Conditions Are Grave ….

Sorry for the lapse in writing; I’ve missed you.  However, conditions with my

Things Aren't Improving; A New Hospital May Help

 

brother have gotten worse … with no improvement in sight.

The most worrying thing is that my mother is 86 years of age and she has to discuss everything with the doctor because she is ‘next-of-kin. ‘  It is taking quite a toll on her.

My brother will be transferred to a new hospital soon; we pray for some change.

Marylouise

Published in: on November 6, 2011 at 8:51 pm  Comments Off  

Camp Cooking: Some Lunch Tips

Lunch is often a quick meal because campers are busy with other activities. Here are a few quick tips!

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Some Quick Tips for Lunch While Camping

  • Don’t make camping lunches the night before.
  • Substitutes for a sandwich:  a couple of hard-boiled eggs (with salt & pepper), left-over roast or fried chicken.
  • When boiling eggs, white vinegar added to the boiling water will keep the white part from running out of the cracked shell.
  • Gamey-smelling lunch boxes (or bags) will smell sweet if you place a slice of bread (dampened with vinegar) in the lunch container overnight.

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Today’s Recipe

Food just tastes better while camping!  Maybe it is because camp cooking takes longer and we are ravenous by the time it’s ready!

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Dutch Oven Biscuits 

This is a very simple recipe!  It serves 6 to 10.

Mix Bisquick-type mix according to recipe directions on the box.  DO NOT OVER-STIR THE MIX!

1)  Put the hot coals outside of the fire pit.  Oil a large Dutch oven inside thoroughly.

2)  Set the Dutch oven on the coals to heat for about 10 minutes.

3)  Spoon the mixture into the Dutch oven and cover with the lid.

4)  Shovel hot coals onto the Dutch oven’s lid.  Cook for 20 -30 minutes, depending on how hot the coals are.

5)  After 20 minutes, check the biscuits.  They are ready when they are lightly browned.

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‘Secret Lake – used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~ 

Published in: on July 13, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments (2)  
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When a Moose Calf Grows Up

This article is the second 1/2 of the Life Cycle of a Moose.  The first part was:  ‘And Another Thing about Moose Cows & Calves‘ *

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Moose are magnificent animals that live in the colder regions of Alaska, Canada and northern-most US states.

Mother Moose is constantly teaching her babies during that first winter.   If the calf does not learn enough, it will die in the first year of life.

Nature also has a hand in the life of a moose calf.  Depending on the region and food available, calves may die in the first year for other reasons:  accidents, disease, malnutrition, drowning and being attacked by predators.

A Confusing Spring

If the moose mother gets pregnant in the fall after his birth, the calf will face a staggering shock in early spring.  After being constant companions for many months, the calf’s mother will suddenly chase him away!

The calf cannot understand the change.  He may try to follow her for days … or even weeks. Those yearlings born with a sibling are the lucky ones; they have a traveling companion.

Singleton yearlings may try to join an adult bull.  The adult may allow this for a while.  However, at rutting time, he will not want the competition and will drive him away.

If a yearling tries to join a different mother moose and her calf, she will not tolerate it.

Occasionally, a mother moose does not become pregnant during the next rutting season.  In this case, the yearling gets to stay with his mother for a while. 

During the next mating season, either the mother or the bull will drive him away, fearing he is a sexual rival.

Moose Socialization

There are only 2 events of moose socialization:  the close relationship between a cow and her calf and the short period of mating.  The rest of the time, moose are solitary wanderers.

Moose Facts 

  • Moose reach their prime between ages 5 and 10.
  • Moose grow new antlers from scratch each year!
  • Moose antlers in velvet are still sensitive; by the time the velvet falls off, the antlers are hard bone.
  • Moose grow their antlers just for the rut!

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* The original article in this Moose series is:  ‘Moose: Giants of the North

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Coming Soon:  Moose Mating!

 ~

October Moose‘ used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 11, 2011 at 12:04 am  Comments Off  
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Sunday Special: How About a Truck Tailgate Graphic?

Some states frown on rear window graphics for the back window of a vehicle.  However, there’s a new wrinkle ….

Are you aware that  most rear window graphics are convertible into a graphic for the back of your truck (or other vehicle)?

Rear Window Graphics

Essentially, a rear window graphic is a piece of vinyl that is 50% vinyl and 50% holes.  It makes it possible to see out of the back window (for safety); yet the person standing outside of the vehicle can’t see inside.

Good reasons for adding a rear window graphic:  It reduces heat inside the vehicle, protects the upholstery from fading and offers privacy and safety (a single woman might feel safer where it isn’t obvious that she’s the only  person riding in the car/truck).

It is easy to find your vehicle in a crowded parking lot, because it is different … not exactly like the dozens of other cars of the same color, make and model.

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Rear Window Graphics set your vehicle apart from the rest! Take your vehicle out of the 'wall-flower' class!

 ~

Truck Tailgate Graphics

These graphics do NOT go on the back window because they are solid vinyl.  They are laminated for long-wear.

Installation is like that of the rear window graphic and should last more than 5 years.  Easily removed from your car or truck, the vinyl won’t mar the paint finish.

In fact, having a tailgate graphic actually protects your paint job from minor wear-and-tear.

Care of Vinyl Graphics 

Whether your graphic is for the tailgate or the back window, there are some rules for protecting your investment.

1)   Avoid running the graphic through a car wash for at least a week.  This gives the adhesives time to firmly bond to the vehicle.

2)  Commercial car washes are fine. If you are using a do-it-yourself car wash, do not hold the wash wand closer than ten inches to the graphic’s surface.

Prices & Sizes

I’ll cover this next weekend.  In the meantime, if you are interested, drop a line to my email (marylouise @ greatghilliesandgraphics.com) and I’ll get a price for you and email it back!

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Glowing Dust” – used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics 

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Monday:  Rest of the Life Cycle of the Moose!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

And Another Thing about Moose Cows & Calves …

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Enemies of the Moose include: Black, Brown and Grizzly Bears, Wolves and Coyotes. However, man is the moose's greatest enemy: We keep encroaching on his habitat.

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Fascinating Facts about Moose Cows & Calves

After the fall mating season for the moose, the cows search for a secure spot to have their young.  She usually looks for a place that offers three things:  security, food and water.

Typically, the cow chooses an island or peninsula near a pond, river or lake.  The gestation period is about 240 days (or 8 months) and the calf or calves are born in May or June.

The New Calf

After a labor of about 1 hour, the cow has her offspring lying down.  She immediately starts to bond with her baby by licking the calf and nuzzling against the babes.

Mother provides milk soon after the birth, while both are still lying down.  After a few days, the calf can easily reach it’s standing mother to nurse.  Within a week of birth, the babe can easily outrun any human who wants to run along!

Calves and Danger

Unlike some of her cousins, moose moms take their children wherever they go.  This is different from deer, that tend to hide their babies while seeking food.

Moose moms feel assured that they can defend their calves from any predators.  In fact, they are some of the most protective parents in the wild kingdom!

Mothers who have lost their youngsters are some of the most dangerous animals on earth!  They will stop at nothing to get their babes back.

Don’t ever get between a moose mom and her calf/calves.  It’s just not a very healthy place to be!

As the Calf Grows

At birth, the calf is about 3 feet long and 3 feet tall, and weighs 25 – 30 lbs.  During the first month, the calf gains about 2 lbs. per day!  Calves start foraging full-time and stop taking its mother’s milk at about 5 months of age.

Mother Moose is constantly teaching her babies during that first winter.   If the calf does not learn enough, it will die in the first year of life.

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Soon:  As soon as the Moose Mom is ready to have a new calf, something fascinating and awful happens.  Find out what … next time!

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 ‘Northwoods Moose’ is used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

  ~

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 7, 2011 at 12:07 am  Comments (1)  
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Camp Cooking: Breakfast Cooking Tips

Outdoor cooking can be a challenge! Here are a few tips.

These tips are tried-and-true … hope they help you!

Pancakes

  • Making pancakes?  Rub the griddle with cut potatoes instead of grease.  There will be no odor after cooking.
  • Turn the pancakes when the bubbles (in the batter) start to break or pop.
  • Using an aluminum griddle for your hotcakes?  Don’t use grease on your griddle, add melted shortening or oil to the batter.  Use fine steel wool to polish your griddle.
  • Serve pancakes and eggs immediately, do not stack and hold them on the griddle.
  • Cook bacon in a baking pan in the oven.

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 Today’s Recipe

This recipe is for breakfast, lunch or a trail snack.  They are nutritious and very tasty.  Bake some to take on your next outing.

Hunter’s Take-Along Biscuits

Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees.

2/3 cup water

2 and 1/4 cups complete pancake or baking mix (Bisquick-type)

1 cup rolled oats, uncooked

1/4 cup margarine or butter

1/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup chopped nuts:  walnuts or pecans

1/2 cup raisins

Mix all dry ingredients together (pancake mix, oats, sugar, cinnamon, nuts, raisins) completely.

Add liquid ingredients together (water, butter or margarine) and add to dry mixture.

Continue mixing until everything is well-moistened.

Drop by heaping tablespoonfuls on greased cookie sheet.  Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or until light golden brown.

Makes about 12 delicious biscuits. 

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‘Evening Call’ is used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 6, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments Off  
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Moose: Giants of the North

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Despite their looks, Moose are usually rather timid. The 2 exceptions are: a rutting bull and a mother Moose with her calf.

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Moose are the Largest Members of the Cervid Family

Other Cervids include:  axis deer, the North American elk, whitetail deer, caribou, reindeer and mule deer.

A typical example of a Canadian moose is over 7 feet at the shoulders, weighs around 1400 lbs.,  is 10 feet from nose to tail and has about a 40 inch long leg!   However, the Alaskan moose is larger!

Where the Moose Are

Almost 1 million moose range over a huge territory:

  • most of Alaska
  • most of Canada outside of the Arctic
  • upstate New York and much of northern New England
  • Northeastern Minnesota
  • Michigan’s Upper Peninsula
  • upper Rocky Mountains
  • mountain regions of Utah and Colorado
  • as far west as the Blue Mountains of Oregon

Dining Habits of the Moose

As ruminants, moose chew their cud, like domestic cows.  They eat leaves and twig ends of many trees, fibrous forbs (like: bunchberry), plus seeds of grasses and sedge, ferns and fungi.

During warm weather, they eat about 50 lbs. of matter each day; in winter, they  average about 35 lbs. each day.

Moose During Rutting Season

During the mating season, the bull moose is at his most ornery and difficult to anticipate.

If you are following bulls too closely, you may need to climb a tree to get out of his way!  It’s best to give bulls plenty of room.

You will know you are in trouble if the bull moose lowers his head, showing off his full rack of antlers.  Then it is likely that he will swing his antlers to-and-fro, so you get the message — that he’s not kidding.

If he’s really aggravated, he may pitch his head up into a bugling posture (similar to his cousin, the elk).  When he wants to “up the ante” in his challenge of another bull (or people), he grunts.

Are Moose Really Dangerous?

It’s surprising how few interactions  between people and moose there are, considering their numbers.  Other than traffic accidents, there have been only a few incidents between humans and moose.

In 2 separate incidents, moose have stomped 2 people to death!  Oddly enough, these occurred in suburban regions of Alaska — not in the wilds of our largest state!

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Showdown‘ Moose Graphic is used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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More Moose Moments:  coming soon!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 5, 2011 at 12:05 am  Comments (1)  
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Sunday Special: Fun in the Sun with Inflatables!

Sorry for the absence … June was a very difficult month!

Fortunately, my brother is getting the care he needs and I was able to return home.

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Our Local Weather 

Where I live (near Houston, TX), we’ve had more than 145 days without rain!  Everything is parched and dying.

Fortunately, we’ve gotten a bit of rain recently and expect more.  Hope your weather has been a little more balanced than ours!

~^~

Inflatables and Towables 

‘Tis the season for getting out and enjoying the sunshine and outdoors!  We offer some of the latest designs in towables and inflatables.  Here are a few ….

Talk about unique ... Sumo & Splash Guard by SportsStuff! This is worn like a shirt - for towable action or body surfing! Connect a tow rope to the Sumo Splash Guard and you can steer the Sumo Tube back and forth, jump the wake and roll 360's!

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The Zip Ski offers action in the prone and sitting positions! Fun for 1 rider (up to 170 lbs)!

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This amazing, new product is the 12' Funstation Inflatable Trampoline by SportsStuff! It is stable on the water via a special sea-anchor system. No matter how much tumbling, the Funstation remains upright & stable!

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Not to be outdone, AirHead has (come out with) a "Water Weenie" for 1 to 3 riders, called the Hot Dog!

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Remember:  We carry some of the most unique designs available … and they are all discounted!

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Tuesday:  After the 4th of July, I will be back with new articles.  Join me after a great (and safe) holiday!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~*~

Published in: on July 3, 2011 at 6:07 pm  Comments Off  
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Dolphins of the Deep

Let’s start the week with a “happy” posting — about dolphins.  They are one of the most beloved of all marine animals.

Watching these beautiful creatures swim next to your boat is an exciting opportunity to see dolphins up close!

 ~

34+ Members of Marine Dolphins

Today, I’m going to specifically write about the marine dolphins.  As a point of interest, there are river dolphins that inhabit the Yangtze (China), Ganges (India) and Amazon (Brazil) Rivers.

Two of the most well-known marine dolphins are:

  • the Orca, or Killer Whale, and
  • the Bottlenose Dolphins

We probably know more about dolphins than about any other mammal in the ocean because of the popular TV series, “Flipper,” and our visits to Sea-World.

Things You Might Not Know About Dolphins 

The birth of a single dolphin takes 12 months!  The infant is born tail first, probably an adaptation to living in water.  Immediately after birth, “aunts” or other group members, help the baby to the surface for its first breath.

The calves live with their mothers for several years; they may continue to take mother’s milk for (up to) 5 years.  They are most often seen swimming under their mother’s tail, close to the milk supply.

Calves use this extended time to learn their place in the social order of their group.

Dolphins living close to shore tend to live in smaller groups than the dolphin groups living in open ocean.

Fascinating Facts About Orcas

After studying these mammals for 25+ years, biologists have discovered that there are 2 distinct groups:  transients and residents.

Residents live in a distinct area (such as:  Orcas living off the west coast of Canada and the US).  Their pod stays in that area for their entire lives and they eat fish.

Transient Orcas, as their name implies, travel wherever food leads them and they live off other marine animals: seals, etc.

Enemies of the Dolphin

The most dangerous enemy is man.

Sharks occasionally attack dolphins.  The bottlenose pod may act together to try to kill the shark or drive them away.  You can see teeth marks on some bottlenose — their battle scars.

Because of their intelligence and adaptability, dolphins are delightful to see.  “A Day with the Dolphins” is a popular activity on the west coast; dolphins and humans swim together!

‘Caribbean Locals’ is used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on June 20, 2011 at 12:18 pm  Comments Off  
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Thanks for Your Patience

Sorry, I haven’t been able to post this past week.

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My brother is threatening to commit suicide and we are struggling with his problems now.

If you have any suggestions for getting someone who sees the world as hopeless,  (58 years of age, unmarried, no friends, lost his job and probably his house), to see that things will get better, please let me know.  We’re worn out and haven’t made a dent.

–Marylouise

Published in: on June 19, 2011 at 11:20 pm  Comments Off  

Why Should I Take My Kids Fishing?

Goodness, let me count the reasons!

Fishing together builds new ways of relating between parents and children!

People Only Save What They Value

If we don’t teach our children to care about nature, they won’t protect it!   There’s a lot of truth to the song,

“Don’t it always seem to go

That you don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone

They paved paradise and put up a parking lot.” *

Get a Future Fishing Partner 

Folks who take the time to train kids to enjoy the pleasures of fishing earn life-long fishing companions.  This isn’t a very shabby outcome, believe me!

My father had the right intentions, but he used lousy techniques.  He killed the joy of fishing by lining us up on a pier and droning on for more than an hour about the dangers of fishing.

When we made a mistake, we weren’t allowed to forget it.  My father never could understand why we were unwilling fishing partners!

It’s an Opportunity to Relate Differently

While out fishing, you may learn new things about your kids — the way they look at things, what worries them, etc.

When we took our kids fishing, they surprised us by talking about their lives away from us (school), their likes and dislikes … and a thousand other things.

There’s something about being in a natural environment that brings out soulful discussions.

Keep the Preaching to a Minimum 

There is something very satisfying about seeing a child’s face light up when they catch their first fish — even if it is a tiny perch!

A successful fishing trip is actually a juggling act! The trick is to teach youngsters the safety they need to know while engaging them in the fun of fishing.

This isn’t nearly as easy as it sounds!  Most of us are so used to talking to our kids as … well, kids … that we forget that they will eventually be adults.  This is a great time to practice talking to them as adults.  Kids hear the difference and appreciate the change!

Getting Started

After teaching kids how to bait their hook and cast, talk about the effects of weather and winds on fishing.  Show what you know … your kids can learn a few things about you, too!

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*  From the song, Big Yellow Taxi, by Joni Mitchell

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~

Published in: on June 17, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments Off  
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A Few FishingTips on Catch-and-Release

Catch-and-Release programs have been around for years.  The idea behind it is that we be mindful of the limits of our resources.  Keep the fish you can eat and return the rest to the wild.

Catch-&-Release requires some preparation. Here are some tips!

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What Dry Hands You Have!

Think about the slimy feel of a fish, fresh from the water.  That membrane on the fish’s body protects his skin from infection and disease.

If you handle the fish with dry hands, you can send the fish into shock because of the reaction between the germs on your hands and the fish’s skin.

“When even a small portion of the slime coating is removed, the fish will bleed electrolytes from its body into the surrounding water.” *

Have You Fixed Your Hook?

As I mentioned in a previous article (How Sharp is Your Fishing Hook?), bend down the barb on your fish hooks.                        

Planning on catch-and-release? It is important to use pliers to mash down the barb. That part of the hook is what keeps your fish from sneaking away.

This process makes the hook kinder to the fish … and it is easier to unhook the fish and put it back in the water.

Another option is to use barbless hooks.  Check it out at your sporting goods store.

3 More Tips

  • Return the fish to water as quickly as possible.
  • Don’t toss the fish back.  The fish is already disoriented enough without the shock of hitting the water without warning.
  • Release the fish gently by hand.   Place the fish in the water facing upstream, holding it under water.  It will move out of your grasp as soon as he is able.

Catch-and-Release is becoming a more popular option all the time.  With a little advance planning, you can become a master at the technique!

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* from “The Slime Coat is one of the Fish’s Main Defenses Against Infection and Disease,” on the website Fish Slime Coat

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‘The Prize’ is used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com
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Sunday Special: Hunter & Paintball Ghillie Wear

Just what should a Hunting Fashionista wear while chasing game or other paintballers?  The first half of our name should give you a hint:  Great Ghillies And Graphics!

Because we have so many items, they are split into 2 categories — Ghillies:  Suits & Accessories and Ghillies:  Jackets & Pants.

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From the Ghillies:  Jackets & Pants Category 

This Ultra-Light Jacket is available in different sizes: ML, XL-2XL and ML Long. This item is more comfortable for warm weather hunting.

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This Ultra-Light Weight Sniper Jacket and Pants is also useful in an area of warm weather hunting. Woodland Pattern (as shown) is "all season."

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An outer shell of 3/4" netting on this Ghillie Jacket allows the user to insert vegetation or any additional material to alter coloration and pattern of camouflage.

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This Stalker Ghillie Poncho is great for crawling. Your back is completely covered. Colors available: woodland, mossy, desert, winter white and leafy green.

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From the Ghillies:  Suits and Accessories Category 

Kid's Ghillie Suits are very popular -- especially around Christmas! Three suits are available.

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This specialty product is perfect for the Bow Hunter. The shooting arm and chest areas are left without jute/burlap material, so it does not interfere with the hunter's bow-string action!

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These Blind Covers are extremely versatile and some come with their own carrying bag. Colors available: desert (shown), woodland, mossy and leafy green.

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Tomorrow: Come Back for more Fishing & Hunting Info! 

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Saturday’s Humor: Just a Little Dart in the Back

– Thanks to JustForLaughsTV

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Come Back Tomorrow for:  Something New from 3 G’s

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This blog is a companion to my website: GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

~!~

Published in: on June 11, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments Off  
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Why do Leopards Have Spots & Other Amazing Facts!

I’ve been fascinated by these big cats since seeing them in Africa some years ago.  Today, I’d like to share some fascinating facts about leopards.

A Leopard is pure "poetry in motion:" controlled power and sleek majesty wrapped in fur! Watching one stalk prey or run is awe-inspiring!

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Just the Facts 

Although the smallest cat in the Panthera genus (lion, tiger, jaguar and leopard),  the leopard can bring down prey that is larger than itself.

Leopards are the most adaptable of the big cats and can live in habitats that range from:

  • mountain
  • desert
  • Mediterranean scrub,
  • bamboo thicket
  • forest
  • cultivated land
  • rainforest

They are the only cats that have both desert and rain forests as their habitat.  They have spots to help them blend into their surroundings.

How Well do Leopards See at Night? 

Leopards have large eyes and can see at night in light that is only 1/6th of what a human needs!  They hunt day or night, when game is available.

Their eyes are in a forward position (versus a cow’s on either side of the face); this means that they have binocular vision.   They can focus both eyes on a single thing and judge distances.

The Leopard’s Solitary Life

The largest family unit in a leopard’s realm is the mother cat and her cubs (between 1 and 4, with twins being the norm).  Once the male leaves his mother,  he leads a solitary life.  Why?

Unlike lions, the leopard is totally responsible for feeding himself.  If he can’t hunt, the leopard will starve.  Thus, he must stay injury-free.

This leads to some interesting situations.  If lions, wild dogs or other large carnivores approach a feeding leopard, he will abandon the meal to avoid confrontation.

The mother leopard has this same instinct; at a kill, she will eat first.   After having her fill, she lets the cubs feed.

Can Leopards Store Food?

In a way, they do.  Leopards carry their prey to sheltered places or in trees (!) to avoid other scavengers that do not climb high in trees (lions and hyenas).

Leopards particularly like to drape (even heavy) prey across a high tree limb, to keep their meal away from other carnivores (animal-eating predators).

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There are lots of books with the basics about leopards.  However, I wanted to share some of my favorite facts about these sleek, gorgeous animals!

The only leopard  hunting that goes on now is a “Photography Safari.”

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‘On the Prowl’ is used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on June 10, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments Off  
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How Tides and the Moon Affect Fishing

Have You Thought About …?

Fish are cold-blooded  and don’t need energy from food to keep their body temperature at a certain level.  In other words, their metabolism is very slow.

A fish can go without food for days or weeks.  If they are not hungry, why do fish try to snag your lure?

Fish bite your bait for more reasons than because your lure looks tempting!

The Effect of Tides on Fish

Tides in estuaries and bays create movement in the bait shrimp and other foods that larger fish eat.  

When the tide goes out, the it drags these bait fish and food from the shallower areas and into deeper waters.  These foods and baits are concentrated in a smaller volume of water, thus offering more food per cubic foot.  Eventually, fish take notice and respond by chasing all this free-floating food.

Many anglers prefer the incoming tide because this bounty of water pulls food  from their burrowing spots.  Again, predator fish take notice and start looking for a tasty morsel.

The Moon and Tides

The moon and sun create the wave action we call tides.  The phase of the moon has an interesting connection to tidal action.

Spring Tides - have nothing to do with the season of spring.  They occur every 28 days during the full moon.  At this time, tides are at their highest.

Neap Tides - occur during the dark of the moon and have the lowest tidal action.

Is the Best Fishing During a Full Moon?

It seems logical, doesn’t it?  Well, very little is logical with fishing  (you knew that already, right?).

Full moons don’t occur in a vacuum; there other parts to the weather scene.  When a full moon rolls around, you also seem to see that bad weather and a falling barometer have joined the group.  Things can be dicey.

More info about   this important factor:   Barometric Pressure and Fishing.  Click on the words.

Barometer Readings

  • Slowly Rising Barometer = improving or good weather and good fishing.
  • Steady Barometer Reading Over Several Days =  poor fishing
  • Low Barometric Pressure = poor fishing
  • Barometric Pressure is Falling Rapidly = watch fishing shows on TV instead!

What does all this mean?  You will find some of the best fishing when the barometric pressure is rising.  At times, the pressure starts to rise during rain.  Overcast, rainy days are often some of the best times to fish!

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‘Easy Pickings’ used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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  This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on June 9, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments Off  
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How Noise Affects Fishing!

Yesterday, the subject was:  Things You Need to Know to Catch Fish!  Today, let’s take a look at noise and fishing.  Fish respond to noises in surprising ways!

A Quirk of Fishing That Works

Experienced anglers sometimes “stone a pool” while fishing.  It seems that tossing a few pebbles into a stream with salmon can get them interested in looking for lunch!

Fresh water anglers sometimes try this same trick and attract panfish and perch.  If fish aren’t cooperating, toss a  few rocks and see what happens!

Even those with great knowledge of the habits of fish say that they learn new things all the time!

Sonic Lures 

Anglers of the bass persuasion like to use sonic lures; they attract bass by their popping  noise.

Often, the bass will strike at the sound, even when they cannot see the lure.  Champion bass anglers warn that it has to be the “right” sound.  Maybe that is why I haven’t joined their ranks yet.

Other Tips from Champion Anglers

Over the years, I’ve figured out that there is a difference between tournament winners and the rest of us.  They sometimes do strange things to muffle their noises while fishing.

For example, some experts have carpeting in the floor of their boats – to cut noise.  Other tournament winners swear by replacing nylon bearings in their oarlocks.

Still others are very careful about their personal noise; they would never consider dragging their tackle box across the bottom of their boat or tapping against the edge of their boat.

Good News About the Fish’s Sense of Taste 

Generally, fish don’t have a great sense of taste.  Thus, if it looks like a yummy piece of chum and it smells like it … when it enters their mouths, they can’t tell if it is the real thing.

Frightening Fish 

Fish are a nervous group, and they don’t handle fear very well.  They are particularly anxious about fast-moving, dark shadows.  If it looks too much like a predator moving in for a quick snack, most fish will vacate the neighborhood  in a hurry!

Fish in shallow waters, such as trout, are so nervous about dark shadows, the shadow of your rod can frighten the critters away!   Be careful of your shadow while fishing on shore.

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Come Again:  More Fishing Tips … Soon

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‘About to Strike’ used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Rear Window Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on June 7, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments (2)  
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Things You Need to Know to Catch Fish!

Catching fish requires some knowledge — of fish and their habitat.  The more you know, the more fish you will haul home!

In no particular order, these are some of the facts great anglers say are important!

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Getting a Lot of Fish Action Requires You to Know Some Fishing Basics!

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The Senses of Fish

No doubt about it, fish can see, hear and smell.  If you can see the fish, they can see you!  This is no time to wear your hot pink polka dot shirt; mustard, blue and beige are better color choices.

Fish may not hear soft talking, but they do feel the vibrations of a boat motor.  Folks who insist on shouting to others — are alerting the fish, as well as their friends.

Fish are a lot like bloodhounds — they follow the scent of a favored food until they find it.  That is why tossing chum into the water is so effective; fish rush to the stinky fare.

Remember, odors carry better over water than on land!  Thus, smoking or handling kerosene, oil or gasoline is a dead give-away to fish.

Also, be careful with suntan lotion or insect repellent — remove the odors of these items from your hands before casting.

What Fish Like

Have you ever wondered why there are so many colors of plastic worms and lures?  Fish like colors and motion — however, they must seem natural.

On bright days, leave the chrome and nickel lures in your box.  You want to dazzle the fish; but fish are frightened when the light is too bright.

On bright days, it is better to stay with black, copper or brass colored lures.

Fishing in turbid (muddy) waters?  Yellow just might be the best color for the situation.

Fog lights are yellow because they are easier to see (than white) in murky, foggy or dark conditions.  This holds true for fish; they come toward lures they can see in darker waters.

An attractive, noticeable color is nice, but realistic action is what brings the fish in for a bite.

In fresh water, fish like slower moving lures; while saltwater lures need to move rapidly to catch a fish’s eye!

Come Back Tomorrow:  More Things You Need to Know to Catch Fish!

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‘Surface Strike’ used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Sunday Special: Fun in the Sun!

Besides rear window graphics, I sell a variety of other products.  I’ve never mentioned these Outdoor Fun items.  We’ve added several new items recently.

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The SPORTSSTUFF Sumo & Splash Guard Combo -- A Unique Way to Fly Across the Water!

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This SPORTSSTUFF Half Pipe Rampage Inflatable Makes for a "Wild Ride" for 2 People!

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The SPORTSSTUFF 16 Quart Floating Cooler -- For Those Times When You Want to Keep Your Drinks Close, While You are on the Water!

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The Hammaka Suelo Stand and Net Chair Combo -- Great for those "Lazy Days of Summer!"

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For the Grilling Genius in all of Us: the Fire Sense Stainless Steel Cook-All

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The Fire Sense All-Weather Patio Heater: Now with Free Shipping in the Continental US!

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All Images are Click-able!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

 

Published in: on June 5, 2011 at 9:17 pm  Comments Off  
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Saturday’s Humor: Chances of a Man Winning an Argument!

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Between You and Me:  I think the Author of this Graph was an Optimist!

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Things To Say If You Get Caught Sleeping At Your Desk  

15. “They told me at the blood bank this might happen.”

14. “This is just a 15 minute power-nap like they raved about in the last time            management course you sent me to.”

13. “Whew! Guess I left the top off the liquid paper”

12. “I wasn’t sleeping! I was meditating on the mission statement and envisioning a new paradigm!”

11. “This is one of the seven habits of highly effective people!”

10. “I was testing the keyboard for drool resistance”

9. “Actually I’m doing a “Stress Level Elimination Exercise Plan” (SLEEP) I learned it at the last mandatory seminar you made me attend.”

8. “I was doing a highly specific Yoga exercise to relieve work related stress.”

7. “Darn! Why did you interrupt me? I had almost figured out a solution to our biggest problem.”

6. “The coffee machine is broken….”

5. “Someone must’ve put decaf in the wrong pot.”

4. “Boy, that cold medicine I took last night just won’t wear off!”

3. “Ah, the unique and unpredictable circadian rhythms of the workaholic!”

2. “I wasn’t sleeping, I was trying to pick up contact lens without hands.”

AND THE #1 BEST THING TO SAY IF YOU GET CAUGHT SLEEPING AT YOUR DESK:

“Amen”

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– Thanks to WastedYourTime.com  for a cute joke!

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Come Back Tomorrow –  Sunday Special:  Some New Products!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on June 4, 2011 at 12:08 am  Comments Off  
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What Does it Take to Hunt Javelina & Wild Hogs?

Hunting Season of Javelina vs. Wild Hogs

As mentioned in an earlier blog, javelina live in 3 states:  Arizona, New Mexico

Feral Pigs & Javelinas Can Do Incredible Damage to Suburban Yards When Other Food is Scarce!

and Texas.*  If you are interested in hunting javelina here, there are 2 zones in Texas, with a 2 animal/year limit.

In Texas, there is no season for feral hogs – there is no annual limit, nor is hunting limited to certain days or months. **

Hunting the Javelina & Wild Hog in Texas 

Most youngsters have their first experience with a javelina while hunting for whitetail deer.  The seasons often overlap and even in areas with few deer, there are often plenty of javelina.

Things to Worry About When Hunting These Pigs 

Even if you’ve read my 2 previous articles *** about the collared peccary (javelina), you are NOT ready to hunt wild pigs or javelinas.  I only talked about their sweet side.  

Before you start to aim your center-fire rifle, muzzleloaders or archery equipment, we need to talk about their “not-so-cute-and-cuddly” side.

Although not usually aggressive, they are wary, challenging and quite intelligent.

When cornered, wounded or protecting their piglings (or piglets), they can turn ugly.  Actually, they were born ugly; they can become dangerous!

Oh, and the Other Thing I Didn’t Mention … 

These animals come with razor-sharp tusks.  If wounded, they are going to be looking for someone to share their unhappiness with …. Don’t let it be you!

Successful Hunters Know the Animal’s Habits

Both the collared peccary and the feral pig are omnivores, eating cacti, grasses, roots and tubers.

The wild swine have well-developed senses, while the javelina has poor eyesight, average hearing and an excellent sense of smell.

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Come Back Tomorrow:  For The Rest of this Article!

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* Javelina have migrated from their original habitat in South America.  Thus, they are also available in South & Central America, as well as Mexico.  For this discussion, I’m only discussing hunting these animals – javelina and feral hogs — in the US.

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** In fact, if you recall a previous article I wrote about the problem we are having with feral pigs in Texas, you know we are actively inviting hunters to help us cut the numbers of these nuisance animals in our state!

See:  Feral Pigs in Texas — 2 Million Strong and Increasing

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*** The 2 earlier articles are:

Hold Your Nose … We’re After Some Javelina!  and

Javelina: You Don’t See ‘Em, But You Sure Can Smell ‘Em

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Today is Memorial Day!

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We should never be complacent about what others have given to our country!

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Remember Those Who Gave All So We Might Have So Much!

Today is Memorial Day!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on May 30, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments Off  
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Sunday Special: Army Rear Window Graphics With Snap!

Our Army is the largest branch of our armed forces.  So naturally, they should have some super graphics, right? You ‘betcha!  To look at them all, Military Rear Window Graphics. (All 5 branches are in this category; the Army graphics start about mid-page.)

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One of the most beautiful Graphics I sell! That's why you see it whenever I highlight a branch of the services (available for each of the 5 branches, plus one without a service emblem)!

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Special Forces -- There's quite a ring to that phrase, isn't it there? Actually, they are "elite military tactical teams trained to perform high-risk dangerous missions that conventional units cannot perform."

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This Army Armor Graphic comes in 3 sizes to fit your ride (All my graphics come in 3 or 4 sizes, depending on the Manufacturer)!

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The Army National Guard: State-side support in times of disaster and home-grown emergencies!

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Combat Infantry: This flag commemorates the Combat Infantry Badge, awarded to an infantryman or Special Forces soldier - "being personally present, and under hostile fire, while serving in assigned, primary infantry or special forces duty in a unit actively engaging the enemy in ground combat."

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The Army Corps of Engineers: Their mission "is to provide vital public engineering services in peace and war to strengthen the nation's security, energize the economy, and reduce risks from disasters."

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Quotes:

‘Special Forces’ quote is from Wikipedia, entry of the same name

‘Combat Infantry’ quote is from Wikipedia, entry entitled:  ‘Combat Infantry Badge’

‘Army Corps of Engineers’ quote is from US Army Corps of Engineers Mission & Vision Page

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Wondering where the Rest of the Military Graphics Are?

Already Shown:

Air Force

Coast Guard

Marine Corps

Coming Soon:  Navy

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Freedom Flight Army used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

The remaining 5 Graphics are used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

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Remember Those Who Gave All So We Might Have So Much!

Monday is Memorial Day! 

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This blog is a companion to my website: GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Saturday Humor: The Real Truth of Men vs. Women and a Blond Joke

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This was Probably Created by a Woman Engineer!

Examples of Simple vs Complex Machinery!

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This Next Joke Sort of Unravels the Brilliance of the Previous Machinery! 

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The Blond and the Truck Driver 

A blonde had just gotten a new sports car and was out for a drive when she accidentally cut off a large truck. The driver was outraged and was eventually able to make her pull over.

He got out of his truck and pulled a piece of chalk from his pocket. He drew a circle on the side of the road and gruffly commanded to the blonde in his most threatening voice, “Stand in that circle and DON’T MOVE!”

He then went to her car and cut up her leather seats. When he turned around she had a slight grin on her face, so he said, “Oh you think that’s funny? Watch this!”

He gets a baseball bat out of his truck and breaks every window in her car. When he turns and looks at her she has a smile on her face. Now he’s getting really mad.

He gets his knife back out and slices all her tires. Now she’s laughing. The truck driver is really starting to lose it.

He goes back to his truck and gets an extra can of diesel fuel, pours it on her car and sets it on fire. He turns around and she is laughing so hard she is about to fall down.

“What’s so funny?” the truck driver asked the blonde. She replied, “Every time you weren’t looking, I stepped outside the circle!”

– This joke, and many others, are at Wasted Your Time

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Come Back Sunday:  See a Variety of Army Rear Window Graphics!

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Upcoming Attractions:

When Humans Try to Domesticate the Javelina

Plus

Hunting Javelina and Wild Hogs

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I have several other projects in the works – fishing & hunting 

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on May 28, 2011 at 12:05 am  Comments Off  
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How Sharp is Your Fishing Hook?

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Fishing Hooks Get Dull Quickly -- from Scraping Against Rocks, Dragging Along the Bottom of the Waterway, Etc.

In a phrase:  Probably not sharp enough!

When You Open a New Box of Hooks

When I was a kid, a new box of hooks meant something:  every shiny hook was razor-sharp and ready to go!   I don’t find that necessarily true today.

I’ve even had a sales clerk tell me (with a straight face) that the new hook “is ready for you to apply the sharpness you want for your situation.”  (This is fancy double-talk for:  Here are the hooks, you make them usable.)

Whatever ….

Into catch-and-release? It is important to use pliers to mash down the barb. That part of the hook is what keeps your fish from sneaking away.

If your hook is dull, you are going to lose fish. Also, it’s easy to drag your hook over a rock and grind away the edge.

Look at this photo. Although it is hard to see, there is an area between the point and the barb that should be beveled. Also, the point AND barb should be sharp.

Fortunately there is a way to correct this problem. Most sporting goods stores sell a hook sharpener.

I found a site with instructions and photos. Go to http://fishing.about.com/od/basicfishinginstruction/ss/Sharpen_Hooks.htm for info on sharpening hooks.

It seems that any quality file will work — the author (above) even suggests taking an emery board fishing for emergency repairs.

Hook Tips

Expect to sharpen all hooks, even new ones.

Vary the coarseness of the grit for different hooks:

  •  coarse grit for large trebles,
  • medium grit for average-sized hooks and
  • small hooks need a finer grit.

Expect to change your hooks often.  With use, hooks get brittle and fail just when you need them to snag and keep the fish.

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‘The Prize’ used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

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Saturday:  Another Joke

Sunday:  Come See a Variety of Army Graphics!

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Upcoming Attractions: When Humans Try to Domesticate the Javelina

Plus

Hunting Javelina and Wild Hogs

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Javelina: You Don’t See ‘Em, But You Sure Can Smell ‘Em

Let’s talk a bit more about the skunk’s stiffest competition:  the javelina.

What Makes the Peccary Smell So Bad?

While describing the javelina yesterday, I didn’t mention the musk gland of these

Note the raised hairs on the back of this javelina!

creatures.  Located on the lower back (above the tail), the peccary uses the scent in various ways.

When excited or alarmed, the javelina raises the dark hairs on his back and squirts his musk scent. The gland looks rather like a nipple — and the liquid is oily and a dark yellow.

The peccary can squirt the fluid several inches. When the pigling *is born, he has a fully functioning scent gland.

The Social System of the Javelina

After telling you how awful it smells, you may be surprised to hear that these

The Javelina roamed freely in South America before gradually moving northward.

animals use the scent for anything other than to ward off enemies.

But first, I need to share a bit more about the social life of a peccary. The javelina is a social animal that travels in mixed family groups (male and females of various ages).

Herds may be as small as 3 – 4 or as large as 20.  It is rare to see a solitary peccary unless he is old, ill or injured.

Peace and harmony are encouraged in the herd by regular physical contact between the members.

Javelinas pair off and stand nose-to-tail and rub their heads over the scent gland of the other animal!

They share their personal scent with the other members of the herd, essentially creating a “herd scent.”

The Peccary’s 2 Main Senses

The javelina is extremely nearsighted.  Because his eyesight is so poor, he relies on smell and sound to navigate in his habitat.

Thus, recognizing the herd’s scent helps him stay with his own group, even if he’s surrounded by many other animals.

Dietary Delights of the Javelina

These animals aren’t real picky about what they eat.  Although they delight in prickly cactus and other succulent plants, they are not above sinking their teeth into rotting carrion on the roadside or carelessly covered garbage.

As their habitat shrinks due to human development, more javelina than ever are interacting with man … and the results are not very pretty!

*   FYI: javelina babies = piglings; swine babies = piglets

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Tomorrow:  How Sharp is Your Fishing Hook? 

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Soon:  When Humans Try to Domesticate the Peccary

Plus

Hunting Javelina and Wild Hogs

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Photo and Map used through Wikipedia’s Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on May 26, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments (1)  
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Hold Your Nose … We’re After Some Javelina!

This is an example of Ugly, Smelly and Hairy all meeting in one animal!

A Little History

Although pigs and javelina are in the same order of mammals, they diverged

Newborns are 1 lb. bundles of red-brown or tan hair, with a dark strip down the back.

“about 38 million years ago:  pigs evolved in the Old World, peccaries in the New World.” *

Believe it or not, the collared peccary (or javelina – pronounced have-ah-LEE-nah) comes from South America.

Over thousands of years, they worked their way northward into North America.

Eventually, they settled in the warmer areas of North America.  Why?  Because they cannot survive cold!

It wasn’t until the 1700’s that javelinas showed up in the records — of Arizona.

All the Attributes Nobody Wants!

Unfortunately for these little piglings, after 3 months as a “cute” child, they emerge as an ugly mini-adult stinker.

Here’s a description of this strange animal:  He has a large head, skinny, short legs with rather small feet.  His hair is wiry, like a hairbrush’s bristles.

At birth, he is born with a mane of dark hairs (that grow to about 6″) that starts between his ears and runs along the spine to the tail.

When frightened or startled, the peccary’s mane stands on end and he looks fearsome!

Staying Cool During Seasonal Changes

The collared peccary is a fashionista — always changing into a new and better coat.  From November to almost March, the adults wear their dark coat.

In the spring, they shed that fur coat — some even go bald on their hips and hind-ends.  They are pale and blend in with their surroundings – usually very hot summers in parched regions.  However, the dark mane always stays on the animal.

By September, the javelina is growing a thicker winter coat; however, he has no undercoat.  Because he cannot survive a harsh winter, he does not venture into cold climates.  Most javelina live in the dry areas of Arizona, New Mexico and Texas.

Pigling Births

Peccary births can happen throughout the year, however most occur in the summer and fall, when there is plenty to eat.

One or two piglings are born after a 5 month pregnancy.  This is in sharp contrast to the large litter of piglets born to swine.

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* Quote from:  Javelinas, by Lauray Yule, 2004, Rio Nuevo Publishers, p. 7.

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Next Time:  Well, I haven’t even gotten to their stink glands, what they eat, their lives in the herd, or hunting tips! Bummer!  

Come back for more exciting adventures with these stinky little beasts!

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Photo used through the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License of Wikipedia

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on May 25, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments (1)  
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A Different Spin on Fishing — Via Kayak!

As a member of LinkReferral, I have the opportunity to read about and review a variety of  websites and blogs.

Today, I found an interesting one that I’d like to mention to my readers:   Learn About Kayak Fishing,  Fishing Kayaks, Kayak Accessories & Gear

It’s pretty easy to figure out what they are all about!

A Kayaker Riding the Rapids

Why This Kayak Fishing Site? 

In a phrase, I like their style!  

My husband and I don’t watch TV  … so every once in a while, we miss a fun commercial.    If you scroll down to:  “Does Your Girlfriend Like Fishing,” you can get a laugh too. 

Site of Practical Info 

If you’ve ever thought about a kayak, but didn’t know what to ask, here’s a site with buyer’s info.  One example:  “Select your Kayak by the Places You Fish.”

A Look at Their Fave Blogs

Near the bottom, I took a look at their favorite blogs and websites.  I’ve lived in this area for 40+ years and did not know about:   Texas City Dike Fishing

I know about the Texas City Dike (having fished and launched from the site for years), but didn’t know there was a place to keep up on the things going on there.

You never know what is available on the web!

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Next Time: Hold Your Nose, We’ll be Learning about Javelinas

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on May 24, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments Off  
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Sunday Special: Wildest of the Wild Rear Window Graphics

This category is for the jungle animals … and a few others.  Essentially, I call them the Wildest of the Wild Rear Window Decals!

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Everyone will Notice 'Clyde' -- He's So Ugly that he's Cute!

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A Beautiful Leopard ... 'On the Prowl'

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Absolutely Adorable ... 'Three Pandas!'

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Graceful and Gorgeous ... Zebras in 'Golden Reflections'

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Tropical Beauty: 'Rain Forest Menagerie'

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At the End of the World: 'Nomad of the North'

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Graphics #’s 1, 3 and 5 are used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics; Graphics 2, 4 and 6 are used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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       Next Sunday:  Come Back and See a Wide Variety of Graphics for the                 US Army!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Saturday’s Joke: Men vs. Women at the Store

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Thanks to Dorothy139!

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The last few Saturday jokes have been concocted by a group of engineers (male, obviously), who think they understand women!

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Come back next Saturday to find out why they couldn’t possibly have figured out women … or much else!

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Come back tomorrow:   for Sunday’s Rear Window Graphics -

The Wildest of the Wild Animals!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on May 21, 2011 at 12:05 am  Comments Off  
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On the Trail of a Osceola Wild Turkey

If you are hoping to get a crack at hunting all five of the subspecies of wild turkey, plan to hunt in Florida for the Osceola.

Actually, in some areas of Florida, you will find both the Eastern and the Osceola wild turkeys, sharing the same habitat.

The Skinny on the Osceola 

Of all the subspecies these are considered the most beautiful. They have

Most Biologists Consider the Osceola to be the Most Beautiful of the 5 Subspecies of Wild Turkeys.

more golden and green body feathers.

Perhaps because Osceola’s call the Florida swamps ‘home,’ their legs, spurs, tails and beards are longer than average.

‘Pure’ Osceola’s only live in southern Florida.  Because Eastern wild turkeys also live in Florida, some biologists consider all the turkeys as hybrids and refer to them as “the Florida subspecies.”

What Makes the Osceola Unique

These birds prefer to roost over water in cypress trees. Their habitat includes hardwood swamps, palmetto grass lands and live oaks.

When gobblers want to strut their stuff, they fly to dry land near their roosts.

Because of the difficult habitat of Osceola’s, non-natives find hunting these beautiful birds difficult, dangerous * and expensive.

Hunting the Osceola 

By the time you factor in out-of-state licenses, lodging and land (on which to hunt the Osceola), the price of a domestic turkey in the supermarket is an amazing bargain!

Hunting the Osceola isn’t much different from hunting the Eastern turkey except for the handicapping factor of having to maneuver in swampy conditions.

One helpful factor is that the Osceola roost in the same areas each day — unless they are spooked or over-hunted.

Land Options

It can get rather crowded hunting the Osceola on public lands.  Remember to call less – because of the added pressure of so many hunters.

Hunting on private land can be quite expensive.  Before putting your hard-earned dollars on the table, make inquiries about guided hunts, as well as public and private land hunting prices and conditions.

You want the hunt to be memorable for the enjoyment you had and not the staggering price you paid!

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* The Osceola hang out with some heavy-hitters:  alligators, water moccasins, mosquitoes and diamondback rattlers!

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Come Back Saturday:  for our Joke of the Day

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Come Back Sunday: for our Wildest of the Wild Rear Window Graphics

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Thanks for stopping by!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on May 19, 2011 at 6:51 am  Comments Off  
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Searching for the Merriam’s Turkey

Often called Rocky Mountain turkeys because of their habitat, Merriam’s turkeys prefer to roost in ponderosa pines (in canyons), near creek beds.

States With ONLY Merriam’s:

Arizona,
Colorado,
Idaho,
Montana,
New Mexico,
North & South Dakota,
Utah,
Washington,
Wyoming                                                                                                             

Merriam's Turkey Tom and Hen


Merriam’s & the Gambel Oak

On the eastern edge of their habitat, where there are no pines, the gobblers roost in hardwoods.

Merriam’s prefer acorns, but there are few oaks in their range. If you see, however, a small oak, known as the Gambel (in mountain areas), Merriam’s hens prefer these trees for nesting areas and food.  Since the hens are in the oaks, toms will likely be there too.

Traveling in good-sized, mixed groups (hens, jakes, toms and jennies) is a pattern of the Merriam’s.

Unlike the Eastern turkey, these Rocky Mountain turkeys tend to find a new roost each night.  They travel more than other turkey subspecies.

Using This Info While Hunting 

Because these birds range over large areas, using a friction call will be to your advantage.  Their sounds are louder and will carry over longer distances.

Because we know that the Merriam’s travel to a new roost most nights, it follows that they will travel farther to get to a hen than most turkey species.  Flying or traveling over large distances is less of a concern with the Merriam’s.

Once you start the communication process with these gobblers, you don’t need to try to get closer to them because this is pushing your luck.  The idea is to stay put and encourage the bird to come to you.

You can be spotted when you move because you can see long distances in their preferred habitat — and so can they!

Looking for Merriam’s?

Because of the dry conditions over much of the US, start your search for the Merriam’s by heading toward water.  Like humans, these birds must drink water each day.

When calling, be patient.  These turkeys may be a mile away and it may take 30 minutes, or more, for the excited gobbler to arrive.

Once the wild birds move close, imitate their actions.  If they are scratching or drumming, you should too.

Remember, turkeys know that calling doesn’t happen in a vacuum.  They expect to hear other sounds from a hen while she’s calling.

For more info about these other sounds, go to:  Bagging the Hung-Up Turkey  (bottom of article).

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on May 16, 2011 at 12:06 am  Comments Off  
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Sunday Special: Coast Guard Rear Window Decals

The Coast Guard are the quiet giants of our military.  In a phrase, they have a “maritime law enforcement mission.” *

For more than 220 years, the Coast Guard has been the ‘United States’ oldest continuous seagoing service.’ *

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Coast Guard Auxiliary White Emblem on Flag

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Freedom Flight Coast Guard

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The Coast Guard at their Finest: Saving Lives and Protecting Our Coastline!

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Coast Guard on Red

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Coast Guard Reserve Emblem on Flag

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Coast Guard Dog Tags

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These are some of the many faces of our Coast Guard!  The Coast Guard motto is “Semper Paratus“, Latin for “Always Ready” or “Always Prepared”.*

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* Quotes from Wikipedia,  under ‘United States Coast Guard.’

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These images are clickable and are used by permission of the graphics companies listed.  Numbers 1, 3 and 5 are owned by Restyler’s Choice Graphics; # 2, 4 and 6 belong to Vantage Point Graphics.

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Come Back Tomorrow:  Hunting Tips for Merriam’s Turkeys

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FYI:  Most Sundays, I show items from my website.  Each branch of the military will have their own Sunday showing.

Some have already been shown:  Marines      Air Force

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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A Little Saturday Humor

Have you ever wondered how a

woman’s brain works?

Well….it’s finally explained here in one, easy-to-

understand illustration:

Everyone of those little blue balls is a thought

about something that needs to be done, 

a decision or a problem that needs to be solved.

A man has only 2 balls and

they take up all his thoughts.

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Come Back Tomorrow:    See My Coast Guard Window Graphics

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on May 14, 2011 at 12:05 am  Comments Off  
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Learning to Fish in Saltwater

Because we live near Galveston, TX, we learned to fish in salt water before we experienced fresh water fishing.  In fact, I remember my first experience in fresh water was pretty boring.

Recalling a Peggy Lee song, I sighed, “Is that All There Is?

Dipping Your Line in the Ocean 

Eventually, I did learn to enjoy the charm of the slower pace of fishing in fresh water … but

Going to Battle with the Fishes off a Jetty!

that’s another story!

Today, let’s talk about putting your line out in the bay or ocean.

Fishing with a Bobber

If you already fish for crappie and catfish, you are familiar with using a bobber, weight and hook to fish in fresh water.

In saltwater, just about everything you use is larger.  Instead of a bobber, you use a popping cork.  The easiest way to get started is to buy a popping cork assembly:  leader, weight with snap swivel.  The only things you will need to add are hook and bait.

With this set-up, you are ready to catch reds and trout.  Attach to your #6 or #8 treble hooks either live shrimp or small fish, in such a way as to keep the bait alive.

Setting the Hook  

As the angler, smoothly cast your line out on the water.  As soon as the cork lands, take up slack in the line and wait a few seconds.  As you give the line a quick jerk, the cork pops against the water.

Continue this process every couple of minutes until either you have pulled your line in (to check the status of your bait) or until the cork disappears under the water.

When the cork goes under, give a sharp jerk to the line:  this is ‘setting the hook.’  Immediately start reeling in your line.

Lots of folks think that once the fish is hooked, they have only to haul in their catch.  Because fish are often larger in bays and the ocean, bringing in a catch can take from a few seconds to hours.

Things can happen between the time the fish sets the hook and the time he is hauled out of the water.

Practice will help you avoid the pitfalls of last-minute losses (the fish wasn’t fully hooked & he got away; you pulled too hard and didn’t let him wear himself out before pulling him in & he broke the line; you didn’t have a net to bring the fish out of the water and he jumped away, etc.)

Next time:  Let’s talk about fishing for bottom feeding fish

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‘Ocean Angler’ used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on May 13, 2011 at 8:25 am  Comments Off  
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More About the Life & Times of a Turkey Poult

This is a continuation of yesterday’s article on turkey poults:  The Life of a Turkey Poult.  It covered:  nest-building, breeding, incubation and birthing.

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The First Weeks of Life

The first 2 weeks, the poults stay close to mom’s side — for warmth and food.  They spend these

Turkey Poults Grow Rapidly; They Weigh 6 - 8 lbs. by the Time They are 1 year.

weeks on the ground, although the poults can fly by the end of their first week of life!

They are constantly learning at this time; they spend their days: feeding, sleeping, dusting, preening and peeping. By the end of the third week, the poults are able to roost in trees with their mother.

Cold weather can delay the process of moving to the trees.  By the time they roost in trees, they have  a large vocabulary.

A Poult’s Diet Changes 

In the early days, poults need a steady diet of protein:  beetles, grasshoppers and other insects.  However, as they are out looking for these in the open, they become food for hawks and other predators. Thus, they have to balance their hunger with their fear of being eaten!

During the spring and summer months, poults spend most of their time feeding – to fuel the rapid growth of their bodies.  Besides insects, they eat grasses, leaves, plants, berries and agricultural crops.

Because we make scratching noises when we are calling turkeys, we assume they only eat things below them.  However, they also stretch to nab berries overhead and even jump to snatch a morsel from a low-hanging branch.

These birds use their scratching skills year-round, but especially in the fall and winter months.

As the months roll into autumn, the numbers of insects and vegetation sources decreases, leaving the poults to start feeding on acorns and other mast.*

As the poults grow into jakes and jennies, their diet changes from almost all insects to:  10% insects and 90% vegetation.

The Pecking Order

Over the course of their lives, their rank in the pecking order of their flock may change.

At the end of their first year, the jakes leave their mothers and follow the older males or form new flocks of young jakes. Jennies will stay with their mothers, learning skills they will need as hens.

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For more info:  How to Use the Life Cycle of the Turkey to Your Advantage!

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* mast = ‘nuts of forest trees used as feed….” taken from the Free Online Dictionary

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com  

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The Life of a Turkey Poult (Chick)

Nature is amazing; the birth and growth of turkey poults prove my point.

Breeding

Weeks before breeding, turkey hens find a protected place (on the ground) for their eggs.

I know, I know! This is a chick, not a poult! This calls for a little vision here!

After breeding, hens lay their eggs in that prepared nest.  They usually lay one/day for a total of about 12 eggs (these are averages; there’s no hard rule).

The hens will feed before and after laying their eggs.  If not sitting on the nest, she roosts nearby.  If predators destroy the nest while she is feeding, the hen will breed again and lay her eggs in a new nesting area.

She occasionally turns the eggs and clucks to her eggs.

Incubation and Birthing

The incubation period is between 26 and 28 days and the hen stays on the nest. Two or 3 days before birth, the poult eggs start making noises.  Mother hen clucks to them regularly.

The poult uses an egg tooth to start the egg opening process.  He cracks the shell in a fairly even line around the larger end of the egg.  This is hard work for the poult and he may take rest breaks before breaking free of the egg.  His labors can take about 18 hours.

You can tell the difference between a naturally hatched clutch and a destroyed nest by observing the eggs.  The neat chipping of the shell is very different from the ravaging mess predators make.

New Poults

Within 24 hours of the end of the poult hatchings, they leave the nest for 2 reasons:  they are hungry and they want to avoid predators.

Remember imprinting from high school biology? This is the process of social bonding that takes place now, so the poult recognizes his mother’s unique sounds and pitch.

Even if they mix with a variety of other turkey families, when Mother calls, her poults follow.

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Next Time:  More Wild Times With Poults!

They Sing, They Dance, They Talk!  ;-)  (Oops, I got a little carried away!)

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on May 9, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments Off  
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Sunday Special: Wanna to See Some Unusual Graphics?

For the past 2 weekends, I’ve been out-of-town and away from a computer (reunion-izing).  Today, let’s have a bit of fun with some unusual rear window graphics!

Different Categories

These graphics are in a variety of categories.  The photos are clickable!

Graphics that will make folks take notice ….

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Bird, Duck & Turkey Graphics

Show Off Your own Gaggle of Geese!

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For Your Eyes Only 

Jester Eyes - Definitely an Attention-Grabbing Graphic for Your Back Window!

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First Responders Graphics

Colorful & Eye-Catching: You Can Always Find Your Vehicle in a Crowded Parking Lot!

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Eagles & Patriotic Graphics

'Vengeance Clown.' Anyone Know About this One? It has 'USMC' on the Clown's Knuckles, so I Think it is Related to the Marines. Otherwise, I'm clueless!

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Wildest of the Wild Graphics

'I'm with Stupid' says it all!

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Miscellaneous Window Decals 

Show Your Appreciation of Art on Your Back Window with this Van Gogh: Starry Night!

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Also From the Misc. Window Graphics Category 

Sci Fi Fans - Introducing 'Dragon Star 2'

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‘Jester Eyes’ — used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

All others — used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

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Monday:  The Life of a Turkey Poult

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Have You Noticed Too? 

A word about my graphic images.  Stealing images has become such a problem online that graphics manufacturers are putting water marks all over their images.  These marks are only on images used online; purchased graphics are perfect!

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There are two ways to get a FREE subscription: Subscription button for feeds — ‘RSS – Posts‘ — (top of right column) or Subscription link to email — click on the ‘Sign Me Up‘ box —  upper, right column).

Although these postings/articles are PRICELESS, I’m making them available to YOU for nada (also known as: zip, zilch, zero). Can you really afford to miss out on this opportunity?

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This blog is a companion to my website: GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Saturday’s Joke: Engineers Explain Women

WOMEN AS EXPLAINED BY ENGINEERS


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Come Back Tomorrow:  See Some of the Most Unusual Rear Window Graphics I Carry in my Store!  Have You Seen ‘I’m With Stupid?’  It’s a Hoot!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on May 7, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments Off  
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How Much do You Know about Wolves?

“Through the centuries, we have projected onto the wolf the qualities we most despise and fear in ourselves. “

– Barry Lopez, Of Wolves and Men

Gray wolves are the largest animals in the canid family. His extended family includes: jackals, domestic dogs, dingoes, foxes, bush dogs and other wild dogs.

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Man has had a love-hate relationship with wolves for thousands of years.  One way to understand the wolf is to learn more about him.

When the Gray Wolf Breeds

Surprisingly, gray wolves only breed once per year, in the months of January or February.  The  latitude where the wolves live determines the breeding date.

After a gestation period of 63 days, the pups are born between March and May.  A litter is usually 5 or 6 pups.

“… What Big Eyes You Have …”

The average male gray wolf is about 6 feet long (including the tail) and between 70 and 100 lbs.  Measuring from 33 to 38 inches at the shoulder, a gray wolf is an awesome sight in the wild!

Females are a bit smaller.

Gray wolves are at their largest in the coldest climates, where they use the extra bulk to conserve their body heat.

Although called ‘gray’ wolves, their color may actually range from white to black  — with many other shades included: tan, buff, sandy brown, cream and red.

How They Live

Wolves live in packs.  These packs vary in size from fewer than 7 to a maximum of about 20.  The amount of prey helps decide the ideal size of a pack for an area.

The wolf’s main diet consists of moose, deer, rabbits, caribou, bison, beaver and mice.

Once, these creatures roamed over most of  North America — except for arid desert and tropical forest regions.  Now, however, the Endangered Species Act protects the wolves in the US (except for Alaska, where they are not endangered).

In 47 of the 48 lower states, the wolves are endangered;  they are ‘threatened’ in Minnesota.

On the Other Hand

The federal government has reintroduced the gray wolves back into regions where they have been gone for generations.  This has not been met with joy in all areas. 

Not everyone is happy about the return of the gray wolf!

 Next Time:  The Story that Goes with this Photo!

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“Ridgetop Survey” is used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

The second photo was sent (via email) by my husband, Richard

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Know someone who might be interested in reading more about the outdoors, hunting and fishing?  Please pass this along!  

Available via RSS feeds or email.  Sign up FREE – upper right corner!

Thank You!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on May 4, 2011 at 9:52 pm  Comments (1)  
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Today’s Joke: Liberals vs. Texans

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Texas has compiled a Liberal to Texan Translation Directory. This should be helpful for you Californians … and other liberals,  and offer a chuckle for all.

(You need not agree!)

CALIFORNIA                                                      TEXAS

  • Arsenal of Weapons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Gun Collection
  • Delicate Wetlands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Swamp
  • Undocumented Worker . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Illegal Alien
  • Cruelty-Free Materials . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Synthetic Fibers

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  • Assault-and-Battery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Attitude Adjustment
  • Heavily Armed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Well-protected
  • Narrow Minded . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Righteous
  • Taxes or Your Fair Share  . . . . . . . . . . . . Coerced Theft

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  • Common sense Gun Control . . . . . . . . . . Gun Confiscation Plot
  • Illegal Hazardous Explosives . . . . . . . . . Fireworks or Stump Removal
  • Non-viable Tissue Mass . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Unborn baby
  • Equal Access to Opportunity. . . . . . . . . .Socialism

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  • Multicultural Community . . . . . . . . . . . .High Crime Area
  • Fairness or Social Progress . . . . . . . . . . .Marxism
  • Upper Class or “The Rich” . . . . . . . . . . . . Self-Employed
  • Progressive, Change . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Big Government Scheme

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  • Homeless or Disadvantaged . . . . . . . . . . Bums or Welfare Leeches
  • Sniper Rifle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Scoped Deer Rifle
  • Investment for the Future . . . . . . . . . . . Higher Taxes
  • Healthcare Reform . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Socialized Medicine

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  • Extremist, Judgmental or Hater . . . . . . .Conservative
  • Truants . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Home schoolers
  • Victim or Oppressed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Criminal or Lazy Good for Nothings
  • High Capacity Magazine . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Standard Capacity Magazine

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  • Religious Zealot . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Church-going
  • Reintroduced Wolves . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Sheep & Elk Killers
  • Free Trade Coffee . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Overpriced Yuppie Coffee
  • “Exploiters” or “The Rich” . . . . . . . . . . . . . Employed or Land Owners

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  • The Gun Lobby . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NRA Members
  • Assault Weapon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Semi-Auto (Grandpa’s M-1 Carbine)
  • Fiscal Stimulus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .New Taxes and Higher Taxes
  • Mandated Eco-Friendly Lighting . . . . . . Chinese Mercury-Laden Light Bulbs

Hope you enjoyed this poke at our understanding of the English Language!

Next Time:  We’ll get serious!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on May 3, 2011 at 10:32 pm  Comments Off  
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Out-of-Town: a Family Reunion

By the time you read this, I will be on my way back from to a family reunion!

Hope to stop and visit with some fish along the way!

 ~

I’ll be back … & writing again soon!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on May 2, 2011 at 11:51 am  Comments Off  

More Fascinating Facts About Wild Turkeys!

Turkeys of a Feather

Are you aware that young jakes have longer primary feathers in the center of their fan-shaped

Jakes Have Longer Tail Feathers in the Center of the Main Fan; All the Tail Feathers of a Mature Tom are the Same Length.

tails?  

In fact that is a way to tell a mature tom from a young jake. Keep in mind that the only time you will see those longer tail feathers is when a jake struts!

Feather Colors

At a distance, hen feathers look dark brown while a tom’s appear black.

Each of the 5 subspecies of wild turkeys has unique characteristics.  For an in-depth explanation (with photos), refer to these earlier articles:

Head Colors

Perhaps the reason Ben Franklin wanted to name the turkey as the symbol of the US (instead of the bald eagle), is because a male gobbler’s head color is red, white and blue!

In contrast, a hen’s head color is a rather dull blue-gray.

Caruncle Considerations!

Also known as wattles, caruncles are the fleshy growths that hang from the turkey’s head and neck.  According to Wikipedia, “The wattle is often an ornament for courting potential mates. A large wattle is correlated with high testosterone levels, good nutrition ….” *

An adult gobbler’s caruncle will turn bright red when he is sexually excited. In contrast, a hen has a smaller wattle that is pink. An excited jake will have a wattle  that is more pink than red.

FYI for Hunters

In the latter days of the mating season, it may be easier for a hunter to take a tom.  He’s still interested in sex but there are fewer hens available for breeding.  

As more hens start nesting, gobblers may resort to more strident calling for females. Since he’s more stressed (looking for the few hens remaining to breed), he’s more likely to make a mistake — and move into the crosshairs of a hunter’s gun.

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*  Wikipedia, from the page — “Wattle (anatomy)”

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Thanks for stopping by; come again!

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This blog is a companion to my website: GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Do You Know These Facts About Wild Turkeys?

Wild and domesticated turkeys may have a lot in common.  However, just because you nosh on turkey for Easter or Thanksgiving, doesn’t mean you know “jack” about the wild ones!

Note this turkey's beard sticking from his chest!

Sizing Up a Turkey

When choosing a turkey for Thanksgiving, you probably select one between 24 and 28 pounds for a large family gathering.   Domesticated turkeys are raised for lots of meat vs. their body size. 

 Habitat and food availability determine a wild turkey’s weight.  They average  a bit over 20 lbs. in the agricultural areas of the Midwest. In other areas, they average somewhat less than 20 lbs.

How Can I Tell a Wild Turkey’s Age?

The legs of an adult gobbler are about 2″ longer than a domesticated turkey.  Their feet grow to about 4 and 1/2 inches.

A few inches above the feet are bony areas called spurs, with a fingernail-like covering.   Colors of the spurs can range from black to white to translucent.

Soon after birth, the spurs begin to grow. General measurements are:

  • About 1/2 inch by the jake’s (young male’s) first birthday
  • 2 year-old’s have spurs just under an inch
  • and 3 year-olds have spurs just over an inch
  • It is rare for turkeys to have spurs longer than 1.5 inches because of wear

The reason western turkeys do not have spurs as long as their eastern brethren is because of the rough terrain they cover.

 Birds with Beards

Male turkeys have beards – which are modified feathers (not hair).  It is not unusual for a male to have more than one beard!

The beard grows 4 to 5 inches each year.  A jake’s beard starts to show on his chest at about 6 months of age.  

Although turkeys molt and shed feathers, the beard is part of a turkey for life … unless something happens.

Once the beard reaches about 10 inches, it can wear away by dragging, getting caught in fencing, etc.  How much beard wearing  turkeys experience is an individual thing — depending on the thickness of the beard, height of the bird and the terrain he covers.

Did You Know?

One in 20 females has a beard!

Beard and spur lengths are usually more interesting to turkey hunters — rather than their weight!

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‘Turkey Dream 2″ is used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

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Next Time:  More Fascinating Feather Facts & Caruncle Considerations!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com 

Published in: on April 28, 2011 at 3:43 pm  Comments Off  
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Some Quick Tips for Spring Turkey Hunting!

If fishing ‘rings your chime’ rather than turkey hunting, you might wonder when I plan to let the gobblers get some rest.  Spring hunting is winding down in some places, while starting up in others.

Turkey hunting is so much fun because you are matching wits and cunning with worthy adversaries!

 ~

Rest assured that fishing tips are coming soon.  BTW, one of the most important skills you can develop while hunting or fishing is …

Patience

Toms are usually bagged by the person who will wait –

  • for the tom to respond & come to the hunter’s call,
  • for the gobbler to move within range
  • for a clear shot 

Know Your Tom’s Habits

Left alone, turkeys have a routine.  If you can expect what the gobblers will do next, you can get into place to take advantage of their regular patterns of behavior.

Biologists tell us that most of the turkey mating takes place during the mid-morning hours.  Turkeys move into agricultural areas (fields) from their hiding places in the woods to:

  • eat,
  • strut,
  • mate, and
  • dust *

During the heat of the day, as the sun beats down on the dark feathers of the turkeys, they abandon the fields for the cool shade of the trees & woods.

By knowing this, you can situate yourself in a likely spot to surprise the hot and tired toms.

Know the Hunting Patterns in the Area 

Turkeys experience the heaviest hunting pressure from daylight until about 9 am.  They tend to breed during the mid-morning hours.

Experienced gobblers know that hunters leave hunting by noon.  Few hunters are going to sit in the heat without lunch.

Older toms are likely to lower their guard in the heat of the day.  Most hunters have left for lunch and the toms are often looking for a hen and a “quickie.”

Surprise the tom by hunting when he doesn’t expect to see you — and you can have turkey for supper!

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* Explanation of “dusting”:  …”turkeys routinely dust during the mid to late morning hours.  Look for an open area with loose soil where the birds have scratched out a “bowl” of loose dirt they can sit in and kick dust over themselves.

There are usually a lot of tracks, droppings and feathers nearby since they do spend quite a bit of time there during the middle of the day just loafing.

Turkeys are really very clean animals and dusting keeps them free of mites, ticks and lice.”   (Quoted from a fine article by Rob Ramsdale.  Click on the highlighted words to see the info.)

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‘Thinkin’ Spring’ is used by permission of Vantage Point Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on April 26, 2011 at 9:42 pm  Comments Off  
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Getting a Gobbler to Swim to You!

There are times when something awful happens — You are on one side of a creek/stream/river and the tom is on the other side!  Is there any way to salvage the situation?

Yes, there is.  

However, you have less than an even chance. Let’s be clear about that.

If there aren't any hens closer, you may convince a tom to fly or swim across water to you!

The Situation 

When the current is too swift for wading or too deep for walking across, you will have your work cut out trying  to convince a gobbler to fly or swim across. However it can be done.

What to Try

The only way I know to convince a tom to come across a moving body of water, is to convince him that he is missing out on a great party!  He has to believe that there is more excitement on your side of the water than on his!

A tom may have no interest in flying to your party if there is only one hen.  So, using a diaphragm call, a slate call and box caller, just might convince that tom that there are 3 or more hens calling him, wanting to breed.

Change your calls:  you will need to do cuts, excited yelps and cackles. *

Remember to make other sounds that gobblers expect to hear from hens.  More info about these sounds is at:  Bagging the Hung-Up Turkey  (look for “Why Might These Work?” – near the bottom of the post).

Two Things to Remember 

  • It may require extensive calling to convince that gobbler to fly over to you.
  • As long as that tom stays and continues to gobble, you have a chance!

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*For audio of these calls — clicking on the underlined words will take you to the National Wild Turkey Federation’s site.

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‘Proud Crowd’ used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

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Thanks for stopping by; hope you will join us again soon! 

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on April 25, 2011 at 12:35 pm  Comments Off  
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Today’s Joke: Logic and Men

Logic 101


A wife asks her husband, an engineer, “Could you please go shopping for me
and buy one carton of milk, and if they have eggs, get 6.”

A short time later the husband comes back with 6 cartons of milk and the eggs.

The wife asks him, “Why the devil did you buy 6 cartons of milk?” He replied,
“they had eggs.”

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My husband, an engineer, doesn’t understand what’s wrong with the interaction above!

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Taking a few days off to enjoy the holiday!

 Hope you are too!

 ·

 This blog is a companion to my website:   GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on April 22, 2011 at 8:58 am  Comments Off  
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Bagging the Hung-Up Turkey

It’s Happened to Most Hunters

Sometime during a hunt, you get a gobbler almost close enough for a shot.   But he will come so far and no further!

Your Choices

You think you might be within range of the tom.  If you take the chance, you may only wound the gobbler and your chances of recovering him are poor.

If you only scare the turkey, you will spook him and he won’t hang around for you to try to hunt him later.

Remember, a spooked turkey doesn’t forget  a close call.  He may not move to a new zip code, but he sure won’t hang around for you to try again!

Turkeys Use Their Wings to Protect Themselves from Your Pellets; Think of Those Wings As Kevlar-Covered Protection!

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Are There Any Other Possibilities?

Yes, there are.

But before I cover them, please remember one of my favorite sayings about turkey hunting:   Nothing is 100% True (100% of the Time) With Turkey Hunting!

If you can change the situation, you might bag the bird without forcing a bad shot or scaring him away.

Possibility # 1

If you let the gobbler walk away, you might be able to move closer to his new place and call him to you.

Possibility # 2

Another option is to circle the tom and get in front of him.  Then change your calls and try to get him to come to you.

Why Might These Work?

The difference between a hunter and a very successful hunter is understanding turkey behavior.

Some hunters use a variety of methods to call a hen.  However, a master hunter understands that hens make a variety of noises and movements.

Turkeys spend most of their day getting enough food.  While turkeys are calling for mating partners, they are not wasting time; they are also looking for food.

Turkeys expect to hear more than calls.  If he comes close and no further, he is waiting to hear other sounds that assure him that he is really heading towards a hen.

It is critical to add scratching to your calls.  But these scratches need to have a cadence (pattern):  scratch, scratch, pause, scratch.

What I’m asking you to do is think like a turkey.  Assure that hung-up gobbler that a hen is waiting for him, but she’s paused to get another bite of food!

~

‘Threesome’ Rear Window Graphic is used by permission of Restyler’s Graphics!

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on April 21, 2011 at 12:03 am  Comments (1)  
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More Important Turkey Hunter Behaviors

Did You Remember the Insect Repellent?

I have a personal belief that insects, flies and other small creatures are in cahoots with turkeys.  They jump into action: zeroing in on your nose, eyes or wandering up your leg at the critical moment.

Ask me how I know.

Go with the non-scented variety of bug spray.  The good news is that a turkey’s eyes are more sensitive than his nose.

Just don’t choose some scent that doesn’t occur in his world:  old spice, gardenia, vanilla.

Are You in a Good Shooting Position?

Sitting ‘straight on’ narrows your ability to get your turkey.  If you are right handed, it is better to sit a quarter to the right of the turkey you are calling.  This way,  you have a full 180 ° you can turn while getting off a shot.

If you are left-handed, sit a quarter to the left of the turkey you are calling – for the same reason.

Sitting straight-at a turkey narrows your range of firing.

Do You Concentrate on the Turkey & the Bead of Your Gun?

To shoot accurately, it is important to see both the turkey and the bead of your shotgun as you fire.   Turkeys are often missed when a hunter forgets this important step.

Remember:  The bead isn’t on the shotgun for decoration!

Are You Patient Enough?

Hunters often miss gobblers because he/she was in a hurry; rushing to take a shot from a poor position.  Take your time and let the tom move into place for a good shot — or don’t shoot.

Are You Wearing the Right Camouflage?

The ‘right camouflage’ means a pattern that fits the terrain where you are hunting.  Wear a pattern clear enough to disguise you; old and shiny camo is worthless.

Are you wearing jewelry?  Is everything not covered by camo fabric, covered by matte black?  Gobblers are looking for movement.  Jewelery, skin and shiny weapons reflect light.  Turkey eyes are about 5 times sharper than ours.

If you are fully covered in camo, then you will have the confidence to move when you must.  You will be assured enough to let the gobbler come in close;  you won’t feel the need to take just any shot because you are afraid the tom will see you!

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Darn, I’m going to miss turkeys when the season is over!

Come back for another thrilling episode!

~

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on April 19, 2011 at 12:04 am  Comments Off  
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Important Hunter Behaviors While Going After Turkeys

Hunters may sit for hours, waiting for the right gobbler.  However, there are things that can go wrong — that will turn your sure thing into a miss.

Did you take care of these things?

Some Hunters are more Interested in the size of a Turkeys Beard (note the long tuft of hair coming out of this birds chest) and/or Spurs!

 ~

Did You Sight-In Your Shotgun?

If you don’t know what kind of pattern your shotgun shoots, you are at a real disadvantage.  You need to know the pattern at 10, 20, 30 and 40 yards.

Confidence is an important ingredient in hunting.  Only by testing the pattern with each type of shot you plan to use, will you know that you are prepared to shoot at a range of distances.

Need more info?  See:   Shotgun Shell Patterning

Have You Learned to Estimate Distances?

If you haven’t learned to “eyeball” distances when hunting,  you are at a severe disadvantage.  Successful hunting is the marriage of practice, training, luck and woodcraft.

Practice stepping off distances, so you know if that turkey is within range of your weapon!

If you have a hard time estimating distances like I do, go early and walk off a couple of important distances and set a landmark.

During the excitement of  hunting, you will have marked measurements to use for comparison.

Do You Know Where to Shoot a Turkey?

It may seem obvious, but a turkey has a small “killing zone.”  For more, specific info, go to:  Is Your Shotgun Ready?

Do You Know How to Position Yourself?

If you aren’t in a comfortable place, you will not be able to wait the long times sometimes necessary to bag a turkey.

Remember, turkeys are on the lookout for MOVEMENT.  If you start fidgeting because you are uncomfortable, some tom will see it and move on to a safer area.

Find a comfortable tree to lean against because you don’t want your muscles to tense, cramp or shake.

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Thanks for stopping by today!

Come again!

I’ll return soon with the other half of this article!

~

‘Turkey Dream 2′ used by permission of Restyler’s Choice Graphics

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This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on April 18, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments Off  
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Things Continue to Spiral Downward …

My brother fell from his hospital bed (he passed out) and started to  have pains and numbness. When these issues increased, he was rushed for Xrays and then a CT scan.

It looks like this will be my brother's legs for the rest of his life.

Things are not getting better. I’ve already closed my store; I  doubt that I will have time to update you on this blog.

It’s interesting that NOW I have more readers than I did during  the  3 years I wrote articles regularly! I’ll leave the items up for  your  reading pleasure.

Best wishes for a wonderful holiday season!

Marylouise

Published in: on December 18, 2011 at 11:42 am  Comments Off  

How Drought Affects Your Pets … and You!

It seems as if 1/2 the country has too much rain and the other 1/2 doesn’t have enough!  We live in the part that is in a drought.

Coral Snake: Remember the jingle - 'Red & yellow kill a fellow, red & black venom lack.'

Earlier this summer, I moaned about having 145+ days without rain.  Then we got a break and the skies opened and gave us almost 2 inches of rain.

Our part of Texas should have already had about 30″ of rain so far this year, but we are hovering around 10″ of the wet stuff.  Veterinarians are warning about the consequences of so little rain.

Snakes are Biting More Pets

Rattlesnakes are the most likely biter of man and animal! You know what the rattle sound means, but your pet probably doesn't!

The next time Fido goes outside and comes back inside limping, you might want to check your pet.

Our younger pet (a Bassett-Hound) loves to snoop in our stacks of fireplace wood.  He can chase a gecko, or other lizard, for hours.

Unfortunately, the drought has brought all kinds of animals, reptiles and insects closer to homes.  Why?

They are searching for water and food.  As the rodents and insects move closer to homes, they bring snakes … and anything else that eats them as food sources.

Our Bassett came back in with a lump on his right haunch and seemed agitated.  He couldn’t find a comfortable sitting position.   He couldn’t lie still.

Sure enough, the vet confirmed that he’d been bitten by a snake.  Even with medication and a shot, it was several days before Porkchop (our Bassett) was back to his happy self!

How Can You Lessen the Chance of a Snake Bite? 

1) Remove tall grass and piles of trash in the yard.

2) Make wood piles “off-limits” for the rest of the drought. (We put portable fencing around our wood.)

3) Pay attention to your pet. A lump and strange behavior are indicators of trouble.

Next Time:  Save Yourself, or your Children, from a Bite!

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on August 10, 2011 at 11:26 am  Comments Off  
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Things Aren’t Going Well ….

Sorry for the delay; things are not going well for my brother.  As the eldest, I’ve been very involved with his problems (he is unmarried).

Later tonight, I will be back in San Antonio … hoping to help the situation.

I hope to be back to writing by the 1st of August.

~

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Published in: on July 25, 2011 at 3:55 pm  Comments Off  
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