So…it’s been awhile

I know that it has been awhile and hunting season is in full swing. However my life has turned upside down and I am currently in Germany.

 

You can read the details here – https://www.caringbridge.org/visit/zoeydaggett  I do not know when I will be able to write again, or hunt again, but I thank you all for the support and love.

 

Casey Daggett

Teaching Moments – Mallards Don’t Like Running 3 Year olds

A few times in the past I have posted about the ducks in our area. We have a small pond at the end of our road that Zoey calls, her pond. Like papa’s pond where she fishes, this is her pond where she feeds the ducks.

We visit the ducks on a nightly basis, if the weather is warm and not rainy. She’ll pedal there on her tricycle and I’ll bring the bread.  Currently there are five mallard drakes that reside in the pond. I know that when spring turns the summer the mallards will be joined by a few of the hens that are currently hanging out in the corn field behind the house.

The drakes and hens have a tendency to wonder the neighborhood as they did Friday night.  When we asked Zoey if Audrey was here yet, she responded with a firm No, but the ducks are here. We had to go and see what she was talking about. No they were not in the corn field behind the house as they typically were. The drake and hen were hanging out in our front yard by my car.  Ben and I decided to see what was up, as he raised ducks growing up, they are one of his favorite wild creatures.  We offered them some bread and while they seemed content in our front yard Zoey wanted to stir the pot.

The lover of nature and animals she had to feed them bread.  We told her to go slow, but 3 year old bodies do not understand that word. Out to the front yard, into the road, back into the yard, and back to the cars; the mallards ran full circle Ben saved them from any cars and I herded the child back into the house.

She understands that we must be quiet around ducks, and gentle. Ducks don’t like to be petted but they do like bread.  With Spring still being fresh in the air they are nervous around people, even when offering food, which is to be extremely expected .

This weekend we taught her to be kind to ducks, do not run, just offer the food and leave them be. They are making their home for the summer as we have made this house ours. So we must be gentle and cautious if we want them to stay in the area.

I do have to say, they did stay in the area.  They were at the pond this afternoon when we went to say hi. We didn’t offer bread today, but we also didn’t run at them. We’re making progress with trying to keep calm in nature.

 

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Ducks in the pond

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Sleeping in the yard

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Going to feed the ducks

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Chasing ducks with bread

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Trying to herd them correctly

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Must. Feed. Ducks

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Must. Feed. Ducks

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Must. Feed. Ducks

Spring has sprung

It is officially Spring and we had one lovely weekend in WNY where if felt like it.  Since then though, Winter has decided to return.  The animals however, do not notice the cold.  I sat watching Saturday morning cartoons drinking my coffee with my daughter and husband and outside the world was cold but alive.

There was two rabbits running back and forth from the corn field two our deck and back again. The squirrels have decided our dying cherry tree is their new home. The ducks have finally cone home.

It’s Spring in the suburbs. Still snowing but it’s officially Spring. We talk every year about moving South, to Georgia. While I love the concept I can’t leave my seasons; just yet. So I hope you’re enjoying your Spring and your nature filled world’s are coming alive just like ours.

Nature Photo Friday

This weeks hunting photo Friday is bringing it back to nature.  I saw these two beautiful creatures on opening day of shotgun season while out with my dad on the farm.  They were flying over the fields and above my Aunt and Uncle’s house. I felt it was a sign, from my Uncle, and that they have nested and stayed is amazingly beautiful.  The first two photos below are taken by my cell phone, of them flying over head on opening day. The rest of the photos were taken by drivers who stopped and had better cameras than my cell phone.

I do ask that if  you know the location of these beautiful birds you keep your distance and do not disturb them, we want them to stay. There have been a few other times where the Eagles have nested on the farm but this is the first time that the Eagles have stayed this long with a permanent looking nest.

 

I hope you enjoy seeing the spectacular pictures below and have a Happy and Blessed Easter Weekend!

 

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Photo by Larry Williams

 

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Photo by Gary McIntyre

 

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Photo by Jill Amidon

 

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Photo by Sandy Parks

 

I’ve shot…

This year one of our hunting group had a motto. “I’ve shot smaller.” Now it’s not the best motto but it sure was funny at the time.  I wanted to show Gary when he’s shot larger, not smaller. So getting back into the Hunting Photo Friday segment. Here is Gary and his “I’ve shot larger” segment.

 

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One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish

You know it’s Dr Seuss’s birthday today. I find the title fitting.  Last week, I came back from the lovely state of Florida to a brutally cold Western New York. I have to say that I do love New York and our seasons but when I get to go to Florida I go for a single purpose and that is to fish.  I arrived in Florida on the 19th of February and was told that there was a cancellation and just myself, my dad and another guy set to go on our charter. It was also said to be choppy waters with a higher than liked wind.  We chose to reschedule. I was asked if the schedule change would affect anything else I did. While I didn’t get to see my friends I told my dad that my main purpose to come down was to fish, and fish I would no matter what.

My dad has been using Steve at Paradise Fishing Charters for a few years now. This was my second trip out with him.  We met Steve at the dock at 8am on the 20th.  With flat waters and a cloudless sky we set out for the day.  There were four other gentlemen on our trip that day and while I won’t remember all their names I do remember we all had a great time.

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A Great Day to go Fishing!

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Calm Waters with Dolphins

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It took about an hour to get to where we were going, but in the end it didn’t matter with the weather being as wonderful as it was.  First stop we were catching gags and groupers and red snappers. It was a great trip.  Once the catch started to slow and the sun started to rise we moved on to a second spot.  One of Steve’s fishing friends lost their nav and depth finder so they joined a bit off our port side and we went further onto a third location.  This spot was by a crab pot, which proved extremely interesting.

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One of my big catches for the day

 

I was on the crab pot side with my dad and was nervous to hook up on it. While I did not hook up on the pot I did hook up on something else.  While catching the normal gag fish my line decided to go. I was clueless as to what I caught but it took the bait and swam with it.  Steve grabbed the rod and went along the side of the boat as it was being pulled to the front.  I ran up and thru the center console and down on the bow to reel it in. I propped myself up and reeled as best I could.  We got it closer to the boat and realized it was a sting ray. A STING RAY! Out this far, with this weather, it was extremely out of the ordinary.  I wanted to touch it but it was angry so I did not, one killed Steve Irwin remember. We snipped the stinger, released the hook, and sent it back on its way.

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Propped and reeling in!

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The cownose sting ray

It was a rush. Such a rush. I’ve never had anything like that in my fishing experience. The pull, the hard reel, the chance of falling in.  Just a riot and something I would love to do again, just not with a Sting Ray.  After the excitement of that died we went back to the gag, grouper, and snapper fishing.  We also went back to the avoiding of the crab pot.

Because we drifted while chasing the Sting Ray we ended up with the pot right under the boat.  It caught the poles and the prop of the boat and caused Mitch, the mate, to take a dive in 60 degree water.  After he came out, shivering, short of breath, and ice cold we decided it was time to go on to our fourth and fifth spots for the day. Both of these fishing locations gave us a tremendous amount of large fish.

 

Around 3:30 we called it a day and trolled most of the way back for tuna and barracuda.  While we didn’t catch anything on the way back we ended up with full cooler and close to 200 fish. Mitch, Steve, and their friends cut up the fish, bagged them and we each got equal portions of our catch for the day.

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Mitch and my dad setting up for trolling. 

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The days catch!

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The days catch!

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The days catch!

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Mitch the mate and his cleaning skills

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Steve and Mitch setting up the cleaning area

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Looking for scraps

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All in all it was a great trip! I went thru 3 poles, one change, one broken reel and one was a keeper plus way too many hooks but it was worth it!! This is one trip that I will always remember and have a story to talk about and a souvenir to show.  We’re hoping to go down maybe in the summer and again in November to fish with Steve when the style and seasons for the catch changes.

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Sting Ray Stinger

 

I have to say if you are in between the Sarasota to Fort Myers area you need to fish with Steve.  As I told my friend Laura we don’t sit, if its quiet, small, bad catch or bad waters you move and he will always find you your fish for the day.

 

Wait Listed!

Post and running before I recap our AWESOME fishing adventure form this weekend.

 

I am waitlisted for hunting permits in my village/town! This is something that they started up last year, specific quantity of hunting permits on land that is owed by local farms or the village. You must be a resident of that area, which I am, and you must have a valid hunting license and taken your safety course, which I have. The best part?? I can use my cross bow to hunt deer!! This is unheard of in our area. We’re zoned for bow only, so to be able to use my cross bow puts a big happy smile on my face!!

 

Just wanted to share my excitement for the new regulations and the anticipation for the spring season of turkey, other small game and this Fall’s big game season!

 

P.S. I’m super sorry for the lack of post. Between being super busy with work, having a tiny person who’s extremely active with friends and other activities and a Florida vacation I have been slacking!! I’m hoping to start picking up a weekly post again and keeping everyone in the loop with the Suburban Huntress’s hunting/fishing/outdoor activities and life!!