06-27-2019 Outdoors

FUN & MEDALS… Berrien County Straight Shooters 4-H Club members all bring home top medals from Van Buren County 4-H fun shoot! Front row (from the left) Ben Lowry, 12 years old from Watervliet, took 2nd place Junior unsited Target Archery and Henry Lowry, 9 years old from Watervliet, took 1st place in Beginners unsited Target Archery. Middle row (from the left) Julie Holtsclaw, Club Coordinator and Archery, Rifle and Muzzle Loading instructor, Julie is NAA certified; Charlotte Lowry, 14 years old from Watervliet, took 1st place in Junior unsited Target Archery; Maggie Avery, 18 years old from Hartford, took 1st place in Senior Trap; Darlene Mattson, 20 years old from Benton Harbor, took 1st place in both Senior 3-D Archery open class and Senior Target Archery open class. Back row is John Andrasi, leader of Rifle, Trap, Muzzle Loading and Archery, John is NRA certified. The fun shoot was held June 16 in Paw Paw. Nice scores kids and as always you all represented Berrien County with great behavior and sportsmanship.

Fishing The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) said to be prepared to get your feet wet when launching boats from many Great Lakes spots because of the extremely high water levels. Many launch sites have water up into the parking lot. Many rivers across the state are also still running high. Ellinee Bait & Tackle on Big Paw Paw Lake by Coloma reports that panfishing is real good right now with families catching all they need of bluegills, crappies, and sunfish. Smallmouth bass have been biting well on crickets and small crank-bates. A nice 23-inch bass was caught by a young girl and was just short of the biggest catch on the board. Anglers have been doing well on catching catfish with stink bait and channel cats are biting on cut bait too. The surrounding lakes in the area are keeping anglers happy with nice catches. In the southwest Lower Peninsula the inland lakes are producing nice panfish with most of the bluegills off the beds and out in the deeper water. South Haven anglers fishing in Lake Michigan are getting good catches of lake trout and salmon in 100 to 110 feet of water. Pier anglers in South Haven have been taking a few steelhead and freshwater drum on alewife or shrimp. No perch to report. St. Joseph anglers are catching salmon on spoons around 30 to 70 feet down in water 70 to 100 feet deep. Pier anglers are catching steelhead on shrimp and freshwater drum were being taken on alewife and crawlers. The DNR launch closed for a while due to high water levels has since reopened. It will stay open as long as dry weather prevails. In Grand Haven boat anglers were catching chinook in 35 to 75 feet down in 80 to 130 feet deep on orange spoons and shrimp.

Hunting Help improve fish and wildlife habitat on public land. Hunters, anglers, trappers and other outdoor enthusiasts can help improve habitat for fish and wildlife on public lands as part of a volunteer program called On the Ground. Administered by Michigan United Conservation Clubs through funding from the DNR, On the Ground has made a positive difference on more than 1,600 acres of public land throughout Michigan since the program began in 2013. Volunteers improve fish and game habitat through weekend projects like building brush piles and removing invasive trees, installing fish spawning structures, hinge-cutting trees for deer and snowshoe hare, installing wood duck boxes, regenerating aspen stands and planting a variety of trees for wildlife food and cover. On the Ground has projects planned throughout the summer months, ranging from river cleanups to tree plantings. Upcoming events include; July 6, Clinton River cleanup; July 20, Manistee River cleanup; July 20, Gladwin State Game Area in Clare County; August 4, Rose Lake State Wildlife Area in Clinton County. For more information, visit MUCC.org.On-the-Ground.

Coloma Rod & Gun Club Carrying concealed weapon classes are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. the second Saturday of each month. Cost is $105. Call Andrew Zachary at 351-2051 or 944-7802. For more information on CPL or Hunter Safety classes, email inquiry@colomarodandgunclub.com or visit www.colomarodandgunclub.com.

Watervliet Rod & Gun Club Carrying concealed weapon classes are 6-10 p.m. July 25; 8 a.m.-6 p.m. July 27. Register from 6-7 p.m. July 23. Saturday class features an attorney or police officer to speak and answer questions, an NRA course, personal protection in the home, and three hours of range time with one-on-one supervision. Cost is $100. Call 468-3837 or 470-9191 to register.

The inky black organism moving across the pond observation tray looked like a period then an arrow then a period. Many students first think they have found a leech, which is similar. However, the movement and the arrow-shaped head helped them realize they had caught a planarian. The auricles that give the planarian its distinct arrow shape have chemoreceptors to help it find food (alive or dead). Its tiny eyes are only capable of sensing light. It glides over surfaces on tiny hairs called cilia. It can be hard for a tiny flatworm to find another when it is time to reproduce. Planaria have an interesting method of dealing with that problem. They pull themselves apart… literally. It attaches the tail to a surface then pulls its head away until it separates. Each part then regenerates a new head or trail. A new planaria can develop from pieces as small as 1/270th of the original organism! Join a naturalist on Saturday, June 29 at 11:00 a.m. for a talk and walk as they provide an informative discussi