COLUMN: Fall hunting season is here

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By Jeff Lilly

Fall colors, gotta love’em. Even with the drought we have going on, God still gives us a show for free. It never ceases to amaze me how the seasons come and go and how each one of them has its own unique characteristics and fan base. I’m partial to fall for obvious reasons like most hunting seasons are at their peak and the temperatures allow me to open up the windows and turn down the electric company’s little money maker.
I try to keep the next few month’s columns short and sweet due to the number of game harvest pictures that need to be printed. Most all of the readers of this small town paper seem to enjoy the long tradition of hunting and fishing. I will, however, look forward to the letters from the very few that do not enjoy such harvest pictures and can only say to them, “Turn the page”
Thank God, our forefathers and soldiers for the freedoms we all should cherish.

Anderson County youth hunt weekend a success
According to a very enthusiastic phone call I received from our local conservation officer Phillip Crane, the inaugural Anderson County Youth Hunt was a success the weekend of Oct. 9-10. This coincided with the statewide youth hunt which, pending final harvest numbers, appears to have also been a success.
Officer Crane said, “The first annual Anderson County youth deer hunt was a huge success. A youth deer hunt hosted by Anderson County Conservation Officer Phillip Crane with the assistance of Officer Jason Wells (of Franklin County) was held in Anderson County on the youth deer hunt weekend, Oct. 9-10. Twelve lucky kids in Anderson County and some surrounding areas were selected to participate in the youth hunt. We were fortunate enough to have a 50 percent successful harvest rate among the kids even though the weather conditions were extremely warm.
“A special thanks goes out to the landowners and guides who participated in the event: Steve Hartley, Kenny Nash, Jason Wells, Bill Spears, Scott Luna, Jimmy McGuffin, Jeremy Abell, Brandon Carney, Adam Wells, Aaron Burkhead and family, Shane Mink, and Mike Hockensmith. It could not have happened without them.
“A big thanks to our sponsors who also made the event possible: Kentucky Conservation Officers Association, Wal-Mart, Darnell/Burkhead meat processors, and Markwell’s processing. We are very grateful to the Anderson County Sportsman’s Club for allowing us to utilize their facility and firing range.
“We would also like to thank Shannon Crane, Emily Wells, and John Gilbert Peach for helping with the food and other things needed for this event.
“I would like to thank everyone who participated in any way for this event to happen because it was worth all of the time and effort to see the kids’ eyes light up after getting to partake in a hunting activity that some had never before had the opportunity to do. Our youth are the future of our hunting heritage, so please take a kid hunting, you will not regret it.”

Deer harvest update (as of Oct. 21)
Anderson County 315, Franklin County 293, Shelby County 327, Spencer County 308, Nelson County 174, Washington County 200, Mercer County 116, Woodford County 115.
The statewide total is 16,299.

Fall turkey harvest update (as of October 21)
Anderson County 3, Franklin County 3, Shelby County 6, Spencer County 5, Nelson County 3, Washington County 4, Mercer County 2, Woodford County 1. The statewide total is 514.

Archery season for deer and turkey Sept. 4- Jan. 17, 2011; Crow season Sept. 1 - Nov. 7; Squirrel season Aug. 21 – Nov. 12.
Raccoon and opossum hunting season Nov. 1 – Feb. 28, 2011; Raccoon and opossum trapping season – Noon, Nov. 15 – Feb. 28, 2011;
Bobcat hunting season – Noon, Nov. 20 – Jan. 31, 2011; Bobcat trapping season – Noon, Nov. 15 – Feb. 28, 2011.
Otter, muskrat, mink, beaver, red fox, grey fox, weasel and striped skunk hunting and trapping season – Noon, Nov. 15 – Feb. 28, 2011.
Coyote, wild hog and groundhog season – Year round with no bag limit.
Always check the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Resources regulations before going afield.

Quick shots
* Guns have only two enemies: Rust and Politicians.
* Election Day is almost here so take a close look at which candidates do and do not support our Second Amendment rights to keep and bear arms.
Take a kid hunting or fishing soon!
See ya outside!

Jeff Lilly is an outdoors columnist for The Anderson News. E-mail him at sports@theandersonnews.com.