Well, here we are into February and it sure feels good when the sun comes out on a clear day with all the cold weather we are having this winter. I heard we have been below freezing up here since the 3rd of December. With the long range forecast I looked at on the internet, we could go well beyond the record for the number of days below freezing in a row.
On top of all this cold weather we have had, we have received more snow than in the past number of years. In fact, the last sunny day we had a lot of Yoopers were out there shoveling the snow off roofs it was so deep.
When you add these two factors together we could see one of those winters that do a real number on our deer herd and other wildlife out there. It is bad enough when you have a single winter that hits the deer herd hard, but when you have two or more in a row it can really be bad.
The DNR has been compiling a Winter Severity Index since 1969 to use in calculating the effect the winter weather has on the deer herd. It will be real interesting what this program will tell us about the winter weather we are having and how the cold and snow depth combined affects the deer.
One thing for sure if you are driving in some areas make sure to keep your eyes open for deer either crossing the road or taking the easy way from point A to point B by walking down the plowed road. People are seeing a lot of deer between the radio station and the State Park out in the road so watch for them.
With all the things going on this winter there are some pluses out there. People are seeing quite a few eagles in some areas. Of course where you usually see eagles there is usually something dead they want to feed on. I guess no matter how often you see these majestic birds you still marvel whenever you see one.
If you are out on the lake they tell me you want to watch for the slush in some areas. With the weight of all the snow we have received falling on the ice it causes water being forced up through pressure cracks or when fishermen drill holes through the ice for fishing.
Well, winter seems to be here for a few more days so I thought I would pass on this tale someone adapted to the U.P.
It was opening morning of the firearm deer season and Eino being an avid hunter woke up raring to go out and bag a nice buck. He went down to the kitchen to get a cup of coffee and to his surprise he found his wife. His wife was sitting there fully dressed in camouflage. Eino asked her what she was up too and was informed she was going out hunting with him.
Eino though he had his doubts about this move reluctantly decided to take her along. Three hours later they arrived at the area they were going to hunt. They were on state land next to some farm land and near a stable.
Eino set his wife up in a tree stand and told her, “If you see a deer take careful aim on it right behind the front shoulders and shoot.” “I’ll be able to hear the shot and will come running to check on you.”
Eino then walked away with a sly smile on his face knowing his wife couldn’t bag an elephant, much less a deer! Not 10 minutes had passed when he was startled to hear not one but a number of shots fired in rapid succession. Quickly, Eino started running back towards his wife’s tree stand. As he got closer to her stand he heard his wife screaming, “Get away from my deer!”
Confused and now frightened Eino ran faster towards his screaming wife. And again he heard her yell, “Get away from my deer now!” followed by another volley of gun fire!
Now within sight of where he had left his wife, Eino was surprised to see a local farmer with his hands high in the air, obviously distraught, and then he said, “Okay, lady! You can have your deer! Just let me get my saddle off it!”