No one in Kermit Wick’s immediate family was surprised when he wanted to celebrate his 101st birthday this week by hopping on his snowmobile and heading out onto a frozen Sweeney Lake for a little ice fishing. ”This is the greatest sport that ever was, I’ll tell you,” said Wick as he sat on the sled clutching his ice fishing rig. “I was fishing since I was four years old.” That would make 97 years. KARE-TV.
So far this hunting season, Ohio deer hunters have donated more than 104,100 pounds of venison (approximately 416,400 meals) to local food banks, according to Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry (FHFH) and the Ohio Division of Wildlife. At this time last year, 95,500 pounds of venison had been donated. ODNR.
When the folks from the McClain County (Oklahoma) Operation Christmas organization opened their storage unit to retrieve the toys they intended to distribute to needy families and children this holiday season, they discovered that the pungent scent of skunk spray permeated the room—and $16,000 worth of toys. Volunteers have tried using Fabreeze and other deodorizing products, but the stench remains, reports the Purcell Register and AP.
With at least seven separate raccoon attacks on humans or pets reported in Alameda, CA since June, the latest incident sent two dogs to the veterinarian when 4 raccoons entered a home through an unlocked doggy door at 3 a.m. Thursday. According to the Oakland Tribune, a 9-year-old Labrador mix suffered bites and cuts on its lip and face, while a 5-year-old Chihuahua mix was bitten on the face and back.
Genetic testing has confirmed a 104-pound canine shot by a hunter in Carroll County opening day of Missouri’s firearms deer season was an unusually large coyote and not a wolf or wolf-hybrid, according to the Missouri Department of Conservation.
With much of the attention to livestock depredations in Montana focused on wolves, data from USDA’s Wildlife Services indicate a dramatic increase in livestock deaths from coyotes, grizzly bears, black bears and mountain lions. Coyotes killed 1,348 calves in 2010, up from 111 in 2006; along with 2,488 lambs and 422 adult sheep this year, compared to 698 lambs and 135 adult sheep in 2006. The Helena I-R.
JOHANNESBURG – An acclaimed outdoorsman who wrote movingly about testing himself against nature is presumed dead after a crocodile snatched him from his kayak while he led an American expedition from the source of the White Nile into the heart of Congo. Read more
Do not mess with old men. What were these guys thinking? Police in Stockton, Calif. say a 67-year-old man trimming trees behind a Safeway store used his chainsaw to defend himself against an alleged armed assailant whose handgun misfired. The Stockton Record reports the intended victim grabbed his chainsaw and chased the gunman—described as a 20- to 25-year-old black man in a hooded sweatshirt—until he was out of sight.
The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports today that Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., has announced that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has agreed to remove the gray wolf population in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan from the federal endangered species list by the end of next year. The population of gray wolves in the Upper Midwest stands at about 4,000, with about 75 percent of them in Minnesota.
Sometimes, it pays to look before you leak. That was the case this week when an Edmond, OK woman called 911 to report a squirrel swimming in her bathroom toilet. Asked by the emergency dispatcher to identify the wet critter, the caller replied: “Well, it’s gray. That’s all I can tell you. I didn’t look real good because it scared me to death!” Police responding to the scene captured the soaked squirrel and released it in a nearby park. KFOR.
RENO, Nev. (AP) — Federal wildlife biologists have confirmed sightings of two more Sierra Nevada red foxes that once were thought to be extinct. Scientists believe the foxes are related to another that was photographed this summer near Yosemite National Park. More importantly, they say, DNA samples show enough diversity in the Sierra Nevada red foxes to suggest a “fairly strong population” of the animals may secretly be doing quite well in the rugged mountains about 90 miles south of Reno. Read more
This week, Utah state representative Carl Wimmer (R-Herriman), announced he plans to introduce a measure to designate the model 1911 .45 cal. ACP pistol invented by Utah native John Moses Browning 100 years ago as the Official State Firearm when the legislature convenes in January. Salt Lake Tribune.
BEND, Ore. (AP) — An elk hunter is recovering after spending four days and three nights stranded in a central Oregon forest with just a small bag of beef jerky to sustain him. KTVZ-TV reports 48-year-old Alan Hewitt, of Prineville, Ore., went elk hunting on horseback on Thanksgiving but was injured in a fall. Read more
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Abu Dhabi police say an airline passenger carried a bag filled with snakes and other animals on an eight hour flight with him from Indonesia to the United Arab Emirates. The menagerie, including four snakes, two parrots and a squirrel inside a box, was found in the transit area at Abu Dhabi’s airport last week. Read more
A whitetail buck crashed through a picture window of an Accokeek, MD home and proceeded to wreak havoc from the kitchen to the living room for an estimated 15 minutes before it was shot and killed by neighbor Richard DePhillip. “He tore the house up,” said DePhillip. “You’d think a demolition derby went through (it).” NBC Washington.
In a story some supporters of Western wolf reintroduction may find hard to swallow, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is reporting a federally protected Mexican gray wolf found dead in Southwestern New Mexico in October likely died of an intestinal rupture caused by a plastic ear tag commonly used on grazing cattle in the region. Via AP.
At least 60 people have died across Europe during the current cold snap, as snow plagued transport in Britain on Friday and serious flooding prompted mass evacuations in the Balkans.
Seventeen people died in Central Europe in the last 24 hours from the cold, bringing the total this week to 45. A further 11 died in Russia, plus three in France and one in Germany, according to local authorities.
At least 30 people, mainly homeless men, have died in Poland in the past week, and temperatures dropped to minus 15 degrees Celsius (five degrees Fahrenheit) overnight.
Temperatures plunged to minus 20 degrees Celsius (minus four Fahrenheit) in Braemar, Scotland, while Britain struggled to get back to its feet after days of transport chaos.
London’s Gatwick airport reopened on Friday after a two-day shutdown due to snow, but others including London Heathrow and Glasgow warned of more cancellations and delays.
Many trains were cancelled due to snow and travel by road was slow going, and around 2,000 schools remained closed.
Despite Gatwick finally clearing the runways, freezing fog meant flights would be limited and “delays and cancellations inevitable”, Europe’s eighth-busiest passenger airport said.
“It is likely to take a few days before flight schedules return to normal.” Read more
Under regulations implemented by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration this week, anglers in New Jersey, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands will now be required to pay a $15 fee to support of the National Saltwater Angler Registry. While 22 coastal states have existing saltwater licenses or established collection systems, those two states and federal jurisdictions did not. The Star-Ledger.
A deer hunter in Harrison County, Ohio killed a 225-pound male black bear in apparent self-defense on opening day of the state’s firearms deer season after it reportedly charged him. The Ohio Division of Wildlife has not named the hunter, but announced the incident is under investigation. D’Arcy Egan in the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
West Virginia is a state where multiple public schools still have holidays for the opening of firearms deer hunting season. That said, it should come as no surprise that Jessi Pierson, who currently serves a Miss West Virginia, is as comfortable wearing camouflage as she is wearing her tiara. WSAZ reports. Hat tip to John McCoy.