A Tip from the Wildlife Obsession Newsletter
Whitetail bucks shed their antlers from late December through March. Soon many of us will be roaming the ridges scouring the forest floor for that “bone.” The exact time a buck drops will vary region to region, but finding these “cast-off crowns” has become in its own idiom a hunt in itself. You may have witnessed how various species of dogs can find contraband, people, drugs or your game birds with only a molecular whiff to guide them. Guess what else they can find, and they find them about 1,000 times better than you? Shed antlers!
Can you think of a more efficient way to find shed antlers? It’s a fun pastime that you can train your canine companion to join in along with the entire family. This could be a leisurely hobby for some, but believe it or not, it’s the fastest growing sport in the dog industry. You can even become a member of the “North American Shed Hunting Dog Association”. You can train the dog yourself or you can have them trained professionally. Finding sheds can help you to monitor your herd and put you closer to a trophy next season.
Prune for Best Mast Tree Yield
To get mast trees to produce the best yield possible they may need to be pruned. It’s best to do so when the trees are dormant for the winter. To produce the best fruit yield, remove suckers (branches that form from the roots or trunk), branches that grow down as opposed to those that grow upward; however, horizontal branches are most desired because they hold the fruit in the most pristine nature. Remove any branches that are crowded within the interior of the tree or if they are crossing and overlapping. You want to open the tree for sunlight and air penetration.
Photo credit: Tony Peterson