The founder of the Biological Survey—also the collector of America’s greatest repository on bear geneology—tells us some interesting things about a fast-disappearing animal
C. Hart Merriam
OF the wild animals inhabiting the western half of North America in the days of our forefathers, three were of surpassing interest. These were the beaver, the buffalo and the grizzly. The beaver, because of the value of its pelt, was the chief incentive to most of the hardy trappers and adventurers who sought their fortunes in our Western wilds; the buffalo, because of its size, the superiority of its flesh and the ease with which its hides were converted into robes, was the most prized of the game animals; the grizzly, because of its boldness and prodigious strength, was universally respected, for of all American animals it was most to be feared and therefore most worthy of the hunter’s rifle.
THAT tiger of the hunting game, Charles Cottar, has written a three-serial story on African big game hunting, which will begin in our January number. Everyone who knows Cottar believes he will die with his boots on while hunting the dangerous game of Africa.
A couple of sportsmen journey thousands of miles to Wyoming’s big-game haunts, and each is rewarded with a fine prize
R. W. Everett
NOT having forgotten the big bull moose I had seen in 1916 up in the Yellowstone after I had killed the one I was entitled to, I determined, when I heard that the game commissioner of Wyoming intended to issue fifty special bull moose licenses, to try and see if I could get that never-to-be-forgotten bull, or one like him.
The duck is here discussed from the standpoint of the bird itself, the gun used in hunting it and the curious incidents of the sport
William Barber Haynes
THE shotgun will never be built that will kill ducks as far as the average dub duck hunter will essay a shot. I believe this is a provision of nature that automatically saves the ducks just as an alarm clock keeps you from losing your job. Just see how it works to the ducks advantage: Suppose you are up in the marsh fixed nicely with a good blind, and your decoys set.
A glance back into the works of men who have had much to do in forming history—by a native son of Colorado
NEW wars coin new words that in due time become old words of unquestioned standing. Take the word “sharpshooter.” Before the Civil War there was no such word, but today even its origin is unknown to most people, even to some who make dictionaries.
An Alaskan sportsman touches on some interesting phases of the development of the territory’s most valuable asset—her game and fish
Dr. W. H. Chase
CONGRESS sure made a move in the right direction when it turned over to the Bureau of Biological Survey the administration of the laws protecting the fast-disappearing and most valuable wild life of the great territory of Alaska. Politics have long since been eliminated from this branch of our government.
Preservation of Wyoming Elk a Matter of Winter Range
Frank M. Hansen
TODAY the elk is found exclusively in the mountains. There is a strong reason for this. Deprived of their natural range, they are forced up to the same altitude inhabited by the mountain sheep. Years ago they used to frequent the desert and valleys, but they have been gradually forced back until only the broken foothills remain.
THE two great impulses which move tourists are climate and angling. More people go to Florida in winter to angle than go for climate and oranges. More people go to the mountains and lakes during summer to fish than go there for cool climate. Hotel people will affirm this assertion; but where to fish, when to fish and how to fish are the problems which confront the tourist who anticipates a Florida fishing trip.
MANY are the tales of romance and adventure woven about the silver fox. Back to the days of the Hudson’s Bay Company, with its intrepid hunters who pushed ever onward into the wildest of the wilderness, and even before them, to the days of the wild Indians, whose bravest braves dared the wrath of their enemies for the sake of the black, silver-tipped pelt of the silver fox, the timid little creature has had to fight for his existence.
May I not ask for a minute of your personal attention? (I hope every man under whose eye this little message falls will consider it as addressed individually to himself—for it is the only way I have of getting an audience with all my readers at once.) You and I have stalked these hills, waded the streams and ploughed thru the snows of this land for many years.
AN ACT TO PROTECT BEARS. AND FORBIDDING THE USE OF STEEL TRAPS, ETC., IN THEIR PURSUIT BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF................................................
No person shall at any time of the year take any kind of bear with a steel trap, or set, for the purpose of trapping any animal whatsoever, any steel trap larger than what is generally known and designated as a No. 4 Newhouse, and no person shall at any time of the year set a deadfall, snare or pen for the purpose of trapping or capturing any kind of species of bears whatsoever.
A MONG the pioneers of the West, “visiting” was a fine art that was perfected by the women folks. Neighbors were few and far between, distances were great compared to now, transportation was slow and cumbersome, and there was always much work to be done, so “going visiting” meant a lot more than just “going.”
Near springtime brook, ’neath summer sky, and autumn’s glorious wood, I have chosen many campsites, and I’ve found them all quite good; But the camp that’s first and foremost, when you put it up to me, Is that drifted, snow-bound shelter—the Indian tepee.
A series of papers having to do with a subject of increasing interest to every trout fisherman
Chapter VI. THE DRY-FLY MAN’S LINES—PART 2.
THERE is no question or argument regarding the greater value of the tapered line in dry-fly fishing. While one can employ the level with good results—happy results sometimes—for real skillful casting, perfect handling of the feathers, casting against a heavy wind, etc., there is nothing like the balanced weight of the tapered line.
IT is a wild winter night; without is wind and snow and cold. I sit here in my pleasant study surrounded with my books gathered from the world over—books from Chaucer’s time and books from the year so near its close. In the room adjoining are my “rods and reels and traces,” to employ Kipling’s felicitous expression, the walls decorated with a wide variety of the tools of the craft.
Perhaps there is no single article of the angler’s equipment of greater importance than the landing net, and none regarding which there is a greater dearth of reliable information. We pick up a tackle catalog and behold, many types and styles of nets stare us in the face.
It is always proper to take stock of the past year when we make up the records of twelve months’ work, and glimpse the future. Let no reader of the Angling Department think I am in any wise satisfied with my share of the matter that has appeared in Outdoor Life during 1922.
I had the greatest of luck in Rock River, Wis., on channel and blue cat with a black gnat or Lord Baltimore fly, tipped with about an inch of “worm.” They won’t touch pork rind; this combination also is a “dinger” for small-mouth bass.
CHAPTER XXIII—EXPERIMENTS MORE CURIOUS THAN USEFUL
Capt. Chas. Askins
E. M. Sweeley
IN order to save someone else from making like experiments, tho the effect may be the opposite, we have loaded and patterned some shells after the manner detailed below. It has long been claimed that if large pellets were loaded in the base of the shot column with the top of the column composed of small pellets, the large pellets, owing to a better sustained velocity, would drive thru the small missiles, scattering them badly.
THIS looks like a .22 year. I had one— true as a transit from muzzle to doubleset—but sold it. Was too much like a 100pound drunk wanting to fight, and I want a gun that is like a mule or a new grocery boy—one that delivers the goods at the rear. The Buffalo Sharps even was a trifle lacking in this back-door effect, altho the freight lumbered like a string of trotting elephants down past the depot and collided with the clay-bank with steam shovel results.
The article written by A. L. Thompson and published in the October issue of Outdoor Life, giving his experience with the .280 Ross, was very interesting to me. Having done considerable experimenting with this rifle, I would like to state the results of my labors for the benefit of my brother riflemen.
Search of government and private museum publications and other literature bearing on Indian culture has failed to reveal to me a single explanation on the detailed manufacture of a gun case after the Indian fashion. On my hunting trips I always carry my rifle in a case similar to the one described herein.
Whereas I had figured to have this device patented, and have had drawings and description of this device in the hands of patent attorneys since February 18, 1922, I now deem it more appropriate to give this my idea to the public. While experimenting, in January, to make my Ross rifle safe from blowing out the bolt (possibly by negligence of closing the bolt thoroly), I found a safety device in two different ideas.
As a reader of Outdoor Life and one whose hobby is guns and hunting, I feel called upon to suggest that Outdoor Life start a movement whereby an association can be formed for the purpose of fighting the propaganda which aims to deprive us of our right to own or possess firearms by the enactment of a new amendment to our already much amended constitution.
Dispersion of Bullet Energy in Relation to Wound Effects
COL. LOUIS B. WILSON
THE bizarre effects of missiles on tissues are very puzzling. The surgeon sometimes sees a great, jagged, torn wound of entrance made by a shell fragment which has penetrated only a short distance in the tissues, yet causing injury at only an imperceptible distance from those parts actually touched in its course.
I wish to convey to you and Chas. Cottar my heartfelt thanks for Mr. Cottar's excellent letter on "Guns for African Game," and to you for giving same to Outdoor Life readers in August number. Mr. Cottar has spoken, and no amount of gunstore clerk talk or quotations from books on the shelf have any weight in the argument as against Mr. Cottar’s experience.
OWING to the widespread and ever-increasing interest in the Springfield rifle as a hunting and target weapon, there is a corresponding interest in remodeling it more in keeping with the average sportsman’s idea of what the appearance and utility of such an arm should be, as the stock and sights on rifle, “as issued,” are impossible.
The killing power of the hollow point bullet in the .22 rifle is so much greater than that of the ordinary lead bullet that the difference is remarkable. One of the small animals which is the most tenacious of life is the ground squirrel. Many times I have shot these animals thru the vitals with solid lead bullets, and they would run or crawl as far as 50 feet to their burrows to die within.
The passage of a uniform law dealing with the sale and possession of pistols and revolvers will be urged in the various states during the next legislative season by the United States Revolver Association, an organization composed of 3,000 men interested in revolver and pistol practice and the proper use of such firearms.
I have read with considerable interest all the articles of recent years which have appeared in Outdoor Life on the question of the ideal rifle for deer. While there will always be nearly as many “ideal deer rifles” as there are makes and calibers of guns, still these articles bring out many interesting points of view.
I am enclosing an article clipped from the “Jamestown Morning Post,” one of our local newspapers. It is simply another proof of the havoc our “Sullivan Law” plays with people who have no desire to be anything but good, honest citizens : Our present law does not take a revolver away from the crook, for he is going to carry one anyhow, but it does make a lawbreaker of one who desires to own a gun and does not have a permit thru inability to get one or for other reasons.
What is the complete ballistics of the .38-55 and the .25-35? Is the .38-55 cartridge loaded with black powder and a flat-pointed lead bullet? Has the .38-55 good killing power on deer when loaded with black powder? What size group could a person expect with a .25-35 Winchester carbine at different ranges?—L. L. Moody, Gilliam, Mo.
If Winter Comes—What About Your Autocamping Outfits?
F. E. BRIMMER
IF winter comes, what about your autocamping outfits? Some of the fraternity live in the land of perpetual summer, so winter never comes, while a large majority do experience the rigors of 10, 20 or even 40 below zero. How have you packed your camping equipment away for the cold season?
What do you consider the best automobile camping tent for two adults and three small children, ages 3 to 9? I have catalogs of several tent makers, and also find that a mail order house will sell me same size and weight of tent for about one-fifth the price asked by the tent people.
I wish to get some genuine llama wool to make a couple of llama wool quilts. Can you tell me of a firm who can supply me, and who are absolutely reliable? I know it is expensive, but I want the best. I would also like to know where to get eiderdown, so I can make a quilt of it if I am unable to get llama wool.
MANY hunters and trappers of wide experience are given to boasting and exaggeration, but such was far from the case with E. N. Woodcock, born at Lymansville, Pa., August 30, 1844, and who died at Coudersport, Pa.,, December, 1917. Before he was ten years of age he was catching muskrat, mink and ’coon.
Result of the fall sales so far as held at this date (weeks in advance of this issue) are as follows: Marten, 20 per cent higher than April. Wolf, Northern, 30 per cent higher than April. Wolf, Southern, 10 per cent higher than April. Muskrat, Northern, 10 per cent higher than April.
The ancient forest laws of England regarded only possessions of the crown, but an act was passed during the reign of Henry VIII for the protection of the inheritors and possessors of manors, lands and tenements which made the killing of deer and the taking of rabbits and hawks a felony.
Early this morning I was attacked by a “wanderlust” germ, and hiked off into the river bottoms. When I stepped out on the river bank a mallard hen flew up and I shot her. On one leg (I forget which one) was a small aluminum band marked in this way: “Biol.
The marking of migratory waterfowl, as practiced by the collaborators of the Biological Survey, United States Department of Agriculture, has given evidence that it will be a most interesting and important investigation. Altho the work has been in progress for only two years, notable results have already been secured.
I enclose you an open letter in defense of the few remaining specimens of wild life remaining on this continent. I have watched the uncouth, two-legged, human carnivorous beasts unfairly sneaking after beautiful deer and murdering them. The real lover of the wild doesn’t murder and destroy it.
There is most excellent wild turkey hunting (five to a license) and deer shooting as well (two to a license) to be had in December and January a short distance from Fort Myers, Fla., in the Big Cypress Swamp section. This hunting season, however, is not coincident with the tarpon fishing period, for that fishing is at its best after May 15th.
The proposal of a few citizens of Montana to secure the free use of Yellowstone Lake in order to save expense in opening up larger dry areas to cultivation should be placed clearly before the American people. In a recent talk given before the National Editorial Association an interested engineer held forth a bright promise “to build a beautiful concrete bridge and present it to the government as a monument of our love for this beautiful park.”
For over twenty years I have attended every session of the California Legislature and urged the passage of laws to promote a game survey of the state. Altho the fish and game commission has over half a million to spend annually, they have made no such survey.
In your interesting magazine of August I see a Mr. Johnson of Idaho wants some information on sandhill cranes. The “Grus canadensis,” called the sandhill crane, or bird of mystery, gives more thought in the field of bird life than all the rest.
A reader who knows of the good deer hunting to be had in the Siskiyou Mountains of Southern Oregon writes us as follows: “Our guide and a party of two left the Aberdeen Villa of Kerby, Ore., in a Ford on the morning of August 23, 1922, only the third day of the season, and started for Oregon Mountain, where the guide had a good, comfortable cabin for the guests.
It surely makes me hot to read and hear some of the arguments these anti-gun cranks put up against the revolver and pistol in saying these guns cause crime, when the real cause lies in the man himself, for if a man has criminal tendencies he would be one anyhow and would use something else just as dangerous, so where does the good come in legislating them out?
A reliable compass is an absolute necessity for the novice or old-time sportsman; therefore, when making the purchase of this instrument, he should be sufficiently informed to make a proper selection. There are many styles of compasses on the market.
“So long as the new moon returns in heaven a bent, beautiful bow, so long will the fascination of archery keep hold of the hearts of men.” Many years ago a lover of the woods, a great archer, wrote this bit of prose. The charm of the long bow and clothyard arrow is fully appreciated when used for hunting.
On February 21, 1921, in reply to a query of my own, you sent to a total stranger a friendly epistle which gave to both wife and I surprise and joy. Now, when again my absent son remembers to send to his aged parents a copy of Outdoor Life, and the U. S. mail presents us the March (1922) number, containing the welcome assurance that my brother, W. S. Phillips, is still on deck, and still ready to receive a friendly hail from each and all the aged patriarchs all along the line, what remains but to lubricate the entrails of the old blind Remington, and break loose?
On December 11 and 12 the American Game Protective Association will hold its Ninth National Game Conference at the Waldorf-Astoria in. New York City. If it is possible for you to attend this meeting, do so. Sportsmen who have attended former conferences consider these meetings the biggest event of the year.
New and more precise knowledge is continually being developed on consanguineous breeding of animals, especially dogs, and of course there is nothing much more interesting to the dog breeder than information on this subject. The affect of breeding from blood relations on the offspring has always been a debatable subject.
I have an Airedale, about 4 months old, who is continually biting and snapping at everything. He is not sick, only a habit. I do not mean that he is mean or ill tempered. It is just play to him. If you pet or stroke him he will endeavor to take your hand and chew on it—not a real bite, just playful.
Slimtonium Socker, by Evert Macdonald; 367 pages; George W. Jacobs & Co., Philadelphia, Pa. A nonsensical, comical personification of the author’s idea of a typical American, who radiates optimism, cheerfulness and courage. Nonsensical in a way that will appeal to the grown-ups as the Mother-Goose rymes appealed to the children.
I am sending to the Memphis Zoo by express a banded or timber rattler which has fourteen rattles and button, and which measures 5 feet 10 inches and is as large thru the “waist” as a man’s arm below the elbow. This snake was snared by the manager of Virginia Plantation.