If you have bird houses or nesting boxes at your residence, now’s a good time to check them so see if they need repair and to clean them out before spring arrives. Incoming birds won’t nest on old nest material that may have mites, bugs or even mice in them.
If you don’t have any boxes but would like to enjoy seeing the spring arrivals such as colorful bluebirds, it would be a great time to either buy or build a box/house or two.
A huge opportunity is knocking for Pennsylvania’s student archers, say the folks from the National Archery in Schools Program.
The 2019 NASP state tournament is set to be held Friday, March 8 in State College. It’s shaping up to be the biggest student archery tournament ever in Pennsylvania, according to NASP.
Individuals and teams have all shot a qualifying score at one of the many state qualifying matches being held over the last few months. The top-scoring teams and individuals have earned an invite to the state championships.
Pennsylvania’s final bear harvest figures are in and the take was down for the 2018 seasons. This pales in comparison to the state’s top harvest of 4,350 recorded for the 2011 season.
The 2018 season breakdown shows 2,017 were shot during the general firearms season; 699 in the extended season; and 424 during the archery season and 12 in the early season.
Mother Nature has not been kind to ice fishermen this season. With up and down temperatures and weekly rain, ice thickness is dangerously thin in certain local waters.
According to local bait and tackle shops, the best bet is to head north to the Poconos.
If you’re a bird watcher and maintain feeders at your residence, it’s likely your major complaint are feeder robbers.
Yes, those gray, furry, bushy-tailed thieves can, in jiffy, wipe out your feeders stocked with sunflower seeds, peanut hearts, corn or bird seed. But oftentimes squirrels can provide hilarious moments as they attempt to figure out how to rob so-called squirrel-proof feeders, and when they perform other antics. And sometimes they even lose their grip and fall.
When hard-crusted snow covers the ground, wildlife have a tough time finding food. Deer in particular have trouble finding suitable forage. As such, many well-meaning folks put out bagged corn or grain. While commendable as it appears, their graciousness is only harming the species.
According to the Pennsylvania Game Commission, artificially feeding deer in the winter is the best way to kill a large number of deer in a small area in a short time. The problem, says the PGC, is that a deer’s diet cannot be rapidly changed in winter without damage to its digestive system.
It’s the largest consumer outdoor show in the country. And it gets underway Saturday, Feb. 2 and runs until Feb. 10 at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg. To many sportsmen in the Lehigh Valley, this show is commonly known as the Harrisburg Show, despite it’s new name of The Great American Outdoor Show.
Hosted by the NRA and Ram trucks, this year’s super show will feature over 200 seminars, 1,100 exhibits, over 400 hunting/fishing outfitters from around the world, equipment dealers including the top firearms manufacturers, ATVs, SUVs, trucks and boats.
With the major portion of the deer hunting seasons about over, our annual deer-take survey from local deer processors and a taxidermy shop shows a healthy population of 8-point bucks, a favorable accomplishment since antler restrictions went into effect in Pennsylvania.
Within an hours drive of the Lehigh Valley, some of the best smallmouth bass fishing can be had in the Susquehanna River that runs past Harrisburg. And in a pair of recent reports, Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) biologists concluded that the Susquehanna River is home to a healthy, abundant population of smallmouth bass and channel catfish.
For those of you who struck out on getting a buck or doe over the past archery, muzzleloader and rifle deer seasons, you get another chance when the season reopens for archery and flintlock muzzleloader statewide on the traditional post Christmas seasons. Those seasons run Dec. 26-Jan. 12. If you hunt in WMUs 2B, 5C and 5D, that season runs from Dec. 26-Jan. 26, 2019.
The extended firearms season also kicks off Dec. 26 and runs until Jan. 26, 2019, but only for antlerless deer and in Allegheny, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties.