Week of December 12 , 2011

Hunting & Shooting Products/Issues
National

Regional

2nd Amendment Issues
General

Illinois
Michigan
Minnesota
New York
Ohio
Other Breaking News Items

 

       Weekly News Archives

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       New Product  Archives

Hunting & Shooting Products/Issues

Heritage 9-Shot Combo

Heritage Manufacturing introduces our newest addition to the Rough Rider family, a 9 Shot .22 LR and .22 Magnum combo revolver. Spend more time shooting the world's most popular cartridge, the .22 LR or the .22 Magnum and spend less time stopping to load and unload. Whether plinking, hunting, or target shooting, more firepower means the increased chance of hitting your intended target.

Like all Rough Rider Revolvers, our new 9 Shot series combine quality, dependability, accuracy, and firepower all into one and yet maintains the affordability that our customers have come to expect. It’s available in 4.75" or 6.5" barrels and adjustable sights. 100% American Made.

 

About $ 289.99-349.99

 

305-685-5966    www.heritagemfg.com

 

 


Heritage .45LC/.410

Heritage Manufacturing introduces an addition to our Heritage family, a .45LC/.410. The ultimate self-defense gun. Whether you need protection against an intruder or a snake, the new Heritage .45LC/.410 is up to the task. Like all our other Rough Riders, this bad boy is also an all American made Single Action Revolver

 

which holds six rounds and accepts both .410 bore 2 1/2"

shot-shells and .45LC cartridge all in one cylinder.

 

Available in black satin finish with oversized rosewood grips and red ramp fiber-optic front sight.

 

About $ 449.99

 

305-685-5966    www.heritagemfg.com


Ruger SP101 .357 Revolver

Cat # KSP-341X, Mod # 5771

Ruger has released a new Ruger SP101 five-shot revolver chambered in the .357 Magnum cartridge and featuring a 4.2" barrel with improved sights.

 

"The SP101 has been an extremely popular small frame revolver since its inception in 1988, but it has always featured a short barrel and minimal sights," said Chris Killoy, Ruger Vice President of Sales and Marketing. "This new version is a quality .357 Magnum small frame revolver with a longer, full shroud barrel and improved sights that offers the shooter a better sight picture, longer sight radius, and additional weight to better control recoil. I am confident enthusiasts will find that this 4.2" .357 Magnum is a great all around centerfire revolver that remains true to 

classic SP101 styling," he concluded.

 

The newest Ruger SP101 is constructed of weather-resistant stainless steel with a satin finish, and wears checkered and engraved walnut grip panels inset in the one-piece rubber grip. The 29.5-ounce double/single-action revolver features a fully adjustable square notch blade rear sight and green HiViz front sight. The 4.2" barrel features a full shroud covering the ejector rod.

 

About $ 689.00

 

603-865-2442   www.ruger.com


Bushnell Sport 850 Laser Rangefinder

Offers performance and value

Bushnell Outdoor Products has introduced the Sport 850 laser rangefinder. The popular laser rangefinder offers high-performance and a host of valuable features for hunters and shooters.

At the push of a button, the Sport 850 quickly acquires distances from five to 850 yards (or meters) with the +/- one-yard accuracy hunters have come to expect from Bushnell. Featuring four power magnification, fully multi-coated optics and a 430-foot field of view, the Sport 850 provides a

crisp, clear view, even in low light conditions.

 

This rugged, rainproof unit is lightweight and compact, making it versatile and easy to carry in a pocket or pack. With its anti-slip, sure-grip finish, the Sport 850 is designed for convenient one-hand operation. Featuring a posi-thread battery door for long-term reliability and built-in tripod mount, the Sport 850 includes a neck strap, carrying case and battery.

 

About $179.95

 

800-423-3537   www.bushnell.com


National

Anti-Fishing groups bypass lawsuit to ban Lead fishing tackle
Angling community calls for the dismissal of unwarranted petition

Alexandria, VADecember 6, 2011 – On November 16, the U.S. EPA was yet again petitioned by the Center for Biological Diversity and two other anti-fishing groups, requesting that the agency regulate the manufacture and sale of lead fishing tackle of certain sizes and uses under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). If approved, such regulation could result in a de facto ban of lead sinkers, jigs and other popular types of fishing equipment.

This comes on the heels of a similar petition that the EPA dismissed in November 2010. The original petition also sought to ban lead hunting and shooting ammunition, which is exempted from regulation under TSCA. In dismissing the original petition, the EPA indicated that the “petitioners have not demonstrated that the requested rule is necessary to protect against an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment, as required by the TSCA.”

“The sportfishing community is once again asking the EPA to rule on the side of scientific fish and wildlife population management and dismiss this unwarranted petition,” said American Sportfishing Association (ASA) Vice President Gordon Robertson. “Such regulations will have a significant, negative impact on recreational anglers and the sportfishing industry, yet the petitioners lack credible science to back such a far-reaching request. They claim lead is threatening loons across the nation, but several studies, including one by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, have shown that loon populations are either stable or increasing throughout most of their range.”

"Despite the EPA's clear ruling, the petitioners continue to

attempt to push the ban," said Robertson. "This further

demonstrates the need for a legislative solution to this growing threat to recreational fishing. In response, the co-chairs of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus have
introduced the Hunting, Fishing and Recreational Shooting Sports Protection Act, which would prevent an overreaching ban of lead fishing tackle. With anti-fishing organizations trying to over-regulate fishing using whatever means they can, legislation is needed to protect traditional fishing tackle and ammunition from unjustified bans that will harm the economy and reduce participation in outdoor activities."
 

“Last year more than 43,000 anglers sent their objections to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson through KeepAmericaFishing™,” said Robertson. “ASA encourages members of the sportfishing industry and the angling public to contact the EPA in opposition to the petition and to urge their Members of Congress to support the Hunting, Fishing and Recreational Shooting Sports Protection Act. ASA will soon provide suggested comments on www.KeepAmericaFishing.org. The sportfishing industry applauds the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus for its leadership and for so powerfully addressing an issue that urgently needs a dose of common sense.”

Two of the three petitioners are currently engaged in a lawsuit against the EPA’s dismissal of the original petition to ban lead fishing tackle. “The petitioners are taking advantage of our federal government, ignoring the decision that the EPA made just a year ago and working around the ongoing litigation that they filed shortly after that decision,” said Robertson. “This is a gaming of the system and ASA urges the EPA to deny the most recent petition and asks all anglers to voice their support for the Hunting, Fishing and Recreational Shooting Sports Protection Act.”


US House Bill gives more cormorant control to states

US House Bill, H.R. 3074 "Cormorant Management and Natural Resources Protection Act," amends the Migratory Bird Treaty Act to delegate to the States the authority of the Secretary of Interior to address cormorant control.  The bill appears to delegate the Secretary of Interior’s authority to regulate cormorants to the states after a state plan is approved by the Secretary.

 

The Congress finds the current permitting system is not sufficient to achieve a streamlined control of excessive cormorant populations.

Excessive cormorant populations cause damage to ecosystems, Excessive cormorant populations pose public health and safety concerns, Excessive cormorant populations pose an unsightly, loud, and olfactory nuisance, Excessive cormorant populations can have a detrimental effect on fish populations, Excessive cormorant populations displace native species from their habitats and Cormorant excrement in colonies often kills vegetation

 

The bill was introduced by Rep. John Kline (R-MN) and has been referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.

 

 


Senate Votes No On Obama Anti-gun Court Nominee Listens to CCKRBA

BELLEVUE, WA – Grassroots power has helped derail President Obama’s nomination of anti-gun extremist Caitlin Halligan to the District of Columbia Circuit Court, with keystone opposition from members and supporters of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms.

 

“We sent out more than one million e-mail alerts to gun owners across the country, warning them of Halligan’s anti-gun philosophy,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb, “and it is clear from today’s 54-45 Senate vote against cloture, thus rejecting Halligan’s nomination, that their voices were heard loud and clear.”

 

The CCRKBA mailing identified Halligan as a “liberal agitator and a fervent gun hater” who “pushed to bankrupt gun manufacturers in New York with frivolous lawsuits.”

 

“After the disastrous appointments of Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court,” Gottlieb said, “we could not stand silently while Obama put forth his

most radical anti-gun nominee for a lifetime appointment to

one of the most influential federal courts in the nation.

 

“Tuesday’s vote,” he continued, “is proof that gun owners are wise to Obama’s anti-gun strategy. He may not be able to pass legislation, but his legacy could be a federal court system stacked with gun-grabbing judges who will do whatever it takes to erase the landmark Second Amendment victories before the Supreme Court in the Heller and McDonald cases.

 

“We are delighted and proud that our members and supporters told the Senate that this is where it ends,” Gottlieb said. “We are not going to allow President Obama the chance to saddle our country and our Constitution with people like Halligan, who are clearly hostile to the Second Amendment.

 

“There is no place in the federal judiciary for anyone who so vigorously opposes one of our most cherished civil rights,” he concluded. “We’re gratified that a majority in the Senate understands this.”


Regional

Great Lakes Water Levels for Dec 9, 2011 

WEATHER CONDITIONS

The temperatures in the Great Lakes basin have remained around seasonal averages this past week. Heavy rainfall was experienced throughout the region over the last week, with Lakes Michigan-Huron, Erie and Ontario receiving above average precipitation so far for the month of December. Snow showers are likely in parts of the Superior, Erie and Ontario basins this weekend. Next week is forecasted to be mostly dry with average temperatures, although snow showers are possible heading into next weekend.

LAKE LEVEL CONDITIONS

Currently, Lake Superior is 1 inch above its level from a year ago and Lake Michigan-Huron is 6 inches higher than it was last year. Heavy rainfall at the end of November led to significant rises on Lakes St. Clair and Erie. As a result, they are 18 and 20 inches, respectively, higher than they were at this time last year. Lake Ontario is 3 inches higher than it was a year ago. Over the next thirty days, Lakes Superior and Michigan-Huron are projected to drop 3 and 2 inches, respectively, from their current levels. The water levels of Lakes St. Clair and Erie are forecasted to decline 7 and 3 inches, respectively, over the next month. Lake Ontario is expected to rise 1 inch over the next thirty days.  

FORECASTED MONTHLY OUTFLOWS/CHANNEL CONDITIONS

Lake Superior's outflow through the St. Mary's River and the outflow from Lake Huron into the St. Clair River are projected to be below average for the month of December.

The outflow from Lake St. Clair into the Detroit River is expected to be below average throughout the month of December. Lake Erie's outflow through the Niagara River and the outflow of Lake Ontario into the St. Lawrence River are both predicted to be above average in December.

ALERTS

Lake Superior's water level is currently below chart datum. Lake Michigan-Huron's water level is near chart datum. Users of the Great Lakes, connecting channels and St. Lawrence River should keep informed of current conditions before undertaking any activities that could be affected by changing water levels. Mariners should utilize navigation charts and refer to current water level readings

 

 

Superior

Mich-Huron

St. Clair

Erie

Ontario

Level for Dec 9

600.75

577.59

574.64

572.15

244.78

Datum, in ft

601.10

577.50

572.30

569.20

243.30

Diff in inches

-4

+1

+28

+35

+18

Diff last month

-2

-1

+10

+8

0

Diff from last yr

+1

+6

+18

+20

+3

 


2nd Amendment Issues

Illinois Court sides with gun owners in protecting identities

Lawful firearm owners across the state may rest a little easier now knowing that their sensitive personal information is finally safeguarded from release under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). 

 

Earlier this week, the Honorable Michael E. Brandt, Chief Judge of the 10th Judicial Circuit of Illinois, Peoria County, signed an order permanently barring the Illinois State Police from revealing the identities of the state’s 1.5 million law-abiding firearm owners.  This order extends to prohibit the release of information contained in Firearm Owner ID (FOID) applications and Firearm Transfer Inquiry Program (FTIP) background checks.  The ISRA is characterizing the issuance of this permanent injunction as a major victory for Illinoisans concerned about their personal privacy.

 

Judge Brandt’s order stems from a lawsuit filed earlier this year by the ISRA against the Illinois State Police.  The ISRA filed the lawsuit upon learning that Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan had ruled that FOID information was releasable under the FOIA and that the Illinois State Police must honor a FOIA request for such information filed by a newspaper reporter.  Lawful firearm owners were appalled and angry over the prospect of their private information being released to the media.  In response, the ISRA successfully sought a temporary restraining order to halt the release of firearm owner personal information.  Monday’s action by Judge Brandt makes the provisions of that restraining order permanent.

 

“Gun control organizations and their friends in the press

have been trying for years to get the names and addresses of firearm owners,” commented ISRA Executive Director

Richard Pearson.  “For some reason, they think that the public has a right to know who in their city, town or social organization owns guns.  Thus, they would like nothing more than to see the names and addresses of gun owners along with detailed inventories of privately-held firearms plastered across every newspaper in the state.  For years, the State Police correctly and successfully resisted calls for the release of such information.  Well, then along comes Attorney General Lisa Madigan.”

 

“Lisa Madigan is well known as a staunch supporter of efforts to ban civilian firearm ownership,” continued Pearson.  “In fact, Madigan routinely receives recognition and awards for her anti-gun activities from Illinois’ largest gun control organization.  Therefore, it should come as no surprise that Madigan would break with tradition and direct the release of gun owners’ personal information to the public.  Judge Brandt’s order has put the kibosh on Madigan’s abuse of power.”

 

“The most important outcome of Judge Brandt’s order will be the restoration of peace of mind among the state’s gun owners,” said Pearson.  “No longer will they have to fear that Lisa Madigan will target their homes for burglary.  They won’t have to worry that gun control extremists will “occupy” their front yards or harass their children on the way to school.  Yes, the state’s gun owners will be quite content in the knowledge that the court has declared that the choice to own firearms is nobody’s business but their own.”

 


Senate Votes No On Obama Anti-gun Court Nominee

Listens to CCKRBA

BELLEVUE, WA – Grassroots power has helped derail President Obama’s nomination of anti-gun extremist Caitlin Halligan to the District of Columbia Circuit Court, with keystone opposition from members and supporters of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms.

 

“We sent out more than one million e-mail alerts to gun owners across the country, warning them of Halligan’s anti-gun philosophy,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb, “and it is clear from today’s 54-45 Senate vote against cloture, thus rejecting Halligan’s nomination, that their voices were heard loud and clear.”

 

The CCRKBA mailing identified Halligan as a “liberal agitator and a fervent gun hater” who “pushed to bankrupt gun manufacturers in New York with frivolous lawsuits.”

 

“After the disastrous appointments of Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court,” Gottlieb said, “we could not stand silently while Obama put forth his

most radical anti-gun nominee for a lifetime appointment to one of the most influential federal courts in the nation.

 

“Tuesday’s vote,” he continued, “is proof that gun owners are wise to Obama’s anti-gun strategy. He may not be able to pass legislation, but his legacy could be a federal court system stacked with gun-grabbing judges who will do whatever it takes to erase the landmark Second Amendment victories before the Supreme Court in the Heller and McDonald cases.

 

“We are delighted and proud that our members and supporters told the Senate that this is where it ends,” Gottlieb said. “We are not going to allow President Obama the chance to saddle our country and our Constitution with people like Halligan, who are clearly hostile to the Second Amendment.

 

“There is no place in the federal judiciary for anyone who so vigorously opposes one of our most cherished civil rights,” he concluded. “We’re gratified that a majority in the Senate understands this.”

 


CCRKBA applauds Walsh Legislation to withhold U.N.  Funding

BELLEVUE, WA – The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms today applauded Illinois Congressman Joe Walsh’s introduction of legislation to withhold funding from the United Nations and assuring that the United States does not adopt any treaty posing a threat to national sovereignty or that abridges the firearms rights of American citizens as guaranteed by the Second Amendment.

 

Rep. Walsh’s bill, developed with the cooperation and assistance of CCRKBA staff, would block U.N. funding unless the President certifies that the world body “has not taken any action to restrict, attempt to restrict, or otherwise adversely infringe upon the rights of individuals…to keep and bear arms, or abridge any of the other constitutionally protected rights” of U.S. citizens.

 

“The United Nations’ effort to adopt a global gun control initiative needs to be reined in,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan M. Gottlieb. “For too many years, bureaucrats in the United Nations have become far too cozy with international

gun prohibition organizations, and Congressman Walsh’s legislation seems the best way to get their attention. We’ve been delighted and honored to be part of this effort. “It is an insult to United States sovereignty,” he added, “that the U.N. would be entertaining such measures while enjoying this country’s hospitality at its headquarters in New York City. It is the greatest irony, and perhaps the pinnacle of hypocrisy, for the United Nations to be discussing any treaty that might threaten our Second Amendment, because it has been the United States, with its citizen soldiers and our constitutional right to keep and bear arms that has come to the world’s rescue not once, but twice in global conflicts.

 

“When diplomacy fails, it is time to close our checkbook,” Gottlieb said. “The Bush administration opposed such a treaty, but the Obama administration is moving forward with discussions on an international Arms Trade Treaty. It is up to Congress to put the brakes on such efforts and protect our national sovereignty, which has been protected and defended for more than two centuries because our citizens have the right, and the resources, to defend it.”

 


ATF plots to undermine the Right To Bear Arms

WASHINGTON (CFP)--Newly obtained documents show that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives discussed using its covert operation Fast and Furious to argue for new rules about gun sales.

 

As observed in June, the way Fast and Furious — the government’s gun-running operation that resulted in the death of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry — was conducted made no sense unless its intent was to facilitate violence with U.S. weapons in the interests of pursuing the administration’s gun-control agenda.

 

Now documents obtained by CBS News confirm that our first suspicions were correct.  As CBS’ Sharyl Attkisson

reports, emails show ATF officials discussed using the deliberate transfer of weapons to Mexican drug cartels to justify a new gun regulation known as “Demand Letter 3.”

 

We say deliberate because congressional testimony by ATF agents demonstrates how the tracking of Fast and Furious weapons stopped at the border and that requests to interdict the weapons transfers and arrest the gun traffickers were denied by higher-ups.  Demand Letter 3 was so named because it was the third ATF attempt to have Southwest gun shops report all long-gun (rifle or shotgun) sales to the ATF — even those to law-abiding American citizens with all the proper registration and other forms. (IBD)

 


General

Enjoying the Outdoors in Luxury

A memorable experience in the Ozarks

Experience the great outdoors in luxury. America’s Premier Wilderness Resort, Bass Pro Shop’s Big Cedar Lodge located near Branson, MO. offers a pleasant and exciting change from your highly urbanized job and big time destinations. A luxurious tour of the Missouri Ozarks will be a rewarding and exhilarating experience. Rolling hills and wooded pastures are the first change you trade for steel and glass urbania. Roll down your windows and enjoy the crisp, fresh air.

 

Ideal for families, businessmen and angling groups alike, Bass Pro Shops' Big Cedar Lodge offers about everything a big city dweller wants in his getaway vacation. The lodge, a Bass Pro Resort, and its marina, are tucked away in the wooded hillsides of the Ozark Mountains in a quiet cove on sprawling Table Rock Lake. It’s just 10 miles south of Branson and only 5 miles from the Branson airport with direct flights to many major cities.

 

Big Cedar offers a wide selection of lodging facilities, all with rustic and woodsy but contemporary appointments; great views, and opportunities that will accommodate any number in your party, sleeping and living needs, extravagant tastes, or the conservative pocketbook. 

 

Lodging choices at Big Cedar Lodge, all with rustic amenities, include rooms at three lodges, private cottages and log cabins. Experience the best of Big Cedar by choosing a luxurious accommodation in one of their spacious log cabins. Featuring spacious Jacuzzis, real wood-burning fireplaces, contemporary kitchens, spacious balcony views and vaulted ceilings, these deluxe remote cabins in secluded coves offer the finest of appointments for honeymoons to family reunions.  

 

Deluxe rooms are perfect for one to four people. Beautiful lobbies filled with oversized couches and wood burning fireplaces at The Falls, Valley View and Spring View Lodges offer opportunities to relax and enjoy the view. Value accommodations are an economical way to enjoy the resort with unique four-poster beds, rustic décor and gorgeous views. Most are equipped with a refrigerator or are available at no charge upon request. For specific amenities and pricing visit www.big-cedar.com.  

 

Bent Hook Marina offers professional fishing guides, a pro ski school, personal watercrafts and other boating rental opportunities that will tempt your scheduling activities, often making you late for lunch or dinner at the many lodge venues offered to temp any palates. The Bent Hook Market offers a variety of grocery items and sundries, for your cooler. It also offers lake cruises, covered slip rental, fishing licenses, boat rental opportunities and complimental launch and trailer parking. 

 

This is where you can leave everything behind and enjoy everything the great outdoors has to offer – memories that will last a lifetime. Whether you like fishing, cruising, waterskiing, tubing, wakeboarding jet skiing or just venturing out for a quiet paddle in a canoe, Big Cedar’s Bent Hook Marina has it all.

 

This classy, rustic, contemporary and enticing facility is designed to keep you indoors if that is your pleasure, or for a change of pace. From Spa Services to a Fitness Center with possibly your personal trainer, these opportunities can upgrade your state-of-health and mental outlook. Whatever your fitness goals, Big Cedar Lodge can accommodate them all. Their expert staff will help you unwind and have you leaving rested and renewed.

 

For the kids, Big Cedar Lodge offers a unique introduction to the Lodge’s extensive 800-acre playground. The Little Cedar Kids’ Club welcomes children of all ages, who can explore, interact and play in a magical environment, offering nutritious snacks and hands-on experiences. Daily pony rides are available for kids 10 and under. Guided horseback rides are available for adults also.

 

Dining at Big Cedar’s variety of dining locations is another notable experience. From an early breakfast or quick snack to fine dining or a late night cocktail, the lodge has four free standing restaurants, all with spectacular views, to cover your taste buds, and time table.  

 

One of the original structures on the property, The Truman Café will cover your early morning breakfast needs, or for lunch or supper for an assortment of sandwiches, soups, soups and delicious sides. While the interior has been re-designed, the exterior still reflects its 1920’style and charm.

 

Devil’s Pool Restaurant offers a casual dining experience that combines the best in southern home-style fare with rustic elegance steeped in the rich history of local Ozark favorites. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served daily, with a sumptuous Sunday brunch. Indulge in the comfort of the past and present, or savor the taste and aroma of hickory smoked prime rib, Smoked Trout or one of the other local Ozark favorites

 

Buzzard’s Bar is located downstairs from Devil’s Pool, and offers a warm reception in legend and superstition. Comfortable seating is available indoors offering an

excellent selection of specialty drinks, or in an outdoor

setting on their patio overlooking the pool. They even boast their own selection of sandwiches, salads and house-made soups. Each evening, the Bar offers country singing entertainment, singing all your favorites.

 

Devil’s Pool and Buzzard’s Bar are steeped in legend that is now barely a memory, mysteries of a bottomless pool buried under Table Rock Lake.  Early on, indistinct images of the mind and sacred icy waters of the Osage Indians spilled out of its seemingly bottomless confines and twisted and turned on its winding path to the powerful White River below.  A legend of hundreds of buzzards mysteriously appearing nightly, steeped in the minds of the first white settlers to the Ozarks.  However, if you see buzzards circling overhead…

 

The grandeur of The Worman House, a legendary historic home going back to the early 1920’s is well noted with the exciting experience of dining in a lakeside casual atmosphere. Incredible dining from a menu created to please the discriminating palates, a sumptuous Sunday brunch or an elaborate buffet featuring all your favorites.

 

Dogwood Canyon Nature Park, a property of Big Cedar, offers 2200 acres of preserved American wilderness.  One of its greatest appeals is trout fishing in sparkling spring-fed waters, home to their magnificent rainbow trout. The park offers guided catch-and-release fishing trips, fly casting clinics, and multi-day fly fishing schools. It also offers horseback riding, hiking and biking trails, mini golf, romantic carriage rides and chuck-wagon dinners at rustic campsites. A small tackle and souvenir shop with a limited lunch menu is available at the general store.

 

Tram tours of the entire park highlight rustic pastures with herds of elk, native buffalo, deer and other native wildlife.  You might even see some great blue heron and American eagles. The park also has one-, two- and three-bedroom rustic log cabins offering ample opportunity for extended outdoor exploration.

 

Big Cedar Lodge is equipped to accommodate all your business needs, weddings or family reunions from an intimate group of 10 to conferences up to 1000. Situated near the two largest lodges, the Grandview Conference Center has over 21,000 square feet of flexible meeting space on two levels. The resort’s rustic theme is carried out in conference center décor with 21st Century technology and equipment. Relaxing Ozark ambiance is complemented by floor to ceiling windows offering splendid views. In addition to the Conference Center’s 15 meeting rooms, there are smaller meeting facilities scattered throughout the resort, including Dogwood Canyon

 

Complimentary shuttle service is offered to any facility on the 800 acre property from your home away from home or from Bent Hook Marina or any other amenity back to your lodging –or some other property location. Shuttle service is also available to Branson, its airport or other nearby locations. Check for fees and availability.

 

Although ample opportunity exists to fill your daily schedule at Big Cedar, a side trip to Springfield and the Bass Pro Shops’ signature store would be a memorable experience.

 

The mere entrance into the store shows giant, exquisitely crafted outdoor themed chandeliers, made by Bass Pro Shops’ own artisans, hanging throughout the store.   Lifelike images of elk, deer, raccoon, rabbit, turkey, bobcat, bear and water fowl are in the store’s center arena. Museum quality wildlife exhibits and dioramas are also seen around the walls. Waves of waterfowl along with geese, pheasant and eagles may be seen flying and roosting throughout.

 

One last word about fishing; incidental catches of record class feisty blue gills will keep you occupied between those catches of Kentucky, Largemouth or Smallmouth bass. There are plenty of ‘gills, at every cove and point you stop to wet a line.

A memorable trip to Missouri Ozarks’ Big Cedar Lodge can be planned any time of the year. The seasons will vary with each presenting its own outstanding sights, opportunities, adventures and panorama.

Some contact info for your next outdoor experience:

Big Cedar Lodge

Dogwood Canyon Nature Park

Devil’s Pool Restaurant

The Worman House

The Truman Café

612 Devil’s Pool Road

Ridgedale, MO 65739

www.big-cedar.com

800-225-6343

 

White River Fish House

1 Bass Pro Drive

Branson, MO 65616

www.whiteriverfishhouse.com

417-243-5100

 

Bass Pro Shops

Springfield Location

1935 South Campbell

Springfield, MO 65807

800-227-7776

417-887-7334

www.basspro.com

 


Illinois

Court sides with gun owners in protecting identities

Lawful firearm owners across the state may rest a little easier now knowing that their sensitive personal information is finally safeguarded from release under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). 

 

Earlier this week, the Honorable Michael E. Brandt, Chief Judge of the 10th Judicial Circuit of Illinois, Peoria County, signed an order permanently barring the Illinois State Police from revealing the identities of the state’s 1.5 million law-abiding firearm owners.  This order extends to prohibit the release of information contained in Firearm Owner ID (FOID) applications and Firearm Transfer Inquiry Program (FTIP) background checks.  The ISRA is characterizing the issuance of this permanent injunction as a major victory for Illinoisans concerned about their personal privacy.

 

Judge Brandt’s order stems from a lawsuit filed earlier this year by the ISRA against the Illinois State Police.  The ISRA filed the lawsuit upon learning that Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan had ruled that FOID information was releasable under the FOIA and that the Illinois State Police must honor a FOIA request for such information filed by a newspaper reporter.  Lawful firearm owners were appalled and angry over the prospect of their private information being released to the media.  In response, the ISRA successfully sought a temporary restraining order to halt the release of firearm owner personal information.  Monday’s action by Judge Brandt makes the provisions of that restraining order permanent.

 

“Gun control organizations and their friends in the press

have been trying for years to get the names and addresses of firearm owners,” commented ISRA Executive Director Richard Pearson.  “For some reason, they think that the public has a right to know who in their city, town or social organization owns guns.  Thus, they would like nothing more than to see the names and addresses of gun owners along with detailed inventories of privately-held firearms plastered across every newspaper in the state.  For years, the State Police correctly and successfully resisted calls for the release of such information.  Well, then along comes Attorney General Lisa Madigan.”

 

“Lisa Madigan is well known as a staunch supporter of efforts to ban civilian firearm ownership,” continued Pearson.  “In fact, Madigan routinely receives recognition and awards for her anti-gun activities from Illinois’ largest gun control organization.  Therefore, it should come as no surprise that Madigan would break with tradition and direct the release of gun owners’ personal information to the public.  Judge Brandt’s order has put the kibosh on Madigan’s abuse of power.”

 

“The most important outcome of Judge Brandt’s order will be the restoration of peace of mind among the state’s gun owners,” said Pearson.  “No longer will they have to fear that Lisa Madigan will target their homes for burglary.  They won’t have to worry that gun control extremists will “occupy” their front yards or harass their children on the way to school.  Yes, the state’s gun owners will be quite content in the knowledge that the court has declared that the choice to own firearms is nobody’s business but their own.”

 


Michigan

DNR simplifies fish spearing regulations

New spear and bow-and-arrow angling regulations, announced by the Department of Natural Resources, will provide additional recreational opportunities starting in the 2012 fishing season.

 

The changes are a result of a multi-year review process begun by an internal DNR Fisheries Division workgroup designed to simplify spearing regulations. Changes in the regulations were made in concert with citizens on the Warmwater Resources Advisory Committee and signed in a fisheries order by DNR Director Rodney Stokes.

 

Beginning April 1, licensed anglers will be allowed to use

spears and bows and arrows to take designated species of fish year-round, except on designated trout waters or as noted in the list of non-spearing waters. Gizzard shad, goldfish and grass carp have been added to the list of species.

 

The season for spearing northern pike and muskellunge through the ice will remain Dec. 1 – March 15, but the number of waters prohibiting spearing for pike and muskellunge has been reduced from 40 to 30. For additional information, please consult the 2012 Michigan Fishing Guide, which will be available on line at www.michigan.gov/fishingguide or license dealers in late February.


Grant opportunity for private forest landowners

Do you own at least 12 acres of connected forest land?  Have you always wanted to better understand how to manage that land for timber, wildlife values, recreational activities or maybe a combination of all three?  Here is your opportunity to receive cost share assistance to develop a certified management plan for your private forest land. 

 

The Michigan DNR Forest Stewardship Program provides financial and technical assistance on Michigan’s nonindustrial private forestlands.  The program helps private landowners offset the initial costs of developing a management plan for their forested property.  The landowner selects and hires a private consultant forester to aid in developing management goals and objectives, evaluate the property, and prepare a Forest Stewardship Plan. Landowners in the program pay approximately 50 percent of the cost of the plan development. The remaining 50 percent of the costs will be paid by the State directly to the contractor. 

 

“Forest stewardship is the act of managing a forest so that it sustains health, vigor and ecosystem function for the future,” says Shawna Meyer, DNR Forest Stewardship coordinator. “With over 8.4 million acres of privately owned forestland in Michigan, there is a lot we can do to ensure that our private forestlands are both profitable for the owners and managed for long-term sustainability.  Once a landowner has a Stewardship Plan that opens the doors to other funding available to help implement the plan by cost-sharing management practices including planting trees or altering the land to benefit wildlife.”

 

The process for having a Forest Stewardship Plan written

is as follows:

1. Landowner selects a certified plan writer. A list can be found for your county at www.michigan.gov/foreststewardship .

2. Together the landowner and certified plan writer complete the appropriate forms and application.

3. Certified plan writer submits the application to DNR service forester for project eligibility approval.

4. Certified plan writer writes plan. The plan must include all information required by DNR.

5. Landowner reviews, signs and accepts plan.

6. Landowner pays certified plan writer (minimum of 50 percent of plan costs).

7. Certified plan writer submits plan to DNR service forester for review and approval.

8. DNR service forester reviews, approves or disapproves (note: plans will not be approved for payment if there are outstanding omissions of required components).

9. If approved, DNR service forester forwards to the DNR stewardship coordinator for reimbursement to consultant forester.

10. If the plan is not approved, the consultant and the landowner are advised so that corrections can be made to qualify the plan.

11. Certified plan writer is reimbursed in accordance with guidelines.

“This program is a win-win-win for everyone – our forestlands, the landowners and future generations,” added Meyer.

 

For more information on connecting with a consultant forester and learning more about the program please contact Shawna Meyer, DNR Forest Stewardship coordinator, at 517-335-3355 or by email at meyers6@michigan.gov.


Minnesota

Tests reveal Silver Carp eDNA above Coon Rapids Dam in Mississippi River

The latest round of eDNA testing for Asian carp in the Mississippi River has yielded unexpected results, according to the Minnesota DNR.

 

Nineteen of the 48 water tests near the Coon Rapids Dam have tested positive for silver carp DNA, and three of the positive results are from above the dam. The highly sensitive tests are designed to detect DNA in the environment that comes from the mucus or excrement of invasive Asian carp. Although testing was done to detect DNA of two Asian carp species – bighead and silver – all positive results were for the leaping silver carp.

 

The Coon Rapids Dam, located upstream of the river’s lock and dam system, has been a significant fish barrier since it was upgraded in the 1970s, preventing a number of native species such as white bass from migrating upstream. DNR fisheries biologists are surprised by the positive eDNA results.

 

“We are investigating the likelihood of false positives or other sources of Asian carp DNA in the river,” said Tim Schlagenhaft, Mississippi River manager for the DNR. “A study being done in the Chicago area is providing insight into other potential sources of Asian carp DNA, where they have also been getting positive eDNA samples but have been unable to document the presence of live fish. The results of that study will help determine other potential sources of DNA in our waters. Until we can prove the DNA is from other sources, the risk is too high to assume live fish are not present.”

 

In recent years, the dam’s effectiveness as a fish barrier has figured prominently in the DNR’s strategy for keeping invasive Asian carp out of the Mississippi River north of the Twin Cities. The dam is about to undergo $16 million in repairs and upgrades in an effort to further improve its effectiveness as an Asian carp barrier. DNR officials said the improvements are still necessary to slow the upstream spread of Asian carp in the Mississippi River.

 

“The positive test results don’t change the fundamental goal of the state’s Asian carp action plan,” said DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr. “We must research and implement our available options to prevent or slow the movement of Asian carp upstream in our river systems, and to manage and control their populations should they become established.”

 

So far, most of the eDNA tests done on Twin Cities metro

area rivers have come back positive for silver carp, but

extensive netting efforts in the St. Croix and other parts of the Mississippi River this summer and fall have not yielded any of the elusive fish.

 

The netting results and ongoing commercial fishing in the Mississippi River further downstream suggest a very low population of invasive carp, said Schlagenhaft, so there is still time to implement strategies to slow their movements and keep population levels low.

 

Gov. Mark Dayton will hold his third Asian Carp summit Dec. 20 to discuss the state’s proposed actions on Asian carp.

 

The eDNA testing has been conducted by the Asian Carp Task Force, a consortium of local, state and federal agencies, along with local environmental groups, examining Asian carp risks and policies. When eDNA is detected, the group’s protocol is to deploy netting operations to look for Asian carp.

 

The DNR said it will hire a commercial fisherman to look for Asian carp below and above Coon Rapids Dam, as it has at other sites where the carp DNA has been detected.

 

The eDNA samples were collected last September. Test results are still pending for water samples collected in the Minnesota River and above the St. Croix Falls Dam on the St. Croix River.

Here are the test results for the St. Croix River and various sites on the Mississippi River. All positives were for Silver carp, there were no

 

Bighead carp samples testing positive:

• St. Croix River below St. Croix Falls – 22 out of 50 samples.

• Mississippi River below Ford Dam – 14 out of 52 samples.

• Mississippi River below Hastings Dam – 19 out of 62 samples.

• Mississippi River above Coon Rapids dam – 3 out of 19 samples.

• Mississippi River below the Coon Rapids dam – 16 out of 29 samples.

 

Bighead and silver carp are voracious eaters, capable of eating 5 to 20 percent of their body weight each day. Asian carp feed on algae and other microscopic organisms, often outcompeting for food with native fish. Scientists believe the fish could severely disrupt the aquatic ecosystems of Minnesota waters.


New York

NY to purchase 1200 acres of land in the Catskill Park

Big Indian acquisition protects important state forestland

New York state’s purchase of 1,200 acres of land on the eastern side of Belleayre Mountain, known as Big Indian, is expected to be completed later this week, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens announced today. The acquisition will expand the Catskill Park Preserve and further protect the New York City watershed.

                               

“The Big Indian acquisition preserves a major undeveloped geographic feature of the scenic Route 28 corridor in the heart of the Catskill Park,” Commissioner Martens said. “The property is an important natural resource for future public recreation and in protecting the New York City watershed. The completion of this acquisition protects the Catskill Park while allowing economic growth in the area.”

The $5.6 million used to purchase the land came from the Environmental Protection Fund (EPF). The property will be added to the constitutionally protected State Forest Preserve and will remain on local property tax rolls. This purchase fulfills a priority project area in the state’s Open Space Conservation Plan.

 

The purchase also completes a key element in a non-binding Agreement in Principle reached between the state, the City of New York, several environmental groups and Crossroads Ventures LLC in September 2007.  That agreement outlined a potential path forward to protect important lands in the New York City watershed and to allow for the potential future construction of a downsized private development project known as the Belleayre Resort at Catskill Park, as well as an expansion of the state’s Belleayre Mountain Ski Center.

 


Ohio

New Steelhead Big Fish Contest

Harbor Bair and Tackle located at 786 Richmond Street in Fairport Harbor (former D&W Bair) is conducting a Steelhead “Big Fish” this year. The contest is similar to

the popular contest run by the former Grand River Tackle and runs until March 31st. The entry fee is $15.

Each fish checked in gets awarded points based on the length and weight of the fish. There will be a 100 % payout


State Parks offer gifts and celebrations for happy holidays

Special rates on overnight stays add extra value

COLUMBUS, OH – Stressed holiday shoppers looking for great gift ideas or for a relaxing getaway for holiday cheer can turn to Ohio State Parks for convenient shopping solutions and overnight stays, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

An Ohio State Parks gift card is an appealing choice for anyone who likes to play outdoors or unwind in comfort. Gift cards may be redeemed for camping, getaway rentals, cottage rentals or overnight stays in Ohio’s scenic state park lodges. They may also be used for golfing at Ohio State Parks’ six public courses, boat rentals at some state park marinas, or food and merchandise purchases at one of the sites.

 

Available in any denomination of $5 or more, gift cards may be purchased on-line at www.ohiostateparks.org, at any state park office, or by calling 1-866-644-6727. Ohio State Parks merchandise is also available on-line for the convenience of gift givers who prefer to provide a wrapped package. Specialty apparel, books, toys, outdoor gear and nature themed items are offered through the on-line store. All profits from the sale of these items benefit Ohio State Parks.

 

Looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of the holiday season? A variety of seasonal promotions and discounted rates on overnight stays are offered through the winter at state park lodges and cottages. New Year’s Eve celebrations, along with specially priced theme weekends and family-friendly packages are scheduled at Deer Creek, Geneva, Hueston Woods, Maumee Bay, Mohican, Punderson, Salt Fork and Shawnee state park

lodges. Winter discounts of $20 off the regular nightly rate on Sunday through Thursday, and $10 off on Friday and   

Saturday are now available for the state park cottages at Buck Creek, Cowan Lake, Dillon and Pike Lake, and the discounts are offered January through March at Hocking Hills, Lake Hope, Mohican and Pymatuning. Information and reservations are available on the state parks website.

 

When you stay in Ohio State Park campgrounds or select cottages, you also earn points through the Ohio State Parks Rewards Card. Remember to request a Rewards Card and earn points toward a free stay during a future visit. 

 

And don’t forget about the following holiday events this month at your Ohio State Parks:

Now through January 2
Fantasy of Lights, Alum Creek (C) - 5:30-9:30 PM Sun. thru Thurs. and 5:30-10:30 PM Fri. & Sat. at the campground. A fee is charged per car. (740) 369-2900 or (740) 548-6056, or
www.alumcreek.com

December 17
Holiday Traditions Workshops, Caesar Creek (SW) - Sessions start at 10 AM and 2 PM at the nature center. Create holiday decorations and ornaments from natural materials. Pre-registration and a $12 fee required. (513) 897-2437

December 17
Holiday Raptor Invasion, Hueston Woods (SW) - Begins at 11 AM at the Hueston Woods Lodge. Educational raptor program with local birds of prey. (513) 524-4250.

The ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR Web site at www.ohiodnr.gov


Other Breaking News Items

(Click on title or URL to read full article)

 

CCRKBA applauds Walsh legislation to withhold U.N. funding

The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms today applauded Illinois Congressman Joe Walsh’s introduction of legislation to withhold funding from the United Nations and assuring that the United States does not adopt any treaty posing a threat to national sovereignty or that abridges the firearms rights of American citizens as guaranteed by the Second Amendment.

 

Report on waterway shipping decline fuels Asian carp debate
A federal report showing that cargo traffic on Chicago-area waterways has been flat or declining for 15 years was embraced by those who support closing locks or installing barriers to keep invasive species out of the Great Lakes


Efforts to bolster lake herring populations in Lake Huron may be stunted by deadly disease
Although Michigan officials want to bring lake herring back in Lake Huron, there’s a new concern – the fish are highly susceptibility to an emerging fatal disease: Viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus.

 

Invasive species wreaking havoc with salmon fishing in Lake Huron
As invasive species turn Lake Huron's food web on its head, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources is cutting its salmon stocking efforts by more than 50 percent.

 

Senator wants Canadian boater fee dropped

U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., introduced legislation that would prohibit the feds from charging new fees on Canadians who enter the United States by boat or plane.

Washington doesn't need to regulate rain

If the Supreme Court declines to review it, a recent ruling from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco will put federal courts into the business of managing every acre of privately owned timberland in America. Farmers beware. You could be next.

 

EPA defends ballast water proposal
The proposal beefs up equipment onboard cargo vessels, most of them ocean-going “salties,” so most foreign organisms in the ballast water are killed. People can submit comments to the EPA or go to public hearings in Washington or one in Chicago on January 23. The new rules would take effect in mid-December 2013.

 

NY sets hearings on water use regulations
New York regulators are holding public hearings this month on new permit rules for withdrawals of large amounts of water.

Great Lakes safer after Purdue studies data
A new method of visualizing data developed by Purdue University is helping the Coast Guard reduce deaths on the Great Lakes.

Great Lakes islands have unique wildlife, landscape and environmental challenges
Kraus, manager of conservation science and planning at the Nature Conservancy of Canada, worked on a report called Islands of Life, which measured the biodiversity of Great Lakes islands and the things that threaten it.

 

 

The opinions expressed here are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the GLSFC, its officers or staff. 

Reproduction of any material by paid-up members of the GLSFC is encouraged but appropriate credit must be given. 

Reproduction by others without written permission is prohibited.

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