Tuesday, July 29, 2008

MO Spring Youth Turkey Hunt 2008 Video

This was our hunt we did along with MissouriWhitetails.com. Steve and and our young hunter Kelly joined Dad and me up at our farm near Lewistown MO. It was a cold and snowy weekend and we froze our butts off. We did get a couple toms in to about 60 yards but they just wouldn't commit to give Kelly a chance for a poke at them with his shotgun.

Camcorder was a Canon GL-2.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

SLAP CRAZY Award for this week

Every once in awhile I bump into someone who's wired just a bit different. What mortals quake in fear over these folks wade in with a goofy smile on their face. "They just ain't right", as one buddy describes them.

This week's award goes to this fella down in Louisiana doing hog depredation in a flooded rice field. He was new to the game and started out with a rifle and somehow ended up using a Cold Steel spear at night in close quarters. Did I mention he goes in barefoot? Wielding a spear is also tricky in that if you miss a vital spot you're holding on to one pissed off pig that is within easy striking distance.

All this in the dark in high grass so you can't see squat until you're on it. That takes some sand.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Take The Wood To These Folks, PLEASE!!!!

A recent article in the San Francisco Chronicle fish wrap by Tom Stienstra about a poacher busted with a bunch illegally taken game has me wondering when our courts systems will finally put the wood to these folks. The wrist slaps simply are not working.

At the recent California Fish & Game Commission meeting here in Upland CA the commissioners talked about raising the current fines and penalties for the commercial poachers since the current laws are not working to deter folks from raping our natural resources. I think the egregious poachers also need to be lumped in with the commercial poacher law change.

One simple violation like shooting too late would be just a small fine. If you get caught with multiple violations or are a repeat offender than they throw the book at you. Maybe a 2 strikes and you're out dealio. Wardens tell us the current fines are no deterrent when the poacher can make 10X the fine selling the poached game. The solution seems simple, raise the fines to where it really hurts and add in some mandatory jail time. That should get their attention for starters. The commission also talked raising the serious poaching cases to felony level. Whatever it takes, I've had a bellyful of seeing someone caught way WAY over the line and they get a simple $100 fine and back out they go to do it all over again.

I also think the guys poaching for trophy game should also be lumped into the harsher punishment category. Some states have already taken action to stop the trophy poachers with the Samson Law. This legislation significantly increases the penalties associated with the poaching of trophy big game animals. Heck, I'd vote for 1/2 hour with a belt sander being applied but I don't think that's going to fly

I believe the trophy poachers are the worst as they leave the headless animal to rot in the woods or field, many times in plain sight of a road where all can see. Dad and I found a headless whitetail like this near Swan Lake NWR several years back. It really left an empty feeling in me that someone could be so callous in regard to our wildlife and hunting traditions. They simply shot the buck from their vehicle, hopped out with a Sawzall and cut the head off and hopped back in and scrammed. Maybe took them 5 minutes to do their handywork.

What else can we do to stop this nonsense? Store your state's poaching tip line in your cellphone. If your state doesn't have a tip line ask them, "Why Not?" Carry a small digital camera with you in the field. If you see something that raises your suspicions take some pics. You don't need to confront the bad guys, just make the call and let the wardens and cops do their job. In some states they even offer rewards for the tips. You can remain anonymous and help weed out the dirtbags who steal from the community. We also need to educate and put pressure on our local district attorneys and judges who are the ones lowering the boom. Many times they don't understand the severity of these crimes and how they affect our image to the non hunting or fishing public.

What do you think? Are the current poaching laws and punishment fair or do you think we need to tighten the screw a bit? How does your state operate? Do they have a tip line?

P.S. That big whitetail buck above, he was poached on Swan Lake NWR in Missouri and the guy was caught. The mount is on display in the refuge office.

Friday, July 18, 2008

How To Fight The Antis, HSUS

Knowledge is power and this is a big club we can wield to beat back the anti rhetoric.


Sportsmen Against HSUS Fund Issues Fact Sheet


(Columbus) - A new fact sheet that details the dangers of the nation's largest and most active anti-hunting group is available from the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance.

The educational fact sheet is part of the organization's Sportsmen Against HSUS Campaign, designed to educate sportsmen and sportswomen, elected officials, media decision makers and the public at large about the nation's largest animal rights group.

"Thousands of people each year donate millions of dollars to the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) without truly knowing where their money is going," said U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance Senior Vice President Rick Story. "Our idea is to give sportsmen the information they need to understand the dangers of the HSUS and its anti-hunting agenda and to pass the information on to friends and family."

New members of the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance will receive a copy of the HSUS FACT SHEET. Memberships start at $25. Click here, or go to http://www.ussportsmen.org and click on Join Now to become a U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance member.

Also, sportsmen who contribute one dollar to the fund will receive a fact sheet about HSUS that details the organization's anti-hunting programs, its annual funding and other important facts. Money collected will be used exclusively to continue the battle against the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and its animal rights campaign.

The Sportsmen Against HSUS drive will also fund campaigns that combat the public policy threats initiated and supported by the HSUS. The HSUS lobbying machine claims to have played a role in getting 86 different state laws passed in 2007 alone.

Sportsmen who wish to receive the FACT sheet or to otherwise contribute to the Sportsmen Against HSUS Fund may send their contribution to Sharon Hayden, Communications Assistant, U.S. Sportsmen's Aliance, 801 Kingsmill Parkway, Columbus, OH, 43229.

The U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance is a national association of sportsmen and sportsmen's organizations that protects the rights of hunters, anglers and trappers in the courts, legislatures, at the ballot, in Congress and through public education programs. For more information about the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance and its work, call (614) 888-4868 or visit its website, http://www.ussportsmen.org

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Each spring brings the young kids of our planet out, it's always a joy to watch the newbies find their legs and explore their new found world.

I first saw these California Valley Quail as they crossed the road in the foothills of Claremont CA. Mom and dad were easy to see but the little fuzzballs looked like Morse Code dots, scrawling across the pavement like on a ticker tape.

"Wow, they're just lil guys" I thought to myself. Maybe a late 2nd hatch.

The covey was too fast for me to catch in the road with my Canon GL-2 camcorder so I parked and waited to see if they would come back out of the Catclaw bushes where they had disappeared.

Since it was feeding and scratchin time it wasn't long before they popped back out for some tasty seeds and bugs.

Man are them lil goobers fast with such short legs. I tried to count the chicks and got maybe 12 to 14. See how many feathered pinballs you get. I figure Mr. Hawk and Mr. Bobcat have already glommed a quail cheeseburger or two so this hatch was close to 16 maybe? Not much to chew on though, more like popcorn shrimp for a large predator or raptor.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

A Deal's A Deal,,,,, Right?

I saw this issue many moons ago posted on one of the turkey hunting forums. A woman who had just lost her husband was having a yard sale and was selling a high dollar turkey call from a well know callmaker for $10. The call was worth several hundred. The person had bought the call and never mentioned the ridiculously low price to the lady. It was obvious he had taken her pretty bad. Several members called the call buyer out and asked why he hadn't let the poor woman know about her mistake. She obviously needed the money as she was on fixed income and had no real way to judge the value of the call. This was before most folks were on the Internet.

The buyer mentioned the seller should have done her homework and a "deal was a deal." He claimed he was under no obligation to let her know of the value before he paid for the call. Granted the seller needs to make sure they are asking a fair price but in this case the elderly lady had just lost her husband and was in dire straits.

Should we be that uncaring in that we can nick someone when they do not have their normal wits about them? Is a deal a deal no matter what? Is there any wiggle room for special cicrumstances or do we cast out those who break a deal. How was it in the movie Thunderdome, "Bust a deal,,, face the wheel?"

What say ye? Every been in on a deal like this or had someone welch on a deal after they realized they had listed the selling price wrong. How did you work it out? Did it leave a bad taste in your mouth?

Say, how much you want for that pistol on your belt there?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Wild Wild Web, YouTube & Dinosaurs

They say dinosaurs faded out when they failed to adapt to changes on the planet here. Today I see the same thing happening with the Internet and the current dinosaurs who say "I don't get the Internet". How could you not get the Internet? It's like a huge library at your grubby finger tips. You can research a lodge for a fishing trip, check out pics to see what a jaguarundi really looks like and so much more. What kid didn't stare in wonder the first time they walked into the school library, all that info and such a short a time to cram it into our small melons.

Fast forward to the video age on the web today, online video is so dominant I'm thinking about turning off my DirectTV satellite. I can get all my hunting shows now on MyoutdoorTV.com. I watch the local news channels OTA (Over The Air), you know, the old TV antenna on the roof setup except now it's a digital HDTV feed to the big screen. It's all free too once you buy the HDTV tuner box. Who needs Sat TV anymore, especially at $100+ plus a month if you get the better packages? The only real channels I'll miss is my hockey which I can now watch on the laptop too.

Oh and about those dinosaurs, I recently bumped into a couple who questioned the free videos I shot of their company youth event and posted on YouTube. A few members of this companies' board were moaning the fact my YouTube video was ranked #3 in a Google search for their event and they were talking of having me pull the video. I had a verbal go ahead to film but some of the board members were not in the loop and had some heartburn over the videos. You'd have to be a fool to turn down free Google 1st page ranking like that promoting your product, especially when the video was geared to the younger generation which this company wants to attract. The company had filmed a commercial and some other video for TV broadcast at this same event but how many teens do you see sitting in front of a TV now days? It's the computer, Ipod or cellphone mostly that I see the kids paying attention to.

The links that are created with these videos and the websites that these links are posted on are what makes the web go round. It's the glue that holds this magic all together. So much so Google ranks linkage and the traffic on those links very high in the indexing of a website. The more links you have to high traffic websites the more golden you are, literally. For the small mom & pop companies this is the edge they need to get noticed, their foot in the door of the outdoor market. With a $500 camcorder, some $100 editing software and a decent computer you can produce your own promotional videos or "how to" video blogs (Vblogs).

I guessing if you're reading this you get the Internet but how many of your family or friends don't get the wild wild web? What are their reasons?

Have you embedded lately?

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Tactical2Practical Stuntwoman Shoot Piru CA

Part 2 of this video series has the famous Cowboy Action Shooter "Tequila" covering the .38 single action pistol and pump shotgun used in CAS (Cowboy Action Shooting).

Tactical2Practical was a Stuntwomen's Association Of Motion Pictures shooting seminar held in November 2004 at the ISI range in Piru CA. All types of weaponry, from handguns to full auto machine guns to antique cowboy rifles are taught, as well as police, SWAT, and military tactics. The seminar is taught by world and national champion competition shooters, elite police and military trainers, as well as Olympic gold medalists.

The seminar is by invitation only to elite members of the stunt community.

More info about the Stuntwomen's Association Of Motion Pictures

More info on guns and how to shoot at our Gun forum at


Part 3

More CAS single action pistol, lever action rifle and shotgun.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Goobermint Run Amok

Brace yourself, this one's as painful as watching a 2 year old get a splinter removed. It's complete with the same caterwauling and foot stomping.

Most of the states now have online licensing where you can walk into many stores and buy your hunting or fishing licenses. Eazy, peazy, Japanezy. You'd think California, being the high tech hotbed we are, would be one of the first states to adopt this time and money saving system. But Nooooooo. We're are currently in year 13 of trying to get the ALDS (Automated License Data System) up and running.

At the June 26th 2008 California Fish & Game Commission meeting the ALDS project manager gave the commission the current sitrep. It was brutal. Commissioner Daniel Richards called the current ALDS situation a "trainwreck". The project was started in 1995 and the DFG is still getting excuses from the contractor, Outdoor Central Inc., on why they can't perform. They don't even have a date for delivery yet, maybe 2010 is the new guess. The commission is JUST NOW asking for milestones from the contractor.


From what I can gather the commission does not have performance bonds on this contract, something that is standard practice in the business world to prevent this kind of mess. In my opinion it's high time to fire the contractor and sue them for non performance.

Link to Commission video If you want to view the debacle it's at the 2 hour 54 minute mark.

I know some coders you could supply pizza to for 2 months who could hammer this online system out. I'm still digging trying to find out how much of our money DFG has peed away down this black hole.

Some of the commissioners mentioned Idaho and Oregon having up and running systems and wondered why California is so behind. ALDS project manager Reyes said the contractor first tried to piggyback on the code they already have up and running for other states but then they had a management loss and upheaval. Then the contractor decided the piggyback wasn't going to work and because CA is soooooo different we need "special" code written for us special folks.

The final insult to injury was hearing the contractor has only "about" 25% of the "special" code done according to DFG. Reyes looked looked like a deer caught in the headlights at the commission meeting. "I'm holding their feet to the fire", Reyes said when asked what was being done to correct the problem.

"A pig in poke is what we got heruh", as my grandpa would say.

Do you have online licensing in your state? If you do how long have you had it? Do you like it or not?