I Hate Running Over Critters

Snakes, like this gopher snake, like roads for sunning themselves.

Yesterday was a very hot day at the ranch.

I chose not to hunt, just scout and prepare for next weekend. As I drove past my tree stand I noticed that a doe was laying in the shade about 15 yards from my seat. Wonder if I buck had been around.

Quail were everywhere and many were quite small. As I drove the four wheeler down a road through brush, something very small darted in front of me. I was shocked to see two baby quail about two inches tall running directly in front. I slammed on the brakes and barely avoided them.

Last year the quail were about three quarters grown by archery season. This year none of them were half grown. Must be due to the late spring, but there are sure a lot of them.

Jumped a nice buck near the site where our friend Joe shot a very good buck last year. Good buck spot.

Put my ground blind near a stock pond and added some brush around it. Two does and a fawn were standing near it when I returned a while later. Maybe it will work out.

Checked out a new pond for tracks thinking it might be another tree-stand site. Not hardly a track at the pond. Wonder if the water is poor.

It was so hot that I could barely function. Decided to leave for home about 6:30 and drove my bike right over the front of my trailer raming into the back of my car. Fortunatly it just bounced off the spare tire and left me with the front wheels over the front rail of the trailer. Pretty exciting, but I just drove it back off. No harm no fowl.

Ran over a very large rattle snake on the way home. I normally watch for snakes, but with the sun low and my sunglasses on, I didn’t realize it was a snake until the deed was done.

Hated seeing the smashed rattler wiggling in the road. He was a four footer and quite fat.  Thought about taking a picture of the disembowled snake, but that would have been too rude.

He was also somewhat alive so I dispatched him with my shovel. For some reason I like snakes – not to play with like we did when we were kids, but just to watch and I hate running over them.

2 thoughts on “I Hate Running Over Critters

  1. Rich,

    You certainly have some spectacular wildlife on the ranch. Interesting about the small quail this year.
    As a novice waterfowl hunter I am hoping to try my hand on some of the wildlife refuges this season.
    So I went to Grizzly Island Sunday to fish, hike and check it out.
    Coming home there two pheasants in the road by the drainage ditch.
    I stopped to see if I could get a picture and they flushed before I could get a good photo.
    One rooster, three hens and a whole bunch of juveniles took off across the water.
    Half the juveniles were what I would have expected (ie 50% grown or more) but the other half were very small (maybe 25% grown).
    I guess the heavy spring rains delayed the hatch this year?
    Good luck getting your buck.

  2. Your observation is consistant with what I saw. The pheasants could surely use a boost. Nice to hear.

    The refuges are a great place to hunt. In the beginning you may want to make some late morning and afternoon hunts in order to learn the lay of the land. Then go out early after you’ve learned your way around. Use November to scout and then you’ll be ready for serious duck hunting in December and January.

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