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The Shotem' and Caughtem' Blog is the place to find the latest reviews and commentary on gear, destinations, conditions, events, and general knowledge to inform our readers and give our opinions to anyone listening.

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Friday, 10 May 2013 15:45

Deer Birth Control? Seriously?

We at Shotem and Caughtem built this website as a fun social network so that hunters and fisherman/woman had a place to come and brag about their experiences.  We have done our best to merely give our readers the facts and allow them to comment.  We never want this blog or website to ever become a place that begins to take sides so to speak.  However, when we heard that the Humane Society of America proposed a contraceptive device as a way to curb deer populations in the Washington, D.C. area we had to share our thoughts.  Here is what had been reported.

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) has recently offered their suggestion on how to cut an increased deer population in Washington D.C.- birth control.

Deer populations in Rock Creek Park in D.C. have increased to 3-5 times more than what the National Park Service (NPS) deems sufficient, causing the NPS to take action. Controlled hunting has been successfully used as a means to limit the population – something hunters are willing to do and even to pay for the opportunity.  But HSUS sees this as a “wasteful killing program.”

HSUS is pushing the NPS to administer a form of birth control known as porcine zona pellucida (PZP) that causes antibodies to bind to a deer’s eggs to block fertilization. Administering PZP is expected to cost taxpayers $340,000 for just the Rock Creek Park alone according to humanewatch.org.  HSUS has offered to pay for half of the program, leaving taxpayers “holding the bag” for the rest of the cost.

Hunting has been proven as an effective way to curb populations of certain species when the opportunity to do so is done with a fair cost to the hunter.  Many fail to realize or admit that the sport of hunting has gotten quite expensive.  (The equipment needed and also finding a place to hunt that does not cost an arm and a leg no pun intended) To get permitted to do so can cost a lot of money not to mention travel, processing etc.  I have never heard a hunter turn away from a chance to go hunting if cost factors are not outrageous.  Heck the TV Show Chasing Tail is based on this very premise.  Guys who like to hunt get access to ground in trade for some meat.  Happy hunter = Happy landowner.  If there were more who adopted this principal I would guess we might not have near the hog problem.  I know that if I saw a Craiglist ad that said WANTED/TRADE responsible hunter to come and help us out by getting rid of some hogs in trade for some of the meat.  Please send us references and resume, I would be all over sending my information.  

So instead of spending money, why would they not make a little money by selling decently priced permits and finding a way to give responsible hunters access to the areas that need a little population control.  Heck I know that the population of the needy is pretty high in D.C. how about this as a solution.  Take a weekend to interview hunters as a way to find good, responsible people who would hunt, tag (Give Tax Write Off) and take the deer to be processed by a local butcher willing to donate his/her time (Tax Write Off) to process the meat and then take it to the local shelters to feed the needy (Save Tax Payers Money).  Let us know your opinion in the comment section below and keep posting pics and sharing stories in the gallery sections.  


Published in News/Events
Wednesday, 08 May 2013 16:20

Hunting TV Show looking for Talent

We at Shotem and Caughtem have learned that the TV Show Addicted to the Outdoors is looking to expand their brand and their talent.  They are currently looking for the next great hunting couple.  Do you think you have what it takes?  Here are some details about what and who they are looking for as well as where to go for the potential selection.  Addicted to the Outdoors with Jon and Gina Brunson has unveiled a dynamic new program focused on shining a spotlight on family participation in the outdoors, and on couples who make the outdoors more than a hobby – but a lifestyle.  Basically Shotem and Caughtem kind of people.


Published in News/Events

Yes we at Shotem and Caughtem have been doing a lot of blogs on the invasive feral hog problem.  Luckily so far they have stayed clear of Kansas but this article started to raise even our eyebrows.  We have hunted hogs in Oklahoma and Texas and have witnessed this animals destructive power and ability to out wit and out breed even the most dedicated hunters.  But know they are starting to have problems in even the far Northern States and we felt we would add our two cents on the subject.  If like with any invasive species the Wildlife and Parks for each state would adopt the Missouri rule of thumb I doubt we would have the problems of illegal transport of these horrible wild animals.  Missouri has waged an all out war on the animal and we praise their efforts in this fight.  No license, no permits we don't care just help us get rid of the animals is Missouri's stance.  Day or Night.  We at Shotem and Caughtem do not want to see armed men and women roaming people's properties or state parks shooting at everything they see but we also know that no farmer or rancher want these animals anywhere near their properties.  Candace, one of our members, of the Queens of Camo has plenty of experience with hogs should you need a second good resource to ask questions about hog hunting.  Send her a message on their discussion forum http://www.shotemandcaughtem.com/groups-main/viewdiscussion/5-ask-the-queens-of-camo.html?groupid=2

But the pig wars are moving north. In Michigan, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon and Pennsylvania — states where not long ago the only pigs were of the “Charlotte’s Web” variety — state officials are scrambling to deal with an invasion of roaming behemoths that rototill fields, dig up lawns, decimate wetlands, kill livestock, spread diseases like pseudo-rabies and, occasionally, attack humans.

In 1990, fewer than two million wild pigs inhabited 20 states, according to John J. Mayer, the manager of the environmental science group at the Savannah River National Laboratory in Aiken, S.C., who tracked the state populations. That number has now risen to six million, with sightings in 47 states and established populations in 38 — “a national explosion of pigs,” as Dr. Mayer put it.

The swine are thought to have spread largely after escaping from private shooting preserves and during illegal transport by hunters across state lines. Experts on invasive species estimate that they are responsible for more than $1.5 billion in annual agricultural damage alone, amounting in 2007 to $300 per pig. The Agriculture Department is so concerned that it has requested an additional $20 million in 2014 for its Wildlife Services program to address the issue.

There is wide agreement that the pigs are undesirable — like the Asian carp that is threatening to invade the Great Lakes, but far bigger, meaner and mounted on four legs. But efforts to eradicate or at least contain them have been hampered by the lack of a national policy to deal with invasive species as a whole, the slowness of states to recognize the problem and the bickering between agencies about who is responsible for dealing with them.

“As a nation, we have not thought through this invasive species problem, and we just have disaster after disaster after disaster,” said Patrick Rusz, the director of wildlife services at the Michigan Wildlife Conservancy. Dr. Rusz, who travels around the state educating farmers about the menace posed by the wild pigs and encouraging them to set traps on their land, is so avid a hog-hater that in the early stages of Michigan’s invasion, he went to bars to eavesdrop on hunters who might have spotted the porcine invaders.

At least in Michigan, Dr. Rusz said, the pigs appear to be winning — their numbers are estimated at 3,000 to 5,000 and growing. Wild pigs are virtual Houdinis, able to dig or climb over almost any barrier; pig experts are fond of saying that “if a fence won’t hold water, it won’t hold a wild pig.”

Allowing hunters to shoot them in the wild all year round, as Michigan and other states do, is not in itself enough to limit the population, Dr. Rusz said. So trapping is an important component of wild pig control, as are bans on owning or breeding the animals.

But state bans like an invasive species order issued by Michigan in 2011, which prohibited ownership of Russian wild boar and other feral swine, have been opposed by shooting preserves and other businesses with a stake in keeping them.  We at Shotem and Caughtem hope all states change their minds and let us hunters start to post more photos of our kills as long as we have permission and a hunters license from any state.  Let us know your feelings on the subject in the comment section below and as always we will be bragging about our Wild Hog kills in the Shotem Gallery.

Published in News/Events

We at Shotem and Caughtem had an interesting conversation on twitter last night with one of our followers.  He had taken a picture out of his back window of a wolf standing by a pond on his property.  We commented on what a beautiful animal it was and he commented back about how they have effected the Elk populations in his area.  This started the discussion on hunting predators as a need to maintain a balance.  It was a great debate so we felt we would get others input on their thoughts regarding the predator and prey balance.  He is from Idaho where the increase in bear and wolves have had there effects on deer and elk populations.  We are from Kansas where coyotes and hawks have had an effect on our rabbit, turkey, quail and pheasant populations.  However, the lack of apex predators such as mountian lions and wolves has caused an increase in our deer populations.  Their has also been pressure from the drought conditions we have experienced in the Midwest.  So we have not only done a little research as to the nature selection process but we have also set up a forum discussion to get more peoples input.  We hope that it gets both sides of this age old debate to think about our involvement as hunters and conservationists.  We always want to make sure that we have hunting available for not only ourselves year to year but also for future generations.  It is striking that balance that has been debated across the world.  We hope you leave your thoughts in the comment section below or join our discussion in the forum section  http://www.shotemandcaughtem.com/groups-main/viewdiscussion/8-predator-prey-balance-hunting-and-conservation.html?groupid=2



Published in News/Events
Tuesday, 23 April 2013 19:44

Midwest Turkey Hunting Last Weekend

We at Shotem and Caughtem took advantage of the nicer weather last weekend, except for the wind, to venture out and go on our first Turkey hunt of the season.  Though we did not come home with a turkey we did make some observations that might delay many hunters from going out in to the field here in the Midwest.  This is what we observed and our thoughts on how the weather has effected the season so far.  Let us know how your hunt has gone so far, your observations and what has worked for you in the comment section below.  As always post your adventures to the Shotem gallery and tell us your story.

This weekend we got the opportunity to watch plenty of turkey from a distance, just did not get the chance to bring one home.  We arrived to our hunting spot around 2 in the afternoon in hopes that the warmer afternoon temperatures would split some of the larger toms away from the groups.  We were excited since on our way into our location we had seen a couple of birds at a distance so we knew they were within calling distance.  After about an hour we saw one turkey at about 250 yards pop out from a hedge row and begin foraging in the field we were hunting.  After a couple of calls with no response we figured it was a lone hen.  This made us hopeful that the larger groups might have started to break up which would allow us to call in that big tom.  Unfortunately, a couple of hours later a large group of about 12 hens, a large tom and a jake rounded the corner about 200 yards away.  Though I was able to get a couple of responses from the tom when calling they never separated from their flock.  Not even the smaller Jake.  

We took this as a sign that many of the hens from this flock were still in need of a partner and that the larger males from any of the two larger groups we saw were going to have nothing to do with our calling or our decoys.  The recent weather fluctuations have apparently caused a delay in the breeding season which means unless you have a tom decoy and can provoke a fight, the larger toms are not going to leave their flocks.  We only saw a few birds that were not in the larger groups and have concluded that they might have just been temporarily separated from the flock and not the random toms out looking for more mates.  We are planning to go out again this weekend and will let you know how things have changed.  

Published in News/Events

We at Shotem and Caughtem realize that this kind of news only makes the want for the year to pass by faster but the state of Arkansas has approved the hunting seasons for deer, elk and bear.  We thought we would pass along the information to raise your spirits that the season is coming.  We hope until then you post your bragging photos to the Shotem wall or your game photos to the Caughtem wall and tell us your story.  

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission has scheduled the dates for this fall's deer hunting season.

The commission approved the dates at its monthly meeting Thursday. Modern gun deer season will open Nov. 9, and the end date varies by hunting zone.

Archery season opens Sept. 28 and will run through Feb. 28, 2014, for all zones in the state.

Muzzleloader season will open Oct. 19.

The commission also approved some changes to bear hunting regulations for Zone 2, which covers parts of western and central Arkansas. The commission moved the archery hunting opening date to Oct. 1 and reinstated a 150-bear quota for the zone.

Elk hunting season will take place in two segments: Oct. 7-11 and Oct. 28-Nov. 1.

Published in News/Events
Wednesday, 17 April 2013 22:24

Alligator Hunting in Texas

We at Shotem and Caughtem were not aware that the State of Texas had a hunting season for alligators.  We were made aware that the season started April 1st and we thought we would pass along the details.  Sounds like Texas might be able to run their own version of Swamp People we think a good title might be Lone Star Gator.  Let us know if you have ever had the opportunity to hunt gators and leave your comments or suggestions in the comment section below or share your photos in the Shotem and Caughtem galleries.

With the open season in progress for gators in non-core counties, hunters are hoping to harvest one of the 250,000 alligators living in Texas.

The open season in non-core counties occurs April 1 through June 30.  During this time, hunters can only take gators on private property with the permission of the landowner.  

During the spring gator season, alligator hide tags are issued to private landowners. Biologists research private lands to determine the amount of gators living on their area and, depending on the gator population, tags are given out to the owners. The owners can then charge hunters to fill those tags. The “non-core” counties allow one alligator per person, per season and all hunters are required to have a valid hunting license. 

Game wardens are made aware of how many tags are given in their areas, which gives them an idea of where hunters will be during the season. Angleton Game Warden Capt. Nick Harmon keeps his eye on how many gators are taken and where they are taken. 

On private lands in the non-core counties, gators cannot be taken by firearm, but can be dispatched by firearm if caught by a taking device. 

Harmon said that even though using a firearm may be legal to dispatch an animal, he insists that hunters check with any city regulations before discharging a firearm.  

In many instances, gators wander from public creeks to private lakes. In that case, the landowner can use one of his tags to take a gator if it’s in season. If it’s not, even though the gator is on their property and possibly a danger, the owner cannot kill that gator. If the gator is killed without a tag, the landowner can be subject to a fine. 


Published in News/Events

We created Shotem and Caughtem so that people that love to hunt and fish could communicate and share with one another on a site dedicated to Hunting and Fishing.  A fun social network where people could connect based on their shared interested and find others who share their passion.  Over the past four months since we launched the website we at Shotem and Caughtem have had the opportunity to start just such a relationship with the women from the Queens of Camo.  They like us try to live as much of the Shotem and Caughtem lifestyle as we do and have become a great resource to help us promote and get the word out about the website.  Because of this relationship we have tried to repay their generosity by showing them how they could expand there own network by using Shotem and Caughtem as a resource.  We have started a place where our members can go and ask questions about their experiences and what has worked for them (Ask The Queens of Camo ).  Here is a little information as to who they are so that you might learn more about them.  


Published in User Spotlight

We at Shotem and Caughtem can not support enough the hunting of Wild Boar as not a paid expense but a necessity to curb hog populations around the United States.  Luckily, Florida has adopted a good way to curb this population.  Check out the regulations below and let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.


Published in News/Events

We at Shotem and Caughtem have been made aware, in what might be just a publicity stunt, the organization PETA might begin using drones over popular hunting and fishing areas to video tape and enforce laws and regulations.  PETA plans to purchase several Aerobot Cinestar Octocopters--eight-rotored octocopters designed for use by the film industry and landscape architects. The Cinestar is designed to carry heavy cameras and has a 20 minute flight time when carrying smaller cameras; it is also intended for use by a two-person crew.  Once deployed, the animal rights organization says it will use the UAVs to collect footage of illegal activity such as hunters drinking while in possession of a firearm, maiming animals for fun (leading to possible persecution on animal cruelty counts), and using locally-forbidden hunting or fishing enhancements such as spotlights and speed lures. In a prepared statement, PETA's Ingrid Newkirk said that “Slob hunters may need to rethink the idea that they can get away with murder, alone out there in the woods with no one watching.”


Published in News/Events
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