Week of October 2, 2006

National

Regional

General

Lake Erie

Illinois

Indiana

Pennsylvania

Wisconsin

       Weekly News Archives

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National

US federal judge declares boating illegal in all US navigable waters

International Boating Magazine reports a rather bizarre ruling that has marine industry officials as well as boaters and anglers alike worried.  Judge Robert G. James of the United States District Court, Western Division of Louisiana, has said that it is criminal trespass for the American boating public to boat, fish, or hunt on the Mississippi River and other navigable waters in the US.

 

In the case of Normal Parm v. Sheriff Mark Shumate, James ruled that federal law grants exclusive and private control over the waters of the river, outside the main shipping channel, to riparian landowners. The shallows of the navigable waters are no longer open to the public. That, in effect, makes boating illegal across most of the country.

 

"Even though this action seems like a horrible pre-April fools joke, it is very serious," said Phil Keeter, MRAA president, in a statement. "Because essentially all the waters and waterways of our country are considered navigable in the US law, this ruling declares recreational boating, water skiing, fishing,

waterfowl hunting, and fishing tournaments to be illegal and the public subject to jail sentences for recreating with their families."

 

Last month, James rejected the findings of the Magistrate judge who found earlier that the American public had the right under federal law and Louisiana law to navigate, boat, fish, and hunt on the waters of the Mississippi river up to the normal high water line of the river. Judge James Kirk relied on the long established federal principles of navigation that recognized the public navigational rights "…entitles the public to the reasonable use of navigable waters for all legitimate purposes of travel or transportation, for boating, sailing for pleasure, as well as for carrying persons or property for hire, and in any kind of watercraft the use of which is consistent with others also enjoying the right possessed in common."

 

"MRAA is working with the Coast Guard, state boating law administrators, and NMMA to fight this onerous ruling," said Glen Mazzella, MRAA chairman, in the statement.

http://www.ybw.com/ibinews/newsdesk/20060814154923ibinews.html


NMMA weighs in on court ruling in Louisiana

The National Marine Manufacturers Association is lobbying against a recent court ruling in Louisiana that restricts hunting and fishing along the flooded Mississippi River. But the association says the impact of the ruling is not as sweeping as some groups have claimed.

 

“I understand the concerns of our avid outdoorsmen and women, but I want to assure them that this very strict and narrow decision will not impact legitimate and legal boating, hunting and fishing,” Monita Fontaine, NMMA vice president and senior counsel for government relations said in a statement. “We expect this ruling to be overturned, and NMMA will stay on top of the situation to ensure public water access rights are not infringed upon.”

 

The heart of the case is whether flooded areas along the Mississippi River are considered navigable waters or private waters that belong to the landowner of the flooded land beneath. The Aug. 29 ruling by Judge Robert James of the 

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana would make hunting and fishing on such areas outside the main river channel a criminal trespassing offense in Louisiana. 

 

The case stems from six men arrested on criminal trespassing charges while fishing on a portion of the Mississippi River’s flooded bank in Louisiana. In response, the men filed a civil suit against the arresting sheriff, arguing the arrest was made without probable cause.

 

In the wake of the case, many individuals and groups have made public claims, contending the ruling would ban boating on the river, and some claimed it would ban boating outright in the United States.

 

The NMMA says that interpretation is not correct. However, the NMMA disagrees “strongly” with the ruling. The NMMA says it will continue to monitor the litigation to ensure legitimate water access rights are not infringed upon and take appropriate action, if necessary.  Another hearing is slated in November.


Cabela's Trophy Properties helps in the hunt for land

Recreational property sales gaining steam despite slowdown in residential market

 SIDNEY, Neb. - To the surprise of many real estate experts, the sale of recreational properties in the United States remains strong despite significant downturns in the national housing market.

 

"It's all about perspective," said David Nelson, Manager of Cabela's Trophy Properties LLC, a recreational property listing service offered by the outdoor experts at Cabela's. "Decisions to invest in commercial and residential property are usually based on profit potential. That's why a declining market scares off buyers and creates panic among sellers. But we are seeing continued strong demand for recreational land by those who are interested in ensuring a place for their outdoor pursuits."

 

The independent brokers affiliated with Cabela's Trophy Properties are witnessing consistent growth in the sale of recreational properties, especially large tracts with multi-million dollar price tags. And this has been happening while housing market sales are slumping by double digits. So, does this mean recreational land buyers are recession-proof? Quite possibly, says Nelson. "The decision to buy hunting and fishing land is an emotional one. Buyers don't buy recreational property expecting to make money on their investment, so they don't fret over rising interest rates and sags in the real estate market. Instead, their return-on-investment is based solely upon enjoyment of the land."

 

Cabela's has solid evidence to support this theory. Launched in February, 2004, Cabela's Trophy Properties has grown from a simple idea into the world's largest purely recreational listing service in less than three years. Today, Cabela's Trophy Properties features more than $730 million in real estate listings in 27 states, two Canadian provinces and Belize.

 

Trophy Properties was created in response to repeated comments from customers frustrated with the lack of a national hunting and fishing property listing service similar to the MLS system for residential properties. Cabela's already offered everything the outdoorsman or woman needed to succeed in the field, so why not make the field itself more accessible?

 

"Landowners, sportsmen and investors appreciate our service. We developed a one-stop-shop in response to our customer's desire for a searchable internet database of

quality recreational properties for sale," said Gregg Severinson, Director of Cabela's Outdoor Adventures and

Trophy Properties. "Recreational real estate brokers are excited to have an opportunity to participate in our program. They all want to be part of the Cabela's team." So much, in fact, that Trophy Properties has awarded exclusive recreational real estate marketing territories to brokers in 63% of its 247 U.S. Territories, many within the past six months even as the residential market has been cooling.

 

With a goal of making the purchase or sale of fine sporting properties easier, Cabela's started with one local real estate broker in 2004. Today, Trophy Properties boasts a network of 106 participating brokers and real estate associates who offer the finest ranches, hunting lands, mountain cabins, oceanfront properties and recreational businesses for sale.

 

"The credibility gained through our association with the Cabela's brand helps us in our negotiations on land acquisitions, land listings, planning board presentations and virtually every aspect of our business," said Dan Christmas, president of Christmas & Associates Inc. in Camden, N.Y. "This creates a huge marketing advantage over our competition and a greater level of respect and credibility than we could ever have enjoyed on our own."

 

Following their 45-year-old field-testing tradition, Cabela's ensures participating brokers meet certain criteria, going so far as to interview each one at the company's world headquarters in Sidney, Neb. Customers benefit by getting all the finest sporting properties gathered together in one easy to search location, plus they have the security of knowing they can trust Cabela's to offer only the best.

 

"Cabela's is the champion of the outdoor industry," said Aaron Graham, former NFL player and broker/owner of Premier Outdoor Properties Inc. of Gretna, Neb. "My clients and customers benefit from Cabela's national network of avid outdoor realtors".

 

Bryce Engel, Senior Vice President & Chief Brokerage Operations Officer for TDAmeritrade, is a customer of Graham's. "Aaron and Cabela's Trophy Properties had a tremendous selection of options in the area I was interested. I thought it would be hard to choose, but in the end we found absolutely the perfect one. I had always dreamed of owning my own hunting property and it has turned out to be one of the best investments I have ever made."


Researchers to probe decline in Great Lakes water levels

Canada and the United States are launching a $17.5-million study to determine why water levels in the upper Great Lakes have declined to near-record lows.  The study by the International Joint Commission will consider a number of possible causes, from climate change to erosion caused by dredging in the St. Clair River.

 

Environment Minister Rona Ambrose noted that water levels in Georgian Bay together with Lakes Huron and Michigan were as much as 45 centimetres below average this summer.

"Clearly, the health of this ecosystem has global significance," she said. "Change is already upon us."

 

 

Huron and Michigan are at their lowest levels since the 1960s and Lake Superior is at its lowest since 1926, reports the Canadian Hydrology Service at Burlington, Ont.  The decline has caused problems for navigation, recreation, power generation and the ecology of the area. Wetlands are drying up, docks are stranded and beaches in some areas are overgrown with weeds.


Gade appointed EPA Region 5 Administrator

Mary A. Gade has been selected to serve as Region 5 Administrator.  Mary has over twenty years of experience in environmental regulation and enforcement.  Since July 1999, she has been a partner in the national Environmental Practice Group at the law firm of Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal LLP in Chicago, Illinois. 

 

Previously, Gade served as the Director of the Illinois EPA.  At this post, she provided policy advice to Illinois Governor Jim

Edgar and oversaw the implementation and administration of all environmental laws and programs for the state.  Prior to joining the IEPA, she held various positions at the U.S. EPA, including Deputy Assistant Administrator of the Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, Associate Division Director for Superfund, and Deputy Director of the Waste Management Division.  Mary holds a bachelor degree from the University of Wisconsin, and a J.D. from the Washington University School of Law. 


Federal Court Reinstates Roadless Area Rule

United States Magistrate Judge Elizabeth D. Laporte threw out the Bush administration’s roadless area development rule of 2005 and reinstated the Roadless Area Conservation Rule of 2001.

 

Idaho Governor Jim Risch was expected to release a petition under the Bush rule that if accepted would open the majority of Idaho’s pristine roadless areas to logging, mining, and drilling.  Governor Risch became the first governor in the

country to press for less protection of these areas.  It remains

unclear how the ruling will affect the state petition process.

 

In May 2005, the Bush administration repealed the 2001 Roadless Area Conservation Rule in its entirety and substituted it with a state petition process that eliminated federal protections from logging and mining in millions of acres of national forests.

 

The Roadless Rule was finalized in January 2001.


Nationwide Survey Shows Most Americans Support Hunting and Fishing

 HARRISONBURG, VA, —A new nationwide survey of Americans 18 years old and older shows that a strong majority of Americans support hunting and fishing.

 

National Hunting and Fishing Day was officially established in 1972 to celebrate sportsmen and their role in fostering conservation and the scientific management of natural resources and wildlife. This year those celebrating National Hunting and Fishing Day will also be able to celebrate at least a decade of public support for their activities, according to a nationwide poll.

 

The nationwide survey, conducted by Responsive Management of Harrisonburg, Virginia, found that support for hunting and fishing has remained strong over the past decade with approximately every 3 out of 4 Americans approving of legal hunting and more than 9 out of 10 approving of recreational fishing.

 

“We have been seeing public support for hunting increase in several states over the past decade where we had data but this is the first nationwide study where we could verify that public support has increased over the past decade. In 1995, 73 percent of Americans approved of hunting while in 2006, 78 percent approved of hunting. Support for fishing nationwide, as well as in numerous states where we have conducted studies, remains very high,” says Mark Damian Duda, executive director of Responsive Management. Although approval of fishing has decreased slightly, dropping only 1.7 percentage points from 95 percent in 1995 to 93.3 percent in 2006, most Americans approve of recreational fishing.

 

The results of this survey reflect the opinions of randomly selected U.S. adult residents based on a scientific telephone survey of 813 Americans conducted from August 31 to September 9, 2006. The sampling error is 3.44 percentage points.

 

The poll was conducted as part of two larger projects—a book being written on sportsmen’s issues by Duda, Marty Jones, and Andrea Criscione of Responsive Management that was commissioned by the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation and a study on the future of hunting and the shooting sports under a grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

 

As Americans become more knowledgeable about the role of hunting in wildlife management as well as how much money hunting and fishing contributes to fish and wildlife conservation efforts, coupled with a visible increase in deer in urban areas and the need to actively manage their populations, Responsive Management’s research shows that the public continues to approve of hunting.

 

Officials in the hunting and fishing industries are encouraged

by the public support, citing the important role that sportsmen

play in a number of areas, including conservation and the economy. Steve Williams, current president of the Wildlife Management Institute and former director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, noted, “Sportsmen are essential to wildlife protection and management. Game management programs, which are funded by sportsmen’s dollars, have brought back numerous wildlife species from unhealthy population levels, such as wild turkey, wood ducks, white-tailed deer, beaver, pronghorn antelope, and Canada geese to name a few. In addition, sportsmen’s dollars have purchased and managed millions of acres of fish and wildlife habitat benefiting all fish and wildlife species and the public who enjoy them.”

 

Responsive Management is a Virginia-based public opinion polling and survey research firm specializing in natural resources, fisheries, wildlife, outdoor recreation, and environmental issues and has been assessing public attitudes on these issues for 18 years. Surveys are conducted with scientific rigor according to the standards of the Council of American Survey Research Organizations. For more information, please visit the firm’s Web site: www.responsivemanagement.com.

 

Poll Data:

Do you approve or disapprove of legal hunting? (2006)

45.4% Strongly approve and 32.2% Moderately approve (77.6% Approve)

4.9% Neither approve nor disapprove; 1.2% Don’t know

8.0% Strongly disapprove and 8.3% Moderately disapprove (16.3% Disapprove)

 

Do you approve or disapprove of recreational fishing? (2006)

68.5% Strongly approve and 24.8% Moderately approve (93.3% Approve)

1.5% Neither approve nor disapprove

2.0% Strongly disapprove and 3.2% Moderately disapprove (5.2% Disapprove)

 

Do you approve or disapprove of legal hunting? (1995)

40% Strongly approve and 33% Moderately approve (73% Approve)

5% Neither approve nor disapprove / Don’t know

11% Strongly disapprove and 11% Moderately disapprove (22% Disapprove)

 

Do you approve or disapprove of legal fishing? (1995)

65% Strongly approve and 30% Moderately approve (95% Approve)

2% Neither approve nor disapprove / Don’t know

1% Strongly disapprove and 2% Moderately disapprove (3% Disapprove)

 

For more info contact: Mark Damian Duda, Executive Director, Responsive Management, 540-432-1888, or mark@responsivemanagement.com .


Feds give $67 million in grants for Endangered species

Secretary Kempthorne says money for land purchases and planning

The Feds announced $67 million in grants for land acquisition and Conservation planning Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne says money to support endangered species Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne today announced more than $67 million in grants to 27 states to support conservation planning and acquisition of vital habitat for threatened and endangered fish, wildlife and plants.  The grants, awarded through the Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund, will benefit species ranging from orchids to bull trout that are found across the United States.

 

Authorized by Section 6 of the Endangered Species Act, the grants enable States to work with private landowners,

conservation groups and other agencies to initiate

conservation planning efforts and acquire and protect habitat to support the conservation of threatened and endangered species.

 

The Recovery Land Acquisition Grants Program provides funds to states and territories to acquire habitat for endangered and threatened species with approved recovery plans. Habitat acquisition to secure long term protection is often an essential element of a comprehensive recovery effort for a listed species. The acquisitions provide a unique opportunity to increase existing efforts to protect and manage rare forest habitats that support threatened and endangered species.

 

For a complete list of the 2006 grant awards:  http://endangered.fws.gov/grants/section6/index.html


Regional

NMMA Announces Suburban Chicago Sportshow to Debut Feb 14-18, 2007

Schaumburg Boat & Sportshow to Focus on Boating, Fishing & Travel Outfitters

CHICAGO – The National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) will launch a new outdoors show to be unveiled in February 2007 in Chicago’s northwest suburbs. The Schaumburg Boat & Sportshow will be an annual event held in the newly constructed Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel & Convention Center. The inaugural show will take place February 14 – 18, 2007.

 

The show will focus on outdoor sports-related equipment, including smaller sport boats, fishing tackle and vacation destinations. Organizers anticipate the event to feature more than 200 boats and 100 marine, fishing and travel outfitter booths, in addition to informational seminars and entertainment.

 

"The Schaumburg Boat & Sportshow will offer local boating, fishing and travel enthusiasts everything needed for their outdoor adventures,” says Bonnie Schuenemann, show coordinator for the Schaumburg Boat & Sportshow. “We are designing this show to feature the boats and gear that are ideal for use on local waterways.”

 

Show details include:

When: Wednesday through Sunday, February 14 - 18, 2007

                        Wednesday (3:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.)

                        Thursday & Friday (1:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.)

                        Saturday (10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.)

                        Sunday (10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.)

Where: Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel & Convention Center

             1601 Thoreau Drive

              Schaumburg, IL 60173

 

Admission:      $8.00 – Adults

$4.00 – Youth (13 – 15 years)

FREE – Kids (under 12 years)

 

Show features include:

• Fishing Seminars: Professional anglers, including Ted Takasaki and Bob Mehsikomer, will provide fishing and casting tips

• Trout Pond: Opportunity for children under 12 to drop a line in a family-friendly fishing pond

• Discover Boating Resource Center: Special display designed for visitors to ask questions and receive expert advice before hitting the show floor 

 

For further information on the Schaumburg Boat & Sportshow, please visit www.SchaumburgBoatShow.com  or contact Bonnie Shuenemann (312-946-6279, bonnie@nmma.org ). Those interested in exhibiting at the 2007 show should contact Sherri Cuvala (312-946-6240, scuvala@nmma.org ).

 

The Schaumburg Boat & Sportshow is produced by the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA), the world’s largest producer of boat and sports shows. NMMA is the principle trade association representing a $37 billion a year recreational boating industry. For more information, visit www.NMMA.org .

 


General

Waterfowl hunters - wear lifejackets, don't overload boats

Safety tips for waterfowl hunters

As waterfowl hunters head out in boats in search of geese or ducks, state boating safety specialists are reminding them to pay as much attention to their safety on the water as to their success in bagging a limit.

 

Too often, state boating safety experts say, waterfowl hunters consider their boats merely a way of getting to their duck blinds and setting up decoys. But several factors make boating, even if it’s only to go to a duck blind, a riskier activity during fall months, especially in late October and in November, according to Roy Zellmer, boating law administrator with the Wisconsin DNR.

 

“During the fall season, it’s crucial that boaters wear a life jacket or float coat,” Zellmer says. “The chance of falling in the water is much greater this time of year due to boats heavily loaded with hunting gear, unexpected changes in weather and cold water temperatures.”  People falling overboard, or ending up in the water when their boats swamped or capsized, accounted for more than two-thirds of the 29 boating fatalities in 1997.

 

Although hunters may consider the risk of falling overboard or capsizing to be small, such accidents pose a serious threat to life, Zellmer says. Fewer people boating on lakes and rivers in the colder months of the year greatly reduces the likelihood of a prompt rescue.

 

“It’s also much more difficult to survive a fall into cold water,” adds Zellmer. “With the rate of body heat loss 25 times greater in cold water than cold air, any water less than 70 degrees can rapidly incapacitate and cause hypothermia.”

 

Zellmer notes that without a life jacket, a victim may inhale 

while under water, as a result of an involuntary gasping reflex, and drown without resurfacing. Exposure of the head and chest to cold water causes sudden increases in heart rate and blood pressure that may result in cardiac arrest, he says. Other responses to immersion in cold water include immediate loss of consciousness and drowning.

 

“Not only will a life jacket help you stay afloat effortlessly, it also serves as insulation in cold water, which will increase your chances of surviving,” Zellmer says.

 

To avoid capsizing or swamping in the first place, Zellmer advises waterfowl hunters to make sure they do not overload their boats, and, if they use motor boats, they should make sure they have enough fuel. Decoys, dogs and shells will add weight to the boat and require more fuel than when fishing, he says.

 

Boaters also need to be aware of weather conditions before they venture onto the water, and to pay attention to the weather as the hunting trip progresses.

 

Other safety tips for waterfowl hunting include:

 

•Tell somebody where you are going and when you expect to return.

Dress appropriately for the weather, in layers that can be peeled off and put back on as the temperature dictates.

•Watch carefully for branches and other debris and underwater obstructions, especially now that dry summer weather in northwestern Wisconsin and other parts of the state mean that water levels are lower than usual in some places.

If you end up in the water, stay with your boat and try to pull yourself up on it since the air temperature is likely warmer than the water.

Use three points of contact whenever you move about within a boat while hunting.


 

 

Lake Erie

Lake Erie 2006 walleye hatch poor     

Preliminary numbers on the 2006 walleye hatch which normally are released in March (it usually takes this much time to edit and double-check the numbers), suggest that the 2006 walleye hatch was poor, slightly better than the 2002 hatch. 

Ohio and Ontario jointly participate in a basin-wide trawling survey at the end of August and sample 70-80 stations across the west basin.  Between the two trawling surveys, Ohio DNR biologists only saw 10-15 young-of-year walleye.  As contrast, in 2003 (the year we had an excellent hatch) they collected 2,500 young-of-year Walleye.


Illinois

Illinois Fall Trout Season begins Oct. 21

Trout to be stocked at 35 locations

SPRINGFIELD, IL - The 2006 Illinois fall trout fishing season opens on Saturday, Oct. 21st  at 35 ponds and lakes throughout the state, Illinois Department of Natural Resources Acting Director Sam Flood announced today.

 

More than 70,000 trout are stocked by IDNR at the locations listed below just prior to the opening of the fall trout season.  Anglers are reminded that no trout may be taken from any of the stocked sites from Oct. 1 until the fall trout season opens on Oct. 21 at 5 a.m.

 

To take trout legally beginning Oct. 21, anglers must have a fishing license and an inland trout stamp, unless they are under 16 years of age, blind or disabled, or are an Illinois resident on leave from active duty in the Armed Forces.  The

daily catch limit for each angler is five trout. While regulations

allow trout season to open at 5 a.m. on Oct. 21, anglers should check in advance for the opening time of their favorite trout fishing location as some of them will not be open that early in the day on opening day.

 

For more information on fall trout season and other Illinois fishing opportunities, contact the IDNR Division of Fisheries at 217/782-6424, or check the web site at www.ifishillinois.org .

 

Illinois fishing licenses and inland trout stamps are available at DNR Direct license and permit locations, including many bait shops, sporting goods stores and other retail outlets.  Fishing licenses and trout stamps can also be purchased by using a credit card at DNR Direct online via the IDNR web site at http://dnr.state.il.us  or by calling DNR Direct toll-free at 1-888-6PERMIT (1-888-673-7648).


IDNR issues alert regarding fish virus

Virus poses no threat to human health

SPRINGFIELD, IL - The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is alerting aquaculture operators, fish dealers and other fisheries interests to take precautionary measures in an effort to prevent the spread of a viral disease that is causing significant fish kills in some areas of the Great Lakes.

 

The viral disease known as Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia (VHS) affects a number of species of fish, but does not affect humans and poses no threat to human health. 

 

"VHS was known to have killed trout and salmon on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts in the past, but a new strain is causing mortalities in muskie, yellow perch, drum and other sport and non-sport fish in areas of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario," said Scott Stuewe, chief of the IDNR Division of Fisheries.  "Because VHS is proving lethal to species that are common in Lake Michigan and waterways, lakes and ponds in Illinois, every precaution must be taken to try to keep the disease from advancing into the state's waters."

 

IDNR has issued an alert targeted to aquaculture operators and fish dealers who move fish and fish eggs into and out of the state.  The alert has also been sent to university research

personnel involved in fisheries projects that may require moving fish or fish eggs into the state.  The IDNR alert suggests a limit on importation or shipment of fish from Lake Erie and Lake Ontario.

 

"We are also suggesting that bait dealers and anglers make every attempt not to move bait and fish from out of state into Illinois," Stuewe said.  "Just recently, fish with VHS were found in an inland lake in New York State, meaning the disease may have been carried into that area through the movement of bait fish or water from a live well or holding tank on a fishing boat."

 

The IDNR alert suggests that all tanks, containers, and live wells that have held fish from infected waters should be disinfected.

 

IDNR is working with fish and wildlife agencies in the Great Lakes states and provinces and federal authorities in the U.S. and Canada to develop control strategies to limit the spread of VHS in fish.

 

"Like any new disease, until fish build up immunity to the virus, there will probably be large scale fish kills in areas where VHS is present," Stuewe said.  "We want to emphasize though, that there is no known threat to human health from this virus."


Gurnee Bass Pro Shops featuring Great Lakes Expo

Gurnee, Ill. – After nine years at the Gurnee Mills Mall Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World has had a facelift!  The store recently underwent a significant remodeling to better reflect the hunting and fishing heritage of the area.  Most of the changes have been cosmetic as customers will still have 133,000 square feet of outdoor shopping pleasure to explore, and the 35,000 gallon fresh water aquarium to view but the overall effect will bring a little bit more of the grandeur of the Great Lakes outdoors indoors.

 

There will be new, exciting, museum quality, outdoor mounts and dioramas to see.  A few department moves will help better serve area outdoor enthusiasts.   An archery cabin replaces the gift cabin where visitors can talk to archery experts and learn how to take their bow hunting to the next level.  The gifts department has been moved closer to the main entrance and will still offer a variety of items from artwork to lamps, to bird feeders and furniture, home decorating items, cooking accessories and gifts for the holidays.  Hunters will be pleased with the expanded hunting department and men’s apparel sections.

 

A special event with exciting celebrity guests and pros and fantastic displays has been planned to celebrate the improved store look.  The public is invited to join the Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World staff as they showcase the store changes during The Great Lakes Expo October 6 through 8.

 

Meet Rick Clunn, recently voted World’s Greatest Angler, on Saturday, October 7 and watch as he demonstrates special

casting techniques.  Pick up new angling tips from other professional bass fishermen including Mike Webb, Marty Stone and Jason Quinn.  Chicago’s own pro team members Dan Hayes and Lenny Szulc will also be on hand to help show off the changes in the store.

 

The Great Lakes also feature some of the best areas in the country for hunting and shooting sports. Brandon Wikman of the Bass Pro Shops Next Generation Television show will be available to answer questions with Mike Reynolds of Bass Pro Shops Chicago’s RedHead Pro Hunting Team.

 

Customers will also have the opportunity to meet Willie T. Ribbs, former Indy Racer and current clays shooter and champion on Saturday, October 7 and Sunday, October 8.  As legendary as the Great Lakes, former Chicago Cub, Billy Williams, will make an appearance on Saturday, October 7 from 2 p.m. until 4 p.m. customers will have the opportunity to speak with Billy about Cubs old and new.

 

There will be daily giveaways to the first 100 customers. Johnsonville Brats and Coca-Cola products will be available for $1.00 each to benefit a local conservation group on Saturday, October 7 from noon until 2. The King of Bucks World Record Exhibit will also be on display. Customers can test their fishing skills on the Coca-Cola Fishing Simulator and everyone can register to win an Artic Cat 400 ATV. Toyota will have giveaways in the parking lot and showcase some of their new vehicles.

 

Be sure to join the Great Lakes Expo October 6 – 8, 2006.


Indiana

Fish and wildlife rules public meeting

The Department of Natural Resources will hold a public hearing on proposed changes to Indiana's fish and wildlife administrative rules on Oct. 23 at 2 p.m. EDT in Indianapolis.

 

Changes to urban deer zones, squirrel season, rabbit season, and spring wild turkey hunting locations are some of the rule changes being considered.  The creation of a spring youth turkey season is one of the rule proposals that continue DNR's efforts to provide additional hunting opportunities for youth.

 

The Oct. 23 hearing will be held at 2 p.m. EDT in Indianapolis at Indiana Government Center South, Conference Center Room 18, 402 W. Washington St.  Public hearings have not yet been scheduled for the other rule proposals that received preliminary adoption by the Natural Resources Commission earlier this year.

 

Preliminarily adopted rule changes:

www.in.gov/dnr/fishwild/about/

 

Written comments can be sent to: jkane@nrc.in.gov

 

Or mail comments to:

Hearing Officer

Natural Resources Commission

402 W. Washington Street, W272

Indianapolis, IN 46204

 

Comments must be received no later than close of business on October 24.

 

A copy of the public hearing report will be available at www.IN.gov/nrc  prior to final consideration by the Natural Resources Commission. The NRC will likely consider these rules for final adoption in November. If approved by the attorney general and governor, the changes will become effective in 2007; the first youth spring turkey hunting season will take place in the spring of 2007.


Photos needed of Portage area group activities October 2-5

Bass Pro Shops promoting local conservation activity

Allen Morris is with Bass Pro Shops in Springfield, Mo. and is doing research for a store coming to Portage, Indiana.

 

Morris would like to learn more about and celebrate local and/or state fishing, hunting or conservation groups that will have representation in the Portage Indiana area.  Scouting groups could also bring in their photos of conservation programs.

 

Specifically, Morris would like information on the History of the group, and possibly get some logos for the Local Conservation Display.   Historic photos or current photos of the chapter participating in a conservation activity, which you would be willing to donate or share.  Bass Pro Shops would always give you guys credit.

 

Historic people and photos of them in the area, historic items for that area

Also what would help you and your chapters quest for a fishing or hunting trip in the store.

Along with address and contact info to be able to follow up and

possible Grand Opening.

 

Bass Pro Shops would also like to learn about Hunting or Fishing Camps with folklore history as well as any other local historical events or areas; What common goals in sustaining natural resources and outdoor life for future generations.

 

If you or others that have access to (Black and White Photographs) heritage and vintage photographs/negatives and other archival items of interest that we could replicate for displays in our stores. Members within that might have old family hunting or fishing photos, typically before the 1950’s.

 

Some more current photos may be considered of the chapter if they are doing conservation activities.

 

Contact:

Allen Morris

Bass Pro Shops

2500 E. Kearney St.

Springfield, MO. 65898

1-417-873-4349 Office

1-417-350-5710 Cell

1-417-873-5383 Fax


Pennsylvania

Rabies confirmed in Coyote killed in Berks County

HARRISBURG - Dr. Walter Cottrell, Pennsylvania Game Commission wildlife veterinarian announced the state Department of Agriculture's laboratory has confirmed that an eastern coyote killed in Sinking Spring, Berks County, was rabid.  The sample was submitted by a private citizen, who killed the animal on Sept. 21, after it displayed aggressive behavior.

 

According to the individual, his dogs were attacked by the coyote, and it attempted to come through a door after attacking the dogs. One dog was bitten; both were previously vaccinated, and subsequently received booster shots.

"This is the first confirmed case of rabies in this species in Pennsylvania," said Dr. Cottrell.  "We always knew that coyotes were susceptible to rabies, but such a case had never been confirmed before.  The Game Commission is awaiting the results of tests to determine which strain or the rabies virus was affecting the coyote.

 

"With many Pennsylvanians, including hunters, trappers and hikers, preparing to enjoy outdoor activities in Penn's Woods, we wanted to remind them to be cautious if they encounter wildlife acting in an unusual manner."

 


Wisconsin

Conference to focus on citizen-based conservation efforts October 5-6

MADISON – Efforts by Wisconsin residents and visitors to help monitor a wide variety of the state’s environmental and conservation conditions will be the focus of a two-day conference Oct. 5-6 in Door County.

 

The Citizen-Based Monitoring Network of Wisconsin will host its annual conference at the Wagon Trail Resort in Rowley’s Bay. Door County Naturalist and writer/photographer Roy Lukes will be the keynote speaker. Registrations are still being accepted online at http://www.orionrising.net/CBM/registration.php . Additional information and the conference agenda are also online at http://www.orionrising.net/CBM/agenda.php .

 

“The data collected by citizen environmental monitors is used extensively by wildlife and fisheries biologists, foresters and

water resources experts for planning and on-the-ground management actions,” said Andy Paulios, Department of Natural Resources citizen monitoring network liaison.

 

“All citizens of Wisconsin have a stake in the quality of our air and water and in the health and productivity of our forests and fisheries,” said Laurie Osterndorf, administrator for DNR’s Land Division. “In an age of pinched government budgets, the work these groups do is invaluable.”

 

Awards will be presented for citizen monitoring successes in student/youth, individual and program/project categories. The department is also seeking recommendations from citizen groups on how to better support these activities in these areas.

 

For more info: Andy Paulios - (608) 266-8523


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