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Puppy staycation

By Dan Armitage, host of Buckeye Sportsman, Ohio’s longest running outdoor radio show

When we learned in April that our English setter “Tailer” was pregnant (good job “Goober”) I realized with some remorse that the Armitage clan would be taking a Staycation this summer in order to remain at home to tend to the puppies. As with most families, summer is prime vacation travel time for us, so it was disappointing. At first…

Eight setter pups later, we haven’t had a second thought about sticking around town this summer, for every day the little guys offer entertainment that rivals anything a theme park can offer. In the middle of the day when I need to step away from the computer and drain my brain, I let the puppies out of their fenced enclosure in the back yard, sit down and simply watch them roam. They’re hunters, bred to point pheasants, grouse and woodcock, and they’re already displaying signs of their bird dog heritage. They also pair up and battle like gladiators, sample the flowers, tromp through the garden and simply run. After 20 minutes of free play, I put down a towel and, as I do when they feed, whistle gently. In no time I’m reminded about where the term “dog pile” came from, as all eight stack themselves atop the terrycloth and each other and nod off in a mound of murmuring setter pups.

Yes there are messes to clean up and some yelping to endure, but the pure joy of having a damp puppy rolled in a towel in your lap after a wading pool bath washes all the trouble away. At eight weeks old, the pups will start to go off to their new homes by the time you read this. So will son Ethan, leaving for his sophomore year at Kent State. I figure it will be a bit lonely around here about that time, but I’ll have the memories of one of our best summer adventures ever to fill the void — even if it all went down in our backyard.

 

Spencer Lake WLA Cleanup Planned

The Backcountry Hunters and Anglers (BHA) group is organizing a clean-up at northeast Ohio’s Spencer Lake Wildlife Area on s August 18, joining with the ODOW, the Raptor Center, and Homerville KOA. After the clean-up effort, the Homerville KOA will host participants for fishing, swimming, games and a cook out with raffle opportunities. The clean-up address is 5852 River Corners Rd, Spencer, 44275; the cook out address is 11450 Crawford Rd, Homerville, 44235. RSVP at backcountryhunters.org

 

State park waterfowl blind lotteries underway

The 2019 duck blind lottery drawings at select Ohio State Park lakes will be held on Saturday, Aug. 17, except at Portage Lakes, which will be held on Thursday, Aug. 15. Here’s the scoop on where to go and when to enter:

Adams Lake State Park (Adams County) will offer two blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing at 8 a.m. at Rocky Fork State Park campground amphitheater, located at 9800 North Shore Drive, Hillsboro 45133. Call 937-393-4284 for more information.

Alum Creek State Park (Delaware County) will offer 24 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 8 a.m. with the drawing at 8:30 a.m. at 3305 S. Old State Road, Delaware 43015. Call 740-548-4631 for more information.

A.W. Marion State Park (Pickaway County) will offer three blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 8:30 a.m. with the drawing at 9 a.m. Meet at the Deer Creek State Park office, 20635 State Park Road 20, Mt. Sterling 43143. Call 740-869-3124 for more information.

Buck Creek State Park (Clark County) will offer 19 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing at 8 a.m. Meet at the park office at 1976 Buck Creek Lane, Springfield 45502. Call 937-322-5284 for more information.

Buckeye Lake State Park (Fairfield/Licking counties) will offer 13 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing at 8 a.m. Meet at the park office at 2905 Liebs Island Road, Millersport 43046. Call 740-467-2690 for more information.

Caesar Creek State Park (Warren/Clinton counties) will offer 21 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing at 8 a.m. Meet at the main beach house at 8570 E. State Route 73, Waynesville 45068. Call 513-897-3055 for more information.

Cowan Lake State Park (Clinton County) will offer 10 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing at 8 a.m. at the park’s campground commissary at 1750 Osborn Road, Wilmington 45177. Call 937-382-1096 for more information.

Deer Creek State Park (Pickaway/Fayette counties) will offer 14 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 8:30 a.m. with the drawing at 9 a.m. Meet at the park office at 20635 State Park Road, Mt. Sterling 43143. Call 740-869-3124 for more information.

Delaware State Park (Delaware County) will offer 25 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 8 a.m. with the drawing at 8:30 a.m. Meet at the park marina at 5202 U.S. Route 23 North, Delaware 43015. Call 740-548-4631.

East Fork State Park (Clermont County) will offer 25 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing at 8 a.m. at 3294 Elklick Road, Bethel 45106. Call 513-734-4323 for more information.

East Harbor State Park (Ottawa County) will offer six blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing at 8 a.m. at 1169 North Buck Road, Lakeside-Marblehead 43440. Call 419-734-4424 for more information.

Hueston Woods State Park (Preble/Butler counties) will offer 14 blinds and two permits for early goose season. Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing at 8 a.m. at 6301 Park Office Road, College Corner 45003. Call 513-523-6347 for more information.

Indian Lake State Park (Logan County) will offer 35 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 8 a.m. with the drawing at 8:30 a.m. at the campground office at 13156 State Route 235 North, Lakeview 43331. Call 937-843-2717 for more information.

Lake Loramie State Park (Shelby/Auglaize counties) will offer 19 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing at 8 a.m. at 4401 Fort Loramie-Swanders Road, Minster 45865. Call 937-295-3900 or 419-394-3611 for more information.

Portage Lakes State Park (Summit County) will offer 24 blinds. The drawings will be held on Thursday, Aug. 15, at 5 p.m. at Wingfoot Lake State Park, located at 993 Goodyear Park Blvd., Suffield 44260. Call 330-644-2293 for more information.

Rocky Fork State Park (Highland County) will offer 16 blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing at 8 a.m. Meet at the campground amphitheater at 9800 North Shore Drive, Hillsboro 45133. Call 937-393-4284 for more information.

Shawnee State Park (Scioto County) will offer three blinds. Applications are accepted beginning at 8 a.m. with the drawing at 9:30 a.m. at 4404 State Route 125, West Portsmouth, 45663. Call 740-858-6652 for more information.

West Branch State Park (Portage County) will offer 8 blinds (east of Rock Spring Road bridge). Applications are accepted beginning at 7:30 a.m. with the drawing upon completion of registration. Meet at the campground office at 5570 Esworthy Road, Ravenna 44266. Call 330-654-4989 for more information.

 

Controlled waterfowl opps offered

Waterfowl hunters are invited to participate in special drawings for controlled hunting opportunities on Thursday, August 15. The Ohio Division of Wildlife (ODOW) will be holding drawings for waterfowl hunts occurring at Pipe Creek Wildlife Area and East Sandusky Bay Metro Park. Both drawings will be held at Osborn Park located at 3910 Perkins Avenue, Huron 44839. Registration is from 5 p.m. to 6:20 p.m. and the drawing will begin promptly at 6:30 p.m.

To be eligible to apply all applicants (adult and youth) must be properly licensed to hunt the

species for which the hunt is being held (i.e. possess a current hunting license, any necessary

permits, stamps, or certifications such as HIP). Applicants must be present to be eligible. For more information, call 1-800-WILDLIFE or visit wildohio.gov.

 

 

 

 

 

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