Get a reading of your property’s wildlife habitats

I recently had the opportunity to be a guest speaker at the sportsman’s banquet at Heritage Christian Union Church in Forest. Part of the presentation included reviewing organizations and reading materials that could help improve wildlife habitat on private property. Many suggested that I include this information in the Field Notes column for you so that you might have the chance to improve your world.
Ohio Division of Wildlife, www.wildohio.gov: Information and publications concerning habitat needs, nesting and denning box plans, life histories of wildlife, wildlife management, private land management, and much more. District offices employ a private lands biologist who specializes in helping landowners manage their property to benefit wildlife. In Northwest Ohio, contact Division of Wildlife, 952 Lima Ave., Findlay. Phone: 419-424-5000.
Pheasants Forever, www.pheasantsforever.org: A nonprofit organization that supports upland habitat restoration. It is one of the best sources for hard-to-get food plot, grassland and sunflower seed for your ground. For a list of available seed: www.pfhabitatstore.com/store/items/OH. It also sponsors biologists who work closely with the Farm Services Agency. For Hancock, Hardin and Wyandot counties, contact Cody Grasser, CGrasser@pheasantsforever.org or 419-551-3875.
Arbor Day Foundation, www.arborday.org: The foundation supports everything to do with planting trees and has a reasonable sales program for sapling purchases. It offers fast-growing fruit and nut and flowering trees and shrubs. Buy them online now for early spring delivery. Trees are sold to fit particular weather zones.
The Wildlife Group, www.wildlifegroup.com: A nursery strictly dedicated to wildlife and the enhancement of its natural, productive beauty. It grows trees that not only intensify the beauty of your surroundings, but also improve the productiveness of your land.
Whitetails Unlimited, www.whitetailsunlimited.com: A national nonprofit conservation organization that has remained true to its mission and has made great strides in the field of conservation. Technical information and seed mixtures are offered.
National Wild Turkey Federation, www.nwtf.org: NWTF supports conservation with its focus on increasing habitat to hold wild turkeys. You’ll find an online resource library and can visit www.nwtf.org/conservation to get insights about managing your property.
For some excellent reading:
GameKeepers Farming for Wildlife Magazine, www.gamekeepersclub.com: I first came across this one at Tractor Supply Co. in Findlay. Published quarterly, the publication offers diverse wildlife management information. GameKeepers is Mossy Oak’s flagship publication that teaches how to improve and enjoy the wildlife on your property. It’s available in both print and digital formats.
Wildlife Trends Journal, www.wildlifetrends.com: An outdoor magazine providing the latest wildlife management information for landowners, land managers, hunters, and all wildlife enthusiasts.
Deer & Turkey Management Beyond Food Plots: Complete and comprehensive management studies. Two-hundred pages packed with information and hundreds of color photos. Available on www.amazon.com or can be ordered at any good bookstore.
Shooter’s Bible Guide to Planting Food Plots: Through practical, understandable and easy-to-apply information, this food plot authority divulges the plants that are guaranteed to attract deer. Available on www.amazon.com or can be ordered at any good bookstore.
Last, and one that all wildlife enthusiasts should read:
A Sand County Almanac: Written by Aldo Leopold and first published in 1949, it combines some of the finest nature writing since Thoreau with an outspoken and highly ethical regard for America’s relationship to the land. Available on www.amazon.com or can be ordered at any good bookstore.
“Acts of creation are ordinarily reserved for gods and poets, but humbler folk may circumvent this restriction if they know how. To plant a pine, for example, one need be neither god nor poet; one need only own a good shovel.” “” Aldo Leopold
Along the way:
Archery instructor training will take place from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 25 at the Division of Wildlife District Two office located at 952 Lima Ave., Findlay. Teachers and other members of school communities who are interested in becoming certified National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) instructors are invited to attend the free workshop.
NASP instructors teach target archery to elementary, middle and high school students within the school gym. The curriculum covers archery, safety, equipment, technique, concentration skills and self-improvement.
Introduced to 12 Ohio schools in 2004, more than 900 Ohio schools now have teachers certified to instruct target archery. Over 30,000 Ohio students participated in NASP during the 2015-2016 school year.
Preregistration is required by March 24. Visit naspbai.org to sign up for the course. For details regarding NASP, visit wildohio.gov or contact the Wildlife District Two office at 419-424-5000.
Step outside:
• Today and tomorrow: Maumee Valley Gun Collectors show, Lucas County Recreation Center, Maumee.
• Today and tomorrow: Ohio Deer & Turkey Expo, State Fairgrounds, Bricker Building, Ohio Expo Center, 717 E. 17th Ave., Columbus. Visit www.deerinfo.com/ohio.
• Tomorrow: 50-bird trap shoot, practice at 11 a.m., program at 12:30 p.m., UCOA, 6943 Marion Township 243, Findlay.
• Thursday and Friday: Trap and skeet, open to the public, 5 p.m., UCOA, 6943 Marion Township 243, Findlay.
• March 24: Ohio Botanical Symposium, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Villa Milano Banquet and Conference Center, 1630 Schrock Road, Columbus. Preregistration is required. Visit www.cmnh.org/obs.
• April 7, 14 and 21; May 2, 9 and 16: Ball Metal Spring Trap League, 9 a.m. each day, 50-bird program. The events are not a team shoot, but rather six individual programs. You don’t need to have a team to participate and each day is an individual event. Contact Denny Snyder at 419-722-7846.
• April 8: Black Swamp Bucks Unlimited banquet and fundraiser, games, raffles and social hour, 3 p.m.; dinner at 5:30 p.m., the Cube, 3430 N. Main St., Findlay. WKXA’s Big Dave will join Nashville country music artist and host of the Outdoor Channel’s “HeadHunters” program, Nate Hosie, to host this important conservation event. Visit www.blackswampbucks.com or call Nate Riker at 419-306-1595.
Abrams is a retired wildlife officer supervisor for the state Division of Wildlife in Findlay. He can be reached at P.O. Box 413, Mount Blanchard 45867-0413 or via email at jimsfieldnotes@aol.com.



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