Rain a welcome relief for area ponds and lakes but much more is needed

Rain a welcome relief for area ponds and lakes but much more is needed

Posted: Saturday, September 18, 2010 8:53 am
By: By BRENT CALLICOTT

The Messenger 09.17.10

Last week’s rains were very much a welcome relief but not enough to make any type dent in the low water levels we are experiencing around our area.
I had reports from just a trace in the southern parts of the Obion County area to over 2.5 inches in the northern half. I had just over one inch at my home in Union City but it all was very well received and welcomed.
Reelfoot Lake’s water level is still very, very low and will be until we have one big rain or several small rains in a week to a two-week period.
Water temps are in the upper 70s at last check.
As for the fishing, some crappie and bass are still being reported caught on Reelfoot Lake.
Crappie are mainly being caught on the Lower Blue Basin area.
For bass, simply look for the baitfish. This is key.
The 2010 wood duck and teal season has come to a close.
Many folks across the state hunted the feathered friends for five days. With low water and warmer temps, this wasn’t the best overall conditions for waterfowl hunting.
Back last week, I received a call from some of the good folks at the Reelfoot Animal Clinic here in Union City concerning a duck on Reelfoot Pond that was having problems walking and a slight swimming problem. The duck could fly pretty good, though.
I did some serious thinking with nothing coming to mind. Then, I told my dad and mom (Lanny and Patricia Callicott) about the call. So after the sun went down the night of the call last week, my mother and father decided they would take a fishing dipnet, mounted on a long pole down to the pond and try and catch the duck.
Come to find out, it was a greenhead mallard duck. After several attempts, their luck wasn’t meant to be so they headed home.
Dad then ask me if I would go with him another night down to the pond to try and attempt to catch the duck again.
So last Thursday evening, my daughter Gracyn, my dad and I headed to Reelfoot Pond with the dipnet and lights in hand. Light rain was headed our way so we had to move fast. After two attempts, I finally made close enough contact with the duck to catch him and then the next move was to figure out what the plan was. By then, my wife Lisa and my mother had arrived.
With a combination efforts of all, we managed to find out that this duck had come in contact with used monofiliment fishing line left in the pond from someone in days past.
As I had been holding the duck since we first caught the poor fella, the duck finally relaxed enough to allow us all to have a part in removing all of the line that was wrapped around his right leg and wing. We then decided to treat the wound left from the wearing of the line with some meds we had.
The leg on the duck did show some damage and may or may not be permanent but we are not doctors.
After a call to the folks at the Reelfoot Animal Clinic that night, Dr. Keith Middlebrook and Dr. Leland Davis both returned our calls in concern for the duck. Leland informed my wife they had been trying to catch the duck for over a month.
With all that went on that night and the weather about to get nasty, we did our deed and released the duck hoping that things would get better.
As of Wednesday, it seems the duck has made some type of progress with the leg maybe starting to heal. Our family has been keeping a close eye each day on the duck’s progress.
A lesson to be learned for anyone … please, when you go out fishing, no matter what body of water you are on, remove your discarded line and place somewhere to carry home for the trash. Do not leave it behind for the animals or fish to get tangled in.
If this had been done (the old line trashed) on Reelfoot Pond, this duck would have never had this to encounter.
This was a good, up-close learning experience for my daughter, who loves all type of animals and someday has her sights set on helping other animals in some way.
I want to thank my family for taking the concern into their hands, making sure we were doing what the man above would have wanted us to do — help out and help others no matter what.
My good friend and BassMaster Elite Series Bass Pro Mark Menendez completed his 3rd and final PAA (Professional Anglers Association) bass tournament this past weekend, finishing 9th and propelling him into the Texas Bass Classic in early October. The Texas Bass Classic will see the top 15 anglers from each of the FLW Outdoors, PAA and BassMaster Elite Tours as the best of the best fishing in one tournament to end the fishing tournament season. First place will pay $150,000. More later on this event.
Another special event Mark is about to take place in is his first ever team buddy bass tournament this weekend where he and his 5-year-old son Max fishing together. A dream for sure to come true for Mark. I hope to have the results in next week’s column from this event. Good luck guys.
A report from the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency on the 2010 Labor Day Weekend holiday reads as follows.
Through Labor Day weekend, the statewide totals for 2010 stand at 160 accidents and 19 fatalities. TWRA boating officers have made 151 BUI arrests.
Over the Labor Day holiday weekend in 2009, there were nine accidents and two fatalities reported in separate accidents.
Also from the TWRA, the application period began Wednesda at 8 a.m. for the computerized hunt drawing system to be used for 2010-11 waterfowl blind sites on Bogota, the new Thorny Cypress Wildlife Management Area in Dyer County (Region I) and four units of the Region III Chickamauga WMA (Candies Creek, Johnson Bottoms, Rogers Creek and Yellow Creek).
The application period will continue through midnight Oct. 13.
The application form, similar to WMA quota hunts, etc., is available online at the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s website and in printed format. All participating WMAs are on the one application with a total of 41 blind sites. The applicant will have 12 choices. Applicants may not use the same hunt code more than once. An applicant can only apply once per year for these areas.
For more information on the computer duck blind drawing or any other information concerning fishing or hunting in the state of Tennessee, visit the TWRA website at www.tnwildlife.org
That’s all for this week’s report.
’til next week
catch ya on
the water folks.
Brent

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