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!

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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 on Sunday Special: Fun in the Sun with Inflatables!  
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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 on Dolphins of the Deep  
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Thanks for Your Patience

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

~

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 on Thanks for Your Patience  

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

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Published in: on June 17, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments Off on Why Should I Take My Kids Fishing?  
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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!

~~~

* 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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Published in: on June 13, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments Off on A Few FishingTips on Catch-and-Release  
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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 on Saturday’s Humor: Just a Little Dart in the Back  
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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 on Why do Leopards Have Spots & Other Amazing Facts!  
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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 on How Tides and the Moon Affect Fishing  
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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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