KAMO November, 2020 Newsletter
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Hello Kids And Mentors Outdoors members and friends,
This is Kids and Mentors President, Mark Walters with my monthly words of wisdom. For the first time in months, and only a bit, I am starting to feel that there is a light at the end of the tunnel with Covid 19. My gut feeling is warm spring when the turkey gobble, the walleye spawn, and people start sitting around campfires in mass.
I have intentionally not pushed KAMO activities on anyone for all of the right reasons, but I have the highest of hopes that everyone will hang in there as amember and return when the time comes.
A good example of a member chomping at the bit would be Jim Braker of what will be the Beaver dam chapter when life gets back to normal. Jim has reached out to me twice since Covid began wanting to get things started and after both conversations we were in agreement that the time was not right.
My main request is that all of you come back to KAMO when the time is right. Everyone in the group realistically feeds off from what we get done and the fact that all of their comrades are hanging in there through thick and thin.
On a lighter note, at deer camp my buck was much larger than Jeff Moll?s.
As always, thank you for all that you do for KAMO
Committee Formation – Looking for a person from 3 or 4 chapters to be on a committee that discusses via phone/ email with other members how to deal with officer replacement, setting a date for the state convention, adjusting the state due for the coming year,etc. If Bob or Mike don?t hear from some volunteers soon, we?ll be reaching out to chapters.
Potential Fundraising Idea- Possible way of doing raffles – A nonprofit group?s state management could arrange the acquisition of quality raffle items each year and the printing of tickets The tickets would be offered/ distributed to chapters at their request. Kids/ families/ mentors would sell the tickets during a window of the same two months. Tickets would sell for 5.00/ each – 5 for $20.
Each chapter would turn in funds to the state treasurer. When the raffle ends, the state treasurer would write a check out to chapters for 60% of whatever their raffle ticket sales total came to.
Organizations using this fundraising method are enthusiastic about the benefits it brings about.
Snapshot Wisconsin – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources runs a citizen science project based on heat/ motion detecting trail camera photos taken in nearly all 72 counties of Wisconsin. The program began in 2016. 1,800 volunteers monitor 2,100 cameras that take an average of 45,000 pictures a day. In the five year history of the program, over 50 million photos have been processed. To give the reader an idea of the growth of this program, in 2018, there were 849 cameras..The cameras are provided by the state DNR.
Volunteers load pictures from camera SD cards they are onto WDNR before classifying them. The classification process includes species identification,number and age of animals (young, old), . The pictures ultimately end up on Zooniverse,a photo and data collection app. DNR scientists then use this collective location and photograph data to understand animal populations and movements, estimate deer and elk populations, and inform wildlife management decisions. Most recently,this data has been combined with imagery gathered from satellites to extend the survey.
Of particular interest to the D.N.R. is monitoring elk herd abundance, cow/bull ratio, and recruitment. In 2018,approximately 35% of the program?s 849 cameras were set up near the Black River, Clam Lake,and the Flambeau State Forest. The Black River herd has spread to agricultural areas east and south of the forest. My brother enjoys reminding me of a text he sent me on opening morning of the 2019 deer gun season to let me know four bulls were headed right for my blind on his property southeast of the forest. I was just getting out of bed.
Most photos captured on the snapshot cameras are of deer. It is common knowledge that deer move most frequently at sunrise and sunset during any season. Zoniverse data shows that winter movement occurs primarily near sunset and during the summer sunrise is the most common time.This is thought to correspond to the most warm/ cool most energy efficient time for movement. Buck activity is most active at night during the winter. Does and their fawns are less predictable in their movements during the summer – it takes fawns 12 weeks to fall into the sunrise/ sunset movement behavior of their parents.
Sara Mosely of Warrens is a Snapshot enthusiast who started monitoring 5 cameras in 2018. These cameras were already up and running in southern Jackson County. This past year she went to those camera sites as well as units on the Sandhill Wildlife Area on four occasions to trim and prune in front of the lens, put in a fresh battery, and replace the SD card.
Moseley?s Jackson County photos had pictures of deer, bear sows with cubs, bobcat,and fisher. Moseley commented that the Sandhill photos bear proof that exceptional whitetail bucks thrive there. Tom St. Clair of the Meadow Valley chapter took a kid to the Sandhill Youth Hunt in early November 2018 (peak rut).That youngster shot one of those monarchs – probably the deer of his life. Photos on Meadow Valley chapter page of kamokids.org website.
Mosely ended by saying that visiting the cameras gives her a nice purpose to be outdoors and that it is always exciting to see what has been captured. If you are interested in learning more about the snapshot program, visit www.snapshotwisconsin.org Requirements to get involved are access to 10 or more acres of public or private land, basic computer skills, and an internet connection. There are quite a few cameras out there already and some of these can be passed on to a new volunteer.
Increase license sales in Wisconsin – Hunting license sales were up just under 4 percent in 2020. That’s the first time there’s been a positive bump in a while.
Other license/ permit percent increases were: Fishing – 10, new boat – 13, atv/ utv – 37, state park -12.. The number of female Hunter’s increased 12 percent over previous years
Hunter Education – There is still an opportunity for minors interested in hunting to get their Hunter’s education certificate online without the field day requirement. This ends on December 31.
This is not an endorsement, but we have to consider that access to safety classes may continue to be difficult in 2021. Kids who have taken an online class without hands-on experience can always be taken out on the range prior to a hunting season or shooting sports to make up for that, preferably with the firearm they will be using in their sport.
Website – The website was visited about 160 times in the past 30 days. The most frequently visited page was Lake Wisconsin Chapter. The system blocked over 600 suspicious attempts to enter the site in just the past week. A computer in Serbia accounted for most of these. Go Wordfence!
Chapter Reports –
Baraboo – The Baraboo chapter had its meeting on Nov 9 at Rivers Edge. A couple of our mentors have continued to keep some kids involved with duck hunting and shop activities. Although there is not a ton going on in KAMO during these strange times, we still feel it is important to meet and remain in contact with each other. As it looks like things are not going back to normal any time soon, it should make us appreciate the freedoms we still have to enjoy the outdoors. Stay strong and stay safe.
Coulee – Establishing a Wisconsin Interscholastic Fishing Association (WIFA) team in the La Crosse area is going to be discussed among several La Crosse area conservation groups. The WIFA has grown explosively, yet there are no teams in the southwest corner of the state, even along the river. Several groups, including KAMO, are going to convene in some meetings in the coming weeks to consider how a team could be established in the La Crosse area.
Each team needs a hosting organization and some coaches to manage their outings. A team would be hosted by a school district or be run through a hosting local nonprofit sportsman’s group. There are some advantages to the sportsman?s group being a host. For example, a sportsman group could take kids in general onto their team in coop fashion, whereas a school team serves only their school?s population.. The deciding factor in starting a Coulee Region team may be how many members of the combined sportsmans/ parent groups would be willing to fill the role as a coach. None of the groups acting on their own could take the project on themselves,
The prospect of adding a La Crosse area team is supported by WIFA leaders, local parents, the U.W. La Crosse Fishing Club/ Recreational Management Department, members of KAMO, Friends of the Upper Mississippi, La Crosse County Conservation Alliance, and the Brice Prairie Conservation Association. The hope is that having a WIFA team in the area will provide a new and exciting opportunity for local youth. Those youth and their families may also be interested in learning more about the groups that are helping their team.
Meadow Valley – No activity to report for the month of December
Northwoods – We have decided to cancel our December meeting due to Covid infections locally and within our group. We do have things we need to resolve but now is not the time to gather.
Enjoy your upcoming Christmas season,
Yellow River – Brad has been contacting guides,resort owners, and pheasant farms to donate to our ?destination raffle? for summer/ fall
Next month?s newsletter – The Wisconsin Youth Conservation Corps role in youth involvement in the outdoors.
If you?ve read this far and are curious about what ?make sure you put away your groceries first? could possibly have to do with the newsletter, please contact Mike to find out.