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Fishing Report for May 18, 2012 / ODFW

May can be excellent month to go trout fishing

Minam rafters clean up campsites


Two-day float trip cleans up 40-mile corridor before Memorial Day 

A party of 12 rafters organized by Grant and Lottie Richie launched onto the Wallowa River May 5 at Minam on a two-day float trip to clean up 90 campsites along a 40-mile corridor of the Wallowa and Grande Ronde rivers. 

Penguin authority will be keynote speaker at Ladd Marsh Birdathon

dd Marsh Birdathon is conducted each year during the height of the spring migration and nesting in the Grande Ronde Valley. It is always put on close to International Migratory Bird Day, which is on the second Saturday of May in the United States. CHRIS BAXTER / The

The seventh annual Ladd Marsh Birdathon, set for May 18-20, will be paradoxical in nature.

Those attending it will have outstanding opportunities to see sandhill crane chicks, striking redhead ducks and countless other waterfowl with assistance from some of the most knowledgeable birders in Northeast Oregon.

Birding enthusiasts will also have an opportunity during the birdathon to learn illuminating details about a bird which thrives in sub freezing temperatures — the Adelie penguin. 

Elk population survey finds calf ratios up in Union County

Elk in Union and Wallowa counties survived the winter of 2011-12 in good condition, according to spring Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife population surveys. JIM WARD photo

Elk and deer in Union and Wallowa counties emerged from the relatively mild winter of 2011-12 in good condition overall according to spring Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife population surveys.

The surveys indicate that for the most part fawn and elk calf survival was good.

Following is a breakdown of what ODFW biologists found.

Hunting Report for May 11, 2012 / ODFW

Meadow Muncher: Ground squirrels are out in full force on ag lands throughout Northeast Oregon. In high numbers, these rodents can cause considerable damage to crops, so hunters can often get access from ranchers and farmers suffering losses. Studies have shown that squirrel carcasses left by hunters often contain lead fragments which can be devastating to raptors like golden eagles when they find and feed on these. Fortunately, most rifle cartridges now come in lead-free choices. Young hunters should be observant of their background when shooting rifles in open country. A small .22-caliber bullet can travel up to one mile and larger calibers even farther. JIM WARD photo

Squirrel hunters find active targets

Viewing Report for May 11, 2012 / ODFW

A northern harrier takes a tree break (no crumpets, please) at Ladd Marsh. ODFW photo

Birdathon flies in May 18-20

Fishing Report for May 11, 2012 / ODFW

Catch of the Day: Ron Harrod, from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, releases a brightly-colored steelhead into Roulett Pond northeast of Elgin. After hatchery quotas are met, more than 260 hatchery-born steelhead are released in area ponds to provide additional fishing opportunities. Fisherman can log onto the ODFW website to learn of planned releases. JIM WARD photo

May can be an excellent time to go trout fishing 

Catfish put youth in winners’ circle at fishing derby

Colt Foltz of La Grande tied for third place in the 7-to-10 age category at the La Grande Optimist Club-Bi Mart Morgan Lake Fishing Derby by landing this 1-pound, 8-ounce catfish.
Isaak Carson of La Grande displays some of the fish he caught at the La Grande Optimist Club-Bi Mart Morgan Lake Fishing Derby. The fish he caught included a 1-pound, 8.6-ounce catfish, the heaviest fish caught in the derby.
Isaak Carson of La Grande displays some of the fish he caught at the La Grande Optimist Club-Bi Mart Morgan Lake Fishing Derby. The fish he caught included a 1-pound, 8.6-ounce catfish, the heaviest fish caught in the derby.

The annual La Grande Optimist Club-Bi Mart Morgan Lake Fishing Derby took some  long-time residents down memory lane Saturday.

It cast their thoughts back to an era before    spinning reels, a time when Morgan Lake was filled with perch and catfish. 

Hunting Report for May 4, 2012 / ODFW

Carnivorous Vegetarian: Black bears are well known for their fondness for fresh meat or carrion, but veggies, including grasses and forbs, actually make up the largest part of their diet. Good places for hunters to look for bears are open, grassy slopes in the early morning or late evening hours. Later in the season, bears will be looking for newborn elk or deer. Calls simulating young animals in distress can be very effective in luring bears at this time. Oregon’s bear season began on April 15 and ends on May 31. JIM WARD photo

Find bears in spring green-up

Viewing Report for May 4, 2012 / ODFW

Mouseketeers: Young northern harriers, also known as marsh hawks, have an almost insatiable appetite. Their daily menu might include white-footed mice for breakfast, a couple of garter snakes for lunch and a young pheasant for dinner. In-between snacks could include a blackbird and a fat gopher. Northern harriers are very common throughout Northeast Oregon, but they’re especially common at Ladd Marsh. Look for their tell-tale white saddle patch near the tail and their distinctive habit of gliding low over the marsh. JIM WARD photo

Marsh wonders

Northern harriers among many raptors commonly seen at wildlife refuge 

Fishing Report for May 4, 2012 / ODFW

Wallowa Lake anglers pick up nice lake trout 

Norway’s Rondane National Park: Gliding through enchanted landscape

Dick Knowles, left, his daughter Brenna Warburton and Robert Molnar ski at Rondane National Park in Norway. Molnar is the director of the Venavu Center in Norway, which Dick Knowles and his wife Siobhan worked for in March, providing ski tours at Rondane National Park. BILL WARBURTON photo

Haines pair lead cross-country ski tours in Scandinavian country 

Reindeer are elusive in Norway’s Rondane National Park but wisdom on the art of ski instruction is easy to find.

Dick and Siobhan Knowles of Haines know this first hand after one of the most fulfilling experiences of their lives — a month spent in Rondane National Park leading cross country ski tours.

Traditional opener of trout season Saturday

The annual La Grande Optimist Club Morgan Lake Fishing Derby unfolds Saturday. The derby, sponsored by Bi-Mart, runs from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The event, which started at least 30 years ago, is one of the most popular youth angling events in Northeast Oregon, with between 100 and 150 people participating each year. The derby has the following age divisions: 6 and under, 7 to 11 and 12 to 16. Prizes will be awarded to the top three in each age division based on the weight of their fish. Participants can enter any fish caught in the contest. There is no entry fee and all entrants will receive a prize for registering.

“In the spring, a young man’s fancy lightly turns to thoughts of trout.”

Those were Tennyson’s words. Almost.

Doubtless I am not the first trout enthusiast to make sport with poetic verse, but with apologies to the bard, I discovered that Shakespeare reads just as well if the word “trout” is substituted for the word “love.”

Viewing Report for April 27, 2012 / ODFW

Looking to Rent: Wood ducks have just arrived in Northeast Oregon from their spring migration. First on their agenda is to find a place to nest. Unlike most waterfowl that nest on the ground, wood ducks seek abandoned woodpecker cavities or will even accept artificial nesting boxes when available. For information on free boxes call 541-963-6977. A good place to see wood ducks is along the Highway between La Grande and Hot Lake or Pete’s Pond in Enterprise. JIM WARD photo

Waterfowl using Ladd Marsh as international airport

Fishing Report for April 20, 2012 / ODFW

Some anglers catching Wallowa Lake kokanee limits jigging

Viewing Report for April 20, 2012 / ODFW

Bald eagles are common along the Wallowa River from Minam Canyon to Wallowa Lake. ODFW photo

Look for eagles near cattle

Fishing derby returns to Morgan Lake April 28

Another chapter will be added to a popular angling tradition on Saturday, April 28.

The annual La Grande Optimist Club Morgan Lake Fishing Derby will be conducted. The derby, sponsored by Bi-Mart, runs from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Elgin’s Doug Winkelman reflects on evolution of archery in Oregon

FRED BEAR BOWS: Dr. Doug Winkelman holds his Bear Cub and Bear Kodiac Special bow. On the table is a bow he made, a spine tester and two arrows with hand-crafted broad heads.

One outdoors man, Dr. Doug Winkelman of Elgin, was introduced to the “sport of kings” in 1949, and he still marvels at how far archery has developed in Oregon over the past sixty years.

“I was one of the first people in Oregon to be a part of this (archery) movement,” said Winkelman. “I grew up at Klamath Falls, and as a boy, I truly enjoyed the outdoor life. At 73 years of age, I still do.”

Anthony Lakes community mourns loss of longtime ski instructor

George Roach taught skiing at Anthony Lakes for seven years. “He always had perfect skiing form,’’ said Mike Gooderham, a member of the Anthony Lakes Ski Patrol. ANTHONY LAKES photo

Mike Gooderham could always quickly identify George Roach on the ski slopes of Anthony Lakes.

Roach was the flawless one. 

“He always had perfect skiing form,’’ said Gooderham, a La Grande resident who is a member of the Anthony Lakes Ski Patrol.

Fishing Report for April 13, 2012 / ODFW

Steelhead season coming to a close 

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