Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 12

grounds. Surrounding Ron and Jeanne’s classic brick farmhouse is a big yard shaded by Norway spruce and walnut trees, and off the far southeast corner, an old country lane runs past a stone fire pit and a shallow pond all the way to the back woods. On a late autumn day like this one, with bronze and golden leaves thick upon the ground, that lane looked like a Robert Frost poem come to life. Near the entrance to the lane lies an old ruin of a fallen wooden barn; that’s where our hunting day began. We drove my Jeep and Paul’s pickup down a long gravel driveway and over the yard far beyond the house and released the dogs. We stood chatting with Ron about likely rabbit hotspots on the property when, suddenly, the urgent blaring of beagle voices rang out; our first race of the day was on. I had not witnessed a beagle chase in years, but it was everything I remembered from the old days with my family. Paul used hand signals to motion the rest of us into intercept positions — Billy on top of a mound above the barn foundation, Josh and me at the north and south corners of a large thicket, and Paul himself near the starting point of the chase — while the beagles sang out excitedly, each with its own distinctive voice, all hot on the trail. I stood and listened in the cool autumn breeze as the barking sounded far into the distance. The beagle voices suddenly chimed louder, meaning the rabbit had turned, and each of us watched now with greater intensity to see if its path would cross in front of one of the hunters. A few minutes later the chase ended with
12

The farm lane looked, with golden leaves strewn upon it, like a Robert Frost poem come to life.

one shot from Billy’s 12-gauge, and we four hunters gathered briefly to congratulate the dogs and admire the game. Then we sallied right out after the next rabbit and the next beagle run. During the second hour of the hunt, we crossed an open field that had been thick with soybeans up until just the day before, when it was cut. The dogs jumped a bunny in a cover edge, and it came barreling out into the open field, probably shocked that what had been heavy ground cover the day before was now unprotected open space. I smiled and watched the rabbit bounding in the distance and then heard two shots from across the field to my left. It was Josh, trying a long shot with his .410 pump. As the morning progressed, I realized that Paul’s champion beagles were great rabbit hunting dogs. They ran the bunnies fast and true, gave up quickly on the ones that holed up, and did not chase, as some beagles do, a deer that jumped up in front of Paul and Billy. Queen was the best hunter of the bunch, expert at jumping rabbits and leading the pursuit, but my favorite dog was Blackjack. He’s heavy and old, and his face is weary and gray from the thousand rabbits he has run, but he gave it his best, and I admired him. I spoke encouragement to him and petted him whenever he chanced nearby. We hunted for four hours, and the beagles chased 12 rabbits, some of them briefly and others for hundreds of yards through weeds, briers and hardwood saplings until they ran close enough for a shot. Six rabbits escaped by holing up quickly, while the other six ended up in our game bags, the main ingredients in our future plans for rabbit stew. It was a morning to embrace and remember over the cold winter months to come.
GAME NEWS



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010

Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010
Life & Times of the Whitetail Biologist
Contents
First Archery Buck
Red Oak, White Oak
Just Like the Good Old Days
Step Back in Time
Antler Restrictions in Pennsylvania
What Goes Up . . .
First Time’s a Charm
100 Deer
The Brute
Flight 93
Field Notes
Conservation News
Off the Wire
Another View
Fun Game
The Naturalist’s Eye
Straight from the Bowstring
Lock, Stock & Barrel
Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Life & Times of the Whitetail Biologist
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - First Archery Buck
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Red Oak, White Oak
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 7
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 8
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 9
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Just Like the Good Old Days
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 12
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Step Back in Time
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 14
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Antler Restrictions in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 17
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 18
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - What Goes Up . . .
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 20
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - First Time’s a Charm
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 22
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 100 Deer
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 24
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 25
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 26
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - The Brute
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 28
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 29
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 30
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Flight 93
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 33
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 34
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 35
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Field Notes
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 37
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 38
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 39
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 40
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Conservation News
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 44
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 45
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 46
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 47
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Off the Wire
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Another View
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 50
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Fun Game
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - The Naturalist’s Eye
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 53
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 54
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 55
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Straight from the Bowstring
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 57
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 59
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Lock, Stock & Barrel
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 61
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - I1
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - I2
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2010 - Cover4
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