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Outdoor Journal: Turkey hunting season ends

Outdoor Journal: Turkey hunting season ends

Ed Noonan's weekly outdoors column
Outdoor Journal: Turkey hunting season ends

At 4 a.m. on May 31, the alarm rang on my last day of turkey hunting.

I was dressed, fed (two cookies) and in the woods at 5:30 a.m. with my two decoys (hen and tom). I set the decoys out about 20 yards from where sitting comfortably in the bushes with my new Henry Lever Action 410 shotgun across my knees.

My first sequence of calls got a gobble from across the road. I was about to make another call, but the sound of a shotgun across the road ended that. It wasn’t the first time I have heard shots over there on posted property. 

I continued calling every half-hour or so, but did not receive any answers to my calls. I did have a jake and two hens come in and out to my decoys. I wanted a long beard. And several hours later another hen and jake again came within shooting range, and I let him go also.

The highlight of this hunt was when a chipmunk jumped up on my leg. I had gloves on and could not help but grab it. Glad I had gloves, he scratched and bit and got away before I could get my phone out to take a photo. Thus, ended my 2019 spring turkey hunt.

On my way home, I spoke to several locals who lived in the area, and they told me that there were feeders, which is against the law, out there where I heard the toms and the shot.  Next year, I will have to look elsewhere. 

TURKEY BANDIT CAUGHT

ECO Jeff Hovey responded to assist a Department of Law Enforcement member who caught two subjects involved with the illegal taking of a turkey in the town of Chesterfield.

The off-duty officer was at his own residence when he heard four shots close by. Shortly thereafter, the officer found two turkey hunters set up with decoys on state land adjacent to his property and had untagged turkey and were still hunting. In addition, they had shot within 500 feet of the officer’s house.

The turkey carcass was seized, and charges are pending in the Town of Chesterfield. Too bad they don’t name these poachers.

THINKING FISHING

Time to think fishing. I have begun to get my boat ready for it’s first trip out in 2019. All my rods and tackle need to be reviewed and ready for use. I also will have to replenish my supply of Bass Pro Shop Stik-O-Worms. 

That’s a good excuse to take a trip to Bass Pro. Also, in the boat right now will be my carp shooting bow and fishing arrows. I have been carp fishing since the 1960s. I believe that, last weekend, there was a carp shooting contest on Saratoga Lake that started on Saturday and went all night to Sunday.

Speaking of carp shooting, the 39th Annual St. Lawrence Bowfishing Championship out of Amvets Riverfront campground will be held in Massena on June 14-16. The shooting hours are 9 a.m. Friday through Sunday 1 p.m. Last year’s winner weigh in at 38.20-pound carp that measured 38.50 inches and had a 28-inch girth. For more information, go to http://stlawrencebowfishing.com/.

SARATOGA LAKE

I stopped in the Saratoga Lake boat launch, and it’s a good thing I didn’t have my boat. There was no place to park my boat within the launch area. There were also a few vehicles with boat trailers parked outside the launch on the side of the road. 

That same day, I visited my friends at South Shore Marine, and they, too, were quite busy. I launch there quite a bit because some of my best bass fishing spots are at the south end of the lake. Toss a wacky worm around down there and you will get a bent rod.

Tim Blodgett of Saratoga Tackle and Archery will again do his Tuesday afternoon Saratoga Bass Challenge bass fishing tournaments out of Lee’s Campground. The first tournament will be June 18. For more information, go to http://www.saratogatackle.com/archery.html.

The Guan-Ho-Ha sportsman club will host its annual Mohawk River Bronzeback Tournament on June 23 out of Mohawk Valley Marina. Entry fee is $25 per person, which covers prizes, and barbecue Cost is $10 for kids under 16.

The rules are five smallmouth bass per team and cash prizes will be given to the first three places determined by weight. All fish must be caught between Locks 7 and 8. Each team must have one Guan-Ho-Ha member, live bait can be used and weigh in is 1 p.m. Other prizes include a $50 for heaviest bass and rock bass. For more information, call John Gaworecki at 518-399-9488 or Nick Gaworecki at 518-441-2286

The Great Sacandaga Fisheries Federation will be hosting its 28th annual Summer Fishing Contest on June 15 from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. The measuring station and awards presentations will be at Sport Island Pub with $20 pre-registration only.

Fishing hours are 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. There will be four places paid: $300, $200, $100 and $50 for Bass, Walleye and Trout. There are 25 trout tagged swimming around out there with orange tags worth $750 if caught at the tournament, and $500 through Labor Day.

For more additional information call Randy Gardinier at 518-848-7248, or Brian Kedik at 518-469-8124. For an application, go to http://www.gslff.com/contest_info.

Contact Ed Noonan at [email protected].

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