I wrote Sunday about the three Pheasants Forever employees who are on a five-day, five-state pheasant hunting trip to highlight the need for wildlife habitat -- and show that public hunting lands offer plenty of hunting opportunities.
They sure did in North Dakota. The Minnesota trio, Anthony Hauck, Andrew Vavra and Rehan Nana, and their three hunting dogs found plenty of birds. You can read their blogs at www.roosterroadtrip.org
Bob St. Pierre and his German shorthair, Izzy, were featured recently on a Wednesday Outdoors story on hunting dogs.
St. Pierre, who writes a blog for the Star Tribune, lives in Hugo, is vice president of marketing for Pheasants Forever and an avid bird hunter. Izzy was just 1 ½ years old, and St. Pierre looked ahead to many years hunting with her.
But Saturday, while ruffed grouse hunting in Wisconsin, Izzy leaped over a log but struck a limb with her chest while going full-bore. She died minutes later of a ruptured carotid artery.
"It was a freak accident,'' St. Pierre wrote in an email to friends. "Needless to say, Meredith (his wife) and I are having a tough time losing our 1 ½ year old tornado of loving energy.''
It's a crushing blow to lose a pet and hunting companion, but especially such a young one with a bright future. Condolences to St. Pierre and his wife.
Meredith St. Pierre wrote a fine piece on the loss of Izzy, which you can read here.
As if that wasn't bad enough, his other dog, Trammell, fell ill after the same hunt, and X-rays revealed two nails, a staple and a large ball of grass in her stomach. Surgery was successful, and Trammel appears on the road to recovery.
St. Pierre can't figure out how the dog ate nails, but suspects someone might have placed nails in bait to target wolves.
The Hautman Brothers Wildlife Art Exhibit at the Minnetonka Center for the Arts has been extended three days, because of high interest.
The exhibit, which is free and open to the public, now will be open through Oct. 29.
Also, a closing reception will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 24, giving people one more chance to meet the artists. Prints of the brothers' artwork will be available to buy, and Joe, Bob and Jim Hautman will be on hand for signatures.
The Minnetonka Center for the Arts is at 2240 North Shore Drive in Wayzata. For more information, see www.minnetonkaarts.org.
Now is the time to climb into a duck blind, as migrant waterfowl have moved into the state.
The DNR's weekly waterfowl migration report (see link below) says hunter success has remained fair to good across the state, though hunters in the south did especially well last weekend.
The report says that with cooler temperatures and favorable winds, the outlook for this weekend is excellent as good numbers of migrant ducks move in from Canada.
See the full report at:
From the DNR's weekly waterfowl migration report, which came out Thursday:
"Duck hunting success has remained fair across the state despite the unseasonably warm fall weather pattern. Numbers of early season migrant ducks such as blue-winged teal and wood ducks are declining and more of the typical mid-season migrant species such as redhead, gadwall, green-winged teal, and coots have increased.
"Ring-necked duck numbers in north central Minnesota increased from last week and are likely near normal levels for this time of the fall. A few scaup are present in northern Minnesota. Hunting pressure was somewhat higher in the Central Zone last weekend when the season reopened but generally remains fairly low. Canada goose numbers have improved in many areas. Small numbers of tundra swans arrived in northern Minnesota last weekend.
"Wetland habitat conditions improved statewide with some of the recent rain events and are generally in good shape. Wild rice stands are just starting to deteriorate on wild rice lakes. Corn and soybean harvest is progressing rapidly.
"None of the reports or waterfowl counts from Federal refuges are available due to the Federal government shutdown."
You can see the full report at http://www.startribune.com/a726