Now is no time to doze; those who snooze will lose. Landscape coloration reports from the north detail monumental pigment spikes, with the trend rushing south, hastened and lessened by unusual September weather.
Last minute shenanigans have turned an already confusing and frustrating deer registration and regulation system turbulent. Still, this is not the time to ask why or even question, but to do one’s best to follow the fluid rules of the moment.
It could be worse. We could be field wardens trying to protect the state’s natural resources. All hunters have to do is try to follow them.
To uncover the twisted reasoning will likely further aggravate and take away from the excitement and traditions of gathering Wisconsin, of making Wisconsin Wisconsin.
In short, the Department of Natural Resources news release stated, “The 2017-2019 biennial budget recently signed by Gov. Scott Walker includes changes in deer and turkey tagging that are going into effect immediately.
“Under the new budget law, deer and turkey carcass tags are not required to be issued with licenses. In addition, validation and attachment of carcass tags are no longer required.”
Outdoors enthusiasts should eventually make those blamable accountable. ‘Nough said.
Forest vegetation understory is clearing and browning. Overhead leaves —needles and broad — are abscising and dropping. The white pine needles have turned green grass brown, dotted with spent seed cones deseeded by black-capped chickadees.
Deer are camouflaging with the new landscape. Scrapes under overhanging twigs are omnipresent. More saplings have lost the battle, and war, of bullying bucks.
More normal autumn temperatures ahead will likely allow squirrel hunters, archers, turkey callers and grouse flushers to catch up on lost opportunities. Anglers, too, even fly-fishers, are welcoming the weather changes sure to turn on fish.
The DNR’s deer registration recording system is active at dnr.wi.gov/topic/wildlifehabitat/harvest/deerharvest.html.
Weekly changes will be made during the seasons, in all active categories, with most being posted and updated after the weekends. During the gun deer season, two postings are planned, one following the opening weekend, one following the season closure.
Each season will have its own chart, divided into counties. Archery will be split into an archery season and a crossbow season, as it was since the crossbow season came into the picture.
The drop-down charts allow hunters to find the county, within the zone, where they hunt or where they are interested in seeing data.
The bottom of each chart lists totals for that season.
Migrating ruby-throated hummingbirds continue to be duped by anything red, including a gasoline can or vehicle taillight inside an open garage door. It is nearly impossible to get those tiny birds to fly out; first they must fly at a lower elevation to an open door. Putting something big and red outside the garage helps attract them back outside, sometimes.
Night gliding and climbing flying squirrels have found their favorite domestic fruit or nut tree or shrub, including ornamental pear trees. Look for them between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m. with a yard light.
Wild turkey rafts have begun to reassemble, often by gender and age. Notice, if there is a rafter of 10 or more hens, how many are bearded. Sometimes, two or more show these modified feather growths on their chests.
Now is the time to play catch up after the record heat and continued drought in some areas. Take in autumn’s sounds, smells and sites. Feel the frost, too, and taste the fruits of fall.