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Solving Problems with Nature - Naturally

ERIC P. ORFF
Certified Wildlife Biologist
Wildlife Author - Wildlife Lecturer - Wildlife Photographer
Non-Lethal Control of Bats since 1983
nhfishandwildlif@aol.com

NH Nature

New Hampshire Nature Notes by Eric Orff

Sunday 10/31/2004 A New Hampshire ghost deer for Halloween.

Saturday and Sunday was the opening weekend of the traditional muzzleloader season in NH. The season runs the 10 days prior to the regular firearms season which will start on Wednesday, November 10th. I operate a biological deer checking station at the Wildlife Sports Shop at the Massabesic Traffic Circle in Manchester. I have been there over a decade and have run a biological deer check station for most of my 28 years with the NH Fish and Game Department. I was remembering today, as I waited in my truck for deer during one of the brief lulls, that I first began checking deer as volunteer when I was a UNH student in 1969 or 1970. Wildlife management majors were "expected" to volunteer at one of the F&G bio check stations. We all did, and most like me, for several days each fall. In fact I was sitting in a F&G truck with an employee when were heard a radio call that one of the Conservation Officers was accidentally shot and severely injured. I can tell you UNH wildlife students have not been at any of my stations for years and the occasional one that has stayed but a few minutes and rarely touched a deer. For the most part today's college students are not the fishing and hunting types. It scares me as they are inline to replace the current older bios.

The Manchester station has traditionally been the busiest one in the state. Each year I check over a hundred deer in the 5 days of bio checking duty. Numbers of "special WMU-M tagged" deer are brought to this station. I checked 29 deer yesterday on the opening day and 21 today. Today I had to leave early as my son Adam was home for the weekend after a 3-month training in New Mexico. Since I had to work both days it at least gave me an extra hour or to for a family gathering before I delivered him to the Manchester airport. So 50 deer for two days. Not bad, not bad at all.

Yesterdays bonus was a nearly all-white deer. A nice 9 point 154 pound deer taken in Raymond by Carl Lang of Manchester (see attached photos). In nearly 30 years of checking deer this was a first. I have had deer with lots of white but not nearly all white. And a nice buck to boot! He was grand. I did check a nice 182 pound 10 pointer from Goffstown yesterday as well. There are plenty of huge bucks along NH's southern towns. Apparently this white buck has been spotted in the area for a couple of years (I aged him at 3 1/2) and has had a following. Literally. Several hunters had seen him, but had not had a good shot. I spoke with a hunter, a few minutes before the buck came in, who said he saw him during the early bow season, but the white buck didn't present a shot to him. This buck had quickly become a legend!


   

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