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Hunters engaged in deer watching see different starts to mating patterns each fall season. The opening of archery-hunting season nearly two weeks earlier this year has put students of deer dynamics into action a bit earlier and harvests – during the first year of a Youth Hunt with guns and the archers hunting with bows – have been impressive.
Craig and Neil Dougherty at NorthCountry Whitetails report bucks still moving together and showing little rut-related interest so far. Despite the earlier season, savvy bow hunters generally look for good trophy buck movement late in October and the first week or so of November.
Harvest reports in early October often include first good kills rather than high-scoring antlered bucks. Jeffry Skrzynski was proud of his older brother Justin Skrzynski, 26, of Blasdell after he took his first buck with a bow.
Jeffry writes, “He has had several close calls before connecting this weekend.” Justin hunted an open area in Orchard Park and got a clean-kill shot at 12 yards on a 4-point buck on the morning of Oct. 13. That deer went less than 50 yards after the shot.
As always, drivers are cautioned to be watchful for deer crossing roads at change of light hours especially during the onset of the peak in the mating season during the coming three weeks.

Bird watching

A U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service survey of outdoors activities ranks birding (bird watching) as the fastest growing sport in America.
On Friday afternoon and evening, the Buffalo Museum of Science will offer visitors a series of programs before and during a “Science of Sports” exhibit from 4:30-9 p.m. “Sport of Birding Family Activities” goes from 4 to 7 p.m.
At 7 p.m., David N. Bonter with Cornell Lab of Ornithology will present the William C. Vaughan Lecture for 2012 on “Science at the Bird Feeder: What thousands of people and hundreds of small transmitters can tell us about bird behavior.”
For more details on all of these events, visit sciencebuff.org.

Cartridge recall

As more Southern Tier counties open big-game hunting seasons to rifle use, more hunters are switching from shotgun slug use to the popular calibers of centerfire rifles.
Two major cartridge makers have posted recalls of caliber lots.
Six lot numbers of the Remington 270 Win. 150-grain soft point (SP) may have been improperly loaded. If you recently purchased this 270 load, check the lot numbers at Remington.com and call the Consumer Service Dept. at (800) 243-9700 (Prompt No. 4).
Fiocchi Ammunition is recalling selected lots of .22-250 and .243 Win. rifle loads. For information about locating lot numbers on cases and boxes to determine which lots are being recalled, go to fioccheusa.com. For specific answers to ammo questions, call Fiocchi Customer service at (417) 449-1039.

Discharges discharged

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, in collaboration with the Environmental Facilities Corporation and the Department of State, has submitted petitions to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to designate New York’s portion of Lake Erie and the St. Lawrence River as a “Vessel Waste No Discharge Zone.” The ban would include all New York State waters from just west of Barcelona Harbor to Buffalo Harbor.
Boaters must instead dispose of their sewage at pump-out stations that are available for recreational boater use. A list of pump-out stations is available on DEC’s website at: http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7840.html.
email: odrswill@gmail.com