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Study: Impact of Wolves on Minnesota Moose Greater Than Expected

November 17, 2014

Minnesota's wolf population seems to be having a bigger impact on the state's moose than previously anticipated.

A new study recently published in the Journal of Wildlife Management found that wolves may be a bigger factor in Minnesota's moose decline than experts previously believed. The study, authored by two adjunct professors at the University of Minnesota, David Mech and John Fieberg, concluded that there was a correlation between the number of wolves in moose territory and the population of the moose themselves. Following up on a previous study that also took into account climate changes, Mech and Fieberg said that...

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Suspected Cop Killer Caught in Pennsylvania, Hunting Bans Lifted

October 31, 2014

Eric Frein is now in police custody after two months on the run.

Update 11-3-2014: As of Friday evening, restrictions on hunting and trapping in the areas affected by the search had been lifted. For more than seven weeks, Eric Frein, 31, has been on the run in northeastern Pennsylvania after he is believed to have shot two State Police officers in September. Inch by inch, law enforcement officials from multiple agencies combed through the forests of Monroe and Pike Counties for Frein, who was described as a dangerous "survivalist" and armed with a rifle. The manhunt grew so intense that it prompted the state's Game Commission to...

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Wisconsin Leopold Fans Reflect as They Reenact “Good Oak” Chapter

October 30, 2014

Janice Penn, left, of Highbridge and John Olson of Ashland cut into the good oak with a crosscut saw.

When felling an old red oak by committee, you learn plenty about the tree, the land that nurtured it, and the animals, birds, and people who benefited from its long life. That was just one lesson learned when 18 hunters, tree-huggers, and other conservationists of various ages and backgrounds gathered October 4 in northwestern Wisconsin to re-create the “Good Oak” chapter from Aldo Leopold’s famous book, A Sand County Almanac. Leopold wrote the chapter after pulling and guiding a two-man crosscut saw through his lightning-killed oak north of Baraboo on the Wisconsin...

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Wisconsin Leopold Fans Reflect as They Reenact “Good Oak” Chapter

October 30, 2014

Janice Penn, left, of Highbridge and John Olson of Ashland cut into the good oak with a crosscut saw.

When felling an old red oak by committee, you learn plenty about the tree, the land that nurtured it, and the animals, birds, and people who benefited from its long life. That was just one lesson learned when 18 hunters, tree-huggers, and other conservationists of various ages and backgrounds gathered October 4 in northwestern Wisconsin to re-create the “Good Oak” chapter from Aldo Leopold’s famous book, A Sand County Almanac. Leopold wrote the chapter after pulling and guiding a two-man crosscut saw through his lightning-killed oak north of Baraboo on the Wisconsin...

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Video: 10-point Buck Rescued from Iowa Sinkhole

October 8, 2014

These three Iowans helped a 10-point buck escape from sinkhole.

Thanks to three young men coming home from a football game, a 10-point buck in Iowa has a chance to spend the fall somewhere other than a sinkhole. Eric Smorstad, Gavin Nimrod, and Dryton Meyer used some rope and a tractor to rescue an unfortunate buck last Friday night on Smorstad's family farm east of Decorah. Smorstad's father, who runs the farm, was the first to find the animal after the tractor nearly got stuck in the sinkhole itself. Seeing as how Smorstad and his friends were home from college, his father recruited them to haul the deer out. “It was hard to see; only three or four...

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Study: Efforts to Preserve Sage Grouse Also Benefit Mule Deer

October 7, 2014

Protecting grouse habitat also means protecting the habitat of other critters.

Researchers have found that conservation efforts for sage grouse in Wyoming may have benefited the local mule deer population as well. Scientists at the University of Wyoming, US Geological Survey, The Nature Conservancy, Western Ecoysystems Inc., and the University of Montana recently published a study confirming "umbrella" benefits stemming from grouse habitat conservation. Many conservationists have long argued that protective measures for sage grouse would benefit other species as well. "The study results are heartening, because they show that benefits of sage grouse conservation by...

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A Book Review: Beryl Markham’s ‘West with the Night’

September 29, 2014

Used copies of 'West With The Night' in good condition can be found for a reasonable price, much like this one that was purchased for just $1.50.

Did you read Beryl Markham’s book, West with the Night? She has written so well, and marvelously well, that I was completely ashamed of myself as a writer. I felt that I was simply a carpenter with words, picking up whatever was furnished on the job and nailing them together. But she can write rings around all of us who consider ourselves writers. -Ernest Hemingway (from a letter to Maxwell Perkins) First printed in 1942, Beryl Markham's West with the Night only sold moderately well despite stellar reviews. It was out of print for nearly four decades until rediscovered and...

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Study: Deer Respond to Cries of Human Babies

September 18, 2014

Scientists say that mule deer does display "altruistic" behavior, rushing to the aid of young animals in distress regardless of their species.

Human parents will instinctively respond to the cries of their child, so it is not so strange that other animals behave the same way toward their offspring. However, the distress call of a newborn fawn can also have the same effect on us, despite it being a member of a different species. It is something that we as humans like to attribute to our unique emphatic nature, but scientists recently discovered that some deer will also show the same protective tendencies toward human infants. These findings were the result of a study by researchers into interactions between mule deer and their...

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Strong Gun, Ammo Sales Benefit Wildlife as Firearms Industry Settles into “New Normal”

September 17, 2014

Since their creation, the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Programs have generated more than $15 billion for conservation projects. Thanks to high gun and ammo sales in 2013, this year's apportionment is the highest yet.

The firearms and ammunition industry is once again returning to normal after a busy and chaotic 2013. Manufacturers found themselves pressed by sky-high demand as customers stocked up on guns and ammo, causing visible shortages in items such as AR-15-style rifles and .22 LR ammo. According to statistics from the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), background checks in 2013 rose to a record 14.8 million as compared to 5.64 million in 2011. While last year may have been immensely profitable for the industry, it was also a shot in the arm for critical conservation projects across the...

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Deer and Tomatoes

September 4, 2014

"Living off the land," regardless of the degree to which outdoorsmen truly do it, is something that should always be valued.

Long ago, our forefathers---George Washington, Davy Crockett, Daniel Boone, Kit Carson, and so many others---could not conceive of the idea of a grocery store. A trading post was the closest they would ever come, but at that time the wheels of socioeconomic evolution were hardly set for supermarkets that allow us to buy everything from meat to butter. Today, we can still live off the land to a certain extent, though many, myself included, are spoiled by the ability to just ordering pizza when cooking seems too arduous a task. I hardly remember cleaning my first deer, though I know it was...

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