George's Outdoor News

George’s new outdoor issues blog. He goes all over the state. He listens. And he reports on issues of concern to sportsmen, conservationists, and environmentalists.

Loon story is beautifully illustrated and written

Blog Showcase Image: 

 I once played the haunting cries of a loon at a legislative hearing, to emphasize the importance of banning lead sinkers and jigs that poison and kill this iconic bird. The good news is that the legislature did just that.

My Dad is a wood carver and his carved loons have always been his most popular. He’s carved over 100 and they are stunning. Everyone in Maine recognizes the beauty and importance of our loons.

That’s just one of the reasons I expect The Lake Where Loon Lives by Brenda Steeves Sturgis to be a bit hit. Published by Islandport Press in Yarmouth, this children’s book is beautifully illustrated by Brooke Carlton. Maine Audubon hosted a special event on May 17 to launch the book. It’s getting a lot of deserved attention.

When do the turtles cross the road? Now! Don’t run over them!

Blog Showcase Image: 

 Decades ago, whenever I saw a snapping turtle alongside or in Blake Hill Road, I’d run over it, sometimes backing up to do it again. Snappers kill too many baby ducks to deserve life. That was my thinking at the time.

Eventually I got educated about the value of all wild critters, and stopped killing snappers. And then one night, I was able to achieve a bit of redemption.

Driving home in the rain, approaching the bridge over Hopkins Stream in front of my house, I noticed a bunch of small turtles in the road. Emerging from the car, I discovered about a hundred tiny snapping turtles, apparently just hatched, and laying all over the road. Many had been run over and killed.

I searched through the lot of them and picked up the live ones, moving them to the grassy bank by the stream. It took quite a while. Actually, they were kind of cute.

When do the turtles cross the road? Now! Don’t run over them!

Blog Showcase Image: 

 Decades ago, whenever I saw a snapping turtle alongside or in Blake Hill Road, I’d run over it, sometimes backing up to do it again. Snappers kill too many baby ducks to deserve life. That was my thinking at the time.

Eventually I got educated about the value of all wild critters, and stopped killing snappers. And then one night, I was able to achieve a bit of redemption.

Driving home in the rain, approaching the bridge over Hopkins Stream in front of my house, I noticed a bunch of small turtles in the road. Emerging from the car, I discovered about a hundred tiny snapping turtles, apparently just hatched, and laying all over the road. Many had been run over and killed.

I searched through the lot of them and picked up the live ones, moving them to the grassy bank by the stream. It took quite a while. Actually, they were kind of cute.

Time to make your voice heard on private land access, deer, bear and brook trout issues

Blog Showcase Image: 

 The Sportsmen Say Surveys on my website are off to a great start. Thanks to all who have participated so far. If you haven’t voiced your opinions yet, there is still time on a host of key questions including private land access, any-deer permits, deer yard protection, wild and native brook trout, and spring bear hunting.

This new survey, sponsored by Moody’s Collision Centers, gives sportsmen and other outdoor recreationists an opportunity to voice their opinions on key issues. The survey questions can be found on at the top right of  this website. The survey is named for long-time outdoor newspaper reporter Gene Letourneau.

One of the best things about Gene’s column, called Sportsmen Say, was the way he let his readers and fans speak, by constantly soliciting and printing their comments. This is exactly what I hope to do with this survey – help Mainers make their voices heard.

Man kills neighbor over Lyme disease

Blog Showcase Image: 

  

If you needed any encouragement to stop feeding deer, this might be it. An angry and distressed Minneapolis man shot and killed his neighbor, thinking he’d gotten Lyme disease from the deer his neighbor was feeding in the yard.

Neil Zumberge also wounded the neighbor’s girlfriend. Zumberge’s son was arrested the day before, accused of threatening to burn the neighbor’s barn down and kill them. Google Zumberge’s name and you can read all about it.

Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife discourages deer feeding. If that is not enough to make you stop, this latest unfortunate and tragic incident might do it.

After posting three columns on deer ticks and Lyme disease, I continue to receive advice and information from people in and outside of Maine about this terrible affliction.

Grandson

Doiron packs plot into The Bone Orchard

Blog Showcase Image: 

Author Paul Doiron is packing more and more plot into his novels. After publishing four very popular award-winning novels, Paul left his job as managing editor of Down East magazine to focus all of his attention on writing. That decision appears to be paying off.

Paul’s new book, The Bone Orchard, scheduled for publication by Minotaur Books on July 15, is riveting. I was surprised right off the bat to discover that Paul’s central character, Mike Bowditch, had quit his job as a Maine game warden and become a Maine guide. But not to worry, game wardens are front and center is this novel.

Twenty percent cut in Maine’s any-deer permits will give resident adult hunters only 12,395 permits

Blog Showcase Image: 

 Maine’s any-deer permits will be slashed 20 percent this fall. The Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife reports “the winter of 2013-14 was of above average severity, which may have resulted in increased winter mortality rates for over-wintering deer.”

Focus on the word “may.” The sad fact is that the agency doesn’t know how many deer died this past winter, or how many deer we have in the state. Maine’s #1 game animal isn’t getting the attention and research needed to assure good decisions on harvest, habitat, and other critical issues. The Maine Game Plan for Deer has fallen far short of its goals. This year 17 of the 29 Wildlife Management Districts will get no any-deer permits, 4 more than last year.

Site by Fieldstone Media