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Home arrow Wallowa Life

Falling for turkeys

During the fall turkey season, hunters stand a much better chance of taking young birds like these jakes. Novice hunters may find it difficult to distinguish a young jake from a hen, especially birds from a late hatch. Due to reproductive issues, most hunters would rather take a young male over a hen Ė even though hens are legal. JIM WARD photos

Turkey day has different meaning for some folks 

With the memories of Thanksgiving still fresh in our minds and the after-taste of cranberry sauce, giblets and the Butterball lingering on our taste buds, “turkey day” was a day for family and friends. Others have a slightly different approach to putting a fresh turkey on the table. 

These folks think of box calls, camo-garments and 12-gauge magnums. 

Viewing Report for November 23, 2012

Fishing Report for November 23, 2012

Hunting Report for November 23, 2012

Motley gathering evolves into The Feast of the Unloved

Two days before any holiday I finally get in the mood for the revelry. Problem is, it takes longer than that to thaw a turkey.

Friends of NRA banquet set Saturday

It is quickly becoming one of the most successful firearm education and safety organizations of its kind in Oregon.

This year the organization’s annual big night is fast approaching.

Viewing Report for November 16, 2012

A cedar waxwing takes in the view while preparing to devour some mountain ash berries. Waxwings are flocking up at this time and seeking out fruit. Favorites might include the smallest crabapples, hawthorne, Peking cotoneaster and highbush cranberries. Later in the season, the larger Bohemian waxwings will migrate from the north and begin foraging in local backyards. JIM WARD photo

Fishing Report for November 16, 2012

Hunting Report for November 16, 2012

For a male valley quail, pleasing the ladies includes finding a lofty perch and singing melodiously. Keeping oneís topknot preened and in good condition can help. The birds were introduced to Northeast Oregon in the early 1900s and have done well. Nesting later than most game birds tends to improve brood success by missing early, cold rains. The valley quail season runs through Jan. 31. JIM WARD photo

Calling all ducks

A junior at La Grande High School, Mitch Workinger uses his calling skills to win competitive events against other callers and to draw in waterfowl while hunting. DICK MASON - The Observer

Local caller practices an hour a day for five years to prepare for world championships 

La Grande High School junior Mitch Workinger will be in world class company late next week.   

Workinger will travel to Stuttgart, Ark., to compete in the annual World Duck Calling Championships, which are scheduled for Nov. 23, the day after Thanksgiving. Workinger, one of the top youth duck callers in the Northwest the past several years, is entered in the 14-16 age division. 

White-tail fever

Darrel Plank of La Grande runs a ramrod through a muzzleloader he built. He will be participating in the Union County muzzleloader hunt for white-tails. DICK MASON - The Observer

Union County muzzleloader hunt starts Monday 

Millions of Americans set their clocks back an hour Sunday to make the annual autumn switch to Standard Time.

Four days from now many hunters in Northeast Oregon will switch back their timepieces back more than 150 years. 

Hunting Report for November 9, 2012

Hunting Report for November 9, 2012

Fishing Report for November 9, 2012

Fisherman all seem to have their own time-tested methods of catching fish. Two-year-old James Ward prefers the hands-on approach. Not unlike a big-game hunter, his habit of smearing fish scales and slime all over his clothes tends to mask human odors and allows for a silent assault. Although Thief Valley Reservoir was drained almost dry it is refilling and will soon be restocked with more fish. Pilcher Creek Reservoir is closed for the winter. JIM WARD photo

Viewing Report for November 9, 2012

Love is in the air: A Wallowa County mule deer sifts the air for the telltale scent of a doe in estrous. Mid-November is perhaps the best time to catch bucks coming out of their hiding places looking for females. Unlike bull elk, who usually gather a harem of cows, buck deer tend to move around looking for receptive does ó one or two at a time. At this time, finding a small group of does is a good bet for finding a buck. JIM WARD photo

Fishing Report for November 2, 2012

Fishing Report for November 2, 2012

Viewing Report for November 2, 2012

Jim Ward photo Prickly situation: Some wildlife and forest managers are a bit perplexed as to the decline in porcupine populations throughout the state in recent years. Itís not an uncommon subject among hunters and other forest users as well. Some suggest the upswing in cougar populations may be the culprit as the big cats do prey upon porcupines. Some suggest an increase in human interactions might be to blame. Although porcupines can kill young trees, experts suggest that notion is a bit overblown. Actually, their habit of partial-girdling of tree tops and the subsequent formation of branch produces formations attractive to nesting and roosting owls, other birds and small mammals. Porcupines give birth to one young, which comes with four teeth and a full set of more than 30,000 needle-point quills. The young leave their mother at about two months of age. JIM WARD photo

Hunting Report for November 2, 2012


Aiming for the heart

Issac Jergens, left, and Brody Hanson, both of La Grande, prepare to fire at targets at the Centershot range Monday evening at Valley Fellowship. CHRIS BAXTER - The Observer

Eight-week program teaches local youths about archery, spirituality

Arrows travel a bit slower than normal on Monday nights at this indoor range, but words of wisdom, encouragement and spirituality cascade like a waterfall. 

Introducing the Centershot program and its range at Valley Fellowship across from Pioneer Park. The range, set up on Monday evenings, is a key element of Centershot, an eight-week program through which boys, girls and adults are taught about the sport of archery while learning about the gospel of Jesus Christ.  

Footprints in the snow

Last month I quoted a biologist who said, “Not many people enjoy wildlife without a bullet or a hook.” The story was about kokanee spawning in Wallowa Lake and the unique opportunity to enjoy the yearly phenomenon with nothing more than a camera.

Fishing Report for October 26, 2012

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