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The Berries are good, the fishing not quite so much

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I am sure I was not the only one smiling as we welcomed the little bit of rain we received last week. I only wish it had continued for several more days. But I will be thankful for what we have received and enjoy the cooler weather. Along with the weather break I have been enjoying the night sky. With the moon coming full and the stars showing up so well it is a pure delight, and restful, to just sit quiet and cogitate. Many a problem becomes clear and solutions are found during these nights but, unfortunately, age-activated attention deficit disorder sets in and I can’t remember a thing in the morning light. Apparently everybody on this planet will soon have an opportunity to witness an event in the night sky that happens very, very infrequently. The next time may be 65,000 years from now. Sounds to me like something worth staying up for, as it will occur around 12:30 am. The planet Mars will be the closest to Earth and a relatively modest scope will afford a fantastic view. If you do not have a scope, buddy up to someone that has one. I am sure you can gather all kinds of information on this event through your computer or by reading. Don’t miss it. Some folks will probably head to high, dark areas to observe the sky without interference from city lights. Others will just sit in their yard, but don’t you just know there will be a lot of critters standing around, wondering what these two-legged critters are up to.

In my last article I had mentioned the problem some folks are having with geese fertilizing their lawns. I requested any solutions that may have worked to solve your problem. Well, now I know the name of the other person, besides my mother, who reads my articles. The Thompsons called to offer a solution that worked well for their goose problem. They live along the river and the geese would just waddle up from the water to the lawn. They ended up buying some relatively cheap, metallic tape from a nursery. This is the same tape used to keep birds out of fruit trees. The best color scheme they found was red on one side and white on the other. They used stakes of varying length and attached the tape to the top and let it droop. Any kind of breeze or wind will move the tape vigorously and has been effective in keeping the geese on the neighbors’ lawns. This may be all it takes for your lawn. Sounds like it would be worth a try.

With the fire danger and the hot days, many folks have been reluctant to head into the woods. The dust on some of our roads can be pretty awful. While things are not great, they are no means terrible. Just finding a nice, cool spot, near a creek and in some big timber, to enjoy a picnic with the family can make the weekend. There are still plenty of huckleberries on the hillside. Big, fat, juicy berries that have managed to stain my hands, face, tongue and uniform shirt. But I do have a dilemma. While I purely do enjoy my huckleberries and consider them a perk of the job, there is another berry growing out there that often takes precedence when spotted. I refer to Thimbleberries. Ripe Thimbleberries draw me like a moth to the light. I suppose, if I was thinking clearly, this is not really a dilemma - I should just eat them both whenever found. Anyway, lets get out there and enjoy your National Forests, and be smart when doing it. I realize that to some folks the forests are just big, woody things that stick up into the air, but they are home to many of the critters we hold dear.

I wish I could report that fishing is great, but I can not. It has slowed down, way down, because of the heat. But that is not unusual for this month. Some folks have been fishing for Bass and having lots of fun trying to outwit the big ones. Just remember the big Bass get that way because they are not stupid. Some folks have been going to Montana’s Kookanusa (I know it is spelled right) and doing quite well on the Kokanee. Recent checks on Lake Cocolalla have shown a few Channel Cats in the bag. Nothing super big - five to seven pounds. Stream fishing is also slow and with the water levels down, a few folks may be tempted to pull the Bull Trout out to take home. Don’t - or at least smile for the wardens.

I imagine the Hatchery crew will start planting fish again when the water cools off. Hey, don’t forget the upcoming Bonner County Fair and be sure to visit us in the Wildlife building. The Wildlife building just keeps getting better. In my travels I have begun to notice the good archery hunters already out scouting their prime areas. They will be the hunters eating elk this winter.

Well, I have run out of things to write about and I need to beg forgiveness from “the other boss” because this article is late. I need to close so I will have enough time to get on my knees, and back up again. So please, enjoy what we have, enjoy it with the family and leave it better than when you found it. “JJ”

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Author info

JJ Scott JJ Scott was a Fish & Game warden for the state of Idaho, now retired

Tagged as:

forest fire, geese, The Wardens Words, wildfires, Mars, thimbleberries, bass fishing, channel cats

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