Sometimes you wait your entire life to do something special with your dad and this is what happened recently to Pepperell resident Arthur Taddeo and his father.
The pair have been putting in for a Maine moose tag every year and Arthur finally had his name pulled. Not an easy task when there are 75,000 people applying for just 2,400 permits.
The pair made plans for a trip to the north country of Zone 6, Acrostic County, Maine, so they could do some scouting. They looked far and wide through the vast farmlands and made their plans. The moose population there is healthy but there are not as many as there used to be so scouting is very important.
The time came and the trip was on. The car all packed, Arthur picked up his dad and up they went for the eight-hour drive to moose country with a tag in their hand.
The good news in Maine is that either party can shoot a moose but they can only shoot one moose.
The day arrived and they went out and spent the day and — nada. Day 1 become 2, then 3 became 4, and 5 became the last day. Would they get the moose they had hoped to get together?
On day 6 they headed out and spent the day on a farm backed up by a woodland. It was now late in the day and the pair were looking hard over a broccoli field. His dad spotted it first: a cow being courted by a bull. But he was a long way off, too far for a shot.
The pair got down on their bellies and started their stalk. For the next 45 minutes they crawled through that broccoli field getting closer and closer. The bull was so in love he did not notice the pair moving in on them.
After the 45-minute stalk the pair got in position for a shot. On the count of 3 they shot together. One, two, threeBANG! The moose went right down.
The father, now 86 years of age, had made a great shot and matched Arthur’s shot just one inch away. The moose weighed in at 700 pounds and sported a 43-inch spread.
This is a memory that lasts a lifetime for both men.
Deer are very active
With deer becoming increasingly active, and daylight saving time soon to put more vehicles on the road during the hours when deer move most, it is advised by Fish and Game officials for motorists to slow down and stay alert.
Deer become more active in autumn with the lead-up to their fall breeding season, commonly referred to as the “rut.” Around this time, many yearling bucks disperse from the areas in which they were born and travel, sometimes several dozen miles, to find new ranges.
Meanwhile, adult bucks more often are cruising their home ranges in search of does, and they sometimes chase the does they encounter. The older bucks push these younger bucks out and they cross the roads looking for the love not found. Yes these young bucks of this year’s class are ready to breed as well and become stupid.
Add to this the fact autumn sees a number of people taking part in outdoor activities that might flush deer from forested areas or briar thickets, and that deer are more actively feeding to store energy for winter months, and it quickly becomes evident why motorists might be more likely to encounter deer on roads.
When daylight saving time ends Nov. 4, there also will be increased vehicular traffic between dusk and dawn — the peak hours for deer activity. There are going to be more deer on the road playing dodge the car than at any other time of the year.
While the peak of the rut is still maybe two weeks off, deer already have increased their activity and are crossing roads. While motorists — at any time of year — are well advised to stay alert and be on the lookout for whitetails while driving, it’s especially important now and in the coming weeks.
Deer will die. Damage to your car will happen and your local auto body shop loves this time of year. Not to mention you can get hurt too.
Deer often travel in family groups and walk single file. So even if one deer successfully crosses the road in front of a driver, it doesn’t mean the threat is over. Another could be right behind it.
Bill Biswanger’s email address is firstname.lastname@example.org