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Alabama Native Recounts Catching Record Gator

August 21, 2014

Team members are: (from left) Mandy Stokes, John Stokes, Parker Jenkins, Savannah Jenkins and Kevin Jenkins. The 15-foot gator weighed 1,011.5 pounds.

At 5 p.m. on Friday, Mandy Stokes of Thomaston, Alabama, was a wife, mom, and assistant to Dr. Bill Bledsoe at the Camden Veterinary Clinic. Less than 24 hours later, Stokes was an instant, multi-national celebrity. Stokes admits she had no idea what she was getting into during the second night of the Alabama alligator hunting season and, especially, the media feeding frenzy that started when word began to circulate about the 15-foot, 1,011.5-pound alligator that she tagged in the wee hours of this past Saturday morning in a slough near Miller’s Ferry Dam on the Alabama River. “I...

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Seven Questions with Huntress Julie McQueen

August 21, 2014

julie mcqueen hunter

Julie McQueen is the co-host of Brotherhood Outdoors and a producer for Backstage & Backroads Productions. Her passion for hunting and sharing the outdoors with others is evident from her on-camera time and social media pages. I recently had the pleasure of speaking with Julie about her favorite kind of hunting, superpowers, and working side-by-side with her husband. Britney: Please tell us a little about your background in the outdoors. Who introduced you to hunting and fishing? Julie: I grew up on an Indian reservation in Oklahoma where there are plenty of...

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The BAREBOW! Chronicles: Chasing Dreams

August 20, 2014

29 rd 2

In 1989, I was fortunate enough to draw a Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep tag in my home state of Washington. This BAREBOW! Chronicle combines two different stories from BAREBOW!’s 14th chapter. Both misadventures occurred on the same unsuccessful hunt, yet both are worth telling. The Umtanum Unit for which I was drawn was an archery-only unit, and it straddled most of both sides of the Yakima River, from Ellensburg to a point about 10 miles downstream, through what’s known as the Ellensburg Canyon. Most of the rugged cliffs along the river were on the south bank, so that was...

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Video: Leopard Forgets How to Ambush Warthog

August 19, 2014

leopard ambush

Not every hunt in the animal kingdom ends with a successful harvest. Even predators as fearsome as the leopard have their off-days, and sometimes they simply mess up. A video posted on YouTube by Kruger Sightings shows what should have been a pretty one-sided ambush between a leopard and his prey. After almost two minutes of stalking, the cat makes its move and, well, something obviously went wrong. It may be that the warthog was larger---and much more intimidating---than the leopard expected, or it simply lost interest. Whatever the case, the video is worth a watch. This footage was...

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USDA Announces Farm Bill Funding for Increased Access, Wildlife Conservation

August 18, 2014

A supplementary $20 million will go towards increasing access and improving wildlife habitat as part of the 2014 Farm Bill.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently announced an additional $20 million in grants to increase access for hunters and anglers, protecting wildlife, and enhancing business opportunities for rural economies. The funding comes as a part of the US Department of Agriculture's Voluntary Public Access and Habitat Incentive Program (VPA-HIP), which was authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill. "The funds we are announcing today will empower state and tribal governments to partner with landowners in their areas to enhance outdoor recreation opportunities, protect at-risk wildlife, and spur new...

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Get Yourself More Hunting Land in Five Easy Steps

August 18, 2014

Be sure to make the fact that you appreciate the opportunity to hunt on someone else's land well-known to the landowner. Image by Scott Roduner.

It’s coming up on that time of year again---when we spend more time in a treestand than we do at a desk (or at least wish that we did). I don’t know about you, but last year was not that great for me when it came to deer hunting. I had deer around, but they just didn’t ever seem to cooperate. Don’t they want to just hop right in the freezer? This year I’ve decided to expand my hunting opportunities by securing some new hunting land. There’s a few ways to go about doing this, and I’ve got my work cut out for me. Do you want to gain access to more hunting land, too? Sure you do!...

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Quebec Welcomes Hunters with Open Arms and Garbage Bags

August 18, 2014

For the discerning bird hunter, Quebec has a lot to offer.

What’s your pleasure? Puddle ducks? Geese? Ruffed grouse? Woodcock? Sea ducks? Whichever, the days are quickly ticking off the calendar. Prime time will soon be here. Do you have your hunts booked for this fall? My own dance card is pretty full, but as I seek to plan hunts for the gaps, my starting point is the Quebec Outfitters Federation website. They are the best place to connect you with the province’s finest operations. Though I’m a Midwesterner born and bred, Quebec has become a hunting home away from home for me over the years....

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Energy for Hunters: HuntNdurance

August 11, 2014

The author, left, and Brennan Waller found this big whitetail set while hunting bears in Montana's backcountry.

As we walked through the aisles at the International Sportsman’s Expo (ISE) this year, we checked out the latest and greatest products coming to market. Jana and I had traveled from Montana to Salt Lake City, Utah to meet and greet the thousands of ISE attendees at the Sportsman Channel’s booth. Over the three-day event we visited with many manufacturers, who had the latest gadgets they were bringing to market. Halfway into the show we were headed to grab a bite to eat when we came upon a vendor that had a super-cool display featuring new energy drinks, bars, and shots. We were both...

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Hunting Michigan’s Seven Wetland Wonders

August 11, 2014

Some of Michigan’s Managed Waterfowl Hunting Areas are best suited to goose hunts, while others favor ducks of many species. However, all can be found at each unit. Image by Derrek Sigler.

To waterfowl hunters, there are some historic destinations that fill dreams and top bucket lists. While it's well-known for excellent deer hunting and amazing fishing, Michigan is also home to some amazing waterfowl hunting action. What’s better still are the outstanding Managed Waterfowl Hunt Areas that make up the Great Lake State's Seven Wetland Wonders. Unlike deer hunting, some of the best action hunters can find for waterfowl is on public land. Establishing in the 1960s and early 1970s, the Managed Waterfowl Hunt Areas offer a diverse array of hunting opportunities and...

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Why a New Shooter’s First Shotgun Should Be a Semiauto

August 10, 2014

Though single-shots and pumps are usually the go-to picks for an outdoor mentor to outfit a new shooter, the author feels semiautomatics are, in fact, the way to go. Image © National Shooting Sports Foundation, Inc.

My first shotgun was a single-shot hammer gun, a hand-me-down from my mother. Dad bought it for her while they were dating, and though they hunted together a few times, Mom never caught the fever. She loved the dogs. She loved walking in the autumn fields, but shooting stuff---not so much. A couple outings quenched her curiosity of what her fiancée found "fun" in all this, and she never touched the gun again. Today, I work part-time at a small sporting goods store, mostly to get out of the house and to maintain measure on the pulse of what real hunters and shooters are buying. Usually,...

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