This summer has been different in a few ways. The months of June and July were exceedingly warm. Temperatures were at or near record highs. However, I think August has been quite typical. We had dog days during the first week in the Elkins area.
We will start the last week of August tomorrow, and I can already feel the chill of autumn in the air, especially early in the morning.
This past Monday, the kids started back to school, and last night Elkins High School played Oak Hill for its first football game for the 2012 season. Time goes by quickly when everyone is having a good time.
The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources has made a few changes in the fall turkey hunting season. The wild turkey hunting season will open on October 13 and run through October 20 in fifteen counties. These counties include: Barbour, Cabell, Calhoun, Harrison, Jackson, Marion, Monongahela, Pleasants, Putnam, Summers, Taylor, Tyler, Upshur, Wetzel and Wirt.
Seven counties will open the fall turkey season Oct. 13 through Oct. 20, and then from Oct. 29 through Nov. 3. These counties include: Brooke, Hancock, Marshall, Mason, Ohio, Preston, and Wood. All of these counties except for Preston are located on the Ohio River.
On Oct. 13 through Oct. 20, and from Oct. 29 through Nov. 17, fourteen counties will have their fall turkey season. These counties will be Berkeley, Grant, Greenbrier, Hampshire, Hardy,Mineral,Monroe, Morgan, Nicholas, Pocahontas, Randolph, Tucker and Webster.
Wild turkey hunters need to remember that it is unlawful to hunt the birds using electronic calls and to hunt using bait. Some of the common violations during the fall turkey season, observed by the DNR police officers, are: hunting over bait, hunting without a license or improper license, exceeding the bag limit, and having a loaded firearm in or on a motor vehicle. The season bag limit for the fall turkey season is one turkey of either sex.
The West Virginia Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation is sponsoring rewards or individuals giving information that leads to an arrest and conviction of anyone found guilty of: Illegally killing a wild turkey, hunting turkey over bait, willfully destroying a turkey nest or eggs.
After killing a wild turkey, a successful hunter must either attach a completed field tag to the turkey or remain with the turkey and have upon their person a completed field tag before removing the carcass from where it was killed.
I have never been a big turkey hunting enthusiast. I have only taken one in all my years of hunting. This was in early November when I was squirrel hunting out Files Creek more than twenty years ago. I just happened to be at the right place at the right time when I got this young hen with a .22 rimfire rifle.
When I checked it in at what used to be Mountaineer Sporting Goods on Harrison Avenue, we forgot to weigh the bird. It most likely weighed around eight or nine pounds. Ruth prepared the turkey for Sunday dinner the following weekend, and it sure was tasty.