Search This Blog

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Success in the Virginia Fall Turkey Woods (Blog 266)

This morning, Virginia's early muzzleloading season began, and I relish my time using a smokepole to pursue deer.  But the fall turkey season was still in, and I had not killed a bird - so there was no doubt that I would be going turkey hunting.

I hope to do a magazine story on the outing, but the short version is that I called in and killed a jenny that weighed all of nine pounds.  Although I have had a satisfying deer season so far, nothing this entire hunting season brought me so much joy as
tagging that turkey.

Deer hunting is a complex, wonderful pastime that is richly satisfying, but I love nothing better than pursuing turkeys in the spring and fall.  Elaine and I cut off every bit of meat that we could from that turkey and will honor it by eating many meals from the bird.  What a thrilling day.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Lost Weekend of Fall Turkey Hunting Blog 265)

There is nothing I enjoy doing more in the fall than turkey hunting.  As much as I relish pursuing deer, when Virginia's fall turkey starts, I stop deer hunting for the weekend.  I will share the two low points.  On Saturday when I finally came across a flock, I began the charge to scatter the gang - and made it all of five running steps before I tripped and fell.  Needless to say, the bust was not a good one.

And after coming close to having a shot on Sunday, I was so tired that I left my Northeast Proucts Therm-A-Seat Wedge behind in the woods. I was so exhausted that I had to ask my long suffering wife Elaine if she would drive me back to the mountain where I had left it behind.

So the highlight of my weekend was my being able to find the tree where I had left my seat cushion behind.  Driving to and looking for the seat took about 2 1/2 hours - lost time on a lost weekend.  I will be back turkey hunting this coming weekend.  Things can't go any worse, I hope.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

The Death of our Buff Orpington hen, Ophelia (Blog 264)

It was not a good week in our Buff Orpington chicken run.  We only had two BOs left of the four that hatched last April, and now there is only one.  Ophelia had been a great layer since she started in September and produced an egg on Wednesday, behaved normally on Thursday, and was dead Friday morning.

Elaine and I are at a total loss to figure out what happened.  And poor Orville, now alone in the run, has spent Friday and Saturday looking for Ophelia and giving the food cluck.

Fortunately, our Rhode Island Red run is adjacent to the Buff one, so Orville will at least have the company of other chickens.  But we expect it will be a very lonely winter for him, as it will be spring before we order some new Buffs.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

In Praise of Virginia's Sunday Hunting (Blog 263)

Last Saturday was opening day of Virginia's early archery season, and most of the day I spent watching rain come down.  Therefore, it was both a joy and a relief to be able to go hunting on Sunday.  And even more of a joy when I killed a very nice mature doe that morning.

This Sunday afternoon, I am taking Robin Clark of Virginia's Wheelin' Sportsmen bowhunting as part of a suburban deer hunt.  We will be setting up in a blind in a backyard whose home owner has told me she is plagued by an overpopulation of deer.

Both Robin and I had other commitments on Saturday, and Sunday afternoon was the best time for us to go.  I hope he arrows a fat doe.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Deer Kidney Pot Pie, Anyone? (Blog 262)

While hunting behind our Botetourt County, Virginia home this morning, I was fortunate enough to kill a mature doe with my Parker Thunderhawk Crossbow.  After dragging the doe back to the house, I asked Elaine, as usual, to help a little with the field dressing chores.

Also, as usual, I cut out the heart and tongue (both delicacies as far as I am concerned) and Elaine took them to the kitchen to clean and freeze for later use.  As I was working on the bottom loins, I asked my sweetheart if she would mind making some kidney pot pie like the British do.

Elaine said she would make the entree, but I would have to eat it all myself the first time. We would appreciate any advice from folks who have prepared kidneys.