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Archive for the ‘Fishing’ Category

Snapping Turtle

The pole didn’t move much at all before the line tightened to the point for me to set the hook. Immediately I recognized something very different about this fish. I was fishing for Catfish and Carp, and I knew this battle was not familiar as the how those two species fight. My very next thought was…turtle!

I was correct as the Snapping Turtle came to the surface the first time. I hung on for this turtle was not appreciative as to me catching it. The pole was deeply bent with the tugs and weight.

Once I brought the turtle to the shoreline, I had few options. I would not be unhooking this feller by hand. Snappers can bite hard and lock their jaws. Naaa… I think I will cut the line.

I did catch some catfish and was enjoying the morning when I felt the very similar battle as with the first Snapping Turtle. Could have I caught another Snapper?

Again, I had hooked a second Snapping Turtle and I, once again, cut the line to reserve my fingers for other things. Both turtle shells were between twelve and fourteen inches in length.

So, I caught two Snapping Turtles within an hour. I, also, watched a doe during her potty time and would see a gobbler as I walked out of the area. It was a good and interesting morning.

The lonely pole.

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Morning Fishing

Smallmouth Bass

The Allegheny River looked good. My second cast resulted in a fish of size and power. The fight didn’t last long for my string was either broken or cut by sharp teeth.

Shortly after this failing, I had another good fight on my rod. I was going to be more careful, but I felt a stoppage of reeling. I was snagged among a treetop, I guess. I gave the line some slack hoping the fish might find a way out where I could land it. Nothing doing! I ended up having my line break again, but by me.

Things changed for the better for my next casts produced Smallmouth Bass and Catfish…all good fighters.

I quit around ten for the sneezes were coming on strong and it is not fun doing anything under those conditions.

My largest bass was about fifteen inches, and the catfish was about twenty inches.

Friendly Grackle

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Pumpkinseed Sunfish

I was feeling rather well early this morning. So well, I decided to go for a walk to a pond and do a little fishing. The early morning coolness felt good as I walked along. During the walk in I saw a buck with two-inch antlers budding forth.

Eventually I came to the pond and settled in for some fishing. I was not disappointed for a caught plenty of Bullhead catfish and a Pumpkinseed. During my time along the bank, I spotted a Snapping Turtle checking out that strange mass on the shoreline.

Bullhead Catfish

Snapping Turtle

The fishing was fairly constant with bringing in the fish and missing some fish, too. Ya know the big uns always get away.

I heard Canada Geese honking in the distance and was surprised to see a V-pattern with twelve to fifteen geese flying over. Usually, they are paired off for the nesting season and to see this many was interesting. I was pleased to hear a gobbler sounding off with about eight or ten gobbles high on the hill.

Turkey egg

Unfortunately, close to ten o’clock I was noticing some burning in the eyes. I decided to head out for these sensations almost always develop into a full pledge allergy attack. I was correct. I was walking back towards the jeep and the sneezing began in earnest. I became very miserable and before I was to the jeep, I was having many of the symptoms and not enjoying my life at all.

At least for a few hours I had a very enjoyable time afield.

Below are some additional photos of the morning.

Fire Pink

Little buck

Wild Geranium

Baby Red Squirrel

Wild Columbine
Deadly Nightshade

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I had some great time on a local trout stream on Wednesday, May 18th. However, I had a pain issue I was forced to work with.

Family and some friends know I have had asthma all of my life. I often forget of the realities of the pollen season. The coughing escalates until I take on chocking spells until I spew forth material from my lungs. On Monday I had one of these spells and apparently caused enough muscular strain somehow that my hip area and thigh dealt with some intense pains. However, I was determined to go fishing and I took some pills and headed off to enjoy some trout fishing.

I quickly realized I needed extra precautions while wading the waters. I ignored the pain issue as well as I could and began going upstream fishing and taking photos.

I reminisced as I walked upstream. I could see my dad fishing at this spot so many years ago. I took a photo at that time with my little instamatic camera, and I could visualize that photo. Oh, how if he could really be there!

Interesting rock being swallowed up by a tree.

I had some luck and managed to find a few trout. I caught Brown trout and one hybrid trout. I released all of the fish back into the stream.

Brown trout

Hybrid Trout

The morning was a beautiful one, but as the day moved towards noon the cloud cover began increasing for rain was coming. I returned home about noon and climbed on the riding tractor for the grass needed mowed and nobody else was going to do it.

I would see seven deer during the morning.

Mayapple blossom

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Cold, Windy Fishing

Rainbow trout

Yes, the temperatures never came out of the thirties this morning while I was fishing. Yes, the winds were brisk, but I enjoyed some trout fishing regardless.

The fishing was unsuccessful at first, and I was wondering what had happened. Was it this cold front moving through? I moved along a short distance trying different areas when it happened…a HIT! I would catch and release five or six Rainbow Trout. I lost two and missed one. Around ten o’clock my hands were becoming very cold, and I decided to call it a day.

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The morning was to be a nice one and I left early to try my hand with some trout fishing. (Later rain came but I had already quit fishing.) The stream was colored but not muddy and fast, but not overly rapid. Recent rains have been keeping the waters moving. The area I stopped initially showed much evidence of others at the stream’s edge. My attempts failed to catch any trout. Fishing pressure appeared hard everywhere I checked.

I moved to another area and found lots of evidence of fishing pressure including tents and such. I never had a hit in the two hours I fished so exploration was a must. I hadn’t traveled far when I saw a good on a small island rise up. Her nest was obvious, and I walked to the site for some photos. Ma and Pa Goose were very vocal about my presence. I continued upstream for a bit, and they believed their luring me away had been successful.

Although I failed to snag onto any trout, I definitely enjoyed my time out. I saw some deer, six turkeys and lots of squirrels.

Downed-lined Canada Goose nest.

Skunk Cabbage

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Yes, the catfish were biting well. every cast I was either catching a Bullhead Catfish, missing one or discovering my bait was stolen. Once the bait was gone I learned the catfish quit biting. Huh..who would have “thunked” that!

Praying Mantis

Shortly after the fishing began, I noticed something that didn’t look quite right. A closer observation proved what I suspected.. a Praying Mantis hanging upside down and in a semi-dormant state. It was chilly this particular morning. However, once the sun began to warm the air up I started to see movement/ I took several photos of this insect.

Puffball ready to shoot out spores

I did see about six different deer on this morning for I incorporated a walk with the fishing trip. many species of fungus are out at this time of the year. I know some, but I know far less when it comes to edibles. I can identify several edible varieties.

Spicebush

Widow Skimmer Dragonfly

Pearl Crescentspot

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I checked the weather and decided to get out for a walk and some Carp and catfish fishing. The heat and humidity would be building so I hoped to be heading home before noon at the latest. I left around 10:30.

the approach to the pond where I would be fishing hosted a doe and fawn. I didn’t get any photos because I wasn’t prepared at the time. Fishing gear and shoulder bag and my little friend Ruger all seemed to be in the way. later I would insert my little ultra-light pole through my belt so my hands would better prepared. , probably, looked like someone with an old CB radio antennae coming from my backside.

Fishing was good for I caught some fish, lost some fish and missed some fish. One Carp broke my light-weight line.

My arms must have been compared as landing zones for a beautiful blue Damselfly would land on it as did some of those Jerk Flies. Fish surface activity was common during those hours fishing. A small and brilliant green Praying Mantis was moving about some grasses, but I couldn’t get a focus.

The wildflower season is definitely moving towards a new look. Jewelweed varieties are common now.

Spotted Jewelweed

Pale Jewelweed

One flower to bloom towards mid-August and onward is the Goldenrod. This yellow is beginning to occur everywhere. Soon the yellow will be everywhere one looks.

Goldenrod
Horse Nettle

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Killdeer

Yes, even I can be stupid at times. When I worked the common term we, laughingly, used was, “Stupido.” We pronounced the word as Stew-peed-o. Well in one of those extremely rare times I discovered while trying to take a photo of a deer of a problem. I didn’t place the camera card in the camera. Yes i was disgusted with myself for the hike was only about 150 yards from the jeep and I would not be able to get any photos this morning.

I returned to the jeep and left the camera and lenses behind.

I walked a gas well road at the top of the hill. As I emerged from the road onto a field of soybeans, I saw a doe and fawn. The photo would have been a good one with dew over the soybeans and the green background. I saw other deer in the huge field, too.

Woodland Sunflower

I continued walking the road watching the field intently on my left before entering another wooded area. You guessed it! As I exited the wooded area to an old field of knee-high vegetation I spotted a nice buck at about twenty yards. two other bucks were just beyond. They stood around and watched me. No camera! It gets worse!

Turkey poult

I walked across this field before entering another woodlot. I would be descending gradually. I looked about 25 yards to my left and spotted a Barred Owl perched on a limb. No camera!

Purple Loosestrife…and invasive specie.

Eventually, I reached Cherry Run and began to head towards the jeep. I searched around looking for trout. Suddenly, I saw waves in the water next to the bank. My first thought was a Muskrat. However, the animal crawled upon a rock and I was viewing a Mink. The mammal even crawled up a leaning tree for a couple of feet. I missed some great photo opportunities again.

This morning I made sure I had my camera card. All of the photos shown here are from today’s excursion.

Allegheny River

I set the minnow trap about five this morning and after catching a few dozen I went off to catch the “big un.” The river was beautiful with some fog conditions early making way for a clear morning.

The fish weren’t biting very well, but I did land a nice Smallmouth Bass. There are literally thousands upin thousands of shiners near the river’s edge. Occasionally, many would leap from the water escaping a bass.

Smallmouth Bass

With a couple of hours fishing behind me, I removed a little trash from the river’s shoreline. Afterwards, I spent some time looking for things to photograph. I saw several hens with several, nice-sized, poults.

Shiners
Blossoms of the Arrowhead plant. They are found in wetland areas usually.

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I like the summer weather when the humidity is low and having cool early-morning temperatures. With such conditions I decided to spend some hours enjoying the conditions.

This venture would include a two or more mile hike and some fishing.

I was fortunate to see some wildlife this morning. I saw eight different deer and three buck. Two were running together in the fog and I managed one decent photo of one standing in the fog watching me. I saw two turkeys feeding along the woodland edge. I saw a Great-horned Owl fly out of a tree. if I would have been faster I could have managed a possible in-flight shot. Rabbits were out and about, as well.

Buck in the fog

During my walk I came upon a few bear tracks. I have been fortunate in recent weeks with bear sightings and I had hoped this one might appear somewhere along the trail.

Bear Track

Eventually I settled in for a little fishing. I had my very light tackle and began the fishing for Carp, but the catfish were biting well. I caught around seven or eight cats. One Bullhead managed a quick turn sending the pectoral barb into the fleshy part by my thumb. The barb actually stayed in the “meat” until I pulled on the fish to remove it. That has never happened before.

I haven’t been “hit” by a catfish barb for many years and the realization of those experiences immediately came to be. I bled, I hurt and became slightly swollen and red. In fact as I type this entry on Monday the 12th I can still feel a slight pain.

Some readers may not know what I am talking about at this time. The catfish family have stiff barbs on their dorsal and pectoral fins. To release a catfish one needs to grasp the fish in such a way the barbs can not jab into the hand. I have heard some believe they have a slight toxin and they might have some validity.

This morning had another first for me. My brand new, never-worn, boots were on my feet. I walked behind to the Nature’s Restroom, and noticed something shining among the vegetation. I had tramped upon a fishing lure and the one treble hook was firmly in place. I removed the boot to remove the plug and luckily the hook was in the thick bottom of the boot and not through the thinner material.

I took some photos of various wildflowers during the jaunt. I found the source of the Coronavirus, too. They grow on small shrubs in Pennsylvania. See photo below.

Swamp Milkweed

Dogbane Beetles

Coronavirus Blossom on a Button Bush

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