The Pope and Young Club welcomes all bowhunters to check out their new podcast, a tool aimed at reaching out to the next generation of bowhunters. This podcast will get you familiar with who and what the P&Y Club is. You will be able to enjoy multiple podcasts each month covering all aspects of bowhunting and our cherished North American big game species.
Available on ITunes and Podbean, the Pope & Young Podcast will give you a front row seat to some of the greatest bowhunting stories, species info, and tips from the most successful bowhunters in the world. Click the “Podcast” button on the homepage at www.pope-young.org to start listening. Be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode.
“The Pope and Young Club is steeped with history, heritage and tradition. Our goal with this podcast is to maintain those ideals while giving The Club a more prominent standing in today’s media-driven society and at the same time reaching a new group of bowhunters that may not know or understand what Pope and Young is all about,” said Zack Walton, P&Y member and host of the P&Y Podcast. “I am personally honored to be able and help further the message of the Pope and Young Club in a way we have not tried as an organization. Our members are some of the most experienced, successful and humble bowhunters in the world. It will be exciting to share their stories with the massive bowhunting community.”
Podcasts available include: Jim willems, Ed Fanchin and M.R. James. Also on the P&Y website are podcasts from Wilderness Attitude. These include Dallas Smith, Harv Ebers, Jack Frost, Tom Hoffman and Lincoln Tapp, Scott Bakken from HHA, Butch Whiting & Justin Sparks from Kryptek, Peter Barela, Tom Nelson, Larry Jones, Bob DeLaney, Lew Webb, Curt Wells from Bowhunter Magazine and Jon Syverson from FeraDyne.
The Pope and Young Club is a non-profit North American conservation and bowhunting organization dedicated to the promotion and protection of bowhunting by striving to increase awareness and appreciation of bowhunting foundations, principles and values. The Pope and Young Club is focused on Fair Chase hunting ethics that support the ethical pursuit of free ranging, wild game animals without unfair advantage while promoting the conservation of both habitat and wildlife. The Club also maintains the universally recognized repository of records and statistics on North American big game animals harvested with a bow and arrow.
The Pope & Young Club office is at P.O. Box 548, Chatfield, MN 55923; Phone 507-867-4144.
Do not forget: The deadline for the first Tennessee elk raffle is Aug. 15. This year, instead of an online eBay auction for one elk permit, an old-fashioned raffle will be held for that ticket. And you can buy as many chances as you want for $10 per. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Foundation (TWRF) is the non-governmental organization that will run the raffle, and all proceeds go to the Tennessee elk program.
As a bonus, the raffle winner will also get a new Tikka T3X Lite Stainless bolt-action rifle in 7mm Remington Mag, topped with an Oculus Pro Team HD 3x9x40 mm rifle scope, a $1,000 package value. This is a donation from Bass Pro Shops.
The raffle drawing will be held on Aug. 15 and the winner announced at the Aug. 24 meeting of the Tennessee Fish and Wildlife Commission in Nashville. The raffle winner will join the computer drawing winners in the 2018 hunt in mid-October at one of the elk hunting zones on North Cumberland Wildlife Management Area.
Tennessee state law requires that applicants must be at least 18 years old and a U.S. citizen eligible to legally own a firearm according to federal law. The winner is responsible for all taxes and fees associated with the prize, and will need to purchase the required elk license. To purchase tickets for the raffle, visit the TWRF website at http://www.twrf.net/store/2018-elk-tag-raffle.
TWRF is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to promoting habitat conservation, responsible land stewardship, and Tennessee's hunting and fishing heritage for the benefit of Tennessee's outdoor enthusiasts and the TWRA. Check them out at www.twrf.net.
There is a new piece of artwork for the series of hard-copy hunting and fishing licenses offered by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency. The latest design features a flock of mallards and a Labrador retriever in a flooded woods.
The new addition is created from a painting by Tennessee artist Phillip Crowe, who has dedicated his time and art to organizations who care about wildlife. Crowe has painted 35 state duck and conservation stamps and donated approximately $4 million in art prints and originals to various organizations. He was recently inducted into the Arkansas Waterfowl Hall of Fame and elected as a National Ducks Unlimited Trustee.
The new artwork joins one of the inaugural cards which features a leaping largemouth bass. Last year’s card portraying a trophy buck ignoring a vacant treestand is now retired. Both cards were created from artwork by another famed Tennessee artist, Ralph McDonald.
The size of a credit card, the hard-copy license costs an additional $5 above license purchases. Your specific license details are printed on the back of the card. Licenses are available at the TWRA regional offices, license agents, on the TWRA website www.gooutdoorstennessee.com , and at the TWRA “On the Go App.” The 2018-19 licenses are valid through February 2019. License sales provide the primary funding for the TWRA.
Now is a good time for a new hunter to get a hunter education certificate – that’s anyone born after 1968. You must go online to sign up for a hunter education class. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency lists the upcoming classes on its website, which you can see by going to www.tnwildlife.org and selecting Hunting, then Hunter Education Classes. Students must be at least nine years old to earn a certificate; they should bring a pencil and their Social Security number (mandatory). Do not bring a gun.
Are you having trouble scheduling the hours for a hunter education class? For many years there has been an online alternative with an online written exam and a required field day for live shooting; but, now there is an exemption to the field day for those 21 years or older. The following steps are required:
Complete the online class (for age 21) at www.Hunter-Ed.com. This course costs $24.50 and it is interactive, narrated, and offers daily (including weekend) live customer service via email or telephone. Complete the form provided for the exemption and mail, fax or email it with required documentation and payment to the address listed on the form. To request a form contact the Hunter Education Coordinator at 615-781-6538. Your certificate will arrive in three to five business days after submission.
This year both Tennessee and Arkansas have legalized airguns for hunting big game. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency has not yet publicized the particular regulations for airgun hunting; but the following article by Randy Zellers, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s (AGFC) Assistant Chief of Communications, should be of interest to Tennessee hunters.
[Posted Jul 11, 2018, LITTLE ROCK, AR] - Deer hunters will be able to pursue their game with one more option this season, thanks to a recent regulation change by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. During the annual hunting regulations review process, commissioners voted to legalize large-caliber air rifles that meet certain standards for deer hunting during modern gun season.
The change comes at the request of airgun enthusiasts and after being thoroughly reviewed by AGFC biologists with the help of subject-matter experts. Ralph Meeker and Jeremy Brown, the AGFC’s Deer Program Coordinators, spent months researching airgun designs and ballistic data and personally met with several big bore airgun and ammunition manufacturers and airgun enthusiasts. Their research also involved contacting many other state agencies that allowed airguns for hunting to determine any issues they may have had in legalizing the weapons for deer season.
“Our primary concern was to establish a minimum set of standards that would be sufficient enough to provide an ethical harvest shot and recovery on white-tailed deer,” Meeker said. “Working with all those different groups and analyzing the data, we feel like we’ve been able to establish that.”
To be legal for deer hunting in Arkansas, an air rifle must be at least .40-caliber, produce at least 400 ft. lbs. of energy at the muzzle and be charged from an external tank. “This isn’t a CO2-powered pellet rifle, but one that is charged with a scuba-style tank holding 3,500 to 5,500 psi,” Meeker said. “The bullet also must be a single, expandable slug, not just a pellet.”
The weapons that meet these standards are a far cry from the Daisy Red Ryder or pump-up pellet guns people may envision when the term airgun is used. Air rifles capable of killing game as large as Bison have been around since the days of westward expansion. In fact, Lewis and Clark carried an air rifle on their famous expeditions west. Although used primarily as a show of strength to prevent possible attacks from some American Indian tribes, the Girandoni air rifle was capable of firing up to 30 shots before requiring a recharge from a hand pump. This same design was in service with the Austrian army from 1780 until 1815.
The requirements to make and maintain large-caliber airguns, however, made them lag behind powder-burning firearms. Gunpowder-charged guns cost less to mass produce, could be mistreated in the field and averaged more velocity and power during practical use than their air-charged counterparts. High-powered airguns largely survived as a niche market, primarily in countries where traditional firearms are highly regulated.
“Airgun enthusiasts are a relatively small contingency in Arkansas,” Meeker said. “But it does appear to be growing. Airguns also offer some added opportunities in some of our deer zones.” Meeker says a few deer zones along Crowley’s Ridge historically have not allowed modern high-powered rifles during deer season, only shotguns with slugs, muzzleloaders and handguns shooting straight-walled cartridges. Air rifles meeting the minimum hunting qualifications will be allowed in these zones as well.
“They may not be used for bear or elk, and they may only be used during modern gun season, but after our research we feel confident that they can be a good, ethical choice for harvesting white-tailed deer in Arkansas,” Meeker said.
The sixth Tennessee sandhill crane hunt will have its in-person permit drawing on Saturday, Aug. 11 at a new location, the Rhea County High School (885 Eagle Lane, Evensville, Tenn.). The 2018-19 season dates for the Southeast Crane Zone are Dec. 1 – Jan. 17 and Jan. 21-27.
Registration for the permit drawing begins at 8:00 a.m. and the drawings will follow at 10 a.m. Applicants must have a current Tennessee hunting/fishing license (Type 001) and a waterfowl license (Type 005) or equivalent. There will be 479 permits issued, with three birds per permit allowed. Any leftover permits will be included in the computerized waterfowl drawing on Sept. 5-26, which will offer 1,274 more crane permits for the statewide season on Dec. 1 – Jan. 27.
On Saturday, Aug. 4, Tennessee’s traditional hand-drawn, in-person duck blind selections will take place at the regular sites and wildlife management areas across the state. At stake are the permanent blinds at the following sites in Middle and West Tennessee: Gooch WMA Unit A, Reelfoot WMA, Kentucky Lake (Camden Units I & II, Harmon’s Creek, Big Sandy, Gin Creek), Barkley WMA, Tigrett WMA, West Sandy, Old Hickory WMA, Cheatham Lake, Haynes Bottom WMA, and AEDC/Woods Reservoir.
Registration will be held from 7 a.m. until 10 a.m. and the drawing of permits follows immediately at most locations. For specific addresses of blind drawings, interactive maps, and more information, go to www.tnwildlife.org, select Hunting, Other Hunting, and Computerized Waterfowl Blind Drawings; or click here.
Computerized drawings will be held Sept. 5-26 for duck blinds in the Chattanooga area and some other western counties. Those blind sites are: Bogota and Thorny Cypress WMAs in Dyer County, Gooch Unit E, Meeman-Shelby Forest State Park, White Oak (Lebanon Pond area in Hardin County), and the four units on the Chickamauga WMA (Candies Creek, Johnson Bottoms, Rogers Creek, and Yellow Creek). Get applications at the above website.
Do not forget: Wednesday, July 25 is the deadline for quota hunt applications for wildlife management areas and for the elk license drawing. The applications are available at license agencies and online at the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s website, www.tnwildlife.org.
There are two ways to file your quota application. Fill out the form and take it to a license agency, but do not mail it in; or, file online at https://quotahunt.gooutdoorstennessee.com/Hunts/CustomerLookup.aspx.
The TWRA Bartlett Range is Open. After a long project the TWRA Firing Range in Bartlett (Shelby County northeast of Memphis) is now reopening with a fully temperature controlled range. Come in and shoot in comfort. The price is $10 per person (cash or check only).
Hours: Tuesday 12-9 p.m.;Thursday 11-9 p.m.; Saturday 9-4:30 p.m.; Sunday 1-6 p.m. Firearms must be cased. The Bartlett Range does not sell ammunition; shotguns, centerfire rifles and steel ammunition are not allowed.
Directions: From I-40, take the Appling Road exit. Proceed north on Appling Road and cross over Stage Road. Approximately 800 yards on the right is a service road. There is a green Hunter Education sign on the light pole. The service road is right after the green sign.
Landowners and farmers with grain crops, do not miss out on the extra money available just in the manner your crops are harvested. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency is seeking dove fields to lease for public hunting for the upcoming 2018 dove season. Landowners can time their harvest, or partially harvest their grain or millet hay fields to be eligible. They should promptly contact their TWRA regional office for consideration.
Rates paid to landowners will be $75 per acre for a maximum field size of 40 acres for a maximum contract of $3,600 per field; wheat crops earn an additional $15 per acre. At least three priority dates for public hunting are required. Phone numbers to call: Region I is 731-423-5725; Region II is 615-781-6622; Region III is 931-484-9571; Region IV is 423-587-7037. More information is at www.tnwildlife.org.
Dove hunters can find the fields leased by TWRA, which cost nothing to use, at the above website one or two weeks before the season opens. The first phase of dove season begins at noon on Saturday, Sept. 1.
The 2018-2019 hunting seasons and dates are updated on this website. Check out the new format. The 2018-2019 TWRA Hunting and Trapping Guide will be printed and distributed in August, and posted on the TWRA website. The Tennessee Fish and Wildlife Commission made changes to the regulations for the next two years that went into effect July 1. Here are some of them:
There will be a new, three-day archery-only antlered (in velvet) deer hunt on Aug. 24-26; the definition of an antlered deer will return to the previous three-inch minimum antler (male or female). The special private-lands-only raccoon/opossum hunting season in selected East Tennessee counties is eliminated. The fall turkey hunt will be bearded birds only. Deer urine lures will be illegal as of July 1, 2019. Aerial drones may not be used for hunting or trapping. Hunting with airguns and the new “Airbow” will be legal under certain conditions.
The Tennessee Fish and Wildlife Commission will have its next meeting July 12-13 in Chattanooga. October 2015 was the last time the TFWC met there. The Downtown Westin Hotel will host the meeting. Thursday’s committee meetings will begin at 1 p.m. (EDT). The regular commission meeting starts at 9 a.m. on Friday. The public is invited to attend each day.
On the agenda, there will be a report on the progress of the TWRA chronic wasting disease (CWD) Response Plan draft, including prevention, risk assessment, and an early detection system. CWD has been detected in the neighboring states of Virginia, Missouri, Arkansas and most recently, Mississippi.
In other items there will be an update on the progress of the Deer Strategic Plan, an update from the Fisheries Division on ongoing reservoir habitat projects, a report on boating and law enforcement on the July 4 and Memorial Day holidays, and a status report on the new elk license raffle. Assistant TWRA Director Chris Richardson will discuss TWRA’s future plans to address the user conflicts on Tennessee’s smaller rivers.
What’s happening in nature? Male deer form bachelor groups during the spring and summer months when their testosterone levels are at their lowest for the year. Not only do bucks of varying age classes group up and tolerate each other's company this time of year, they will often go as far as to groom each other. However, they form a pecking order and, as the summer wanes and the rut approaches, the bachelor group will experience an unruly, often belligerent, breakup.
Also in July black bears are breeding; chipmunks are bearing their second litter; baby bats are becoming volant (able to fly); bluebirds are having their third hatching; purple martins prepare to migrate from the state, eventually traveling 5,000 miles to South America; monarch butterflies begin to migrate south; and the number of mature bobwhite quail is at its peak.
Squirrels have had their second litter of young, which will be weaned in time for fall squirrel season on Aug. 25. Crappie and stripe jumps are frequently seen roiling the lake’s surface. The lakes are getting stratified layers of water temperatures and it is a great time to go night fishing.
Deer hunters, remember that deer season opens with a new, earlier season. This is the first year for a special opportunity to harvest a buck in velvet. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Commission voted in May to allow for a three-day season, August 24-26 this year; but it is archery only, private lands only and one buck only.
Now is a good time to get those trail cameras out and begin planning your strategy and looking for that worthy trophy. The traditional opening of the archery season has been the fourth Saturday in September; that season is still on.
This year there will be no deer hunting season at the Holston Army Ammunition Plant near Kingsport. Last summer’s heavy outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD) that hit Tennessee, Kentucky and North Carolina killed nearly 20 percent of the deer herd on the HAAP property. HAAP biologist want to give their herd of 200 to 250 whitetails some time to recover.
EHD is an infectious, and sometimes fatal, virus that is transmitted to deer by tiny gnats in the summer. Afflicted deer will lose their appetites and their fear of humans, will have extensive hemorrhages. and will salivate excessively; they will often seek out water sources. Humans are not susceptible to EHD. Tennessee has an EHD outbreak every five to seven years.
The federal Duck Stamp in now available for the 2018-2019 hunting seasons. More than a million waterfowlers and conservationists traditionally purchase one or more of the colorful stamps to invest in waterfowl conservation and wetlands that support many other species of wildlife. One third of America’s threatened species make their homes in wetlands. Every year the program raises more than $38 million used to purchase wetlands in the National Wildlife Refuge System.
Since its inception in 1934, the Duck Stamp, officially the Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp, has raised more than one billion dollars to acquire and protect more than six million acres of habitat in the NWR. The artwork for the stamp is chosen by annual competition. The artwork for the 2018-2019 stamp was created by Bob Hautman, an artist from Delano, Minnesota. His acrylic painting features a pair of mallards. This is Hautman's third federal duck stamp contest win. His art previously appeared on the 1997-1998 and 2001-2002 stamps.
More than 3,000 junior duck stamps are sold annually for five dollars each to help promote conservation education through art. This year’s junior duck stamp features an acrylic painting of an emperor goose, painted by Rayen Kang of John’s Creek, Georgia.
Hunters of ducks, geese and cranes age 16 and older are required to purchase the federal stamp in addition to their hunting license. Still, 10 percent of stamp sales come from stamp collectors and non-hunting conservationists. It can be purchased at many license agencies, most U.S. Post Offices, by phone at 800-STAMP-24, and online at www.duckstamp.com. Find all buying options here.