Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Eagles and Osprey

When I was growing up, bald eagles and osprey were virtual strangers in Ohio. A few nesting pairs of eagles were found along Lake Erie, but elsewhere nothing. Osprey, at least nesting birds, were gone from Ohio.
Pollution, especially DDT, and habitat destruction were the culprits. But since then, the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts, the ban on DDT, and the efforts of the Division of Wildlife have resulted in two more wonderful success stories. Today, both birds are a regular sight on many inland lakes and rivers.
I don’t remember the first time I saw an osprey in Ohio, but I remember the first time I heard of one being spotted in the area. It was probably the early 1970s. A neighbor, who shared a love of bird-watching with my mother, told us she had seen an osprey perched in a tree along the Licking River near the 408 (Pleasant Valley Road) bridge. I think I drove there several times hoping to see it, but never had any luck.
My first Ohio eagle, however, I remember clearly. It was in the mid-1970s and I was fishing at Dillon with the late Paul Watson of  Newark. As we prepared to fish an area on the right side of the lake (as you head upstream), I noticed a large bird heading for the trees. I didn’t think much of it at first, expecting it to be a heron, But as I turned to look at it, it spread out in a landing, giving a great view of the distinctive white head and tail.
Excited, I finally managed to get out the word “eagle,” and then I found out not everyone shared my enthusiasm for the great birds. Paul simply said “So?”
Since then, eagles and osprey have become regulars at Dillon, Buckeye, Knox, Delaware, Salt Fork, Seneca and most other area lakes. I never get tired of spotting them and I almost always have a pair of binoculars in the boat, just so I can get a better look. 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

First tournament

The Southern Ohio Bassmasters tournament season finally started April 29 and I finally got to spend a full day fishing. Naturally, the hot bite that everyone else had been enjoying slowed down, but I put some bass in the boat and got some points in the club standings.
Buckeye was in good shape and the day was warmer than predicted.
Anyway, Eric Woodrow won the contest with five bass weighing 6 pounds, 15.2 ounces, followed by Alan Fulks with three bass weighing 5 pounds, 14.8 ounces. Alan also had the big bass of the day at 3 pounds, 14.2 ounces.
Bruce Reavley finished third with three bass weighing 4 pounds, 15 ounces, Rick Pfeifer was fourth with four bass weighing 4 pounds, 4 ounces and Chris Lighthizer was fifth with three bass weighing 4 pounds, 1.2 ounces.
I was tied with Chris, also with three bass, but he beat me on the big bass tiebreaker.
Twenty-five out of 33 members fishing weighed in 51 bass.

Fabulous catch
The biggest news locally was Jerry Mossman's catch on April 22 to win the Cranberry Marsh Bass Club tournament at Dillon Lake. Jerry had five bass weighing 14.08 pounds, which is unreal for Dillon. But Dillon has been producing all kinds of great catches this year, and naturally, I haven't been there yet.
Tim Magers finished second wigth five bass weighing 13.22 pounds; Wayne HAnley was third with five bass weighing 10.94 pounds; B ob Fulks took fourth with five fish weighing 10.81 pounds and Rick Miller was fifth with five bass weighing 9.16 pounds.
Big bass was a 5.19-pound fish caught by Miller.
Out if 37 members who paid entry fees, 35 weighed in 112 bass, including 12 five-fish limits.

Y-City results
Y-City Bass Club has held two tournaments already, its first at Buckeye, the second at Seneca.
At Buckeye, Matt Hoy won with five bass weighing 7.57 pounds, Kenny Simpson was second with four bass weighing 7.49 pounds, Bob Hammer placed third with five bass weighing 6.77 pounds, Dave Blackstone took fourth with four fish weighing 5.96 pounds and Doug Rothert was fifth with five bass weighing 5.86 pounds.
Tom Sherfy took big bass honors with a 2.98-pound fish.
At Seneca April 29, Kenny Simpson won with four bass weighing 8.27 pounds, followed by Rick Nyhart with three bass weighing 6.24 pounds. Ryan Boyer finished third with two bass weighing 5.11 pounds, Chad Lighthizer took fourth with two bass weighing 4.82 p-ounds and Tom Sherfy was fifgth with two fish weighing 4.28 pounds.
Dave Blackstone took big bass honors with a 4.1-pound fish.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Tournament season

This weather has been unbelievable. Unfortunately, I've been unable to take advantage of it. Maybe this weekend that will change.
Of course, the downpour Thursday morning didn't help anything, except maybe to fill Buckeye a bit. Dillon was five feet above summer pool when I last checked. Knox won't be high, but I wonder how muddy it is.
I have heard bass were being caught at Buckeye before the rain came, crappie were hitting at Apple Valley and water temperatures were reported near 60 degrees at Knox (and probably elsewhere).
If you're waiting for tournament season, here's the schedules for Southern Ohio, Cranberry March and Y-City:

Southern Ohio
April 29 – Buckeye Lake (North Shore)
May 5 – Seneca
May 19  – Pleasant Hill
June 2 – Charles Mill
June 10 – Clendening
June 23 – Piedmont (Reynolds Ramp)
July 16 – Ohio River (Moundsville)
July 28 – Wills Creek
Sept. 9 – Dillon
Sept. 29 – Tappan (fire house ramp)
Oct. 13 & 14 – Classic (to be determined)

June 3 – Chuck Murrey Open, Dillon
Aug. 4 – Draw Tournament  (Dresden Pool)
Aug. 5 – Kids (Dillon)
Aug. 19 – His & Hers (Riverside)

Cranberry Marsh
April 22 – Dillon (Marina)
May 6 – Buckeye (north ramp)
June 10 – Salt Fork (U.S. 22 marina)
July 15 – Alum Creek (Howard Road)
Aug. 12 – Griggs
Sept. 16 – Delaware (ramp near dam)
Oct. 6 & 7 – Classic (to be determined)

May 5 – Buckeye, Pete Taylor Open

April 15 – Buckeye Lake
April 29 – Seneca
May 6 – Clendening
May 20 – Charles Mill
June 3 – Dillon (146 Ramp)
June 17 – Piedmont
July 15 – O'Shaughnessy
July 29 – Hoover
Aug. 12 – Muskingum River (McConnelsville)
Sept. 16 – Alum Creek
Oct. 13 & 14 – Classic, Dillon

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

New season here

Just a quick note to everybody: I know I've been negligent in keeping things active since fall, but there hasn't been much going on and work's been keeping me busy. Translated, that means when I get home, I don't spend much time looking at a computer screen.
But, with the beautiful weather that's here, I feel like I should be getting back in the groove. I'll try to post weekly and more if I have some news to pass on.
Right now I'm trying to catch up with all those things I should have been doing over the winter, like spooling new line on reels and sorting tackle. I just hope my boat tags get here quickly so I can get out on the water while it's nice!
Thanks for checking in and Ill have some news on here soon.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Last tournament

Sorry it's taken me so long to post this; time slips past before you know it.
Anyway, Bub Cooksey's annual season-ending tournament at Dillon was held Nov. 6 with nine boats (16 anglers) competing.
Willard and Mark Hensley walked away with the victory, bringing in four keepers that weighed 5 pounds, 5 ounces. Rick Fifield finished a strong second with two bass weighing 4 pounds, 9 ounces.
Cooksey and Dick Bowman finished third with a 1-pound, 10-ounce fish and I was officially fourth with a 1-pound, 5-ounce bass. I say officially because at east two other boats had fish but didn't bother to weigh them in (it was only paying two places).
Bob Mathie at Bob's Outdoor Supply in Newark donated plaques for the winners.
Will that be my last fishing trip of the season? I hope not, but it al depends on the weather. I was going to go out Sunday but decided I really didn't want to fight the wind that was kicking up.
Next Sunday is out because Southern Ohio is setting up its schedule for next year that afternoon. Maybe Saturday will be decent.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Greenlee, Parrett promoted

ATHENSOH – Fisheries biologist Mike Greenlee has been promoted to Fish Management Supervisor for Wildlife District Four in southeast Ohio, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife.  Greenlee succeeds Tim Parrett who was promoted to Fish Hatchery Program Administrator in June 2011.
 “I’ve got all the confidence in Mike’s abilities to lead the fish management section,” said Mark Hemming, District Four Manager.  “He has always been very professional, and I know he will put all of his experience and expertise into doing the best job possible.”
 Greenlee received an associate’s degree in Recreation and Wildlife Management from Hocking College and a bachelor’s degree in Fisheries and Wildlife Management from Lake Superior State University.  He comes to the job with over 20 years of experience in the fish management section.  He was first hired as a biologist in District Four in 1990 after working as a seasonal in the same section for three years.  He also worked as a Biological Aide with the Utah Wildlife Resources at the Bear Lake Fisheries Experiment Station.
 “I’m looking forward to the opportunity to serve our anglers and the Division of Wildlife by leading a great group of dedicated Fish Management staff in District Four,” said Greenlee.
 As the district’s Fish Management supervisor, Greenlee will coordinate all fisheries programs and projects for 19 counties, including streams and rivers, more than 40 public fishing lakes, and the Ohio River from Scioto toBelmont counties.
 He currently resides in Vinton County with his wife Linda and their two teenage children, son Joshua and daughter Ashley.

Logan to MWCD post

Former ODNR Director Sean Logan is moving to the Muskiongum Watershed Conservancy District. Here's some of the announcement from MWCD:
The management of the natural resources and conservation programs on the 54,000 acres of public land and lakes overseen by the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District (MWCD) will be led by former Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) director Sean D. Logan.
Logan was appointed chief of conservation of the MWCD by the conservancy district’s Board of Directors during a recent meeting. A Columbiana County native, Logan also is a former member of the Ohio House of Representatives and served as a Columbiana County commissioner.
“Since its organization in the 1930s, the MWCD has planted hundreds of thousands of trees to slow erosion, worked with local farmers to open acreage for sharecrop operations and managed its mineral resources through a strategy that has served as a model for other public agencies,” Logan said. “I am humbled and honored to be part of the work by the MWCD to protect these valuable natural resources in the Muskingum River Watershed for generations to come.”
In his position, Logan will oversee the MWCD’s conservation operations and management, which include forest and timber harvest and planting, agricultural activities, water quality testing, partnerships with other agencies involved in flood reduction and water conservation, and mineral resources management.
“The MWCD is extremely pleased to have Sean Logan in charge of its conservation programs,” said John M. Hoopingarner, MWCD executive director/secretary. “Sean brings to the residents of the MWCD region a tremendous amount of experience, insight and support of the protection of natural resources in the state of Ohio. He also understands the value of partnerships to enhance the benefits that are being produced by the system of dams and reservoirs in the Muskingum River Watershed.”
Logan was the 11th person to serve as director of ODNR since it was formed in 1949 when he was appointed by former Gov. Ted Strickland in 2007. Prior to that, he served as an elected member of the Ohio House of Representatives from 1990-2000 – including sitting on the House’s Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee – and was a Columbiana County commissioner from 2001-2007.
He received a bachelor’s degree in political science and speech communication from Muskingum College and earned a law degree from Capital University Law School. He and his wife Melissa have three children and reside at Guilford Lake.
“The MWCD has a professional and educated staff that is dedicated to serving the residents and property owners in the watershed,” Logan said. “As a native of Eastern Ohio, I understand the rich natural resources that have been protected by the operation of the dams and reservoirs in the MWCD region, as well as providing sources of outdoor recreation and economic benefits. We are truly blessed in this watershed to have these resources and facilities available, and we must work diligently to protect this valuable infrastructure.”
For more information about the MWCD, visit www.mwcd.org.