estherville (Ia.) Outdoor Connection, FRIDAY, June 7, 2013
HUNTING SNAPPING TURTLES NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART
hen many people hear the words snapping turtle, they cringe thinking about what that sharp, hook-shaped mouth could do to an unsuspecting finger! Yet there are individuals who relish the opportunity and the challenge of catching, cleaning and eating snapping turtles.
STEVE WEISMAN OUTDOOR EDITOR
At the same time, there are approximately100 commercial harvesters in the state of Iowa that will catch or buy turtles from others, and then clean and sell turtle meat to a growing customer base. Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) regulations allow the non-commercial taking of turtles by Iowans to a maximum of 100 pounds live weight per year or 50 pounds of cleaned turtle meat. These individuals are only required to have a fishing license. Commercial harvesters, meanwhile, can trap an unlimited number of turtles the year around. They must pay a $100 annual license fee and report their harvest monthly to the DNR. DNR regulations allow turtles to be taken only by hand, turtle hook, turtle trap or hook and line. Turtle traps must have no more than one throat or funneling device. All turtle traps must have a functional escape hole provided with a minimum diameter in all directions of 7-1/2 inches to allow passage of fish and small turtles. On hoop type traps the 7-1/2 inch escape hole shall be located in the last hoop to the tail-line. Any unattended gear used to take turtles must have a metal tag bearing the owner’s name and address. All turtle traps must be lifted and emptied
of their catch at least once every 72 hours. Certainly, snapping turtles are sometimes caught by accident, but to purposely catch one requires knowledge of the snapping turtle’s life, its environment and what it eats. Catching snapping turtles To share this part of the story, I visited with a northwest Iowa man, who spent over 50 of his 77 years catching snapping turtles: Ed Kabele from Spirit Lake. “When I was 15 years old, I was working at Stoller’s Fisheries in Spirit Lake. So did Red Thompson. He caught turtles and asked me one day if I wanted to hunt turtles. I said sure.” Kabele remembers that they got $.08 a pound for live turtles. “That was good money then considering we were getting paid $.75 an hour at Stoller’s.” That began a lifetime of hunting snapping turtles, first for himself, and then as a commercial harvester and owner of Kabele’s Trading Post, where he and his wife, Alice ran a baitshop in the front and later a fur harvester business in the back addition. It was here that Kabele brought his own turtles to clean, along with turtles brought in by others. He even began dressing out turtles for two major companies. Kabele remembers prices creeping up over the years from $.30 to $.50 and eventually up to $5.00 a pound for cleaned turtle meat when he retired. The spike in prices came with the increased demand for turtle meat in the Asian market. “You can figure on a 15-pound snapper that you can get about 1/3 meat.” At first, Kabele would place the meat in cans packed in ice, but later he would vacuumpack them in 1½-pound packages. In addition, he had a source for the turtle shells and the claws. According to Kabele, there are many ways to hunt snapping turtles, but the turtle trap is his favorite. “I would build 150 traps a year, because a lot would get torn apart or go downstream in high water. So, I was always rebuilding
traps. Snapping turtles will eat a lot of things, but they really like a carp head. I would put the carp head in a wire basket attached to the corner of the trap.” Kabele would check the traps every couple of days and often have several in an individual trap. Kabele also found that midOctober to the end of November was prime time to find snapping turtles in holes along the river banks as they got ready to hibernate. For this type of hunting, Kabele would use a probe, which is a long rod with a curved hook. He would probe back in the hole until he “felt” the turtle and would then hook it out. Many times, he found them stacked in the hole catching anywhere from 10 to 50 turtles in one hole. Another means of taking snapping turtles is the milk jug method with a line, hook and bait attached to the jug. “I’ve used this method in gravel pits, because the shoreline drops off so fast. The jug works in this case, because once the turtle takes the bait, it will then swim to the shoreline. Then all you have to do is walk the shoreline, hook the jug and line and pull the turtle up the bank.” This is the least favorite means for Kabele, because it takes so much time. 50 years and lots of stories. Listening to him reminisce, I truly believe that he remembers every big snapper and each spot. Most prominent, though, is the 73 pounder he caught in North Dakota, and then there’s the picture of four snappers on the cleaning table, all over 50 pounds, and then there’s the 44 pounder he caught out of the Little Sioux River in 1972, which sits as a mount in a case in Kabele’s Trading Post, and then there’s the…the memories go on and on. Words of advice: Be cautious after catching the turtle. Know where the head is at all times. With 50 years of turtle catching in the bag, Kabele has only been bitten once. That’s right. No missing fingers or anything. Pretty amazing when you have a stock tank filled with water and snapping turtles
Ed Kabele with the 44-pound snapping turtle that he took from the Little Sioux River. Photo submitted
waiting to be cleaned. The one time? “I was hauling out a gunny sack full over my back and I must have had one situated a little wrong. All of a sudden it bit through the sack and right into my back. All I could do was drop the sack and let it tear the meat off my back!” Kabele’s preferred way is to pick one up is by the tail with body and feet toward you. “I’ve found they can bite out but not under.”
Certainly, Kabele has made some good money over the years, but he also says with a smile, “I’ve eaten a lot of turtle. They say there are seven kinds of meat on a turtle. I know for sure that some tastes like chicken, some like frog legs, some like venison and some like beef. My favorite way of preparing it is to brown it and then put it in a roaster in the oven for at least an hour and a half. This really helps get the meat tender.”
Estherville (Ia.) Outdoor Connection, FRIDAY, June 7, 2013-3
Evolution in the ʻblink of an eyeʼ ITHACA, N.Y. — A novel disease in songbirds has rapidly evolved to become more harmful to its host on at least two separate occasions in just two decades, according to a new study. The research provides a real-life model to help understand how diseases that threaten humans can be expected to change in virulence as they emerge. "Everybody who’s had the flu has probably wondered at some point, 'Why do I feel so bad?'" said Dana Hawley of Virginia Tech, the lead author of the study to be published in PLOS Biology on May 28, 2013. "That’s what we’re studying: Why do pathogens cause harm to the very hosts they depend on? And why are some life-threatening, while others only give you the sniffles?" Disease virulence is something of a paradox. In order to spread, viruses and bacteria have to reproduce in great numbers. But as their numbers increase inside a host’s body, the host gets more and more ill. So a highly virulent disease runs the risk of killing or debilitating its hosts before they get a chance to pass the bug along. It finds the right balance through evolution, and the new study shows it can happen in just a few
years. Hawley and her coauthors studied House Finch eye disease, a form of conjunctivitis, or pinkeye, caused by the bacteria Mycoplasma gallisepticum. It first appeared around Washington, D.C., in the 1990s. The House Finch is native to the Southwest but has spread to towns and backyards across North America. The bacteria is not harmful to humans, which makes it a good model for studying the evolution of dangerous diseases such as SARS, Ebola, and avian flu. "There’s an expectation that a very virulent disease like this one will become milder over time, to improve its ability to spread. Otherwise, it just kills the host and that’s the end of it for the organism," said André Dhondt, director of Bird Population Studies at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and a coauthor of the study. "House Finch eye disease gave us an opportunity to test this—and we were surprised to see it actually become worse rather than milder." The researchers used frozen bacterial samples taken from sick birds in California and the Eastern Seaboard at five dates between 1994 and 2010, as the pathogen was evolving and spreading. The
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House Finches that contract eye disease develop swollen, weepy eyes. They become lethargic, suffer reduced vision, and may succumb to adverse weather or be caught by predators such as hawks and cats. The disease led to an estimated population decline of 40 million House Finches in its first five years. Photo by Andy Davis, Cornell Lab
samples came from an archive maintained by coauthor David Ley of North Carolina State University, who first isolated and identified the causative organism. The team experimentally infected wild-caught House Finches,
allowing them to measure how sick the birds got with each sample. They kept the birds in cages as they fell ill and then recovered (none of the birds died from the disease). Contrary to expectations, they found that in both regions the disease had evolved to become more virulent over time. Birds exposed to later disease strains developed more swollen eyes that took longer to heal. In another intriguing finding, it was a less-virulent strain that spread westward across the continent. Once established in California, the bacteria again began evolving higher virulence. In evolutionary terms, some strains of the bacteria were better adapted to spreading across the continent, while others were more suited to becoming established in one spot. "For the disease to disperse westward, a sick bird has to fly a little farther, and survive for longer, to pass on the infection. That will select for strains that make the birds less sick," Hawley said. "But when it gets established in a new location, there are lots of other potential hosts, especially around bird feeders. It can evolve toward being a nastier illness because it’s getting transmitted more quickly."
House Finch eye disease was first observed in 1994 when bird watchers reported birds with weepy, inflamed eyes to Project FeederWatch, a citizen science study run by the Cornell Lab. Though the disease does not kill birds directly, it weakens them and makes them easy targets for predators. The disease quickly spread south along the Eastern Seaboard, north and west across the Great Plains, and down the West Coast. By 1998 the House Finch population in the eastern United States had dropped by half—a loss of an estimated 40 million birds. Bird watchers can do their part to help House Finches and other backyard birds by washing their feeders in a 10 percent bleach solution twice a month. More tips for bird feeder maintenance can be found at http://www.allaboutbirds.org/clean-feeders. Along with Hawley, Dhondt, and Ley, the study’s authors include Erik Osnas and Andrew Dobson of Princeton, and Wesley Hochachka of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. The research was funded by the joint National Science Foundation–National Institutes of Health program in Ecology and Evolution of Infectious Diseases (EEID).
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4-Estherville (Ia.) Outdoor Connection, FRIDAY, June 7, 2013
Hot patterns for cool walleyes BY JASON MITCHELL
his 2013 season looks to be a later spring where everything is behind schedule from a biological perspective. Colder water temperatures can be a double-edged sword. Some patterns happen later or don’t happen at all. When we have had cool, late springs in the past, good solid patterns for shallow water held on much longer than usual and resulted in overall good fishing conditions. Overall, some of our best open water seasons on Devils Lake, ND have been the years where we had late springs and cool summers. When the water never really does warm up and the patterns don’t change much… watch out. Great fishing lies ahead. Weed factor If there is one effect from colder than normal water temperatures that surprises some anglers, it might be the weed factor. On lakes that have weeds, weed growth can sometimes really accelerate when the water stays cold. That doesn’t sound correct does it? You would think weed growth would be behind, because even on land during a late spring… trees bud later and everything takes longer. On many bodies of water, the water will actually green up as it warms up so as the water warms up, light penetration is reduced. When the water stays cold, it often clears up and the overall visibility is good. This better light penetration and good visibility often speeds up or accelerates weed growth dramatically. The weeds seemingly shoot up like they are on some performance enhancement drugs. So often, cold water will enhance weed patterns on some fisheries and because these weeds are growing so fast during these conditions, staying dialed into weed related patterns takes some diligence. During these cool water, good light penetration scenarios, the distance weeds will grow in a day are remarkable. I have found instances where the weeds would actually grow a foot in one day. As the weeds grow from the bottom and reach towards the surface, the open window or lane in which you can often catch walleyes changes dramatically. The window closes and gets smaller each day. You might start out with eight feet of water above the weeds and after a month, the open water above the tops of the weeds might be a foot. From my experiences, whenever you get situations where the weed growth gets extremely accelerated, the fishing is typically pretty solid in these locations. Fast growing weeds attract fish. Look to the flats My favorite location for this fast weed growth scenario are big shallow flats. Flats that are anywhere from six to twenty feet with ten feet being about an average. Big flats that have a soft bottom and have good weeds are perfect and one great way to fish these locations is by pulling crank baits. If you have weeds that are four feet high in ten feet of water, run cranks about four or five feet down over the tops of the weeds and hang on Crank baits cover a lot of water and have enough vibration and noise to pull fish out of the weeds. Not always, but hard vibrating cranks often work best as they seem to call in more fish and also shake off
One of the best crank baits for walleyes today is a number five Salmo Hornet. The hard vibration of this lure will pull walleyes up out of weeds. Photo submitted
weeds better. The old school Hot n Tots with the metal bills were always good for this type of fishing. Today, the Salmo Hornet is king for a hard vibrating crank that tears up walleyes. When it comes to trolling, I like to use planer boards at times especially early in the season when I am pulling these shallow weed flats. I will also often use my electric trolling motor if it is really flat. Not because of the quiet factor but because I can save routes and make tighter turns allowing me to work tighter spots. There are times however especially when the fish are getting triggered by speed when pulling the cranks right behind the prop works best. This typically happens more so however later on in the summer when the water does really green up where visibility is reduced and the fish are attracted to the flash and turbulence of the prop. Just remember to fish the baits high. As the window closes and the gap of open water between the tops of the weeds and the surfaces gets smaller, there will come a time when you just run out of open water to work cranks. When the window does get small, shallow running stick baits or crawler harnesses are a few good options. Many anglers have this perception to move towards deeper diving and bigger cranks as the season wears on but on this pattern, you move towards shallower running baits as you have less water to work. Typically, the louder and harder vibrating shallow running minnow baits work the best. Usually, I don’t have as good of luck with the real subtle minnow lures that have a real soft and rolling wobble in this situation. Kind of baits I have done well with are the Reef Runner Little Ripper (shallow runner) and Salmo Sting.
Understand the weeds The whole key to these weed flats patterns is understanding how high the weeds are in order to fish cranks through these locations effectively. Don’t be afraid to fish the lures high. Now that is something that can be tough for some anglers to do… pulling a lure four feet down over twelve feet of water is a tough adjustment for anglers who are used to pulling cranks near the bottom. With weeds however, you have to fish high and let the fish come up out of the weeds for the bait. Remember that no lure will catch fish if you are pulling a foot of weeds behind the lure. You have to run the baits clean so that means fishing high and raising fish. Most electronics will reveal weeds and show you the zone to fish. Another good tool is the Precision Trolling Book for quick adjustments with baits. Big weed flats can be a nightmare to fish if you don’t fish these locations correctly but if you can get in the right mindset and fish these locations high in the water column, these locations can be extremely productive and hold a tremendous number of fish. Trolling with crank baits is one of my favorite ways to fish these types of locations but this is obviously not the only way. You can swim jigs and soft plastics, you can cast cranks or even spinner baits. For working big spots however and just amassing gross pounds of fish, trolling keeps so many lines in the water and is tough to beat. Editor’s note: The author, Jason Mitchell earned a reputation as a top walleye guide on Devils Lake, North Dakota. Today, Mitchell produces the outdoor program Jason Mitchell Outdoors that airs on Fox Sports North and Fox Sports Midwest (www.jasonmitchelloutdoors.com).
Estherville (Ia.) Outdoor Connection, FRIDAY, June 7, 2013-5
Back to the basics: A hook and a sinker
t doesn’t get any simpler than a hook and a sinker. I’m pretty sure that’s how I caught my first fish when I was a kid. Just put a worm, leach or minnow on the hook and you can catch just about anything in the lake. Nearly a half century later this method still catches fish when others won’t. I call it “Split Shot Rigging,” a 3/0 or BB Eagle Claw split shot about 16 to 18 inches above a #4 Lazer Trokar Octopus hook. The line I choose to use is the key. Six-pound Berkley Nanofil allows you to throw the lightest splitshots and baits a country mile. Then to the Nanofi I’ll tie an 8 lb. Berkley 100 percent fluorocarbon leader…about two to three feet long. It started off sounding sim-
ple didn’t it? It is, but this combination of makes it all work just right. The light BB or 3/0 shot allows the bait to fall slowly
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and naturally through the water column. You’ll be surprised how many times that bait gets hit while it’s falling. The light shot also helps the while fishing over a weedbed. The split shot is usually not heavy enough to sink down into the weeds. It’ll sit right on top while the bait swims
around in the weed tops. I use the Lazer Trokar Octopus hooks because they are the sharpest in the world. No other hook comes close. If a fish choses to try to eat the hook, it’ll have a very hard time trying to spit it out. I use the Berkley Nanofil for this rig because of its casting performance. No other line casts as far. It’s a fact. When throwing a BB or 3/0 shot that is ultra light… Nanofil is a must. Then there’s the Berkley 100 percent Fluorocarbon leader. Fluorocarbon line is virtually invisible in water. This line provides the stealth you need to fish this slow, finesse style presentation. Minnows get hooked through the lips. I want them to stay alive and swim free. Leeches get hooked once just behind the big sucker for the
The authorʼs son Calvin with a nice smallmouth bass taken with a split shot rig. Photo by John Grosvenor
same reason, and worms get hooked once or twice through the middle…letting the ends dangle. Do not wad your bait up on the hook. That will catch bullheads. Unless, of course, bullheads are the target.
Now cast the rig out as far as you can without throwing your bait off. Give it time. Let it sink, maybe two minutes or more. Give it time to fall. You might even see your line start to run to one side or the other before it hits the
bottom. If it settles to the bottom, tighten your line and do a big giant sweep upward. Lifting your bait 6 to 10 feet off the bottom. Then let it settle again. Take your time. If you think you are going slow, you’re still probably not working it slow enough. It’s not your action that’s catching the fish. It’s the action of your live bait while the line is settling or sitting on top the weeds. Slow and natural is the key…and the simple hook and sinker gets it done! Sponsors of JTG Expeditions include Great Lakes Marine and Skeeter Boats, Eagle Claw, Pure fishing, Otter, Dura Lift Boat Hoists and the Dry Dock Restaurant and Four Season’s Resort.
Stewardship Tip: Cigarette butts BY BEN LEAL PROGRAM DIRECTOR, RECYCLED FISH
For smokers, the flick is an easy move. As an ex-smoker, I know this first hand. Sending a butt flying with a well-timed flick of the index or social finger is one of the first skills that a smoker learns. Most smokers acquire the flick before they can blow smoke rings. Unfortunately, though, the flick is a move that can damage the environment. Consider, ■ In laboratory experiments, Kathleen Register, founder of Clean Virginia Waterways, noted that 100 percent of Daphnia died after 48 hours of exposure in concentrations that were equivalent to only two used cigarette filters per liter of water. The transparent crustacean Daphnia (often called a water flea) is a planktonic animal that occupies a critical position in aquatic ecosystems; they transfer energy and organic matter from algae to higher consumers such as fish. ■ Richard Gersberg, a professor of Environmental Health at San Diego State University, found that the chemicals from just one filtered cigarette butt had the ability to kill fish living in a one-liter bucket of water. Gersberg’s most notable finding was that “it seems to be the filter, or rather what's in the left-over filter that is most dangerous to our
water." Many studies have documented that cigarette butts are the most prevalent item that is found in litter. According to the Ocean Conservancy, cigarette butts are the number one item that is found is annual cleanups. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, thirteen percent of the one billion pieces of litter on Texas highways are cigarette butts. Iowa is vast and wide open in some areas. Large bodies of water dot the country side, the Iowa Great Lakes, Saylorville, Big Creek Lake, Red Rock Lake and down in the southeast part of the state Rathbun Lake. These lakes are vast, and like any wide open area it is easy to say, “How much effect can this one cigarette butt have?” Now multiply that thought times the thousands of anglers and smokers that frequent not only these fisheries, but many others that are much smaller. Remember yours is not the only flick. The flick is an easy move. But the time has come to replace the flick with the stuff. If you smoke, make sure to stuff your cigarette butts in a smoker’s pole or an ashtray. If you are out and about, carry an old band-aid tin, an old coffee can, a film canister, or a baggie. Partially fill the container with kitty litter and use it to extinguish and carry your cigarette butts. When you have filled your container, dispose
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6-Estherville (Ia.) Outdoor Connection, FRIDAY, June 7, 2013
Protecting our natural resources Recently, the Iowa DNR released a story about a poaching “bust” of four Louisiana men, who were caught in an investigation that began in November of 2011. The four men came to southwest Iowa specifically to hunt trophy bucks during the rut. Of course, they had no licenses or tags. Just flat out poaching! It turns out that the initial lead came from a TIP call made by a concerned citizen. Kudos to that individual and the resulting arrests and convictions that cost these men lots and lots of money! Then in mid-May, a Davenport couple was charged with three counts of being over possession of white bass (332 fish over their limit). Once again, it
all came about because of an that the poaching goes on anonymous call to the local and we turn our heads, the conservation officer. more harm that is done to our resources. Here is a little more about the history of the TIP program in Iowa and how the program works. TEVE This information came from EISMAN the Iowa DNR website. Turn In Poachers (TIP) OUTDOOR EDITOR The TIP program, which originated in August of 1985, was established by concerned sportsmen and Another TIP call that led to women under the guidance an arrest! of the Iowa Department of Kudos also to all that have Natural Resources Law taken the time to be the eyes Enforcement Bureau. Both of the law and to provide a groups recognized the need TIP for law enforcement for an added dimension to officials. It’s really all about fish and game law enforceethics and caring for our nat- ment in the State of Iowa to ural resources. Poaching is aid in the fight against nothing more than stealing, poaching. stealing OUR fish and TIP is an organized nonwildlife resources. The more profit corporation with dedi-
cated sportsmen and women from all over Iowa who serve as board members with each board member representing a conservation organization from around the state. Responsibility for the TIP program is shared by TIP and the Iowa DNR. The department receives and records reports of fish or game violations through a toll-free telephone number (800-532-2020). It then routes the confidential information to DNR officers for investigation and arranges reward payments to informants through the TIP board. In order for a TIP report/case to be eligible for a cash reward, the investigating officer must have written at least one citation, although a conviction is not necessary.
fish, birds and furbearing animals ❏ $200 – wild turkey and raptors ❏ $300 – deer, elk, moose and black bear ❏ $1000 – threatened or endangered species or commercial poaching operations All of the rewards come from private funds that the TIP board has collected through membership fees, private donations and sale of promotional items such as T-shirts and caps. Another matter of ethics
I want to digress a little here and talk about a form of littering. Again, this is about ethics and taking care of our natural resources. A reader of mine and a listener of my radio show brought this “disgusting” example of littering to my attention. He and his young son TIP Reward enjoy going to area lakes in ❏ $150 – small game, northwest Iowa and fishing
from shore. However, in their travels, they have come across piles, and I do mean piles, of carp left to decompose and make for a stomach churning smell! It appears that people have been bow hunting for carp, which is legal, but then to celebrate their shooting prowess, they have been collecting them for a picture and then leaving them. In visiting with northwest Iowa DNR law enforcement supervisor, Rich Jordet, he said this constitutes littering and a citation will be issued and a fine be levied. Once again, here is where the general public can help conservation officers if they see things like this happening. It’s about doing the right thing! Treat both natural resources and other outdoor enthusiasts with the same respect, and everything will be than much better!
Protect Iowa waters – stop aquatic hitchhikers Des Moines – With the Memorial Day weekend marking the unofficial start to the peak boating season, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is reminding boaters and anglers to “Clean, Drain, and Dry” their boats and equipment to protect Iowa lakes and rivers from aquatic hitchhikers. Zebra mussels and Eurasian watermilfoil are two examples of aquatic invasive species that have spread across Iowa by hitchhiking on boats, in bait buckets, and with other equipment used in the water. Bighead and silver carp are aquatic invasive species that have been spreading on their own throughout Iowa as the result of recent floods. These aquatic invaders can create serious problems when they become established in our waters.
“Public awareness and action are keys to preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species,” said Kim Bogenschutz, aquatic invasive species program coordinator for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. To help raise awareness of aquatic invasive species, DNR employees will be doing watercraft inspections and invasive species education at public boat ramps across Iowa throughout the summer. “Overland transport of boats is one of the most common ways aquatic invasive species are spread,” said Bogenschutz. “By taking some simple precautions – clean, drain, dry – boaters and anglers can help stop aquatic hitchhikers.” • CLEAN any plants, animals, or mud Turn to HITCHHIKERS, Page 7
Estherville (Ia.) Outdoor Connection, FRIDAY, June 7, 2013-7
SPRING IS HERE! BY CAROLE LOCHMILLER BIRD HAVEN
here is probably not one person in our corner of the world who was not totally joyous over the arrival of spring. I have various areas where I look for certain signs of spring. Hot pink creeping phlox was in full bloom today at Rae of Sun in Spirit Lake. They have an excellent and very pretty perennial garden, which has something blooming all the way to the last of the growing season. I also look for lilacs and there are many hedges around. Then there are the crab apples. Now those two do not usually bloom together but for this year they are. The crabapples will provide lots of berrysize fruit for the birds. Newer varieties of crabapples have persistent fruit that stays on the trees until eaten or when the tree starts growing in the spring.
My yard has 19 big old oak trees. Among that forest I have found spots for 5 small-size ornamental trees. Those trees each "belong " to someone. Right now Bailey's crabapple is blooming beautifully. Last time I mentioned Bailey in a column, a lady came into the store telling me I forgot to say who is Bailey. Well, he is my long-haired dachshund. Last year his soft, fluffy hair was used in a wren's nest. I brushed him well before his last grooming and put it in with other nesting material, in a suet cage. The birds in your yard will appreciate that extra effort. Another small tree in my yard "belongs" to a 3-year old friend of mine, and his Daddy planted the tree. The "Cockspur" Hawthorn is probably my #1 favorite ornamental tree. It is a tree of character (kinda sprawly
in a good way) with white flowers in the spring and produces red berries. That will surely bring Cedar Waxwings to my yard. It also has dark green, shiny foliage that turns red in the fall. This will be its third growing season so I look forward to lots of growing, just like my young friend. When you buy a tree, bush or anything in a nursery container, the roots are contained in a small space. You plant it well and all of a sudden the roots have room to spread, which they do. When those roots are cozy and happy in their new home, you will see the top-growth you've been waiting for--be patient. This has been an amazing spring for bird watching. While you are working on spring planting, it is a good time to plant more that will attract birds. There are many varieties of viburnums with various
HITCHHIKERS, Continued from Page 6 from boat and equipment before leaving a water body. • DRAIN water from all equipment (motor, live well, bilge, transom well, bait bucket) before leaving a water body. • DRY anything that comes into contact with water (boats, trailers, equipment, boots, clothing, dogs). Before transporting to another water body either spray your boat and trailer with hot, high-pressure water or dry your boat and equipment for at least 5 days. • Never release plants,
fish, or animals into a water body unless they came out of that water body and empty unwanted bait in the trash.
Law Changes Coming July 1 It is currently illegal to possess or transport prohibited aquatic invasive species in Iowa. Starting July 1, it will also be illegal to transport any aquatic plants on waterrelated equipment. Boaters must also drain all water from boats and equipment before leaving a water body and
must keep drain plugs removed or opened during transport beginning July 1. It is illegal to introduce any live fish, except for hooked bait, into public waters. Signs are posted at public accesses to remind boaters to stop aquatic hitchhikers and to identify infested waters. More information about aquatic invasive species and a list of infested waters can be found in the 2013 Iowa Fishing Regulations booklet or online.
colors of fruit and lots of dogwoods, too. Hummingbirds will go to anything brightly colored and specifically with tubular flowers. My favorite for hummers are weigela bushes and there are certainly lots of varieties available. Not all are tall, some were hybridized for small spaces. Remember annuals too as they will contain nectar right away. Columbines are an early blooming perennial that will attract hummers. Our spring photo contest is nearly complete. The first to bring in a 4" x 6" hard copy of a bird on our list will receive 5# of bird
seed of your choice. Only two birds remain on our spring list, the northern Flicker and Bobolink. Winners to date: Eastern Kingbird / Linda Petersen; Carolina Wren / Mike Fredrickson; Yellow-headed Blackbird / Jesse Juarez; Red-headed Woodpecker/ Linda Anderson; House Wren / Ryer Donkersloot; Pileated Woodpecker / Greg Johnson; Brown Thrasher /Leona Koele; Red-Winged Blackbird / Leona Koele; and Catbird / Linda Petersen. Another good idea to attract more birds is to give them a pest-free environment. Many bird are insect eaters so they will help you
with pest control. And for My Favorite Story…Last year I bought a Chickadee nest box made locally by Dale G. There always have been many chickadees coming to my feeders, and they tend to roost in my neighbor’s big oak tree. The box was hung so we could both see it. There is a very tidy nest with a diligent roosting female and 7 tiny eggs. Wendell always has many nest boxes at Bird Haven but this is my first experience other than wrens. Dale suggested I somehow attach a feeding station to the nest box so the soon to be busy parents won't have to fly so far. An idea!
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8-Estherville (Ia.) Outdoor Connection, FRIDAY, June 7, 2013
Tips for taking shallow water walleyes BY BOB JENSEN FISHING THE MIDWEST FISHING TEAM
Walleyes are often thought of as a fish that inhabits the depths, and there are times when most of them will be found in deep water. However, there are other times, more than you may think, when you can catch walleyes shallow, shallow being eight feet or less. Here are some ideas for taking walleyes in shallow water. Walleyes spawn in shallow water, water so shallow sometimes their dorsal fin will be above the surface of the water. After the spawn they move into the middepths to recover from the rigors of spawning, or maybe they stay in the shallows and just don't eat much. But a few days after spawning has ended, walleyes will get active in the shallows. This is when they get easy to catch. Look for shallow walleyes wherever the shiners or other baitfish are spawning. Shorelines with small rocks, areas with vegetation starting to come up, points related to shorelines, these areas will all hold shallow walleyes early in the summer, and there are lots of ways to catch'em when they're in these locations. Crankbaits, slip-bobber rigs, live bait rigs, they'll all catch shallow
walleyes. But the folks who catch walleyes most regularly are probably throwing a jig tipped with either a minnow or plastic. When the walleyes have just recovered from the spawn, they'll be most susceptible to a jig and minnow combination. In some bodies of water the walleyes will eat a jig tipped with a fathead minnow: In other bodies of water a shiner on the back of a jig will be far more productive. I almost always have shiners and fatheads in the boat. Shiners can be tough to keep lively, so I put them in a Frabill 1404 aerated container. This unit keeps shiners in a fishcatching attitude. I'm hooking the minnow to an eighth ounce stand-up Fire-Ball jig almost all of the time. The stand-up design of this jig enables me to pause my retrieve, but the jig stands up, remaining in full view of the fish. A round head jig lies flat on the bottom at rest, making it harder for the fish to see. As the water warms, the walleyes become more susceptible to a jig/plastic presentation. Where a couple of days ago we were crawling the jig/minnow along the bottom, with the plastic we'll be snapping it pretty aggressively. Walleyes in warmer water will
To see all the newest episodes of Fishing the Midwest TV, visit FISHINGTHEMIDWEST.COM eagerly whack a jig/plastic combo that is moving quickly along the bottom. Many of the strikes will come as the jig is gliding back to the bottom after it has been snapped. A Rock-It jig tipped with something like an Impulse Paddle Minnow is tough to beat. Fish the jig/plastic with eight or ten pound test Bionic Walleye Braid. The braid works better with the snapping retrieve. Fish the jig/minnow on six, seven, or eight pound test Bionic Walleye monofilament. Walleyes can be found in shallow water year 'round in most lakes, rivers, and reservoirs wherever walleyes swim, but you should look for them in the shallows especially in late spring and early summer. Make long casts, keep a low profile, and be quiet. If you do these things, you'll find yourself catching walleyes shallower than you might have imag- Walleye ace Dana Pitt caught this walleye in six feet of water on a jig. Check the shallows for walleyes right now. ined. Photo by Bob Jensen
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