Outdoors in Maine

  • The plight of the panther

    A common mistake we make when dealing with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is to judge its decision-making by normative standards. That is to say, we should have learned by now not to expect much of what USFWS does to make much sense. This large bureaucratic organization is, after all, part of the

  • Brown Trout Focus

    If splake are viewed by Maine sportsmen as the Rodney Dangerfield of Maine’s sport fishery, then brown trout might be deemed the Willy Loman of the Maine sport fish family. (Liked, but not well liked). Not in my mind, though. Brown trout have always held a fascination for me, even though I have not caught

  • Dana’s bear loaf

    What does bear meat taste like? If you Google the question, you’ll get a variety of answers. “It can be gamey and greasy.” “Hard to describe.” “It tastes a little like beef and a little like pork.” Over the years, I’ve tried just about every wild critter Maine has to offer. Only two turned me

  • The lead ammo debate

    In fashionable circles, including segments of the sportsman community, the debate about banning lead ammunition altogether is picking up a good head of steam. An article recently in the Northwoods Sporting Journal by Mark McCollough addressed the lead ammunition issue. McCollough, who is a federal wildlife biologist as well as a hunter, wrote: “I am

  • The three-P factor

    The more I hunt deer, the more I understand one thing: most of the time in the deer woods, a hunter who practices the three “Ps” will, over the years, bag the most deer. Patience, perseverance and peristence make p the deer hunter’s critical triad. Without these, any successes that you have will be mostly

  • Bears: Taking the Offensive

    Now that we have been successful for the second time in defeating the bear referendum, we can go about our business. Our opposition, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), has gotten the message and will move on to more fertile soil. Right? Wrong on both counts. We cannot afford to let down our

  • Gift ideas for sportsmen

    Sportsmen love their toys. Of course, they prefer to consider these toys as indispensable tools for the outdoors. Sometimes the best gift one can give an outdoorsman is a tool or device that he might not either think to buy for himself or feel comfortable buying. For example, my mother-in-law always had an uncanny knack

  • Deer season’s early returns

    The November deer season has come and gone. Hard to believe. Those still waiting to fill the freezer have a week to two weeks to close the deal (depending upon which wildlife management area you choose to hunt). What kind of a deer season was it? The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife customarily

  • A feast for the wolves

    You would think that I would learn after a while. Big game can be hit hard with a high velocity bullet and leave no trace. When my wife, Diane, shot a cow moose a decade or more ago with a .35 Remington, the animal disappeared into a fir thicket. There was no indication on the

  • Bear politics: the aftermath

    Well, we can heave a sigh of relief. Maine bear hunting, as we know it, survived Round Two of another well-funded and well-organized assault from the anti-hunting factions of this country. Who is “we”? Bear guides and outfitters? Yes, they make up part of the “we.” But there is more to it. Much more. Although