JERRY DAVIS For Lee Sports Wisconsin
There are things here for everyone who wants to take advantage of great fall weather, outdoor opportunities, happiness and healthy living.
Bob Nack, a longtime wildlife biologist with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, is now the supervisor of the Wisconsin R-3 Natural Resources program. The three R’s are recruitment, retention and reactivation of hunters, fishermen, trappers and shooting sports.
R-3, a national movement, focuses on maintaining and increasing participation in outdoor areas. Learn to Hunt programs, a part of R-3, were part of the DNR effort before R-3 was launched in Wisconsin. By title, we all fall into one of those R’s, like revival, if we stop taking the time to enjoy the splendor of autumn changing the leaves and then peeking out.
Most are members of Retention R who have been actively involved in deer hunting since last Saturday, using a bow, crossbow and I guess even a camera or truck to drive down country lanes and watch the deer now dressed in velvet .
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And finally, recruitment, the initiation of young hunters, usually begins by participating in any one of dozens of outdoor activities.
Nack reminds us that getting outdoors is a good thing, physically and mentally. “He also makes great memories and great traditions, including getting together with friends for a squirrel hunt or one last shoot at the creek and brown trout before closing on October 15.
Bret Schultz is clearly in a retention stage and doesn’t need much help fishing for trout to stay there fishing from January 1 of any year through October 15 when inland trout season ends.
“Grasshoppers should be good flies until well frozen and even then the fish know what a grasshopper is or at least food,” Bret said. “Stream levels are good; the water is clear and the nights are cooler, so I try to dive a bit deeper. It’s still a jungle out there and will be throughout the season.
Brook trout are likely to look a bit brighter before spawning. The fishing window is smaller, from noon to 4 pm, like last April.
“He’s starting to relax and a little wistful thinking that the 15th is over until January. But there is a garden and a lawn to plant,” she said. “And January 1 is not that far away, so it’s time to fix some mistakes.”
Those who have been pushing the fall a bit or hunting bears up north have seen a few grouse, but most are saving bird hunting in Chequamegon through October. Bear hunting has been good.
Sturgeon fishermen continue to pour into parts of the Wisconsin River, where Wally Bamfi at Wilderness Fish and Game has recorded seven fish, the largest 66.25 inches, weighing 63 pounds. Musks continue to chase lures, he said.
License sales have finally picked up, as seasons continue to open. Young duck season last weekend brought some young hunters to Gov. Dodge and set off with some birds. The South Zone duck regular season begins on October 1 and the first division is from October 10 to 14.
Doug Williams at the DW Sports Center in Portage says it’s starting to smell fall and seeing a few more colors in the flowers and berries. Acorns, walnuts and walnuts are starting to fall.
Without sending all deer hunters in the same direction, Williams often starts with public land and says asking to hunt on private land should start at the time farmers are planting or cutting first-crop hay. Some farmers also appreciate a helping hand during harvest time.
Even with major archery deer, wild turkey, squirrel and grouse openings, license outlets still don’t have hard copies of the Wisconsin Hunting Regulations brochure. However, it is available on the DNR website. The season forecast booklet is also on the website and will not be printed on paper.
Autumn colors continue to show well in the flowers of goldenrod, bottle gentian, Joe-pye grass, asters, sunflowers, corn, tobacco and soybean fields and numerous fruits including grapes, honeysuckle, bittersweet and rose hips, giving viewers purple, blue, orange. and red colors.
Wild cucumber fruits are beginning to ripen.
Common hitchhiking plant parts are mostly ready to grab a shirt, gloves, pants, and boot laces.
Most of the ginseng berries have dropped, but the leaves are starting to turn yellow, making the plants stand out even without the red berries.
Maitake (hen-of-the-woods), sulfur rack (chicken-of-the-woods), puffballs, and golden oyster mushrooms are harvested and preserved, primarily by freezing and drying.
It’s not too soon to start stocking your bird feeders. Consider picking up some walnuts and hickory nuts to crack and throw at squirrels to keep them away from bird feeders. Nut meats do not need to be shelled unless they are being held for human consumption.