Other wildlife | TheFencePost.com

Other wildlife

Regular readers of my column know that I like to hunt and fish as much as physically able. Well, I'm happy to report that for the second time, I've outlived my need for a hunting/fishing license in Kansas.

This year I reached the magic age of 75, which makes me exempt. Ten years ago, when I turned 65, that made me exempt at the time. However, that exemption wuz repealed and the age limit upped to 75.

Now, I'm not really opposed to paying for licenses because fees are what keeps the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks solvent. So, I didn't really mind the $50 I coughed up a few weeks ago to purchase my fall deer and wild turkey permits. I most likely won't harvest either species, but I'll know my money went to a good cause.

However, upon reading the Kansas hunting regulations for "Other Wildlife," I wuz surprised to learn that hunting is regulated on the following animals: Amphibians (except bullfrogs, which require a fishing license), armadillo, rodents (excluding game and furbearers), gopher, ground squirrel, invertebrates, kangaroo rat, mole, porcupine, prairie dog, reptiles (except for snapping turtles and soft-shelled turtles), woodchuck and wood rat.

A friend from Hutchinson said he found regulations for starlings and common sparrows, but I couldn't find that info on the internet.

Legal equipment for harvesting all the above critters include: bow and arrow, crossbow, deadfall, dogs, falconry, firearms (except full auto), glue board, hand, net or seine, pellet and BB gun, poison and poison gas and smoke (if registered and labeled), sling shot, snare, noose or trap.

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The seasons are year round and there is no daily bag or possession limit, except for five on amphibians, reptiles and mussels.

Reading the above causes me to have humorous visions of hunting armadillos with a glue board, hunting a mole with a falcon, and harvesting a porcupine by hand or with a dog. Ouch!

I'm gonna have to check further into the regulations on sparrows and starlings. I can think of no reasons for any regulation on those feed-eating, disease-spreading feathered nuisances.

•••

I think researchers, doctors and dietitians need to get their act together. Seldom a week goes by that I don't read an article in the news that contradicts a "long-established" health practice. Here's examples from this week and the past month: Researchers discover that a baby aspirin a day is either worthless or dangerous. I've been taking the doctor recommended baby aspirin a day for good heart health for more than 20 years. So, which is it?

Similarly, health professionals for years have recommended eating probiotics for good digestive health. Now, this week I see new research showing probiotics do nothing good for your health, but do pad the profits of companies that make them.

My family doc recommended taking a fish oil capsule every day for good cholesterol. Recently, new research says I might as well be taking a dirt capsule.

Just today, I read that 17 internationally prominent doctors no longer recommend statins to control "bad" cholesterol. Naturally, I've been taking a daily statin for more than 30 years. The docs even say bad cholesterol doesn't cause high blood pressure.

I can remember vividly when researchers adamantly declared that eggs would kill you, as would butter and animal fat. Then new research came along that contradicted all the former research.

So, all this confusion leads me to one observation. I think you can find someone to do research and come to any conclusion you'd like — provided that you shell out enuf moolah to the researchers. Folks, that's not a fact. Just one man's opinion.

•••

My new friend, ol' Bacon Loaves, from Hutchinson, Kan., sent me a bunch of column material from the Trials and Tribulations of Bart the Cattle Buyer. Try this story on for size:

After an especially contentious disagreement with his wife, Bart relocated to a nearby tavern to lick his wounds.

Complaining to his drinking buddies, he said, "My wife doesn't fight fair. She always gets historical."

One of his friends responded, "Don't you mean hysterical?"

"No … historical," Bart said. "No matter what I've done, she always says, 'This is just like all those other times you' …"

And, here's another one:

The court was listening to the testimony of Bart's wife, who was seeking a divorce.

"Tell me explicitly," the judge directed the woman, "What fault you have found with your husband."

The wife was explicit, "He's a liar, a brute, a thief and a brainless fool!"

"Tut, tut!" the judge remonstrated. "I suspect you would find difficulty in proving your assertions."

"Prove it!" was her retort. "Everybody knows it."

"If you knew it," his honor demanded sarcastically, "Why did you marry him?"

"I didn't know it before I married him."

Bart couldn't take anymore and interrupted angrily, "She did, too," he shouted.

•••

For my little slice of wisdom for the week, try this: Since light travels faster than sound, some people appear bright until you hear them speak. Have a good 'un. ❖