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Ice Fishing at 50 degrees By Gary Howey

  There’s something to be said about ice fishing when it’s fifty degrees, it’s not the type of weather you usually associate with ice fishing.  For one thing, your hands and the rest of your body isn’t as cold as those minus thirty-three wind chill days you had been on the ice. That day when we traveled five hours north with a film crew and had to film as we had been invited up by one of our sponsors and the day before wasn’t as bad with the weatherman indicating that the following day wouldn’t be all that bad!

  On fifty-degree days, you can fish without heavy gloves, making it easier to untangle your lines when a fish makes a run, wrapping up two of them and it’s much easier to tie on or bait ice fishing micro baits without wearing gloves.

  The best thing about it is you don’t have to bribe your friends to go ice fishing with you.

  When the forecast for Friday February 10 was for fifty-degree weather and little wind in the morning, it sounded like a good time to hit the ice.

  Some of my fishing partners were worried about the ice and not having enough ice but after I assured them that there was eight inches a few days before, they were all in.

  Dani Thoene and I hit the ice first, with Dani punching holes and me following up behind him to clean up the ice mound around the hole and scoop them clean.

  Larry Myhre, Sioux City, IA. pulled in shortly after we arrived and set up on one of the holes to the east of where I was fishing.

  Ten minutes later Anthony Thoene arrived and began fishing not too far from where Larry had set up, with Melvin Kruse rounding out our crew.

  We’d be fishing on a privately stocked pond in northeast Nebraska, one that I’d fished in open water and knew there were some big fish patrolling the depths as on one occasion, I was fishing with heavy line and was broken off when a big fish hit my lure and broke me off in open water.

  We all had Vexilar locators, showing letting us know when fish moving in on our baits, but as many fish do in the winter, they weren’t overly aggressive.

  I rigged up a live bait bobber rig with a minnow and jigged with another rigged tipped with a wax worm hoping to entice a crappie. Larry, Dani and I were doing a number on the smaller bluegill and bass, with two or more of us pulling fish up at the same time.

 A thick red line, indicating a fish moved up under my bait, I raised my bait just a bit, as I waited for the fish to move up to the bait, I watched the sensitive spring bobber at the end of my rod as it will indicate a bite long before you feel it.  [Read more…]


ICOtec Leads Wildlife Research Using Call Development with QUWF



Buffalo , MO: “All of the habitat work, Memorandums of Understanding and claimed acres of restoration mean nothing if the populations of wildlife, in our case upland game, are not positively influenced with healthy population growth” states Craig Alderman of QUWF. “The wildlife habitat work must be constant, and the fact that the majority of lands are with private ownership or the smaller portion of public lands means we must monitor what we call “body counts”, the actual numbers of wildlife observed, counted, surveyed and documented.

Otherwise we can waste immense dollars, untold man hours and supplies and have the same decreasing results we have witnessed for decades” Alderman explains.
“Working with QUWF, ICOtec added calls used for survey purposes of the bob white quail, ruffed grouse and even feral hogs with several more planned. Combined with their advanced electronic calling technologies, these advances provide a huge advantage in active field work. “Turnin-the-dirt” has to be graded with population success by all organizations, ICOtec gives habitat evaluation a new and exciting tool” concludes Alderman.
“The exciting use of our calls for wildlife population studies and evaluations is something ICOtec values above all else with QUWF. They approach wildlife habitat restoration from a holistic approach, making every penny, from every source count for wildlife” states Chuck Ames of ICOtec. “QUWF’s entire structure is unlike other conservation organizations, they work exceptionally hard to benefit all upland game, creatively think out of the box for hunters, landowners and public agencies and that is why we strongly support their efforts as a National Sponsor” Ames declares.

“New evaluation techniques have to be developed which make the process easier, faster and results documented professionally” states QUWF Chief Wildlife Biologist Nick Prough. “Evaluating habitat conditions means nothing if there is no wildlife there. Wasting dollars and manpower on wildlife habitat in the wrong place deters from a great mission. It has to be monitored all the time. ICOtec now gives us a great tool to use natural calls and provide visual confirmation of the work performed. They stepped up with QUWF and the entire industry is better for it” explains Prough.

As of January 2016, QUWF and its local chapters and members have impacted 3.2 million acres of wildlife habitat and its chapters spent over $152 Million Dollars in their local communities. That is “Turnin-the-Dirt™”.

Quail and Upland Wildlife Federation, Inc.™ is the only Disabled American Veteran Founded, tax exempt 501(c)(3) conservation organization in the U.S., serving its members and chapters nationwide. QUWF provides a strong local source of habitat focus on all upland wildlife with population recovery. Millions of dollars of habitat work have been completed by its members over the years on millions of acres of both private and public lands. That work continues with a renewed vitality. Our chapters from coast to coast, provide the grass roots, local habitat work that is making a difference each and every day. For more information or to join QUWF please visit our website at www.quwf.net.

Quail and Upland Wildlife Federation, Inc.

P.O. Box 947, Buffalo, MO 65622; admin@quwf.net


Learning from Past Experiences! By Gary Howey

  I remember while growing up in Watertown, SD, about all the things there were to do and how I wanted to try to do all of them!

  I also remember that several of these things weren’t what I really should have been doing.  My folks were always there to set me straight and would give me that old line, “you don’t need to do that, you could get hurt” and so on and so forth!

  Well after many years of contemplating their statements and many years of wondering how they knew so much about this subject.  I’ve finally concluded that they knew because when they were young, they probably tried it or had a friend that tried it and “got hurt!”

  We all learn from past-experiences and as an outdoorsmen or women, we really should rely on those past-experiences to give us insight on what’s going on around us in the outdoors.

  Take for instance a guide trip that I had a few years back, I had two of the toughest clients that I can ever remember taking out.

  It was late October, a warm October, but none the less October and in my neck of the woods; it’s that time of the year when water is about as close to becoming ice as it gets.

  Well these guys insisted that I take them out as they wanted to take advantage of the warm day, it didn’t make any difference that the water temps were in the 40’s, it was a nice day and they wanted to fish.

  Well as anyone who’s ever been on the water knows that at 40 degrees, fish aren’t exactly bouncing off the wall, heck, they’re hardly moving. [Read more…]