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Turkeys beware!

The last Saturday of March is opening day of the spring turkey season.

One of the perennial difficulties is finding areas in which to hunt. The Department of Fish & Game has two State Wildlife Areas nearby. They are Daugherty Hill and Spenceville.

Due to the popularity of these as turkey hunting locals, they are available only by drawing for the following dates: March 26, 27, 30, April 2-3. Those are the first two weekends of the season and the Wednesday in between. I know Spenceville is closed to other uses (fishing, hiking etc) during these hunt dates and I assume the same is true for Daugherty Hill.



The drawing is entered by mailing a post card to the regional headquarters in Rancho Cordova. The deadline is Wednesday March 9. For all of the information go to http://www.dfg.ca.gov and click “regions” on the right hand column. Or call (916) 358-2839.

The California Department of Fish and Game, in cooperation with Wilderness Unlimited and the National Wild Turkey Federation, will sponsor the eighth annual Wild Turkey Expo. The free turkey-hunting seminar will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday at the Fair Oaks Presbyterian Church, 11427 Fair Oaks Blvd in Fair Oaks.




This popular event, which has drawn capacity crowds, provides comprehensive information on wild turkey biology and hunting, with a focus on hunting turkeys on public land. Topics include locating the birds, effective calling, turkey habits, proper camouflage, and the use of shotguns and archery equipment.

There are also segments on cooking the bird, and equipment demonstrations. DFG will have a wildlife biologist who can discuss wild turkey habitat and the best places to find turkeys on public lands. For more information, contact Susan Herrgesell, DFG Program Coordinator, (530) 225-2319, or sherrges@dfg.ca.gov.

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On March 11, the “Gold Country Gobblers” chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation will hold its seventh annual banquet at the Nevada City Elks Lodge on Highway 49.

The evening will feature raffles and auctions for turkey hunting gear, art work, and firearms. This local club sponsors a number of events during the year to promote both hunting and fishing for the local youth. I hope you will join me there. For more info call Gary Conterno at 274-0773.

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This past weekend a 50-pound striper was taken at the confluence of the Sacramento and Feather Rivers near Verona by Dan Bingham of Sacramento. The photo is up at Johnson’s in Yuba City.

The striper was taken on a red and white plug. The most important fact, beyond the area, is that it was taken after dark. Boat traffic puts these fish off the bite. After the sun goes down and most boaters go home, the stripers are much more likely to bite.

Further downstream in the lower delta the striper action is getting better as the water warms. Trolling and lure fishing are making a resurgence. During the cold winter months bait has been the preferred method.

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John Kusanovich reported in after a recent trip to Pyramid Lake in Nevada. He and some fellow members of the Gold Country Fly Fishers did well fishing south of Sutcliffe near Indian Head Rock.

There has been a distinct temperature difference between the north (43 degree) and south (46 degree) ends of Pyramid Lake. The south end is usually the downwind end of the lake and it has extensive shallows near the Truckee River inlet. Both of these features contribute to warming water.

This time of year, it is a good idea to look for warmer water. Storms and winds can change this temperature differential. Pyramid fishing will continue to get better as the water warms into the 50 degree range. March April and May are the prime months.

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Denis Peirce writes a weekly column appearing Tuesdays in The Union and is host of “The KNCO Fishing & Outdoor Report,” which airs 6-7 p.m. Fridays and 5-6 a.m. Saturdays on 830-AM radio. He may be reached via e-mail at denisp@theunion.com.


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