Outdoor NebraskaDevoted To The Conservation Of Nebraska Outdoor Resources SUMMER 1934 Nebraska Vacation Scenes No. III Vol. IX
Drought Again Causes Shortage of Migratory Waterfowl
Owing to extended droughts which have again covered much of the nesting grounds for ducks again this summer, it is believed the Secretary of Agriculture will limit the 1934 open season to thirty days.
At a meeting at Washington of the Advisory Committee to the Secretary, the Bureau of Biological Survey placed before it a very disheartening report of conditions. According to detailed studies drought conditions in the prairie nesting areas of the United States and southern Canada have been growing worse. The present drought is the longest, covers a larger region, and is more severe than any other on record in 100 years. It was brought out that favorable breeding regions in northwest Canada, covering tens of thousands of square miles of the finest waterfowl hatching in the world are not v over ten percent capacity stocked witKSf: breeding ducks. This means a SO percent shortage in breeding stock with a corresponding shortage in annual crops.
Reports were presented showing that while 1933 was a bad year for waterfowl, reports on the different species indicate that, with the possible exception of the wood duck, none have increased, while some, notably the diving ducks and particularly the redhead, have continued to decrease at an alarming rate.
In view of the reports it is quite likely the 1934-35 season will be only thirty days. The Committee, however, recommended that the Secretary allow each state to select its own thirty days between October 1 and January 15. Such open seasons could be for thirty consecutive days for four weeks, five shooting days each week for six consecutive weeks or three shooting days for ten consecutive weeks. Announcements will be made shortly from Washington and from the Nebraska Game Commission setting forth exact dates.
It is quite likely that bag limits and other regulations will remain much the same as last year, though it is possible the limit of kill of some species may be reduced.
The goose situation is not nearly as bad as the ducks. This is due to the fact that most of the geese nest in wider ranges and in areas not affected so much by drought conditions. Of all the ducks, it is reported that the pintails and mallards have escaped with the least injury.
The reports on breeding conditions as a whole were quite unfavorable. The species with the widest breeding range, or those breeding mostly in the eastern part of Canada and eastern United States (like the Black Duck), were reported to be holding up best. The far western flight of ducks seems to be in the worst plight of all. The Atlantic Coast flight, except the diving ducks, seems to have held up exceptionally well. A general scarcity of diving ducks, especially canvasbacks, redheads and lesser scaups, was reported throughout the entire country.
Investigators reported some of the old breeding grounds practically barren due to drought conditions. In other places they found unusual concentrations of breeding birds, while at still other points where breeding conditions were quite favoiable the percentage of breeding birds was considerably below normal, indicating, according to the investigators, a shortage of breeding stock. They suggested that until the Survey's new program of refuges and breeding grounds and more stringent enforcement of the regulations can become effective every possible effort should be made to conserve breeding stock.
Usually the recommendations of the Migratory Bird Advisory Board go to the Secretary of Agriculture for consideration and are not made public until the Secretary has decided upon the regulations and they have been approved by the President. This year, however, it was decided to give the recommendations of the Advisory Board to the public immediately. The Secretary may or may not adopt all the recommendations of the Board.
The season this year will not exceed 30 shooting days as against two months Jn 1932 and 1933, and one month in 1931. Heretofore the Advisory Board has refused to recommend the rest-day plan. This year the Board decided to try it as an experiment in such states as may care1 to adopt this method. The several state game administrators are now considering recommendations, to be made to the Secretary of Agriculture, for shooting dates within the states between October 1 and January 15.
State zoning may be allowed where the Biological Survey is convinced such zoning is justified, but it is felt that the rest-day plan will obviate the need for zoning in most states.
Another innovation this year will be the method of handling the feeding and baiting question.
The Advisory Board also recommended that the baiting of waterfowl in the vicinity of a shooting stand or blind be prohibited except under permits to be issued without charge by the Secretary of Agriculture. Permits would be limited, according to the Board's recommendation, to use at stands or blinds where baiting is not abused and is not unduly destructive to the birds or where insufficient natural food makes baiting or feeding desirable.HOW DO YOU VOTE?
With a desire to help the Nebraska Game Commission give Nebraska sportsmen the best hunting possible under present adverse conditions, the editor would like to hear how readers of Outdoor Nebraska stand on the following:
Mark with an "X" which of the three open seasons you would prefer.| Thirty (30) consecutive days beginning about October 5 and closing November 5, with shooting permissible every day. | Shooting permitted Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from about October 1 to November 12. I*- Shooting permitted Saturday, Sunday and Monday from about October 1 to December 5.
Vote for only one, clip out and mail toEditor Outdoor Nebraska, Game, Forestation & Parks Commission, State House, Lincoln, Nebraska.
NEW RECREATION GROUNDS AT GUIDE ROCK
Citizens in the vicinity of Guide Rock have also donated a site to the state to be used as a recreation grounds. This has already been developed and a 20-acre lake made available for fishing. The grounds and lake will probably be opened to the public next year.
Nebraska Hatcheries Now Raising Channel Cats
THE Platte river and its tributaries once were ideal spawning places for catfish. That was before drainage and irrigation caused the rivers to become dry during the spawning season. Nowadays it's pretty hazardous for a couple of catfish to try to raise a family.
In attempts to compensate for this diminution of the catfish population, the Nebraska Game Commission has achieved a commendable measure of success in artificial propagation, and the raising of catfish is likely to become one of the major activities at the state hatcheries in the near future.
For many years artificial propagation of catfish was considered impossible or at least impracticable. There are many difficulties not attendant to the propagation of other species. One is because the catfish's natural habitat is in waters with considerable sediment in suspension, which makes observation of the fish difficult. Another difficulty arises from the fact that the eggs are in masses attached to a transparent membrane and hatching requires aeration through all parts of the spawn.
Experiments were started at the Pratt, Kansas, hatchery a few years ago. Using those experiments as a basis and making improvements, Mr. Merritt and his assisants at the Gretna State Fisheries this year have developed a system of hatching which has produced fry with a loss of not more than two per cent. The system is this:
First, the eggs must be procured. Nests of common nail kegs with cement and gravel and equipped with a wire handle for lifting and inspection are put in 30 to 40 inches of water within the pen where there are mating pairs of catfish. The male fish prepares the nest by removing all the loose gravel. When attendants observe this activity they know that nest will have eggs in it within a day or two.
Nests are inspected twice daily and as soon as the eggs are found they are removed to the hatching troughs. Suspended in these troughs are vanes actuated by an eccentric rod, which is driven by an electric motor. The vanes, thrust forward and back, set up a surge of water around the egg mass to provide aeration. The wire container in which the eggs are put prevents their shifting away from the moving vanes, which are driven at a speed of fifteen revolutions a minute.
Water flows through the troughs at a rate of 10 gallons a minute and it is kept at a temperature of about 80 degrees. It is a mixture of water from the river and from wells.
About the fifth day movement is noted within the eggs and the fry emerge on the ninth or tenth' day. Expert swimmers, the fry are in constant motion. By the fifteenth day they begin to eat grated and cooked hog liver and within three weeks they are an inch long. Their length in October should be four inches.
After the baby catfish have attained a length of one and one-half inches, they are placed in the raceways, through which Platte river water flows at the rate of 350 gallons a minute.
These raceways, each 114 feet long, duplicate as nearly as possible actual river conditions. Altogether they provide a stream of water 1,700 feet long. Experiments have shown that parasites causing disease are less likely to affect catfish in rapidly flowing water and in water having sediment in suspension.
Catfish apparently are not cannibalistic like the bass and trout; their spines on dorsal and pectoral fins provide a means of protection and they thrive on a wide variety of food. Consequently they may be planted in the advanced fry and fingerling stage more successfully than other fish.
There's no fish better suited to Ne braska waters than the catfish and now that artificial hatching has been developed, Nebraskans can expect much more thorough stocking of streams in this state with this tasty variety of game fish.
220 ACRE PARK TURNED OVER TO STATE
A brand; new state park and recreation grounds in Dixon county has been handed to the Nebraska Game and Park Board as a gift from the American Legion and 1,000 citizens at Ponca.
The tract contains 220 acres of scenic and partly wooded bluff land with a mile of frontage along the Missouri River. It is situated two miles north of Ponca, just opposite Elk Point on the South Dakota, side of the stream.
Deeds for the property, which was purchased with money obtained through popular subscription in the community, were presented to the governor, as chairman of the game and park board, by a committee of four American Legion men. Members of the party were H. W. Rakow, E. J. McCarthy, F. E. Adams, and F. D. Simpson.
The land is said to be worth $100 an acre, though it was acquired for considerably less than that figure. The canvass for subscriptions was conducted by the American Legion. Two months ago the state park board was approached on the matter of establishing a park area on this land. While the board had no funds available for purchase, it signified that it would gladly accept the tract as a gift and develop it for public use and enjoyment.
It may be possible, Governor Bryan told newspapermen, to secure the establishment of a federal civilian conservation camp at Ponca to improve the park area.
He voiced appreciation of the enterprise shown by the Ponca people in obtaining titla, to the land and placing it in the hands of the state. Arrangements for a suitable dedication ceremony in the near future will be made.
Drought's Effect On Waterfowl Appalling, Declares Henderson
THE long-continued drought has wrought havoc on the great breeding grounds of our ducks, geese, and other waterfowl, W. C. Henderson, associate chief of the Bureau of Biological Survey, U. S. Department of Agriculture, told the Western Association of the State Game and Fish Commissioners at their 14th annual conference in Portland, Oregon, June 14 to 16.
"It is clearly up to the people of the United States," he declared, "to do something to minimize the difficulties that thus menace our birds."
The waterfowl situation, said Mr. Henderson, is nothing short of appalling in some parts of the Middle-Western States formerly important as nurseries for these birds, and conditions are extremely bad on the breeding areas in Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota, and the Dakotas, and in Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, and Wisconsin.
Throughout the Canadian Provinces of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta, and most of our Northwestern States, he explained, there has been a disastrous shortage of rainfall during the past four years. "This catastrophe," he pointed out, "was preceded by a 10-year period during which the rainfall was below normal."Outlines 3-Fold Plan
After emphasizing the necessity for "extraordinary efforts to preserve an adequate supply" of breeding birds, Mr. Henderson outlined the Biological Survey's 3-fold plan of wild-life restoration. This plan, he explained, includes: (1) a more intensive law-enforcement campaign; (2) improvement of wildfowl sanctuaries now under the administration of the Biological Survey; and, (3)" prompt and systematic acquisition "of more refuge areas.
Designating the increase of refuge areas as the most important of the Biological Survey objectives in this plan, Mr. Henderson reported that the Bureau during the last few weeks has compiled maps and lists of prospective refuges. The Bureau, he said, is now ready to go ahead on the acquisition program as soon as it has available the necessary funds, of which there is in prospect about 6% millions of dollars.
In explaining the program for law enforcement Mr. Henderson said: "What additional restrictions may be necessary as to seasonal limits, bag limits, etc., cannot be determined until our field investigations have been completed. The aim, however, will be to interfere no more than is necessary with reasonable shooting practices and privileges, and in all regions to provide gunners with opportunities as nearly equal as it is possible to make them."Discusses Other Wild-Life Problems
Mr. Henderson also discussed outstanding problems in big-game management, in the administration of fur resources, and in combating wild-life disease.
"Few people," he said, "realize that the supply of American raw furs is in jeopardy, and not all who do realize it, have a clear conception of its implications. A tragedy has resulted in part from lack of basic biological knowledge and inadequate public appreciation of the need; for conserving the fur resources. The total annual catch of fur animals in the United States used to be conservatively valued at $65,000,000. Financial conditions and continued decrease in the natural supply have reduced the value of the annual catch to $20,000,000. Fifteen years ago more mink were trapped annually in Maine than are now taken in the entire United States. There are innumerable other phases of fur-conservation problems that need the support of enlightened public opinion, without which the solution to the problem is practically impossible.
"The present system of fur-animal conservation," he declared, "has not proved effective. The problem is national in its ramifications, and the seriousness of the situation is such that a coordinated national policy based on scientific findings should be established throughout the ranges of all fur animals."Sees Encouraging Developments
In concluding his address, the Biological Survey official said: "Despite the effects of a long series of natural disasters occurring to practically all forms of wild life by reason of the drought of the past few years and other damaging influences, including overshooting and over-trapping, we have justification at least for some slight degree of encouragement at the present time. Sportsmen and conservationists are awake to conditions and are manifesting a determination to correct them. There is evidence too that wild-life conservation matters in the United States are emerging from the period of trial and error and that, based on research and experimentation, sound practices are being developed that will form the fabric of the new policy for the restoration of our wild-life resources."
"Success is not yet assured. It will depend almost entirely upon the ability of every State and Federal conservation agency, and almost, I might say, upon the ability of every individual sportsman, to recognize the crisis, and putting aside all other considerations, to unite as never before in support of a coordinated effort to restore a heritage that has been well nigh lost through lack in the past of this essential cooperation."
"There has been considerable agitation in sporting circles," says the Brown County Democrat, "to have a fish ladder established at the Spencer dam, to permit catfish to get up the stream, but it is claimed that fish ladders are not a solution in this section, so the Fish and Game Commission has a force of men at work below the Spencer dam, on the Niobrara, seining catfish and placing them in the stream above the dam. Up to last week 8,000 had been seined. The placing of the fish above the dam is expected to make excellent fishing in this section of the state.
HOOT OWLS ATTACK!
Reports of screech owls which have developed bad dispositions and attacked human beings have been noted in press dispatches this summer and a recent visitor to York related tales of the spitefulness of the birds in the trees about her home.
Residents in a certain block on Iowa avenue have been so annoyed by the little owls, which would fly down from the trees, light on the heads of people beneath and peck vigorously that they have taken steps to rid the neighborhood of the birds. One theory concerning the militant spirit manifested by the usually harmless creatures is that the heat has driven them wild. Another is that during the nesting season the owls are inclined to be irritable.
An Editor Views Fishing and ConservationBy HARRY McGUIRE
FISHING time is here and it is hard to keep one's mind on the really serious things of life when you've got tackle busters on the brain.
What an odd power over men's souls this fishing has. There's neither rhyme nor reason to it, I suppose, if one grows analytical about it. But, as Pascal said, "The heart has its reasons which reason iknows not of." Fishing is in some mysterious other-worldly fashion connected with our hearts, and with that divine faculty in us which men call our souls. The fisherman— that elfin nonsensical wight who for no very reasonable reason bounds right into the gates of Paradise at a nibble from a slender 10-inch morsel—this fellow is indeed a paradox. He is at once a gentleman and a liar, a practical-minded old crabber and a wistful sentimentalist, a mellow philosopher one minute and a raging volcano of cussed ness the next, when perhaps that plagued blankety-blank line gets snarled. In short, the fisherman is the average human being who turned out better than the average.
All the world loves a fisherman. I think that is because the angler is in truth a man in love. Observe season opens, sitting at his desk in strictly business hours, daydreaming of far-off streams and lakes full of the most astounding brillianthued monsters that nature ever produced. Isn't that like a man dreaming of his love? Observe him in the early morning, preparing to depart for the fishing trip—he fusses with his tackle, he mutters that and that which means mostly nothing, he (takes his coffee at a gulp, he hums old forgotten tunes to himself, and in short he is ridiculously, deliriously happy. Isn't that like a man going to see his love? Observe him on the stream or lake at the moment he gets a strike — perhaps he whoops and shouts, perhaps^ he only betrays himself in the fiery sparkle of his eye and the tense coordination of every muscle, but in any case he is in a frenzy of delight, he is a very god in that moment of exaltation. For one instant at least he is aware of the joyousness of all existence. Yes—all the world loves a fisherman—for he loves all the world.
Bass Taken In Nebraska Waters
So it seems to me, fishing being what it is, that of the fisherman is demanded a very special kind of consideration. Let the fisherman be a real and constant lover of the woods and waters and their creatures—the role of the blood-and-thunder conquerer scarcely fits him. Let him release all fish not necessary for his table or his den. Let him dwell on the fitness of sliding that him before the big musky back into the water after photographing it. Let him contemplate for a moment the pristine beauty of those tiny 8-inch trout, for perchance he will be moved to take them on a barbless hook the better to return them to the water. Let him stop on a little eminence some day and, feasting his heart on the multitude of Nature's blessings, ponder on how he can show some return of kindness to Nature's wild life.
Let him recall that fishing for sport is a gentleman's recreation. A fishhog, a fish-slaughterer, is a contradiction in terms. Now that good fishing is scarce, it particularly behooves the angler to propagate as well as kill, and to spare the lives of most of the fish he catches, so that others will learn to do the same thing and by this gentlemanly consideration preserve better sport and more fish for all.
We need fisherman in our struggle to implant in the public mind what I am minded to call "Conservation Consciousness."
There are two kinds of laws in sport. One is a legal regulation—the game and fish laws of state and nation. The observation of these regulations, which almost without exception are aimed at the greatest good for the greatest number, must be scrupulously observed by you and me before we're entitled to call ourselves outdoorsmen. But something more is necessary if we outdoorsmen are to be knighted with that noble term, the title Sportsman — and that is the spirit of conservation, a vast love for wildlife which shows itself in treating the creatures of forest and stream with respect, and in killing them only in moderation. That is what we term "Conservation Consciousness," and I don't think it is far astray to say that the future of wild life in America depends more on the growth of this magnanimous attitude in the public mind than it does on any other single factor.
Research into wild life habits, which is now being enormously stimulated, is absolutely necessary. So is the establishment of refuges, the control of vermin and pollution. So is restocking and scientific management of game and fish. But all these activities depend upon the development of a public mental attitude which will lend them support. Youi and I must be missionaries to the American public, helping the thoughtless and the ignorant to respond to Nature in spirit; and by respecting and not desecrating her, to give back to Nature something of the spiritual beauty and the peace she is so willing(continued on page 9)
-------------- OBSERVE ALL GAME LAWS — Outdoor NebraskaOfficial Publication of The Nebraska State Game Forestation and Parks /jSF^fe. Commission COMMISSIONERS Chas. W. Bryan, Chairman Guy R. Spencer M. M. Sullivan J. B. Douglas W. J. Tiley George B. Hastings Frank B. O'Connell i war i i.. -*-i , EDUCATION & PUBLICATION COMMITTEE J. B. Douglas, Chairman Frank B. O'Connell EDITOR Frank B. O'Connell Vol. IX SUMMER, 1934 No. 3 The Commission's Program GAME: Statewide pheasant hunting. Rehabilitation of the quail. Stocking of Hungarian partridge. Reserves and feeding grounds for migratory waterfowl. Public shooting grounds. FISH: Fish for every angler. Reduced cost and common sense business in fish production. Good fishing at state-owned lakes where public can fish free. Preservation of lakes. RECREATION: A statewide system of recreation grounds for Nebraska citizens. Shade and picnicking facilities at fishing lakes. Conservation of Nebraska's outdoors. LAW ENFORCEMENT: Equality for all. Constant war against the despoiler and destroyer of wild life. Strict observance of game laws by all citizens. EDUCATION: Appreciation of Nebraska's outdoors through education. Make the boys and girls of tomorrow lovers of wild creatures and nature's handiwork. Cooperation of all citizens to the end that Nebraska shall have suitable recreation and wholesome outdoor activities. Program of forestation throughout Nebraska. GENERAL: Full value to the purchaser of hunting and fishing permits. Square deal to farmers and sportsmen. Stabilization of water in Platte River.
North America's Waterfowl Problem
A hundred years ago the population of duoks and geese in North America seemed beyond calculation. The unnumbered marshy and grassbordered ponds and sloughs of the Great Plains, the Great Basin, and the Far West, and the lesser swamps of the East all gave breeding sites and food to waterfowl. In autumn, when to these native flocks were added the hordes that came from; the vaster nurseries of Canada and Alaska, the millions that sought rest and food in the marshes of the United States made words seem weak. So had they gathered for centuries. Through the ages their natural enemies had taken toll, and the Indian, with his bow and arrow and nets, had reaped his meager harvest; but the myriad supply, balanced by the great forces of nature, persisted and probably varied little from year to year.
The pioneer fared westward and the farmer followed him, and each took his mite from nature's bounty. Men plowed, and drained, and built cities. Market hunting became a trade. Still no one noticed any diminution in the waterfowl supply, save here and there some far-seeing individual whose words carried no weight. The destruction continued and multiplied. The agricultural belt crept northward into Canada, and the human population doubled and trebled. Better guns were made, and means of travel were improved. The still small voice of warning was yet unheeded. Perhaps there were not quite so many ducks and geese left, but why should the hunter worry, when one could still kill all he could carry? Was not the boundlesls north still setto its task of rearing ducks and geese to furnish sport and business for the United States? _ Conservationists of all creeds preached, each in his own way; but there resulted only half-hearted methods to stem the destruction.
Such were the general conditions confronting our waterfowl at the close of the nineteenth century. The first restrictive measures emphasized curbing market hunting, and gradually this practice diminished in volume. The development of new methods of taking waterfowl, the improvement of firearms, and better transportation facilities, however, permitted the march of destruction to continue unabated. Wild-life refuges were established, but still the waterfowl diminished. An international treaty, designed to protect migratory birds and supported by enabling legislation both in the United States and Canada, OUTDOOR NEBRASKA 7 increased the interest in protecting waterfowl and resulted in additional beneficial legislation. But lower bag limits, shortened seasons, and bird refuges all failed to stem effectively the tide of destruction.
How a series of years of disastrous drought over an important part of the breeding area of the northern Plains States and the Prairie Provinces of Canada focused attention on the serious plight of our ducks and geese is a story too wellknown to require repetition. This cycle of drought was merely the latest one of a series through which the waterfowl populations of earlier periods had passed without permanent damage. To many, the drought was only a serious calamity, but in reality it might be considered a timely lesson, a phenomenon not altogether without benefit; for the vital necessity of a better system of conservation was at once apparent to all who were willing to face the facts.
$1,000,000 For Bird Restoration
One million dollars of Emergency Conservation Work funds were allocated for migratorybird restoration purposes by President Roosevelt on April 19. Executive Order No. 6684 authorizes the purchase and rental of lands as refuges for migratory birds and other forms of wild life that constitute a diminishing natural resource. Acquisition and proper development of the refuge lands will provide protection not only for the depleted wild-life resources but for the lands themselves. The work incident to acquisition and improvement will also provide employment on useful public work.
Jay N. Darling, Chief of the Bureau of Biological Survey, in expressing his satisfaction over the action of President Roosevelt, said that this is the first real opportunity we have had to restore to our birds some of the areas we have taken from them. "Various promotion schemes," he said, "have robbed the birds of more than 17,000,000 acres of nesting areas and homes for the young. Now we shall have a real chance to put some of these lands and marshes back to their proper uses—for the birds. Their restoration, however, is all part of the general movement for the conservation of our natural resources, and it parallels and aids efforts in flood, forest-fire, erosion, and insect-pest control. We can visualize the ultimate success of the plans now forming. The recent passage of the 'Waterfowl Stamp Act,' will furnish continuing revenue each year for the new refuge program thus happily inaugurated. The many flyways of the birds will be increasingly dotted with adequate 'travelers' aid' stations, and permanent breeding grounds will be assured. Such practical measures will restore the natural resources that we have wasted.
"All who have the real welfare of our birds at heart can now stop talking for a while and actually get down to work. With the Biological Survey well equipped for a good start, the Government is doing its part. It is essential also that neighborhoods realize their responsibility and not neglect their own duties. The job is for everybody, and there is no time to waste. The effective interest of President Roosevelt will challenge the rest of us to act—as individuals, as groups, and as communities. We must all work for the restoration of our seriously threatened natural resources in wild-bird life."
This use, of ECW funds, while not governed or limited by the Migratory Bird Conservation Act of 1929, will further the purpose of that act, which is to establish bird refuges. That act authorized appropriations for land acquisition, but Congress has not yet made the funds fully available.
The President's order was issued under the provisions of the Unemployment Relief Act, the rmrpose of which, as stated in Section 1, are: (1) To relieve unemployment; (2) to provide for the restoration of the country's depleted natural resources; and (3) to provide for the advancement of an orderly program of useful public works. Section 2 of the act authorizes acquisitions of land for these purposes.
The New Duck Stamp
When hunters plank down a dollar for the new Federal hunting stamp at their nearest post office, they will receive no ordinary carrier of mucilage. Nearly twice the size of a special delivery stamp, the hunting stamp shows a waterfowl scene which is the work of J. N. ("Ding") Darling, who was a nationally known cartoonist long before he became chief, a few months ago, of the Biological Survey, U. S. Department of Agriculture.
"No one, however," says Mr. Darling, "is under any obligation to kill a duck just because he owns a Federal hunting stamp, nor is there any rule to prevent a man who wants to help restore the migratory waterfowl from purchasing several of these duck-saving stamps. Every dollar will be devoted to the cause of conservation."
Authorized by the recent Congress and to be issued shortly by the Post Office Department, the new stamp will be on sale at post offices in all county seats, in all towns with populations of 2500 or more, and in certain waterfowl centers. The sale of stamps will provide funds to help conserve ducks and geese and other migratory waterfowl by the establishment of sanctuaries. Everyone over 16 years of age who hunts migratory waterfowl is required to have a Federal hunting stamp in his possession, affixed to the regular State hunting license or to a special certificate furnished by the postmaster if a hunting license is not required. The distinctive qualities of the stamp, it is believed, will also stimulate its sale among stamp collectors as well as sportsmen and conservationists.
Over-shooting and the effects of the prolonged drought, the Biological Survey explains, have seriously decreased the supply of waterfowl. Drainage operations in past years have destroyed millions of acres of marsh and water areas formerly inhabited by waterfowl, fishes, and fur-bearing animals. Much of the land so drained has turned out to be practically useless for farming(continued on page 9)
Commission Field ActivitiesNEW COMMISSIONER
W. J. Tiley of North Platte is the new member of the Nebraska Game, Forestation and Parks Commission, replacing E. R. Purcell of Broken Bow, Nebraska. Tiley lives in an important game section of the state and is greatly interested in outdoor activities. He has already entered into the work of the Commission and will undoubtedly be able to be of great assistance in carrying out the big problem now under way on the Ten Year Program.SUPERINTENDENT DIES
Members and employees of the Nebraska Game Commission were shocked and grieved in the passing of A. E. Speer, Superintendent of the Chadron State Park, early in June. Mr. Speer, formerly of Falls City, had only received his appointment a few weeks prior. He took a great interest in his work and it is believed that over-work contributed to his death. Though he was with the Commission only a short time, all those who met and worked with him had already come to respect him. Mrs. Speer has been acting as Superintendent since her husband's) death and will continue to do so until a successor is named.NEW FOLDERS READY
Nebraska citizens, or citizens of other states who want to visit Nebraska, can now obtain two folders of outdoor interest.
An attractive Park and Tourist folder is available at the office of the Nebraska Game Commission and can be obtained free of charge. It gives much information regarding the parks, scenic sections of the sta*e, etc.
A new edition of "Outdoors in Nebraska" is also available free of cost. It contains a map of the state showing all places of interest to the outdoorsman.
Bass Taken Near Stuart
Fish salvage work this summer will undoubtedly be one of the greatest problems the Nebraska Game, Forestation and Parks Commission has to face. Owing to the extended drought in many parts of the state, especially in the lake region, it necessitates the transfer of thousands upon thousands of fish to deeper water. In view of the extreme hot weather and an unusually heavy crop of aquatic vegetation, this work is doubly difficult. A number of crews as well as deputy game wardens are engaged in this work. It is hoped to save many of these fish, but if the drought continues, there will be a very great loss of fish this summer and next winter.PHEASANT CROP HURT
Dry weather has also taken its toll of small pheasants. Many of the coveys this year are small and in certain sections of the state the cover is scarce. It is hoped, however, that in the counties getting rain the crop will be good. Pheasant hunting has become a great pastime in Nebraska and if the crop is short it will be a great disappointment to many hunters.TRANSFER CATFISH
A state seining crew has been busy the past month trapping catfish in the Niobrara River below the Spencer Dam and placing them in the backwaters above. Catfish of the middle west do not use fishways and the Nebraska Commission has found that it is more effective to transfer the fish than to depend on them getting over the dam themselves. Now that these fish are being hatched in large numbers at the state hatcheries it is hoped that stocking between dams can be carried on to greater extent than heretofore.RIVER DRIVES
Game wardens in Nebraska have been devoting a considerable amount of time this year to river work. Crews of four and five wardens are equipped with boats to search for traps and other illegal fishing devices. A number of arrests have already been made and a large number of devices destroyed. Efforts are being made to make river fishermen using such devices realize that it is impossible for the state to keep streams stocked where there are devices of this kind used.NEW PARK AT PONCA
The American Legion and citizens of Ponca have presented 220 acres of land overlooking the Missouri River to the State Game Commission. This land is quite scenic and it is likely an E.C.W. Camp will be established there this summer. Members of the State Game Commission, headed by Governor Charles W. Bryan, attended a dedication ceremony at Ponca on July 31stNEBRASKA DUCK DOWN SOUTH
F J. Keller, who presides over his Rainbow's End Game Refuge in the sandhills southeast of Alliance, has received a card from J. N. Darling, in charge of game division of the U. S. department of agriculture at Washington, stating that a mallard duck branded by Mr. Keller in the fall of 1928 was shot last December 15 at Graphede(continued on page 9)
A Four-Pound Trout Taken by Ross Chapman Near Bayard
NEBRASKA DUCK DOWN SOUTH(continued from page 8)
Lake, near Bosco, Louisiana.
Each year Mr. Keller catches and places light metal bands bearing registered numbers on the legs of a number of waterfowls at his place. The number of these bands, along with the date they were attached is filed at Washington and is the method used to determine many facts about the migration of birds.
The card to Mr. Keller said that the mallard slain by the Louisiana hunter bore band No. 555463, attached on October 14, 1928. The hunter was C. C. Butler.
AN EDITOR VIEWS FISHING AND CONSERVATION(continued from page 5)
to lend to us weary humans.
Meanwhile, there are stiff, battles to be fought. I can mention a few. There is the plight of the grizzly bear in the West, near extinction because of the persecution of stocksmen. T)here is the mountain lion, a noble animal which we should preserve even if he does kill a few deer— and he has almost been wiped out by government exterminators. There is that great rape of the West, the control of your National Forests and mine by the grazing interests, with the U. S. Forest Service allowing private sheep to graze at public expense, while you and I get in return depleted big game herds, ground nesting birds wiped out by the trampling hordes, marauding sheep herders living off game in and out of season—and, worst of all, ever-increasing erosion and disastrous floods.
There is the menace of the politician getting control of our game and fish departments, a situation actually existing in almost half our states. There is the spectacle of great corporations polluting our recreation waters and defying us to do anything about it. There are these causes calling us to sacrifice something so they may be determined for the right.
THE NEW DUCK STAMP(continued from page 7)
or for any other purpose. The money received from the sale of the new hunting stamp will be used to remedy these mistakes of the past by restoring some of this wasted land to the country's wild life and to purchase other marsh lands not yet destroyed.
Not all the money for this restoration program, the Bureau points out, will come from the pockets of the sportsmen, however, for the President, recognizing that wildlife, like the forest, is a valuable national resource, is planning to devote additional sums, to extending the sanctuary system. The stamp sale will probably provide funds ranging between $600,000 and $1,000,000 annually, according to estimates by the Biological Survey.
As a catechism for hunters of migratory waterfowl, the Bureau of Biological Survey, U. S. Department of Agriculture, has issued the following list of
1. What are the requirements of the law as to persons who must purchase the stamp?
All persons over 16 years of age who engage in hunting migratory waterfowl.
2. Where can the stamp be purchased?
At any post office in a county seat or in any town having a population of 2,500 or more, and at certain other conveniently located post offices that will be later designated by the Post Office Department.
3. How may a stamp be obtained?
Go to the post office in any county seat or in any town having a population of 2,500 or more, and ask for a migratory waterfowl hunting stamp. Fill out the application blank, which will be provided by the postmaster, and hand the blank to the postmaster with the fee of one dollar. The postmaster will affix the stamp to your State hunting license or, if you are not required to have a State license, to a certificate which the postmaster will provide.
4. After paying one dollar for the stamp, is there any additional fee payable to the postmaster or clerk?
5. How long does a stamp remain valid?
One year—from July 1 to June 30.
6. Does the stamp permit one to hunt in more than one State, or must a stamp be purchased in every State wherein the applicant intends to hunt migratory waterfowl?
Only one Federal stamp is necessary, but its possession does not relieve the hunter of any license requirements imposed by State laws. All States require the nonresident gunner to take; out a nonresident license.
7. In case a person has hunting licenses in more than one State, to which of them should the Federal Stamp be affixed?
It does not matter whether the stamp is affixed to the license of the State in which the (sportsman is actually hunting at the time, provided that he has on his person a valid stamp attached to any State hunting license or to the postmaster's certificate.
8. To whom must the stamp be shown?
On request to U. S. Game Administrative Agents, U. S. Deputy Game Wardens, and to any officer of any State or subdivision authorized to enforce the game laws.
9. Is the stamp transferable?
10. Is the holder of a scientific collecting permit required to carry a stamp ?
Yes. Collectors must have the stamp.
11. Does the law require a person who(continued on page 11)
DROUGHT AND FLOOD; MAN-MADE
Drought is largely man-made, except in deserts; which also are man-made, as witness the great cities (including then aqueducts) dug up in recent years out of the Sahara, Arabia and northern and central Asia, from different parts of the great desert, 1500 miles wide, which extends from eastern Asia, 9000 miles to the Atlantic at the western end of the Sahara. Land surface of the Earth occupies 50,000,000 square miles (or one-fourth) of its area, and of this amount 13,500,000 square miles, or more than one-fourth, is man-made desert. Much of China's 3,000,000 square miles is about to join the desert; wherefore it is germane to remark that Ohio has (Tone as much to make a desert waste of itself in 150 years as China accomplished in two milleniums, and from the same causes. But the Chinese always were—slow!
During the period May 10-15, 0.50 of an inch of rain fell, a sharp shower of 0.14 in. on the 10th, and a 36-hour drizzle of 0.36 in. on the 13th-15th; but except for incidental benefit to growing things, all the effect was to reduce the year's deficiency of precipitation to 7.5 in. These are the central Ohio figures; but they are not far different from totals in the middle tier of Ohio counties extending from east to west—and conditions have been worse in other parts of the country. Witness the dust storms which, arising in Kansas, Nebraska and eastern Colorado, during the early part of May blanketed cities to the Atlantic coast, over a wide belt, north to south, in dense clouds taken up from the Granary of the Nation and spilled all the way to New England!
This year's conditions are the continuation of a decade of unusual dryness. Beginning in 1924, there have been only three years in which there was an excess ofj precipitation over normal; and those excesses were very slight. They were in 1926, '27 and '29. All the rest of these years, there was a deficiency, sometimes small, sometimes large. Years of deficient moisture mean years of excess heat; and excess heat means excessive evaporation by suspiration through trees and other vegetation, thus drawing on reserves of underground water and sapping the life-stream of the soil. During the last four years, deficiency of ■' moisture in the central belt of Ohio was 12.87 in., and if this year's deficit to May 23 be added to it, there is a total deficiency for these counties, in four years and 143 days, amounting to 21.22 in., or 59 per cent of a normal year's rainfall hi the same area! Many other sections of the country will show comparable figures.
What can be done about it? And what about floods?
Conditions that cause drought, in the end are conducive to flood. If drought is long continued, flood is inevitable. It may come at any time in the future; but come it will, for Nature is inexorable—and ruthless. She is long suffering and patient, with time to heal her own scars, whether man-made or by her own unbridled forces; but man is too impatient for her slow processes. He cuts down the forests and alters climate, destroys the mulch of thousands of years, and opens vast areas to the ravages of uncurbed run-off, when rains come. By over-drainage and deepening and straightening of streams he runs the fertility of his fields into the rivers and so to the sea—and complains that his fields are "worn out". But he did it!
Nature must restore the conditions which will minify drought; for they cannot be prevented. Only the effects can be ameliorated. When the Ohio Department of Health, in 1930-31, supplied 69 good wells to the people of 28 southern Ohio counties it did not prevent drought, but did minify its effects. And man must help to restore so much of natural conditions as may be possible in view of the complexities of modern life. He must plant trees, establish grassland strips along the streams to prevent soil erosion, put holding dams (including wing-dams) in them to retard the waters and raise ground water levels, and provide cover, food and protection for wild things of the world, by land, air and water. These are things that must engage the sportsman's interest if he would have game to hunt and fish to catch.
Floods also cannot be prevented, but they can be measurably controlled. The forces which tend to minify droughts also tend to hold flood waters to lower levels. The great sponge-like masses which Nature provides around the roots of forest trees are needed; and even the leaves of deciduous trees, in a heavy rain, hold back the first 40 per cent of it, in order that the water may reach the ground and soak into the soil slowly. Nature slows up the courses of streams, with curves and obstructions, in order that as much as possible of its life-giving quality may be imparted to the soil. Man cannot be rid of it too quickly. He forgets that ONLY THE SURPLUS WATER from a rainfall should be discharged away from his fields. To this end, he should adopt contour plowing, which has been used in Europe for centuries.
But man can aid further in flood control. He can build impounding works at headwaters of his major streams; but they must be at headwaters. They will serve in moderate floods if placed elsewhere, as in the Dayton conservancy works; but there always comes a time when Nature excels all previous efforts —'especially when man helps to prepare for it. Zanesville seems to be engaged on the; right kind of flood control project; for Zanesville recalls that if there had been adequate headwaters control on the Muskingum in 1913, all the water which went through the city above flood level in eight days, doing millions of damage, could have been carried through in 15 days at or below flood level, without loss.
Neither drought nor flood can be prevented; but it is in man's power to minify the one and measurably control the other; or to accelerate the power and intensify the ravages of both. It is time for Ohio to inaugurate a settled policy that will assure every possible aid to Nature to restore its safety and its prosperity through a san? and comprehensive conservation policy, wisely administered and adequately—even rigorously — enforced. — From Hunter, Trader and Trapper.
IMPORTATION OF QUAIL IS URGED
If quail could be imported into Nebraska and given protection by sportsmen for several years, "the good old days" of the pointer and Irish setter would come back, according to L. W. Longnecker, Omaha, who is interested in a movement to increase the number of game birds in northeast Nebraska.
According to Longnecker, the number of quail in Nebraska has greatly decreased because of the dry weather and hunters, who have shot them from early fall until late spring. Quail are especially helpful to the farmer because they protect his crops from weeds and insects, their food consisting of more than one-half of detrimental weed seed and insects harmful to corn and other crops, he said.
Longnecker played a part in bringing wild turkeys to the Niobrara refuge and also in stocking bass in the game refuge. He is a member of the Nebraska Prison Welfare society and has a hobby of raising and protecting wild game, especially quail.
THE NEW DUCK STAMP(continued from page 9)
holds a Federal permit and who is engaged in taking wild fowl for propagating purposes, to purchase a stamp?
No. This does not mean, however that anyone with only a propagating permit is authorized to hunt wildfowl without the Federal stamp.
12. Does the law require possession of stamp by a person authorized by permit of the Secretary of Agriculture to kill wild fowl damaging crops or property?
No. The stamp is not required in such cases.
13. What are the maximum penalties for violation of this law?
$500 or six months confinement, or both.
14. What is done with the money collected from the sale of these stamps?
It is to be used by the Federal Government to increase the supply of waterfowl. Of the total proceeds, 90 percent will be spent in buying or leasing and administering marsh and water areas to be set aside forever as migratory waterfowl sanctuaries. The first of these refuges will be set up along the flight lines from the breeding grounds to the Gulf Coast. The remaining 10 percent will be used in issuing the stamps and administering the Act.
15. May stamp collectors and other non-hunters buy stamps?
Certainly. No one is under any obligation to kill a duck just because he owns a Federal hunting stamp, nor is there any rule to prevent anyone who wants to help restore the migratory waterfowl from purchasing any number of these "duck-saving" stamps.
THE LOWLY CARP
No fish, no family of fishes, no denizen of lake/ or stream is the target of more irony, more wise-cracks, or more slurring remarks than the lowly carp.
Nevertheless, I maintain it affords more sport to more people than any other fish of our Nebraska waters.
True it is, there are a number of fish which rank higher from a sportsman's angle and too I will agree that there are fish more suitable for the pan. But say! When you get so high-hat that there is no kick in hooking and landing a three pound carp, on light tackle, then surely your days of thrills are about over. I have found a carp harder to land than a catfish of equal weight.
Remove every carp from every stream in the state and you would be surprised how many people would have no fish to eat.
And really folks, laying all joking aside (as to how to prepare them for eating) J have eaten carp prepared in such a manner that they were fine. There is ja way of cross-cutting them down to the ribs with a sharp knife and then frying in very hot lard, whereby the small bones are dissolved. But my favorite |way of having them prepared is making them into what the Bohemians call soltz, a sort of pickling process (with vinegar and spices). Here too the fine bones are dissolved and you have a very appetizing dish especially nice for lunches and the table.
Thousands of fishermen of our state fish for nothing but carp. They are plentiful and they take bait that anyone can get and afford. Worms, blood, and dough-balls are almost always a good lure. Of the three, I prefer the latter because if rightly prepared it is easier to handle and stays fastened to the hook better. As to tackle (I claim no best-way-there-is) I like a small hook, light line, light reel, no cork, rigged to a casting rod or light bamboo.
Sure I like to catch other fish. Croppies are my favorites and I don't pass up any of our local fish, but I do get a darn good wallop out of catching a lowly carp.Some talk about their catfish, And of Bass and Pike they'll harp But a lot of us are gosh darn glad, To hook a darned old carp.
SCIENCE CAN AID IN MAKING RAIN
Mark Twain's oft-quoted remark about the weather, to the effect that "Everybody talks about it but nobody seems to do anything about it," can be modified now, according to biologists and meteorologists who point out ways and means of increasing rainfall. These are no "rainmakers", no tricksters, soothsayers or other fakirs, but authorities of proven engineering experience, according to a bulletin of the American Game Association.
And all point out the necessity of increasing rainfall throughout the United States, particularly in the fast drying Middle West—the Dakotas and other adjacent states. The underground water table of the entire United States has fallen from six to sixty feet within the last few years.
What is the cause? Excessive drainage, these experts declare. And then go on to point out many contributing causes such as deforestation, silting of streams through erosion, and utter waste of surface water.
What is the answer? Restore as many drained areas as possible and create new water areas. This brings back the stored surface water, gives the sun a chance to; "draw" water, the heat a chance to condense it and precipitate it in renewed rainfall somewhere near the "belt" it was drawn from. Science is now finding that these belts vary from 25 to 100 miles. For instance, water drawn from a lake region will be carried in forming clouds by the prevailing winds, condensed and dropped, usually, within 25 to 100 miles over varying areas, depending upon the degrees of moisture and heat and velocity of the carrying winds.
By spotting the country thickly with lakes, ponds, sloughs and other water holding areas, a large degree of control can be had over rainfall. By stopping the quick run-off by reforestation, and restoration of sod, soil erosion can be reduced to a minimum, thus holding the water for absorption to replenish the underground table. In other words, these experts would merely follow the plan of Nature, in fact restore it, before Man upset it during the drainage craze. Build dams in creeks, non-navigable rivers, draws, scoop out^ low depressions and make ponds. These will aid in bringing about control of rainfall, officials of the American Game Association declare.
Fish culturists have made two great mistakes in the past; they never should have introduced German Carp or Paper Fish.
We have too many of both species, although we must admit that the Paper Fish is difficult to find in our lakes and streams. One must be an exceptionally close observer to find Paper Fish any place other than in the reports of game and fish departments. But we have them, lots of them, and to the sportsman who is looking for a difficult fish to land, we most heartily recommend the Paper Fish. Hje is a most elusive creature.
The business of raising Paper Fish is apparently a great game. But do we really and seriously want many more of this species? It would seem to us that what we need is more honest-to-goodness bass, perch, crappie, sunfish, pike and trout and less of these Paper(continued on page 13)
MAKES CHANGES IN BUREAU
To promote more effectively an active national movement toward wildlife restoration, J. N. Darling, Chief of the Bureau of Biological Survey, has recently made changes in the organization, it was announced recently at the U. S. Department of Agriculture.
Consolidating the Division of Game and Bird Conservation and the Division of Predatory Animal and Rodent Control, Mr. Darling has established a new unit designated the Division of Game Management. Under the leadership of Stanley P. Young, former] head of the control unit, 8 to 12 regional directors will administer the Bureau's game and other wildlife management throughout the States. Leaders of predator and rodent control, refuge custodians, lawenforcement officers, and other field agents will be responsible to the regional directors.
To keep the public acquainted with the accumulating facts and findings and with the activities of the Biological Survey, the chief has established a Division of Public Relations and placed it in charge of H. P. Sheldon, formerly head of the Division of Game and Bird Conservation. In addition to giving attention to the press, the radio, public exhibits, and public speakers, the new division will keep watch of the bureau's relations with the various regions and States. Scientists, says Mr. Darling, will have more opportunity to write about their specialties. The division of Public Relations includes a consolidation of the Office of Editorial and Informational Work and the Office of Exhibits, Photographs, and Publication Distribution.
To promote a national migratory waterfowl program, Mr. Darling has established a new unit to be called the Division of Migratory Waterfowl. In charge of J. C. Salyer, who comes to the Bureau after valuable experience with the Research Department of the University of Michigan, this division will plan for careful and thorough wildlife-refuge administration in the interests of the birds, the public, and the sportsmen. Immediate objectives will be emergency acquisition of refuge areas with the special funds available, and the development of trained refuge custodians. For the present, however, existing refuges remain under the supervision of the Division of Game Management.
Mr. Darling has also amplified the duties and personnel of the Division of Administration, placing the enlarged unit in charge of W. R. Dillon, formerly assistant in the Division of Game and Bird Conservation.
If mine eyes have never lifted to purple mountain shadows, if mine ears have never tuned to mountain waterfalls! then I've missed nothing.
For I have known the wild duck's flight, heard the coyote's howl. Nights I've sensed God's gentle hand when there came the evening hush, mornings I have marveled at the freshness of the dawns.
In my veins there flows the blood of pioneers—with all the underlying glory of unplowed virgin prairie. For me there is the sea of billowing wheat, the flavor of prairie adversities, the tang of clear, cold springs.
Each year I've glimpsed God's miracle of rain, died with the drouths, tasted ecstatic fulfillment of golden harvests.
To you I drink a toast! You gave me birth, from your womb I wrest my life, in your warm arms I'll seek my shroud. Nebraska 'tis of thee, I sing!By Mrs- Blanche Pease, Atkinson, Nebraska.
34 MILLION VISITED NATIONAL FORESTS
A total of 34,672,125 persons entered the National Forests of the United States last year, the U. S. Forest Service announced recently.
In spite of the fact that an increase of 400,000 campers, picnickers, and summer home permittees in the National Forests; was recorded, the total number of visitors showed a slight decline from the preceding year, presumably because fewer people took luxury trips.
Camping in the National Forests was increasingly popular, with 2,219,904 persons taking advantage of the constantly improving public camp grounds, an increase of 21,600 over 1932. Public camp grounds facilities were doubled in some of the Forests in the last year with the aid of the Civilian, Conservation Corps, but much of this improvement work was finished too late in the season to become available last summer.
Hotel and resort guests in the Forests decreased approximately 100,000 compared with 1932, but showed a total of 1,037,096.
Altogether something over 13 million people visited the National Forests primarily to enjoy their recreational advantages. Official summaries of reports from all the 148 National Forests of the country show that 552,685 were summer home or other special-use permittees and their guests, 1,037,096 were hotel and resort guests, 2,219,804 campers, and 4,355,936 picnickers. An additional 5,221,622 motorists and hikers made brief visits to the National Forests primarily for enjoyment of the scenery.
The reports also showed a total of 21,284,982 incidental or transient visitors to the National Forests. The extension of highways and good forest use roads kept the flow of motor traffic about up to par.
California, Washington, Pennsylvania, Oregon, Montana, Arizona, and Colorado counted their National Forest visitors and recreation seekers in the millions last year. New Hampshire had 856,640 visitors in the White Mountain National Forest during the year. National Forests in Idaho, New Mexico, and Utah each had 750,000 to 1,000,000 guests, while Michigan, Minnesota, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Vermont recorded 200,000 to 400,000 visitors each in their more recently developed National Forests. Alaska National Forests had 66,250.
The public is becoming increasingly interested in America's National Forest playgrounds. Already, the 1934 season is attracting large numbers to the Forests, where the Forest Service has thousands of Civilian Conservation Corps and Public Works employees busy opening up new wonders of scenery, building new recreational grounds, and extending protection from forest fires. Recreational uses of the National Forests gain every year in importance along with the other public uses and the Forest Service is making a continuous effort to make the recreational values available to greater numbers of people.
The Central City, Nebraska Local Chapter of the Izaak Walton League, for a number of years have been working to the end of supplying quantities of fish for lakes that the public may enjoy fishing.
This Chapter owns their nursery pits, which are located near the Platte River in Riverside Park, and from these nursery ponds this week the Chapter removed 15,000 fish large enough to go into the public fishing lakes, which the Chapter provides by lease.
Last year this Chapter salvaged from various ponds and drying streams 30,000 Bullheads, Bass, Blue Gills and Sunfish, the majority being placed in their nursery ponds for development.
A Crow Shooting Squad was selected and entered the Nebraska Crow shooting contest, and up to date the Chapter has killed 7,000 with shot guns, only.
What the Chapter is doing, most any small chapter can do if they desire. One of the stunts which has proven remunerative to the Chapter, and created an interest upon the part of the public, is to solicit from business men, farmers, wholesale dealers and manufacturers a donation of goods, corn, wheat, oil, or any product, assemble them and offer for sale to the highest bidder at auction for cash, the proceeds to go to the Local Chapter to carry on their program of conservation and propagation.
The spirit of cooperation among the members and the general public was never better than now, and the public is responding to the Chapter's efforts in a spendid manner.By Mi. G. Scudder, Sec. Local Chapter.
ORGANIZE NATIONAL COUNCIL FOR FISHING
In an effort to bring about better relations between the anglers and commercial fishermen, and better fishing for both, the U. S. Bureau of Fisheries has been instrumental in organizing a Planning Council of Commercial and Game Fish Commissioners to coordinate the work of the States and the Federal Government, according to announcement of the American Game Association. The organization was perfected in St. Louis on April 23, and the, country divided into zones of compatible interests. Zones are as follows:
Western Zone: Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico. Midwest Zone: North Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma. Southern Zone: Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, and Maryland. North Central Zone: Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and West Virginia. North Atlantic Zone: Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont and Maine.
The following were elected as officers: Chairman, I. T. Quinn, Fish and Game Commissioners of Alabama; Vice Chairman, James G. Hammond, Fish and Game Commissioner of Connecticut; Secretary-Treasurer, Ted Little, U. S. Bureau of Fisheries. Commissioner of the U. S. Bureau of Fisheries, Frank T. Bell was named Honorary Chairman. Zone Chairmen for various zones are: Western Zone, M. F. Corrigan, president Board of Game Commissioners of Oregon; Midwest Zone, W. C. Buford, Game and Fish Commissioner of Missouri; Southern Zone, W. E. Mclntyre, Chairman of Board of Fish and Game Commissioners of Mississippi; North Central Zone, Fred A. Westerman, in charge of Fish and Fisheries, Department of Conservation of Michigan; North Atlantic Zone, Major James Brown, Commissioner of Fish and Game of Vermont.
"It will be the work of the National Planning Council to consider the best ways and means of handling fisheries so that all factions will reap the greatest possible returns," Commissioner Bell said.
PAPER FISH(continued from page 11)
Fish that are so rarely caught. Of course, we are willing to admit that Paper Fish are used for bait. But remember there pre also two kinds of bait—the kind to attract a fish that has gills and the kind of fish that votes. We can do with much less of the bait used for the latter species. We need to reverse the old method and put the sucker on the other end of the pole.— Minnesota Waltonian.
HOW TO MAKE CROW TRAP
Boon to the farmer and sportsman alike is the Jack Miner proven crow trap. It really catches this marauder of crops, poultry and wildlife by the hundreds, according to a bulletin of the American Game Association. Mr. P. P. Doze, a farmer of Norwich, Kansas, caught more than 2000 crows last spring with five traps, baited with infertile eggs obtained from a hatchery. Corn, carrion, meat scraps or whatever is available serve as other good baits. It is also desirable to leave a few captured crows in the trap as, decoys.
The trap is easy to make and inexpensive. Mr. Doze used tree limbs, carrying out the rustic idea, instead of lumber framework "to get away from the stamp of man, which always creates suspicion in the sharp mind of Mr. Crow."
Directions for making the trap follow: This trap is made of 2"x4" uprights and l"x4" cross pieces covered with ordinary 2" mesh poultry wire. In size it may be made to any convenient dimensions—12'xl4' or 9'xl2' for instance.
It may be made of permanent construction with all parts and pieces firmly nailed together, or the ends and sides may be made up separately and bolted or hooked in place when the trap is set up. This greatly facilitates the removal of the trap to other locations. When this is done the roof wire should be stapled loosely to the framework.
The wire mesh covers every part of the framework, with the exception of the ladder lying in the V-shaped roof, which acts as the entrance for the birds. This ladder should be about 9" wide and extend the length of the trap. The first five or six rungs at each end of the ladder should be spaced about 3" apart, and the others in the center about 9". This gives ample room for the crows to drop down from the ladder into the trap, but the space is not large enough for them to fly out with outspread wings.
Some of the birds may get out, and if many of them seem to be doing so it may be prevented by stringing wires across from end to end of the trap about 8 to 10 inches, below the ladder. These should be spaced about 3 inches apart with the center wire slightly lower than the outside two. If it is observed that these wires keep the birds from entering the trap readily they should be removed. It is urged that the actions of the crows when they locate the trap be carefully observed from a blind with glasses. This may be the means of modifying the trap to suit particular local conditions and trapping much larger numbers of these black marauders.
Upon locating the bait, the crows light on the trap, work down to the rungs of the ladder, and upon deciding there is no danger in the offing, will drop down inside.
In some cases it may be advisable to leave the gate open for a day or so, scattering corn both inside and outside and allowing the birds to enter or depart at will before attempting to trap them.
Visit the trap every day and remove the birds caught. One or two may be left to act as decoys, but be sure to leave a pan of water for them.
GRASSHOPPPER POISON NO MENACE TO BIRDS
Grasshopper poisoning, now in progress in the Northern Plains States, following a Congressional appropriation for the purpose, can cause little' or no injury to bird life, if properly carried on, says Clarence Cottam, assistant biologist of the Bureau of Biological Survey, in a statement issued recently by the U. S. Department,1 of Agriculture in response to a large number of inquiries as to the campaign's possible effects on birds.
During a two-weeks investigation at the height of the poisoning campaign of 1931 in the north-central prairie region, Mr. Cottam found no evidence of birds being poisoned where the arsenic bait was prepared and scattered broadcast, as recommended by the Bureau of Entomology. Bird fatalities, he found, were confined to isolated cases in places where the recommendations had been disregarded and the grasshopper bait left in piles.
To determine whether birds feeding on baited areas contained any of the arsenic intended for grasshoppers, Mr. Cottam, in fields recently poisoned, collected 25 individual birds of 8 species —western meadowlark, bronzed grackle, lark bunting, horned lark, chestnutcollared longspur, western mourning dove, western grasshopper sparrow, and English sparrow. Stomach examinations showed no evidence that the birds had eaten the poisoned bran used for bait. Grasshoppers comprised more than 60 percent of the total food, an average of 14 grasshoppers being found in each of the stomachs, but the quantity of poison consumed indirectly with the insects was "so infinitesimally small as to be practically negligible."
Detailed chemical analyses for arsenic by the Bureau of Chemistry and Soils in the specimens collected by Mr. Cottam also produced negative results or showed quantities so minute as to be negligible, analyses of birds from areas where no baits had been distributed showing practically the same arsenic content as did those from poisoned fields.
Mr. Cottam tells of one farmer who had more than 800 chickens and turkeys feeding where grasshopper bait had been distributed, yet had not lost a fowl through poisoning. Over his 1,600-acre infested area, the farmer was reported to have scattered bait 12 times in 6 weeks.
"During my investigation," says Mr. Cottam, "I did not find a person who knew of any birds being killed by bait that was properly applied, and every person experienced in the poisoning work was emphatic in asserting that bait applied as directed by thel Bureau of Entomology and made to the proper formula can cause little or no injury to wild life. It is my firm conviction that grasshopper poisoning, when properly carried on, can cause little or no injury to bird life. This however, does not apply if the bait is placed out in piles."
Editor, Outdoor Nebraska:—
In regard to the short article in the Spring edition of Outdoor Nebraska relative to the catching of a Sable in the Platte River near Overton, I am afraid that the Lanphear boys are going! to be greatly disappointed if they expect to sell this sable for $80 or $90.
Contrary to the article, the sable proper is a member of the Marten family (not Mink) obtained only from Russia and northern China. It is not a native of New York state. The sable varies in color with the changing seasons. In the summer the coat is of a dark reddish hue with a sprinkling of grey hairs at the head. Its coat lassumes a dark (nearly black) shade when winter approaches. The underwool is fine, soft and the top hairs regular, varying in length between IY2 to 2 inches in depth. The most valuable sables come from northern Siberia. Here are found the very rarest and finest—those covered with silvery hairs. These sometimes reach a top price of $90 and are usually sold to the Russian Royalty. The average size of the skin is 14% by 5% inches. The so-called "Hudson Bay" sable is the American Marten which is slightly larger in size, the average being about 18 inches by 5% inches. These skins are found in colors varying from dark brown to yellow.
I am greatly interested in this catch and would be glad to aid in any way possible to establish its identity.Gale Walton, Geneva, Nebr.
Use A Flushing Bar On Your Farm!
THE PERPETUATION OF UPLAND GAME BIRDS and more especially the quail, partridge and pheasant, depends upon shelter, food, and the control of predatory animals. Nature has so nicely balanced predator control that the strong are saved, but the weak are destroyed. Artificial predators, of which the common house cat) is the most destructive of all, were never considered in nature's balancing scheme.
THE INDULGENT, THOUGHTLESS PARENTS AND CHILDREN are responsible for the great increase of this artificial predator and destroyer of bird life. Taken to the cottage, country or lake, a harmless and playful kitten and abandoned to its fate upon the return of the family to the city, the playful kitten fully grown is left through neglectfulness to forage for itself and its kind. Reverting quickly to its habits of the wild, it ruthlessly destroys all bird life.
YOUR OBLIGATION TO A SPORTSMAN SHOULD BE TO DESTROY BUT NEVER ABANDON A CAT. Do not leave this vicious animal to prey upon our valuable game birds. Ask the farmer's assistance, for he, too, will suffer unless he comes to nature's aid. Fewest birds mean more destructive insect pests for the farmer to combat, smaller game bags for the sportsman, and eventually bird life extinguished.GAME, FORESTATION and PARKS COMMISSION Lincoln, Nebraska