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Lake life

Hot Topics in the woods

Screen Shot 2015-09-07 at 6.49.31 PMThere’s no mistake about it. The hot topics around four-wheelers and deer stands (the water coolers of the woods you might say) right now are not trophy deer. Here’s my top ten from the past week or so:

  1. Bears — they seem to be everywhere, knocking down feeders, tromping through piles of deer corn (I mean BEAR corn) and even climbing into stands and chewing up deer stand chairs. The bad news is there are no natural predators for them anywhere. This will get worse. Don’t eat candy in your deer stand. Or HONEY buns….They will find you… I’ll comment more on this later, but on with the list.
  2. Snakes — a close second. This order could flip flop with No. 1 for individual hunters based on how close they haveScreen Shot 2015-09-07 at 5.33.27 PM come to one or the other. Snakes are a way of life in the woods, but Union Parish has more than its share. I guess it’s because we have more than our share of woods, too. The only place I like to see a snake is crossing a gravel road while you are in your truck, where you can run over it. Like Peyton McKinnie did with the one pictured here yesterday.
  3. Hogs — oh my…wild hogs have gone hawg wild. They are everywhere. Why don’t  the bears eat hogs? Or why can’t the hawgs at least stay up in Arkansas during football season. Soooiiieeeeee!
  4. Run over deer — I’ve seen photos of at least three huge bucks, one still in velvet that looked like a 14 point a few weeks ago, that would have won any big buck contest and make any taxidermist proud to mount them. The only thing–they had been run over by cars. Big cars, I hope, because if little cars hit these, it wasn’t pretty.
  5. Standing your ground — Finally, something good! It’s always fun to get deer stands in shape, or move a new one in to your favorite spot or a new location. Deer stands are popping up everywhere and we are now seeing more deer stands on trailers behind pickup trucks than bass boats.
  6. Rain — It’s so dry you can’t even see a deer track. Important early season deer browse like French mulberry is wilting up and dying. Some deer in my neighborhood have compensated by eating rose buds and butterfly bush blooms out of my wife’s flowerbeds.  For the more stealthy hunters, they have figured out how to spot deer trails despite the conditions. You just get low and look around the edges of the thickets. There’s a thick cover of about a month’s worth of dust on the leaves of plants and underbrush where deer have kicked it up while walking the trails. No kidding. Okay, I am kidding.
  7. Bow season — here’s another good one. Bow season opens on October 1 and that will be here before you know it. We’re seeing a lot more of those styrofoam targets going up in the backyards. Target practice.Screen Shot 2015-09-07 at 6.32.57 PM
  8. Straight outta  . . . — okay, I stole this one from the Buck Report Union Parish Facebook page. Check out the page. Most folks are getting low on a food staple for this part of the country. Straight outta… Fresh venison. Or fresh frozen venison (as they call “fresh” things in the supermarket when they are 11 months old ..????)  Editor’s note: In case you aren’t up on your rap music, this is a takeoff on the group NWA, which is from the tough streets of the hood in Compton in Los Angeles, California. Their music is “straight outta Compton…”) 
  9. Trick or Treat deer — That’s right, the gun season in Area 2 of Louisiana opens on October 31 this year. That covers most of our immediate area. It’s usually in November. Looks like lots of people will be out looking for early morning treats dressed in camo on Halloween this year.
  10. I hope you get a ticket — No, really. I hope you get a ticket this deer season. Not from the Game Warden. From the Union Parish Chamber of Commerce. The second annual Union Parish Big Buck contest is selling tickets for $10 each. Money goes to promote outdoor activities in Union Parish. The winner of the biggest buck in the parish that has purchased a ticket BEFORE he or she goes to the woods wins $1,000. Last year a couple of deer were killed that would have won — but no ticket. Lots more prizes, too. See, I was being nice. I do hope you get a ticket. We’ll have more on this in the next few weeks.

big buck


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Dusty Gates, Union Parish Sheriff

Bastrop – Morehouse Chamber of Commerce

BnM Fishing


Road Runner Lures

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