A Morning Of Surprises
A person never knows what he or she might encounter or see when enjoying the outdoors. For me, that is part of the mystique and more times than not, the actual memories that I reflect upon for many years.
For example, one morning I went out to the bay trying to catch an early morning catfish. However, the only thing I caught that day was a 3 1/2″ large mouth bass on some cut bait. Granted that was a very nice and unexpected catch but the view farther out and above the water was the highlight of my outing.
A Struggle Ensues
As I was waiting for a bite, I heard a splash on the other side of the bay. When I looked over, an osprey flew from the waters edge with a very nice fish. It appeared he was about to land on a dead pine to feast on his freshly caught breakfast. All of a sudden, a bald eagle came full speed, swooping down trying to steal the osprey’s catch. It was an epic chase that lasted for about 15 minutes. The eagle was faster in the straight stretches but it could not out maneuver the small osprey in the turns and acrobatic type flying.
I know that was probably a once in a lifetime scenario that I will never see again. By the way, the eagle lost.
Old School Still Works
This is where field guides come into play. You may encounter some animal that you are not familiar with and if you are alone there is obviously no one around to ask and cell phone service and/or Google may not be accessible.
Not only do field guides help with identifying your experience but also can help when going after game. Learning different tree types, especially nut trees can be useful since most game use them as a primary food source. The squirrels that I have gotten were in hickory and beech trees. Properly identifying these food sources will help when hunting deer as well.
The more a person knows about their environment, the better experience they will have on an outing. I always try to remember that it is not completely about the thrill of the hunt or catch.
The more knowledge we have, the better stewards of the land we can become.
Until next time. Take care and enjoy the outdoors.
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