It’s beginning to look a lot like winter
By Ken M. Blomberg
Our good friends and neighbors from Maple Road dropped off a Christmas present that added to a joyous holiday season here along the creek. The gift of a birdfeeder and bag of special blend seeds quickly attracted a flock of pine siskins to within inches of our kitchen window. On occasion, a random chickadee would grab a sunflower from the mix of advanced formula “Nut N’ Berry” – a premium wild bird food blended with seeds from sunflower, peanut, safflower, pumpkin and dried raisins and cranberries. Developed to attract chickadees, cardinals and finches, it brought a dozen siskens that dominated our new kitchen window feeder over Christmas weekend.
While we watched the show from the comfort of our warm home, frigid, below zero temperatures made ice covered lakes safer for anglers anxious to begin their fishing season. Several shacks on the backwater sloughs along River Road appeared last week. Just before Christmas the DNR reported, “In the north, many smaller lakes have 4 to 6 inches of ice, but some of the larger lakes just froze up completely in the last week and have only 1 to 4 inches of ice. There is a fair amount of snow on the ice which is leading to slush and inconsistent ice underneath. People should be very careful if they venture out to fish.” However, this week’s arctic blast with sub-zero and single digit temperatures will put a measure of safety to ice conditions statewide.
Snow is accumulating up north and many cross-country ski trails and a few far north county snowmobile trails are open or partially open. The southern half of the state has little or no snow cover. The last of the firearm deer hunts end this weekend in the Farmland Zone. Pheasant, ruffed grouse, rabbit and squirrel hunting continues and as soon as it warms a bit, Buster, my cocker spaniel sidekick and I will venture out for a couple more hunts before the snow gets too deep in January.
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