Outdoor Adventures with Gary Lee - Vol. 101
The snow yesterday morning was like an April Fool’s joke, but on the first of May and temperatures in the 20s froze my rain gauge, which had an inch and a half of water in it. We needed the rain to bring up the water in the Fulton Chain. I heard today that the upper two lakes, Sixth and Seventh, are almost up to summer levels after run-off from those rainstorms.
I got a call from our Sandalfoot condo in Sanibel yesterday morning to tell me that one of my night blooming cereus, which I planted across from the office, had a bloom on it this morning. It was nice of them to call. One of the ladies who works there was an Adirondack resident before moving to Florida. She bikes to work and goes right by one of these plants that still has seven more flower buds to come out, so I might get some pictures this time.
I should have put this in last week, as it involved hunting related incidents from last year and turkey season opened May 1st. Some of these statistics may have come from turkey hunting, as it was a real dangerous sport when it first started years ago now. No mention as to what hunters were doing when these incidents occurred. 22 hunting related incidents in the 2020 season including 3 fatalities. The three fatalities were self-inflicted and involved experienced hunters.
Nine of the 22 were two-party incidents and 13 were self- inflicted. All of these incidents could have been prevented if hunting safety rules had been followed. Nearly 67,000 new hunters were certified last year, compared to 24,000 in previous years. None of the 22 hunting related incidents in 2020 involved a hunter who took the hunter safety course online.
For the past several years, DEC has also tracked and investigated Elevated Hunting Incidents (EHI) previously referred to as tree stand injuries. EHI are under reported and DEC is not always notified when these falls occur. In 2020, 13 EHI were reported, one was fatal. That hunter was not wearing a safety harness and fell while descending from a ladder stand.
Many, if not all, tree-stand incidents could have been prevented if hunters follow the “ABC” of tree stand safety. Always remove and inspect the tree stand before use. Buckle on a full body harness securely every time. Connect to the tree before your feet leave the ground.
You can see by those figures that many people had extra time on their hands and went back to hunting or starting hunting for the first time. So just like trail use hunters using the woods was on the increase because of the Covid virus. People wanted to get out in the open air and out of the house, both hikers and hunters.
Birds were pushed to the feeders by the snow, and I had to fill the feeders twice yesterday, as I had over fifty Purple Finch and Common Grackles who can clean out a feeder in no time. I put up my net and caught several finches, but none of the grackles. I also caught several juncos, a few White Throated Sparrows, White Breasted Nuthatches and one Red Breasted Nuthatch. I still had a few Evening Grosbeaks coming to the feeders. When they were coming in big numbers, some of them nested in the area during the summer season. Maybe that will happen this year. You sure know when they are around with their raucous calls.
I didn’t see any trailing arbutus flowers this week but the coltsfoot, trout lily and spring beauty were out in big numbers so I may have missed the arbutus.
The Crown Point Banding Station will open next Saturday for the 46th year. Some Covid restrictions are still in effect, so visitors will not be permitted at the station, but that’s another story. See ya.
Above Photo: Purple finch at the feeder
Spring beauty wildflower