Archive for February, 2009

More Collectors Club Pictures

Friday, February 27th, 2009

PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketJust added a few interesting pictures to the previous collector club blog.  The orange license is a 1936 gun license, metal tag, and back tag.  The other two back tags are for archery season 1948-49, and the button is the first Michigan Bowhunter button.  The bottom picture is a 1931 deer license before the DNR came up with back tags.  Check out the previous blog for more info on the club.

Mich. Hunting & Fishing Collectors Club

Friday, February 27th, 2009

PhotobucketOn Saturday March 7th. the Michigan Hunting and Fishing Collectors Club will be holding their annual show at Mason Michigan.  The club started in 1994, and has about 125 members from all over the state.  Members of the club collect, display, trade, and buy old Michigan hunting licenses, DNR items, duck and fish decoys, Michigan bowhunter items, successful hunter patches, and pretty much anything that has to do with the hunting history of our state.

The clubs founder Ed Dunifon did extensive research on Michigan hunting and fishing licenses, and discovered that a 1895 license was the first one issued.  It had five coupons with it, which allowed you five deer.  This particular license is very rare, and worth a cool $1000.00 bucks to collectors.  The successful deer hunter patch seen in this blog is the only Michigan patch without a date.  It’s the 1972 patch and is worth between $200-400 dollars.  I know I saw one of these at my brother Darryl’s house.  Michigan deer hunting back tags were started in 1936 for firearms, and in 1937 for bowhunters.  There were only 186 bow licenses sold that year with two of them being out of state.  These licenses are extremely hard to come by before 1950.  Metal deer horn seals started in 1910, and early ones can fetch $200-400 dollars as well.  There is so much more that this club collects, and if your interested in knowing more about them their website is

The club president is Greg Woodland (fitting name) from Pleasant Lake, and the Vice president is Monroe’s own Robert Steckmeyer.  Don Placer from Lansing is the treasurer.  The club is always looking for new members, and extend a warm invitation to any like minded individuals.  Who knows some of you may be sitting on a gold mine, and don’t know it.  Check em out on March 7th. in Mason Mich. you’ll have a good time and meet some great people.


Second Amendment Under Attack Again

Thursday, February 26th, 2009

PhotobucketThe Bible says in I-Peter 5:8 “be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.  Resist him and stand steadfast in your faith.”  The scriptures admonition to resist,be vigilant, and stand steadfast could just as well be excellent advice for the hunters, shooters,  gun collectors, or any Second Amendment believers.

On Jan. 6th. of 2009 Representative Bobby Rush (Dem. IL.) introduced the “Blair Holt’s Licensing and Record of Sale Act of 2009.”  This bill has been introduced into the House as new bill HR 45.  It has been kept a secret and is flying under the radar of most Americans.  If you feel as though you have a staunch ally in President Barack Obama, then I have a bridge to sell ya!  The anti gun lobby is drooling over the possibility of getting HR 45 passed asap.  This is a foot in the door approach to complete confiscation of guns and disarming society to the point that we have no defense.

I don’t have the space to get into all the details, but I will highlight some of the major points.  Basically this bill would make it illegal to own a firearm – any rifle with a clip, or any pistol unless you submit to the following. 1. Register your guns.  2. Get fingerprinted.  3. supply a current drivers license  4. submit to a physical or mental evaluation at any time of their choosing.  5. Supply your social security number.  6. Report the private or public sale of any firearm with a cost of $25.00 reporting fee.  Failure to do this and you automatically loose your right to own a firearm, and you are subject to a year in jail.  7. There is also a child provision law on page 16 in section 305 stating a child access provision.  Your guns must be locked and inaccessible to any child under 18.  Along with this provision the government maintains the right to come and inspect your home to make sure you are complying with this rule.  If you are found in violation you can be fined and jailed for up to 5 years.

Please go on the Internet to verify this Orwellian plan against your Second Amendment rights. Look up HR-45 and you should find a wealth of information.  This is no joke, and if we take it as such, gun ownership will go the same way as school prayer.  Incidentally before school prayer was removed all the teachers had to worry about was kids chewing gum, talking in the halls, passing notes behind their backs, and a few really “bad” kids skipping class.  Now we have weapon detectors, shootings, stabbings, lock-downs, riots, drugs, sexual promiscuity (even the teachers can’t control themselves) and higher illiteracy.  Boy you can give me back the good old days when morality was important.

Please pass this blog and it’s message on to any of your friend.  Write a letter, make a phone call.  These knuckleheads in Washington only listen if enough people get on their case about an issue.

Yours in Solidarity


The Midwest Gray Wolf

Saturday, February 21st, 2009

PhotobucketBack in March 2007 wolves in the Midwest were “delisted.”  The Midwest consist of Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan.  What this means is that the wolves were taken off the federally protected “Endangered Species List” and turned over to the responsibility of the state governments.  The states have had a year and a half of trying to come up with a plan to satisfy conservationist, landowners, and state game managers.

In the meantime the Humane Society of the United States, and other animal rights groups, filed suit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service saying their action was “premature.”  Judge Paul Friedman, on September 29th. of 2008 ruled against the USFWS, and the wolves were again put on the Endangered Species List.  The Federal government was again in charge of this “threatened” species, and it’s encroaching population.

The original numbers for a viable gray wolf population for Minnesota were 1250- 1400 wolves.  The Federal plan called for at least 100 wolves roaming Wisconsin and Michigan.  That goal has been surpassed by an alarming rate, and the hands of sound game management have been “tied again!”  Minnesota has a burgeoing population of over 3000 wolves, and had planned a public hunt, this year, to reduce the numbers.  Wisconsin has an estimated population of 400 wolves, while Michigan has a growing population of 500.  Both states are well beyond the original goal.

That states are at odds over how to handle nuisance wolf complaints.  Ron Refsnider, a wolf recovery expert, has stated that the judges decision was not based on sound biological evidence.  The animal rights groups are gloating over their victory, but in the end it may do much more harm to the wolves than sound game management of a targeted viable population.

The above picture is of a wolf track I came across about 1/2 mile behind the Baldwin bear camp.  The track measured 4″ across, and was mixed in with bear, racoon, beaver, and other smaller tracks on a wild game highway.  Dick Baldwin has actually seen a wolf in this area, and said it was black as a bear.  I have seen two wolves here in Michigan.  One while driving through Seney on highway 77, and the other while hunting in Crystal Falls.  Both of these animal were your typical greyish/brown in color.  For all intents and purposes it appears that the range of the gray wolf is expanding and could soon tip the balance of nature in an unwanted direction.

Turkey Season Past

Friday, February 20th, 2009

PhotobucketSometimes you call the turkey and sometimes the turkey calls you.  I love to hunt turkeys and have called more than a few within shotgun, and even bow range.  The above bird is one of the biggest I’ve ever harvested, but didn’t respond to my “expert” calling.  I don’t use a diaphragm call, as my gag- reflex is very sensitive, so I use a box or slate call.

The birds had shut down, because of unusually cold weather, and except for hearing them on the roost, things were pretty silent.  It usually doesn’t take more than two days to fill my tag, but I was going on my third day when I got this bird.  I was camping with my 4 year old son,  and was awakened one morning by several distinct “gobbles!”  The sun was shining through our canvas tent walls, and I realised we had overslept.  The gobbles sounded like they were within 100 yards of our camp, so I hurriedly dressed and grabbed my shotgun.  I told my son to sit tight I’d be back in a minute.  About 200 yards into my stalk I could see that the birds were further away than I originally thought.  I went back and got my son and together we followed the echoes of some springtime Tom’s.

They ended up being close to 1/2 mile away, but the crisp, cool, windless morning made the sound travel a long way.  There were three of them sunning in a valley strutting and gobbling for a few distant hens.  I was able to low crawl through some high weeds on the ridge above them.  As I parted the weeds with the barrel of my 870 they caught my movement and headed for cover.  I swung on the biggest bird, and a 40 yard shot put meat on the table, and a full strut mount in my family room.  This bird had a 11 inch beard and spurs in excess of 1 inch.  Sometimes a stalk works when all the lovesick calls in the world won’t.


Think Spring

Wednesday, February 18th, 2009

Photobucket” I don’t know about you but I’m ready for Spring.  My grandson Logan is ready to play ball, even if the bases are buried in the snow.  His dad Mark is pitching, and He’s got grandma Horwitz playing the outfield.  It doesn’t seem right that spring training is going on in Florida, and were still dodging snowflakes here in Michigan.

It doesn’t matter how many times you repeat over and over “Think Spring” the weather is not going to cooperate!  I don’t like to admit it, but we have a long way to go before we can put that snow shovel away.  I’m ready for flowers, birds chirping, buds blooming, and warm sunshine bringing everything back to life.  I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone say “Boy I wish Spring would get over!”   Heavy coats, gloves, hats, boots, wet rugs, cold cars, freezing bitter winds, bah humbug, I wanna play ball.


My Little Celiac

Sunday, February 15th, 2009

PhotobucketThis is my granddaughter Addisyn Taylor, pictured with my oldest daughter Tara, at Mrs. Mary’s day care.  Addy (as I call her) was visiting her older sister Ava for the daycare Valentine party.  Addisyn recently had a full page article written up in the Toledo Blade concerning Celiac disease, which she has.

Addy’s mother Courtney (our #5 daughter) is a registered nurse at Oakwood Hospital in Dearborn.  Addy was a fussy baby, and always seemed to have a bloated stomach.  She was extremely tiny, very fair, and a picky eater.  About a year ago Courtney became suspicious about her daughters constant belly aches, and started pushing her Pediatrician to do some test.  A Specialist was called in, and 12 stomach biopsies all came back positive for celiac disease.  With this ailment, her system cannot process any wheat or gluten products.  She is hyper-sensitive to anything involving these two items.

In the above picture she is frosting her “own” cookie, brought from home.  It is made from rice, and taste surprisingly good.  The knife can not be one the other kids used, and the day-care workers have to be aware of Addy’s needs.  She was once given a wheat based cracker, on one of her visits, and it made her quite sick.  It’s a constant vigil to make sure she stays safe and healthy.

At home she has her own toaster, frying pan, and special groceries.  A one pound bag of wheat free/gluten free pretzels cost almost $9.00.  My daughter has stayed on top of this aberration in Addy’s life very well.  Her last Doctor visit revealed she had gained weight, and her blood work was normal.  If any of you readers have been affected by the same disease, and could give Courtney some pointers or advice, her e-mail is

One of these days I’m going to write about Addisyn’s sister Ava who has a severe peanut allergy, but that’s another story.


Greg Moore Deer Camera Pro

Saturday, February 14th, 2009

PhotobucketI want to introduce you to a new blog link I recently added to my site.  Greg Moore from Louisville Kentucky writes the blog “Deer Tracking Camera’s.”  Greg is a virtually wealth of knowledge concerning trail cams, video’s, and accessories.  It is hard for us (the hunter) to know what camera does what.  Camera’s are a major investment in an outdoors persons budget, so the camera that will perform to your expectations is essential.  Greg takes alot of the guess work out of this newer introduction to our sport.  He field test everything that comes down the pike, and reports on the pros and cons!

On his site you will find every camera there is to offer, plus camera tips, new gadgets,camera mounts and accessories.   You can buy from Greg, right over the Internet with the confidence of knowing, Greg has put your choice of products to the test.

The Smart Scouter Cellular Surveillance system is pictured above.  This is one little honey for the money!  (I should of been a poet!)  You can check the activity around your camera without visiting your site.  No more spooking deer on the way in, or leaving your scent behind.  No more wasting gas, or swapping memory cards.

To find out more about this product and many others just drop into Greg’s site.  He’ll answer your questions and do everything within his power to make you comfortable with this new technology

Venison Health Benefits

Thursday, February 12th, 2009

PhotobucketNot very long ago I wrote about a venison meatloaf that I had made.  To me winter is prime time venison eating time!  I love the taste of venison, but that is not the only reason I enjoy the bounty of nature.

According to the USDA’s website on nutrition, venison is one of the most nutritious meats around.  This report states that similar sized servings of beef, pork, and chicken contain more calories than venison.   Of course all meats would be cooked in the same manner, baked or broiled.  Not only that venison has less fat and more iron than these other meats.  Beef  is marbled with the fat running through the meat, while with venison a majority of the fat is removed by the person butchering the animal.

The sorry thing about this whole article is that you (the reader) may never get a chance to consume a fine venison dinner.   Unless you are a hunter, or good friends with one, you won’t have much of a chance to sink your teeth into a juicy venison steak.  Venison is not available in your local supermarket, and it’s against the law to sell it.  Personally I love sharing with the “less fortunate.”  I’d rather give a few packages to a non-hunting neighbor than have him out in the woods shooting MY deer.


Winter’s Retreat – “Not”

Monday, February 9th, 2009

PhotobucketIt’s amazing what a couple warm days will do to 14 inches of snow on the ground.  My driveway is totally free of ice.  The mailman can now reach my mailbox, and I don’t have to wade through snowdrifts to get at my garbage cans.  The weatherman is calling for 60 degrees tomorrow, but I’m not falling for it one bit.   Oh sure, I’ll enjoy this glitch while it’s here, but I know winter will come back in all it’s white fury!

I can remember 18-21 inch snowfalls well into March, and one year we got dumped on in April.  Mother Nature has always been fickle when it comes to predictability.  Even the weatherman has been known to be totally humiliated by his million dollar equipment.  You can be setting up the kids inflatable pool the first of April, or shoveling a wet heavy snowfall.  There is no way of really knowing how long,or short, winter is going to be.  So for the time being I’m going to bask in this aberration, and keep my winter parka hung by the back door.