FRESH perspective on the food chain
By Kevin Reese
As an outdoor writer, photographer, videographer and speaker in the outdoor industry I’ve successfully made work out of hunting; unfortunately, I’ve been so busy writing about hunting recently, that I haven’t had many opportunities to hunt at all. My outdoor work is finally starting to wind down but deer season is all but over and only two whitetails fell victim to my stick and string.
It’s also worth mentioning that I’m so immersed in outdoor communications that I don’t watch very many hunting shows at all – a bricklayer doesn’t want to lay bricks then go home and watch bricklaying on television, even if that his is life’s passion.
That said, I do have a guilty pleasure. I’m addicted to Duck Dynasty. Worse, I created a couple of other addicts; my wife and son can’t get enough. We even blew duck calls at midnight on New Year’s Eve. I must admit I was the only one in the family that actually sounded like a duck; of course, I’m also the only duck hunter in our family so I suppose the gross difference in calling technique wasn’t such an anomaly.
During a recent family viewing, Jase Robertson echoed my sentiments, “I don’t like grocery store meat. It scares me.” Disliking purchased meat has less to do with taste and much more to do with the disassociation it creates between us and the brutal reality we call the food chain. A perfect example of this tragic circumstance was sent to me via email years ago. The email was simple, “LOL” with an attached image. Opening the image I found a newspaper clipping that read, “You ought to go to the store and buy the meat that was made there, where no animals were harmed.” Sadly, the same person that submitted that gem also votes.
Newsflash – ALL meat comes from living things; in fact, all food sources come from living things whether directly or indirectly – meat, fruit, veggies, all of it. Wouldn’t you rather take an active role in what you provide for your family? Like my hunting brothers and sisters, I choose to take an active, responsible role in providing sustenance. Where most people live in that disconnect, we are intimately, blood-under-the-fingernails aware of our role and the significance of taking life to sustain life.
With the close of deer season, it seems that your backwoods grocery store is locking its doors, making for a pretty dismal postseason outlook for meat-seating hunter’s throughout our region, and soon, across the nation. The last time I checked I didn’t see coyote or bobcat entrees littering restaurant menus. For many, hunting is over until spring, full freezers or not. But living in our Lone Star state, especially here in our area, provides infinite opportunities to stock freezers year round.
With an estimated 2 to 3 million feral hogs rooting up the neighborhood, it’s safe to say we are overrun. The bad news is that feral hogs predate bird eggs (including quail, turkey, and others) and other small and young animals, including other hogs. Rooting also causes immense damage to land as hogs root for grubs, roots, shoots and other tasty morsels in the soil. Rooting injures livestock, destroys farm and ranch machinery, and negatively impacts both the landscape and our fragile ecosystem, especially where other wildlife are concerned.
Over $400 million in damage is caused annually in Texas alone by feral hogs. They are not native but invasive and compete with indigenous Texas wildlife like whitetail deer for more than just food sources, but habitat as a whole – and, they are winning.
So, what does that mean for red blooded, meat eating, conservation minded hunters? It means hunting feral hogs is not only fun, it helps combat a real problem! Even better, that freezer of yours, hungry for packages of organic red meat, can be fed year round. There are no bag limits or time constraints. Hunt day or night, seven days a week if you’ve got the time. Dust off your britches, pick up your rifle or bow and go hunt. With our feral hog population Corsicana freezers have a bright, bright future.
Hunt hard, hunt often.
Bowhunter’s hearing amplification with shooting sports protection!
By Kevin Reese
As a tinnitus sufferer, compliments of the U.S. Marine Corps, and avid hunter, hearing has been a significant hindrance to my success in the field. While many count on hearing, sight and smell on the hunt, I have lost much of the second most critical sense we carry into the woods.
So, what’s a frustrated hunter to do? I had heard great things about the quality and customer service at WildEar so I picked up the phone and ordered the Master Series Hearing Enhancement System (HES). What a Godsend! Brad Esson sent me an information and fitting instruction kit and I scheduled an appointment with my local audiologist. I left the audiologist’s office with impressions in hand and mailed them back to WildEar. Within two weeks I had a package waiting at my front door.
What’s in the Box?
Upon opening the shipping box I found a beautifully crafted wood box with my name carved into the lid; I was immediately impressed! Opening the box I found every component neatly displayed including my WildEar Hearing Enhancement Devices (HED), a WildEar adjustable lanyard, extra plugs, a cleaning brush, identification card, extra size 13 batteries, instruction manual and an extremely nice leather carrying pouch.
After a quick read through the instructions and becoming familiar with button locations, I was ready to give my new “WildEars” a whirl. After installing the battery in the first device I immediately inserted it in my ear and continued installing the battery in the other device; while I did so, the left device cycled through a series of tones confirming that I had inserted the battery correctly and the unit was now active. After installing the battery in the second unit and firmly inserting it into my ear canal I heard the same tone; both units were active and appeared to be working properly. Once the units were powered on amplification of sounds was immediate and because the HED was created from personal impressions the fit was incredibly comfortable.
Success, One Ear at a Time!
A major benefit to WildEar’s HES is adjustability. This is the first system I’ve had the pleasure of using that incorporates comprehensive adjustability. WildEar HED’s offer four presets and numerous volume levels to optimize hearing FOR EACH EAR! Using the various presets and volume levels I quickly achieved optimum hearing; in fact, after customizing the settings and recording them on a piece of paper (I now keep folded in the leather pouch for reference) the variance in hearing from one ear to the other I had experienced for years became negligible.
From Every Direction or the Right Direction?
Another benefit was the ability to discern noise direction. Experimenting with other devices I noticed difficulty in ascertaining which direction noises were coming from. Using WildEar’s HED’s I had no problem identifying the source direction of various sounds; a critical element to hearing in the woods! In a matter of minutes I had leveled my outdoor playing field with a keen hearing ability I presume rivals that of my prey.
Hearing to Hearing Protection: From A – Z!
My Master Series HED’s were designed for a diverse range of outdoor activities including both firearm shooting and bowhunting. When rifle or pistol hunting, or during a day on the shooting range, I simply insert the vent plugs into the vent holes. The plugs seal the vent holes preventing outside noise from entering the devices. Noise is suppressed when it reaches a potentially dangerous level. My HED’s only suppressed the firearm blast then returned to hearing amplification.
While bowhunting I remove the plugs. The open vent holes allow for natural noise and air to infiltrate, eliminating any semblance of feeling “plugged up”. It’s worth noting that at any time you transition from bowhunting to shooting a firearm you must remember to install the vent plugs!
The Cold HEARD Truth!
I never realized how much I was missing the field. WildEar HED’s gave me a new lease on my bowhunting life. Now I used them for more than outdoor pursuits. Late in the evening you can now find me watching a couple of my favorite television shows… without subtitles!
The quality of workmanship was readily apparent and proven through use. WildEar accounted for every minute detail. The presentation of the product in the customized box seemed to demonstrate just how much WildEar focuses on satisfying customers; I felt like I was important to them. WIldEar has earned my trust, endorsement and recommendation. Well done, WildEar, well done!
The only con I observed is the inability to power off the devices without removing the batteries. A power button on each device would be a great addition; handling batteries while 20 feet up in a treestand can be frustrating. Considering that minor inconvenience, WildEar still earns top honors with me. I expect my WildEar HED’s will be an important part of my outdoor gear for years to come!
Check out WildEar’s array of premium hearing enhancement and suppression products at www.WildEar.com.
Hunt hard, hunt often.by kevinr
Gimmick or Game Changer?
By Kevin Reese
I high-stepped slowly, taking care to keep the briars underfoot while dodging brittle twigs and branches threatening to signal the alarm to certain nearby critters. It was quite a long trek, I remember, especially in complete darkness. It was 4:30 a.m.; the frost-laden cloak of blacks and grays would not succumb to the golden hues of a rising sun for a couple of hours. Wind direction was perfect, hunting over the super-highway 20 yards in front of my ground blind was going to make for an easy hunt.
Another hundred yards through the briars and blood weeds brought me into a familiar clearing. I headed around the side of the clearing and edged back into the opposite tree line where I had carefully tucked my ground blind and brushed it in. As I neared the blind area cut back limbs and bare ground emerged. Only the branches and foliage I had used to conceal my setup remained. Someone had stolen my ground blind!
Why do we feel that electrical charge course through our veins the moment we realize we’ve become the victim of a crime? What causes that empty shutter in the pit of your stomach as you start processing the crime scene? I could feel my heart pounding and hear it in my ears. My stomach turned the feeling there was hollow right down to the pit. When were they here? I made my way over to a nearby tree to grab my trail camera and realized my horrible morning had become a nightmare they had stolen my trail camera as well – no blind, no camera and no photos of the perpetrators. Call them what you will, criminals, thieves, trespassers – they were all of the above!
What I wanted more than anything was to put another camera up but what would that accomplish? Sure, if they returned I would get another photo but likely lose another camera I even considered using a climbing stand but in the end conceded that the ridiculous amount of effort to check the camera would be excessive there was no guarantee the perpetrators would return. It seemed as though I had a dilemma… until I found out about SpyPoint’s Tiny-W camera. The first generation Tiny-W was incredible… and incredibly innovative. My only concern was the inability to hide the remote black box further away from the camera (50-foot transmission range). Well, SpyPoint promised an improvement and boy did they ever deliver!
Upon capturing an image, SpyPoint’s second generation of this model, the Tiny-W2 immediately transmits a copy to the black box receiver nearly 100 yards away, at least five times further than the original Tiny-W! Imagine yourself in a trespasser, thief or poacher’s shoes. Your photo has just been taken. You break or steal the camera or steal the SD card to eliminate incriminating evidence. Imagine your surprise the following day when 8-megapixel images of your face are plastered all over the community. Now imagine law enforcement officers cuffing you as they advise you of your rights. How on earth did they catch you? With SpyPoint’s Tiny-W2!
The Tiny-W2 levels the criminal surveillance playing field at home and in the woods while offering game-changing scouting opportunities. Gone are the days of disturbing your setup to check your images place your receiver anywhere within 250 feet of the camera and simply pull images from the receiver.
Still images are taken at interval options between 10 seconds and one hour in single shot or multi-shot mode multi-shot mode captures six images per triggering. Three sensors create seven zones of detection resulting in blazing fast trigger speed. Did I say blazing fast? How about ZERO SECONDS compared to the industry standard of a 1 – 1.2-second trigger speed! The two side-sensors sense motion and wake the camera up to capture the image. When the subject passes in front of the center sensor, the trigger is instant. Images are captured in daytime color or nighttime infrared black and white and include date, time, moon phase and temperature information. The Tiny-W2 also captures 10 – 90-second video clips, in daytime color and nighttime infrared black and white at 640×480 resolution, perfect for YouTube and other video-feed platforms!
Detection settings are between 5 to 50 feet and 38 LED lights capture nighttime images out to 50 feet. Both the camera and receiver run on six AA batteries and include 12-volt jacks both units also are solar panel compatible and use standard SD cards. The Tiny-W2 package includes the Tiny-W2 camera, Blackbox receiver, installation straps, USB and video cables, and a user manual.
I attempted to compile a list of concerns about this camera but there really wasn’t a list to be had. It’s truly a phenomenal camera. Considering improvements to the camera, I might ask for a viewing screen on the Blackbox even if the receive was a little larger or perhaps the ability to transfer images from the Blackbox receiver to another wireless device such as my cellphone or a tablet. This might allow for recovering images at even great distances. Some of SpyPoint’s HD-12 Trail Camera Black LED’s would also be a great addition to the Tiny-W2 if a third generation camera is in the works!
However, the truth is that whether you’re after a giant whitetail buck, bruiser wild boar or the scum of the earth that just victimized you and your family, the Tiny-W2 is the best, most practical, most cost effective answer MSRP for the Tiny-W2 is $299.
Any way you slice it, the Tiny-W2 is definitely a 5-star game changer! With the Tiny-W2 and other phenomenal offerings, SpyPoint has landed on the leading edge of trail and surveillance camera innovation! I can’t wait to see what they come up with next!
Visit www.SpyPoint.com to browse a diverse range of other innovative products including more trail camera models and great lineup of accessories. SpyPoint.com also offers technical support, contact information, a gallery of trail camera images and a comprehensive list of distributors near you.
Kevin may be reached for questions, comments, product and outfitter reviews via email at Kevinr@just-Hunt.com.
Visit Kevin at Just-Hunt.com
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Friend Just-Hunt on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/Just-Huntby kevinr
Duck Hunting 101
By Kevin Reese
We laughed there in the dark, each sitting on our tailgates as we prepared for the morning hunt. Some of my favorite ducking hunting memories are not of hunting of at all; this morning was turning into one of those. We laughed hard, out loud, dare I say obnoxiously to some degree but it didn’t matter what others thought, we were caught in the moment.
My breath lifted like a silver cloud in the moonlight as I struggled to get my feet set into the bottom of my chest waders; maybe I could have gone without two pairs of socks. The morning laughs boomed when I finally succumbed to my struggle and fell off my tailgate, feet still wedged mid-way into my wader boots! The laugh was on them, the fall somehow allowed both feet to finally, easily slip into their proper place as I grabbed the tailgate and pulled myself back up. I laughed so hard at myself my eyes teared up.
Finally ready, we grabbed our decoy bag and Mojo Duck… and handed them to the rookie for the half-mile walk to our favorite spot; after all, it’s important for the new guy to earn his keep, right? We grabbed our shotguns, shells, duck calls and thermoses and headed off. Our silhouettes filed down the serpentine trail carved out of reeds and cattails until we finally reached the water’s edge. Once there we waited on the rookie. You would have thought the 60 pounds of gear was going to kill him… but it didn’t; it was good for another laugh in the darkness. Next season, if he survives, he’ll get to do the laughing!
We broke through ice as we entered the knee deep marsh, a sign that hunting was going to be good. We quietly hung a light to let other hunters know of our position then went to work setting up decoys. Like a star atop a Christmas tree we planted the Mojo Duck on the inner edge of our newly created flight path. All that was left to do was enjoy a hot cup of coffee among good friends and wait on day break.
As darkness lifted, we situated ourselves at fairly even distances back up into trees along the edge of the marsh in a crescent formation, simply the shape of the bank. While fun was important, safety ruled our roost; each of us acutely aware of where the others were. Our set was perfect. The biting breeze at our back would soon be replaced by the warm glow of a rising sun; both critical parts of a great setup.
We began the morning with light calling, isolated quacks with some feeding calls; nothing to write home about. It wasn’t long before we started seeing black dots flood the sky seemingly miles away; it’s amazing how quickly ducks can close a distance! After initial rounds of passing and circling ducks, some meeting their demise, things slowed and calling became a bit more active. Veteran hunters know you shouldn’t call if you see ducks heading in your direction; of course, calling after ducks have passed by can be effective if they don’t appear to be circling back. We’ve called many a dead duck back into our decoys using this strategy.
In the end, it was a great hunt. We limited out before lunch and headed back to our families but not before we were checked by game wardens and stopped to allow wildlife biology students to record and keep our ducks; giving up your ducks is voluntary but your rewards are that you are helping them with studies and they send you on your way with nothing but your duck breasts – hard work done!
Sure your morning starts early but by lunch time I’ve got the hunting bug out of me and my family still gets a healthy dose of my time. For me, perhaps, that is one of the draws I have to duck hunting. It allows me to pursue both of my passions, my hunting and quiet time with my wife; better still, to revel in God’s creation amidst His creation. It’s quite humbling and remarkable to watch the world awake from the front row. And, people wonder what I’d do for a duck!
7 Highly Effective Duck Hunting Do’s:
Hunt hard, hunt often.
Full Draw on the Boys of Fall!
By Kevin Reese
You have to admit, summer has been relatively mellow this year compared to the inferno we endured in 2011 making the contrast in seasons nearly seamless; in fact this opening week of archery-deer season promises highs in the 80’s! The truth is, while we haven’t noticed much of a change, our whitetail population knows what time of year it is. Temperatures are cooler, acorns are falling, the antlers are back and the velvet is gone. It won’t be long now before gentle sparring on a set of horns becomes a great way to lure in the deer of a lifetime. I love early season hunting – the gentle coolness of morning sweeping across my cheeks, the heavy scent of cedar and dew in the air and early signs of the impending rut. What a perfect time to venture beyond the sea of asphalt and concrete in search of yourself and your buck of a lifetime!
Rifle hunting can be tough but nothing like the often maddening stick and string chase. Bowhunting means confident shooting, getting so close you can see lungs expand and muscles twitch. Like the planets, numerous variables must align when bowhunting; prepare to experience the highest of highs and lowest of lows! Take my word for it; I’ve experience more than my fair share of epic failures. So, in an effort to preserve your early season sanity here are some tips to up your odds in our October woods.
ü The Cloak of Invisibility: Camouflage is critical when deer hunting. I’m not necessarily talking about color but breaking up your outline is a must. Disappearing is the name of the game. While as a general rule, deer do not see color (at least in the same way we do) they do notice shapes and lines that are not natural to their environment. If you hunt from a ground blind, black is your key to invisibility; consider the color of the interior of your blind. Make sure you are sitting toward the back of the blind and keep opposing windows closed. You never want to silhouette yourself in the ground blind. They may not see YOU but they will see you MOVE! Even the best hidden hunters are easily seen as soon as they move to scratch, drink some water, adjust in their stand – the opportunities and reasons to move are endless.
ü Home Sweet Home: Scouting is vital. Setting up your home away from home means figuring out where and how deer are moving. Where are food and water sources, bedding areas and primary trails? Watch for rubs, scrapes, tracks, scat and other signs of activity. Trail cameras are great for scouting areas. Consider predominant wind direction, shade and sunlight to pick your new hunting spot. Don’t hunt upwind. A great solution to hunting regardless of wind direction is to setup stands or blinds on opposing sides of where you believe deer can be intercepted. Ensure you set up close enough to make a confidant shot if the moment of truth arrives. Trail cameras can be a great way to catch trespassers.
*Cameras like SpyPoint’s Tiny-W2 now have the technology to pass photos instantly to “black box” hidden in another area of the woods safeguarding photos of the criminals from being erased. (www.SpyPoint.com)
ü Win by a Nose: Like hogs, beating a deer’s nose can seem nearly impossible! Make sure to hunt downwind and follow a rigid routine of scent control. Many items are available to control your scent including laundry detergent, dryer sheets, storage bins and bags for your clothes, gear, shampoo, soap, deodorant, toothpaste, gum, cover scent products, etc. Work to control your stink with scent eliminating products like Dead Down Wind and cover scents. Dead Down Wind also makes wipes, great for toting in your back pack or fanny pack. Don’t forget to spray the bottom of your boots, yourself and your gear down with scent eliminating spray again before walking into the woods!
*Visit Dead Down Wind online to browse my favorite line of scent eliminating products.(www.DeadDownWind.com)
A couple of other great products to carry into the woods include:
ThermaCELL – (www.thermaCELL.com) I can honestly say I’ve been using a ThermaCELL for years and have yet to receive a mosquito bite while the unit is in operation. It’s quite possibly the coolest invention since ice cubes!
Alpen Binoculars – (www.AlpenOptics.com) I love the idea of premium glass at blue collared prices. I love the quality of these binoculars and the no-questions-asked lifetime warranty. A hunter without good optics is often at a severe disadvantage!
Following these tips won’t guarantee you that big buck but they’ll certainly increase your chances. On a pre-rut note, don’t be afraid to rattle the horns but start with some light sparring and keep your eyes open. The boys of fall are in your midst!
Hunt hard, hunt often.by kevinr
Tunica, MS – The Professional Outdoor Media Association(POMA) inducted the National Rifle Association (NRA) into POMA’s elite group of Diamond Cornerstone honorees. The announcement was made during the NRA dinner at POMA’s annual business conference in Tunica, Miss.
The Diamond Cornerstone Awardrecognizes those who have played a key role in POMA’s growth and maturation into the traditional outdoor sports industry’s premier communications organization.
“The National Rifle Association is the reason POMA exists,” said POMA CEO Laurie Lee Dovey during the presentation. “In 2004, when the NRA’s right to free speech was infringed, a group of outdoor industry communicators gathered and determined the need for a professional communications organization that would honor and protect the Constitutional rights of traditional outdoor sports industry companies, organizations, professionals and journalists to speak freely. POMA was born.
“From the beginning, the NRA stood by and with POMA, supported our efforts, our beliefs and our members. The NRA is more than the reason we are here, the NRA’s participation is one of the reasons POMA is considered the premier communications organization in the industry.”
John Robbins, managing editor of nrahuntersrights.org, accepted the award.
“This is a real surprise and a real honor,” said Robbins. “POMA members number some of the most talented outdoor writers, photographers and TV hosts in the business. They are committed to defending the Second Amendment, and to advancing hunting and the shooting sports. Their contributions are invaluable and we are proud to support them.”
HISTORY OF THE POMA DIAMOND CORNERSTONE AWARD
POMA’s Diamond Cornerstone Award, founded in July 2005 immediately after POMA was launched, recognized the Safari Club International’s (SCI) and the Outdoor Channel’s (OC) contributions to the formation of the organization.
“POMA could not have made the leap from vision to reality without the contributions of the SCI and the Outdoor Channel,” explained then POMA Chairman/President Betty Lou Fegely. “They were integral to POMA’s launch.”
While the idea of a new media organization was being investigated by a steering committee, SCI provided disenfranchised media members with a way to stay in the communication loop. SCI developed the Professional Outdoor Writer’s Registry (POWR) database and kept POWR members informed of the progress of the steering committee.
When the steering committee determined the need for a new media organization, both the Outdoor Channel and the SCI provided POMA with initial funds to launch the organization. The SCI also promoted the POMA launch to all POWR database members.
“SCI and OC have been great friends to POMA,” said Laurie Lee Dovey, then POMA Secretary/Treasurer. “They truly are the cornerstones upon which the POMA foundation was built.”
Since 2005, POMA’s Board of Directors has inducted several other key partners into the Diamond Cornerstone group. Each recipient has played a key role in POMA’s growth and maturation into the traditional outdoor sports industry’s premier communications organization.
DIAMOND CORNERSTONE AWARD HONOREES
2005 — Outdoor Channel and
Safari Club International
2010 — National Shooting Sports Foundation, Mossy Oak and Brownells
2012 — National Rifle Association
To foster excellence in communications at all levels, help members build their businesses, connect media and industry, promote fair and honest communication of the traditional outdoor sports and conservation stories, and mentor the next generation of traditional outdoor sports communicators.
More information about POMA and the Diamond Cornerstone Award is available by calling 814-254-4719 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the NRA
Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America’s oldest civil rights and sportsmen’s group. Four million members strong, NRA continues to uphold the Second Amendment and advocates enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime. The Association remains the nation’s leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the armed services.
For more information, contact: www.nra.org
L to R – Back row: Toxey Haas, Tom Gresham, Karen Mehall, Jim Lewis, Ronnie “Cuz” Strickland. Front Row: John Jefferson, Tom Tatum, Darren Warner.
2012 POMA PINNACLE AWARD HONOREES &
OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS
Winner – John Jefferson, “The Golden Age of Park Acquisitions”, Texas Parks & Wildlife magazine
Outstanding Achievement – Karen Mehall, “Game Profiles: American Woodcock”, American Hunter magazine
Winner – Tom Tatum, “The Fisherman’s Father, The Fisherman’s Son”, Outdoor Delaware magazine
Outstanding Achievement – Tim Christie, “Hunting for Memories”, Wyoming Wildlife magazine
Winner – Darren Warner, “Will to Keep Hunting Helps Amputee Walk Again”, NRA Hunters’ Rights (www.nrahuntersrights.com)
Outstanding Achievement – Tom Tatum, “State Faces Tipping Point in New Year”, Daily Local News (West Chester, PA)
Winner – Jonathan Brunson, “Addicted to the Outdoors – Noodlin’ Adventure”, Outdoor Channel
Outstanding Achievement – Tom Gresham, “Gun Talk Television – New Shooters”, Versus Network (NBC Sports)
Winner – Richard Bernier, “Two Fawns Feeding”, Deer & Deer Hunting magazine.
Outstanding Achievements – Tim Christie, “A Cackle in the Cold”, Field & Stream magazine; and Tim Flanigan, “Reflected Woodcock Probing Lunch”, Eastern Sports & Outdoor Show, Harrisburg, PA
Mossy Oak, one of just six POMA Diamond Cornerstone members, joined forces with
POMA to promote excellence in communications at all levels and encourage members of the media to set the bar high – knowing the importance to the industry of a professional and dedicated media corps.
“Since POMA’s launch, Mossy Oak’s commitment to the organization and its journalists has been unwavering,” said Tammy Sapp, POMA president. “The company’s efforts are unsurpassed.”
The Professional Outdoor Media Association is a group of individual communicators and Corporate Partners who believe in, defend, support and promote the heritage of hunting, fishing, shooting and traditional outdoor sports through writing, photography and other means. POMA’s is committed to excellence in communications at all levels and to mentoring the next generation of traditional outdoor sports communicators. www.professionaloutdoormedia.org
About Mossy Oak
Haas Outdoors Inc. headquartered in West Point, Miss., was established in 1986 and is home of Mossy Oak. Mossy Oak specializes in developing and marketing modern camouflage designs for hunters and outdoorsmen. Mossy Oak patterns can be found on a multitude of products worldwide. Haas Outdoors Inc. is the outdoor industry leader in modern camouflage design, international licensing and marketing. Haas Outdoors Inc. markets its services and products under widely recognized brands including: Mossy Oak, BioLogic, Mossy Oak Productions, MOOSE Media, Nativ Nurseries, and Mossy Oak Properties. www.mossyoak.com
Media – for more information, contact:
Laurie Lee Dovey, POMA, email@example.com
The resounding differences between mass produced and custom built calls are sound, quality and value!
By Kevin Reese
Few things are better than spending a few spring days tucked into the turkey woods with a bow, crossbow or shotgun. The resonating tumbling gobble of wise toms in every direction mean that whether you harvest a turkey or not, you’re in for a good time! Ask any turkey hunter what their fascination with turkey hunting really is, their constant reply is always the same, it’s interactive. Sure, if everything works as it should and you’ve patterned turkey, identified roosts, etc., you may be able to intercept them on the move and setup an ambush; however, those who choose to experience the real thrill of the hunt lure them in with the clucks, cuts, purrs and yelps of a lonely hen. Successfully calling a turkey into your setup for the endgame is not only gratifying, it’s exilerating!
There are some good calls on the market; even several mass produced calls have a decidedly full tone, but there is no substituting a seasoned call maker’s handmade custom calls. Utilizing years of experience, the feedback of veteran turkey hunters and the desire to improve your hunting experience, custom call maker and owner of Bradley Custom Calls, Rick “Hoot” Bradley, offers a line of exceptional custom calls sure to get you to the endgame.
Here are two Bradley Custom Calls I recently spent some time testing:
White Hot Pot Call with Zebrawood Striker
This is a beautifully crafted call. Cut from exotic zebra wood, each White Hot call is beautiful and different in its own right. The call is topped with an exceptional piece of low maintenance slate, both durable and without defects. I dropped the call several times, once on asphalt as I climbed from my truck, without damage to the slate or internal sound board. The sound board itself is made of cherry wood. No matter what call series I ran on the call the sound was full, rich, even warm, without being excessively loud. Since I do not profess to be a grand champion turkey caller, I do make an occasional bad strike and even those were not bad. The call seemed to do most of the work for me. While hollow, higher pitched sounds are often the hallmark of mass produced calls the problem is nonexistent in White Hot. I found shifting from young to raspy and soft purrs to booming yelp runs on this call quite simple. The matching striker only served to further warm up and enrich the sound. White Hot is an exceptionally built, beautifully toned pot call.
Tom Boatwright Classic Runnin’ Hot Box Call
The Tom Boatwright signature call, Runnin’ Hot, is Bradley’s newest addition to an already great lineup. The Runnin’ Hot offers a beautiful combination of a purple heart lid and mahogany box. Wood quality, box space and radius cut of the lids underside all contribute to the ease of use and rich tones emanating from the call. The lid’s pivot point is spot-on allowing for greater control whether I employ yelp runs, cutting, clucks or purrs. Like White Hot, even shifting gears between young hen and older raspy yelps was quite simple, something often missing from mass produced calls. The truth is, this call offers great diversity in calling yet all runs sounded rich and warm. The call carried well on loud yelp runs without blowing my ear drums out. Like White Hot again, I hollow runs were nonexistent. Consistently rich, real sounding calls were simple to produce and I was able to produce them consistently. Bradley Custom Calls obviously spent considerable time designing this box call. I was impressed through and through.
The Bradley Custom Calls logo is burned into the wood’s exterior along with a message, John 3:16, that lets you know where Hoot Bradley stands and ensures your hunting buddies know where you stand. That simple message was something I appreciated seeing on these calls.
The MSRP on Bradley Custom Calls are $59.95 for pot calls and $49.95 – 69.95 for box calls. A push button call is also available for $19.95 and strikers are $14.95 each in three wood variations; a three-pack is also available for $29.95. To see these calls and others, or to learn more information about Bradley Custom Calls, visit www.BradleyCustomCalls.com.
Top Shot’s Chris Reed’s Tactical .308 Masterpiece Shoots for Spellman’s Cure!
By Kevin Reese
Cancer is a monster. I can scarcely count the number of times someone has reminded me that if I don’t have anything good to say, don’t say anything. So, out of respect I keep quiet on many fronts; however, cancer is not one of them. Cancer is not good, productive, inspiring, kind, peaceful or respectful. The purest definition is simply “monster”! Cancer is not good; it is counterproductive, frightening, nasty, intrusive and certainly not a respectful of one’s time, resources or physiology. I really didn’t have an opinion on it growing up. It never hit close to home, at least until my pop was diagnosed in March, 2011.
Five months after his diagnosis, we lost him. There were no words left unsaid, for that I felt blessed; however, if wishing upon a star was possible, I would have asked for two; one, to spend more time with him and two, that we could have caught it earlier. Fortunately we were afforded the great blessing our spending our childhood through our young adult years, appreciating his dry wit, coy smiles, booming laughter and occasional look that always told us we were in big trouble! By the time he became ill, we were mature enough to handle the news and progress through the illness from start to finish; many don’t get that time with their loved one. Still, many others do get to experience that when the battle is won here on Earth.
I feel blessed in some small way to have experienced it from the perspective of voice. All too often we feel we have no voice when cast into cancer’s downward spiral, but there is a light at the end of that tunnel! Losing someone close to us to cancer is not the end, it’s the beginning; the beginning of using our voice, our finances and our encouragement to make a difference for others battling their monsters. Michael Spellman is the OTHER I wanted to share with all of you.
Michael Spellman’s storybegan long before I heard about it. While on a recent turkey hunt I took a call from good friend Chris Reed, winner of History Channel’s Top Shot, Season Two. After venting about a tom I had missed earlier that morning, I asked Chris what he was up to. Chris quieted a bit, “I’m building a rifle for a friend of mine, Michael Spellman. He’s another friend of mine battling cancer with a great wife and kids. I’m building a special one for him. We’re going to raffle it off and donate the proceeds to his fight. We need to keep him here to raise his kids. Can you help get the word out?”
Chris couldn’t see my reaction but I hope he sensed it through the air waves, I was beaming. Here was a chance to give my voice in chorus with so many others to help a good father win his fight and somehow reconcile the loss of my own; make our loss a purposeful, positive blessing for great kids, a strong woman and a remarkable man. Asking how I could help spawned this article. I can help by telling ALL OF YOU that you CAN make a difference!
Chris has pulled all of his tricks out of the bag to build this amazing rifle, and you can own it! A raffle is currently underway for a modest $5 per ticket. All of the proceeds will be donated to Spellman’s fight. Recently Reed’s masterpiece was displayed at the 141st NRA Annual Meeting and Exhibits, in St. Louis, Missouri. While those who want to make a difference have purchased raffle tickets in person, tickets may be purchased online at www.MichaelSpellman.org.
What you stand to win…
Beyond the obvious, winning the fight against a monster with Spellman and many others, you may win the masterpiece Reed not only designed but personally assembled!
Here are the specs you’ve been waiting for:
Remington 700 SPS Tactical AAC-SD
CNC precision engraving lets you know just how special this rifle really is; engraved on the left side of the receiver is “Outlaw Custom guns by Chris Reed” with serial # 0001 while “SHOOT FOR A CURE” is engraved on the opposite side, reminding you that your help, along with many others, truly makes a difference!
The rifle will be raffled off at Outlaw Sporting Goods grand opening celebration on July 4, in Greenwood, Mississippi. The winner does not need to be present to win. The lucky winner can pick up the Spellman rifle at Outlaw Sporting Goods or have it shipped to the FFL dealer of their choice.
Feel like you haven’t made a difference? This is your chance to make one! Don’t wait. Get your tickets at www.MichaelSpellman.org.
Michael Spellman is a lifetime resident of Mississippi and has spent his entire life in rural Carroll County. The 1994 Graduate of Carroll Academy led his high school football team, as quarterback, to its one and only state championship victory. He has also protected his community as Chief Deputy Sheriff and is the son of Carla Shackelford and retired Game Warden “Big” Mike Spellman, a father of two and friend of many.
His fight now is one we all hear about way too often. Michael has been diagnosed with cancer. He has not asked for help nor would he even consider such a gesture, but it is our duty as friends of Michael to help him just as he has helped so many.
We are asking for anyone willing to make a donation or to purchase a raffle ticket to do so in his honor.
ALL proceeds go directly to Michael and his family to help with medical expenses and to seek out the best treatment they can afford. Michael does not have any insurance to cover these costs and has sold practically everything he owns to keep from burdening others.
We ask that you please help in any way you are able; please know your contributions will be treasured.
Finally, please take a moment and ask the Lord to look over Michael and his family, and pray that we can help them find peace through this difficult journey, AMEN… and Thank You!
Last year, as a result of many hunter and archer questions and a complete lack of anyone willing to step up, Good friend and master archery technician, Jerry Reeves, and me set out to be the first to document the ability to shoot StarrFlight’s controversial Fletching Only Better, also known as F.O.B.’s or FOB’s. We found success quickly. Using my Bowtech Invasion CPX and a Ripcord Code Rest arrow rest, safe travel for my FOB was easy!
This year, we set out to do it again! Many asked and again we appear to be the first, or only, ones to answer the question definitively. “Can you shoot FOB’s through a 2012 Bowtech Insanity CPX? Not only did we accomplish this task, but like last year, we have the first video to prove it!
And, to throw an exclamation point on this success, it’s important to point out that success was achieved using my personal setup, a short draw length, maxed out draw weight and a shorter brace height than the Bowtech Invasion CPX that we used to test the setup last year. My personal bow is comprised of a 27-inch draw length, 70-pound draw weight and 6-inch brace height, shooting 308 feet per second! The shorter brace height, short draw length, max poundage and the increase of 13 feet per second arrow speed over last year’s test mean that we’ve really pushed the envelope on the performance of my Ripcord Code Red Arrow Rest.
Hunt hard, hunt often!