March 21, 2014

Comments Off on It Won’t Be Long Now – Really

It Won’t Be Long Now – Really

As we walk through the still snow-covered and frost-permeated north woods, it somehow seems hard to believe that we’ll soon be hearing the sounds of a changing season.  Chief among these sounds is the one produced by the“King of the Game Birds” who, unlike so many of his feathered cousins, endured this long and difficult […]

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March 2, 2014

Comments Off on The Economics of Birding

The Economics of Birding

by Kay Charter – Twenty years ago, the state of Texas released a birding trail map for the center section of the Gulf Coast. The map was the first of its kind in the country, and the first of what would eventually be fifteen regional maps that would encompass every part of the state. That […]

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February 25, 2014

Comments Off on Straits Of Mackinac Pipeline – The Plan Should Be As Clear As The Water

Straits Of Mackinac Pipeline – The Plan Should Be As Clear As The Water

Within the past year, the nearly 60 year-old, twin oil transmission pipelines which lie at the bottom (mostly) of the Straits of Mackinac have gone from being largely unknown to a chief topic of conversation throughout our region.  Public awareness of oil and gas transmission lines here in Michigan seemingly received the equivalent of a […]

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February 23, 2014

Comments Off on State of the State – 2013 Michigan Forest Health Report

State of the State – 2013 Michigan Forest Health Report

The 2013 Forest Health Report for the state of Michigan has been released. In simpler times this would have merely been viewed as an annual trip to the timber doctor – but not today. As we have now come to expect, much of the document is dedicated to the discussion of the growing threat to […]

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February 12, 2014

Comments Off on Town Hall Meeting Scheduled For “Land Cap” Removal Bill

Town Hall Meeting Scheduled For “Land Cap” Removal Bill

Many may recall the debate from  2012  surrounding what was then known as Senate Bill 248, the “Land Cap” bill.  Although some improvements the original bill were secured, PA 240 of 2012 became law and thereby established a 4.6 million acre limit on the amount of land that the State of Michigan could own and […]

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February 11, 2014

Comments Off on Best Foods for Wintering Birds

Best Foods for Wintering Birds

by Kay Charter – During most years, birds that overwinter in our area are largely able to survive without our assistance, especially if the habitats in which they live are healthy. Birds like woodpeckers, chickadees and nuthatches have survived for many millennia without human help. But significant snowfall during the current winter without any thawing […]

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January 30, 2014

Comments Off on Crop Damage Permits For Bear? Please Say You’re Kidding

Crop Damage Permits For Bear? Please Say You’re Kidding

Had it not been 5°F with two feet of snow around my feet I would have thought someone had moved April Fool’s Day.  That was my honest reaction when I first heard about Michigan House Bill 5226 which proposes to expand crop damage permits to include the killing of bear.  This stunningly bad idea comes […]

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January 28, 2014

Comments Off on Good News for Conservation Programs – U.S. Farm Bill Nears Agreement

Good News for Conservation Programs – U.S. Farm Bill Nears Agreement

January 28, 2014 Report Courtesy of Ducks Unlimited (DU) WASHINGTON – Jan. 27, 2014 – After three long years of compromise, the four primary Agriculture Committee negotiators announced the final farm bill agreement today, and it enhances and strengthens vital polices for wildlife, sportsmen and women and all citizens. The 2014 Farm Bill includes the […]

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January 9, 2014

Comments Off on Kirtland’s Warbler – Back from the Brink

Kirtland’s Warbler – Back from the Brink

by Kay Charter By the time the Kirtland’s warbler was listed under the Endangered Species Act, the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service was already hard at work to save the bird. Brood parasitism (when birds drop their eggs in the nests of other birds, often leading to starvation for host nestlings) by brown-headed cowbirds […]

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December 6, 2013

Comments Off on The Changing Demographic of Hunters

The Changing Demographic of Hunters

Although it remains well short of a seismic shift, there are increasing signs that the traditional makeup of the hunting community is changing.  For those who have seen past national survey data for hunters and anglers, you know that the biggest bubble on the participation curve has always been represented by 40+ year-old white males. […]

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