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Spring fishing fever

Spring fishing fever

There is something about spring ice-off fishing that I can’t quite describe. The aggressive fish, the methodical rhythm of casting and the wide variety of angling opportunities — in short, it’s just awesome.

Nesting habitat for wood ducks

Nesting habitat for wood ducks

Because these ducks are cavity nesters, nesting habitat was mostly unavailable at the pond. Cavities are most commonly found in stumps and dead trees, which are almost always removed from city parks. It was obvious that lack of nesting habitat limited population growth for wood ducks.

Birds are easy, illegal BB gun targets

Birds are easy, illegal BB gun targets

One spring afternoon, I was tired of the usual targets, and I made an amazing shot on a beautiful robin in our cherry tree. After my momentary elation, what I had just done dawned on me. I killed momma robin. I sat and stared at the nest a foot or two from where she was perched.

Don’t toss your tree: help local wildlife

Don’t toss your tree: help local wildlife

Now, despite weeks of watering, you’re starting to find needles on the floor. It’s probably time to put the tree out on the curb for the city to haul to the landfill — or maybe grind into mulch for flower gardens at the local park. But wait, before you get rid of that tree, doesn’t it still have some value?

Deer: to feed, or not to feed.

Deer: to feed, or not to feed.

My primary concern is for the overall health and growth of a species. Rather than focusing on individual animals, I ask myself how management actions will affect the species as a whole in an area, and then I weigh the costs against the benefits. Given these considerations, most of the time my advice is that people avoid feeding deer in the winter.

Crawling along the riverbanks

Crawling along the riverbanks

Fishing for brown trout in the Ogden River can be fantastic. Average fish densities can reach upwards of 6,000 fish per mile of stream. Yes, you read that right: there are tons of fish in the Ogden River.

Perks of the Walk-In Access Program

Perks of the Walk-In Access Program

Many hunters harvested their first deer and elk on WIA areas. Since the program began seven years ago, we’ve received many comments from proud fathers, avid anglers and enthusiastic hunters.

A year in the life of a fisheries biologist

A year in the life of a fisheries biologist

Fish activity and feeding really heats up along reservoir shorelines in the spring. The sun warms the shallow areas of water first, and fish naturally move into this water to bask and feed. The resulting activity attracts anglers and fishery biologists, both with the same goal: to catch a lot of fish.

Clouds of midges and lots of fat fish

Clouds of midges and lots of fat fish

Our total catch was 681 fish, including 443 rainbows, 236 browns and a couple whitefish. Our PIT tag recapture rate was around 19 percent, which is similar to what we normally see. The big fish of the night was a rainbow trout that stretched the measuring stick to nearly 22 inches, while the longest brown was just less than 19 inches.

A habitat remodel for wintering mule deer

A habitat remodel for wintering mule deer

The chaining removed pinyon and juniper trees in order to establish grasses, forbs and shrubs. These trees provide hiding spots and thermal cover for deer and elk, which is like a bedroom. By removing islands of trees and aerial seeding the area with quality plant species, we create a kitchen, and they still have a bedroom too. It’s a habitat remodel of sorts.

My favorite fishing trips

My favorite fishing trips

When I’m not at work, I really enjoy getting away to fish at some of my favorite spots. There are a few places I have to visit every year, and now, they’re pretty much a tradition

A pack trip to restore habitat

A pack trip to restore habitat

I took my first pack trip with horses three years ago, and since then, I have been hooked on this great way to see remote areas. Last summer, I went on 12 trips in three states.