Trout fishing is tops on the local fishing menu, but following a close second and third are shad and stripers.
Chris’ Bait & Tackle in Mertztown reports good trout action in all area streams thanks to recent stockings. At Ontelaunee Reservoir in upper Berks County, the crappie action died down and the overall bite is slow. At Blue Marsh Lake, anglers are doing really good on catch-and-release bass using large shiners. Crappie guys are also doing well there and picking up quite a few. Chris believes more warm weather is needed for them to turn on.
Pennsylvania hunters posted their highest overall deer harvest in 14 years when they took 374,690 deer during the state’s 2018-19 hunting seasons. But the buck harvest dropped.
The 2018-19 deer harvest topped the previous year’s harvest of 367,159 by about 10-percent. The last time the total deer harvest exceeded this season’s total was in 2004-05.
Saturday’s regional trout season opener in the southeast saw unusually warm temperatures, no rain and normal water levels. Three factors that have deterred several past trout openers.
If you have bird houses or nesting boxes at your residence, now’s a good time to check them so see if they need repair and to clean them out before spring arrives. Incoming birds won’t nest on old nest material that may have mites, bugs or even mice in them.
If you don’t have any boxes but would like to enjoy seeing the spring arrivals such as colorful bluebirds, it would be a great time to either buy or build a box/house or two.
A huge opportunity is knocking for Pennsylvania’s student archers, say the folks from the National Archery in Schools Program.
The 2019 NASP state tournament is set to be held Friday, March 8 in State College. It’s shaping up to be the biggest student archery tournament ever in Pennsylvania, according to NASP.
Individuals and teams have all shot a qualifying score at one of the many state qualifying matches being held over the last few months. The top-scoring teams and individuals have earned an invite to the state championships.
Pennsylvania’s final bear harvest figures are in and the take was down for the 2018 seasons. This pales in comparison to the state’s top harvest of 4,350 recorded for the 2011 season.
The 2018 season breakdown shows 2,017 were shot during the general firearms season; 699 in the extended season; and 424 during the archery season and 12 in the early season.
Mother Nature has not been kind to ice fishermen this season. With up and down temperatures and weekly rain, ice thickness is dangerously thin in certain local waters.
According to local bait and tackle shops, the best bet is to head north to the Poconos.
If the Pennsylvania Board of Game Commissioners approves it at their April 9 meeting, deer hunters in Pennsylvania may see a major change in the start of the rifle deer season.
The major change is moving the traditional Monday after Thanksgiving Day start of the rifle deer season to Saturday after turkey day. This proposal will surely bring about conversation among sportsmen.
For some, starting on a Saturday is nice for hunters who can’t take off from work on a Monday. For youth hunters, it means missing a day of school in districts who no longer have off that day.
When hard-crusted snow covers the ground, wildlife have a tough time finding food. Deer in particular have trouble finding suitable forage. As such, many well-meaning folks put out bagged corn or grain. While commendable as it appears, their graciousness is only harming the species.
According to the Pennsylvania Game Commission, artificially feeding deer in the winter is the best way to kill a large number of deer in a small area in a short time. The problem, says the PGC, is that a deer’s diet cannot be rapidly changed in winter without damage to its digestive system.
It’s the largest consumer outdoor show in the country. And it gets underway Saturday, Feb. 2 and runs until Feb. 10 at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg. To many sportsmen in the Lehigh Valley, this show is commonly known as the Harrisburg Show, despite it’s new name of The Great American Outdoor Show.
Hosted by the NRA and Ram trucks, this year’s super show will feature over 200 seminars, 1,100 exhibits, over 400 hunting/fishing outfitters from around the world, equipment dealers including the top firearms manufacturers, ATVs, SUVs, trucks and boats.