Rabbits, Trout and Bull… Tahr where the Spring has sprung,the grass has ‘riz’. I wonder where them birdies is? Along with the rest of Odgen Nash’s ditty about wings on birds and birds on the wing, personally I like spring a lot.
A friend from the States kindly sent me a copy of his travelogue and adventures titled “with lead in the air there’s hope” now that is my idea of spring.
With wonderful weather all of September there are no shortage of rabbits about to throw lead at. Had Bill down from Nelson on his annual visit to the local HUNTS course and this also gives Bill and I a chance to fill his yearly rabbit pie needs.
Bill takes childish pleasure in turning perfectly good rabbit meat into mince with his 22-250 and 17 HMR, we’ll certainly with the 22-250 and anything inside 200m was clinically dispatched,size was not an issue either and many a kits innings ended early with a somersault or 2.
I take a somewhat ” gentler” approach and prefer to sneak quietly around the humps and hollows and Manuka stands with my trusty 10/22 with the express purpose of recovering meat. This in itself is interesting as for 360 days of the year 99% of the rabbits I shoot are also the result of well placed 223 rounds and never a pot animal thought about. Glad Bill makes it down for this trip and I get to put some rabbits to good use, well Bills use, enjoy those pies.
The trout season has also opened on our down land trout streams, streams that are predominately brown trout fisheries, maybe this explains why Sue has several Browns to her name and I have managed one and a number of rainbow, go figure? Streams are in lovely condition, this may well change with today’s storm bringing rain and wind but a nice fresh will be good. Lake venues for the rest of this week, and that’s no bad thing as the riparian margins are loaded with cruising Browns for long periods of the day and if the fish are in the margins they are only there to feed, and we all know that feeding fish are hungry fish and there for we are duty bound to feed them, mainly midges and small caddis, for now thanks.
Now if that isn’t enough to make you appreciate spring then how about some Tahr hunting?
What! Tahr in spring? Absolutely, and while we have taken a nice bull or two and expect to get a couple more in the immediate future, our Tahr hunting is more geared towards culling for the management of the herd and aimed specifically at nannies.
You would not believe how many (300+) bulls you see when they are non target animals.
Angus and his cousin Cameron came down to glean some Tahr hunting knowledge and experience, and what better way than to climb high for some nannies. I’m hopeful I did my job well and have planted the Tahr hunting seed with these two keen young men.
They climbed, they cursed, they scrabbled and cursed, found Spaniard grass and cursed and followed me ever upwards. Most importantly they got to experience Tahr in there alpine habitat and all the pleasures and rewards for there efforts to climb and scrabble and then heat their barrels. Well done guys, 3 good climbs in 3 days and 25 less Tahr, makes room for a handful of trophy Bulls. Get that meat to the butchers and enjoy the sausages, you’d better enjoy them as you’ll have a fair number!
More about the Bulls soon.