Bits and Pieces
Deer seasons may be over but you can still hunt. In Vermont hunting seasons for partridge, raccoon and gray squirrel remain open through December 31. Snowshoe hare, or rabbits as we call them, may be hunted through March 31 and there is no closed season on coyotes. Red and gray fox may be hunted through Feb. 9.
New Hampshire hunters can take gray squirrel, pheasant and partridge through Dec. 31. Snowshoe hare and red and gray fox are legal through March 31. Fisher may be hunted through January 31. Coyote are legal year round.
Ice fishermen are already out on some of the small ponds and some river setbacks. Early season ice fishing is often very productive but be careful. I like a bit more ice myself but others are comfortable being out this early.
New Hampshire teachers and community members interested in involving youth to make a difference for wildlife through habitat projects on schoolyards, public areas or community lands can apply to the Homes for Wildlife Action Grant Program for start-up funds. The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department program provides mini-grants of $300-$600. Habitat projects create spaces for outdoor learning, and can range from a butterfly garden to shrubs for birds to a pond for amphibians.
The deadline for submitting proposals is Feb. 1. For a proposal packet, go to http://www.wildnh.com/Education/project_HOME.html and download the packet, or write to Marilyn Wyzga, Public Affairs Division, N.H. Fish and Game Department, 11 Hazen Drive, Concord, N.H. 03301; email email@example.com; or call 603-271-3211.
Grants are available to teachers, educators, school staff and community members, especially those trained in Project WILD or Project HOME or who have a member of one of these programs on their project team. Project HOME is an award-winning schoolyard habitat program coordinated by Fish and Game. Project WILD is a K-12, interdisciplinary program about wildlife and the environment.
Now that the deer hunting seasons are over for the year it is time to thank the landowners on whose property you hunted. Remember they pay the mortgage and the taxes for the land you were allowed to hunt at no charge to you.
If you can, stop by and thank them personally. At the very least send them a card thanking them. If you got a deer, an offer of some venison is certainly appropriate.
You may find that a simple thank you will ensure that you are welcome to hunt the property next year.
We finally got some much needed snow Saturday night into Sunday. I have been anxiously awaiting enough snow to get my cross country skis and snowshoes out.
I know the snowmobilers and alpine skiers will appreciate the new powder as will all those businesses that rely on winter recreation for a big part of their income.
Another benefit of the snow is insulation to keep water lines and leech fields from freezing. When we have periods of freezing temperatures with no snow on the ground the frost is driven deep and that can create problems.
Syndicated columnist Gary W. Moore may be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or at Box 454, Bradford, VT 05033.