Outdoor / Fishing

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    STEVE MERLO: Faced with dwindling quail growth, hunters should give birds a break

    By STEVE MERLO, For The Californian
    Thursday, Oct 16 2014 09:57 PM

    Saturday marks the opening day of the general California quail season. While the shooting outlook in most parts of the state are only rated fair, at best, the west side of the San Joaquin Valley and surrounding hills still remain dismally poor due to the continuing historical drought. Very few, if any, chicks were hatched during the dry spring due to the profound lack of cover and humidity necessary to successfully rear quail and chukar clutches. The end result means a huge zero for population growth and a probable negative shift in what few adult birds are left to breed in the future.

    So what does this mean for dyed-in-the-wool quail hunters? Basically, some shooters will completely ignore the seriousness of the west side situation and...

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    Oct. 17 fish report

    Kern County, southern San Joaquin Valley LAKE ISABELLA: Light fishing pressure, but the catfish bite continues to provide fair to good action. The crappie action has continued in the trees in the North Fork in 16 to 20 feet of water on...

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    STEVE MELRO: Childhood bird hunts that flew in the face of the law

    While I grew up in Buttonwillow, wild ducks were never in short supply. Back then, game wardens were practically non-existent and I spent most of my formative teenage years not knowing that laws were in place to protect wild game and the...

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    Oct. 10 fish report

    Kern County, southern San Joaquin Valley LAKE ISABELLA: Light fishing pressure, but the catfish bite continues to provide fair to good action. The fish remain in 15 feet of water or more and the bite is best on garlic shrimp, chicken...

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    Oct. 3 fish report

    Kern County, southern San Joaquin Valley LAKE ISABELLA: Light fishing pressure, but the catfish bite continues to provide fair to good action. The fish remain in 15-feet of water or more and the bite is best on garlic shrimp, chicken...

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    STEVE MERLO: Krug family to be honored for dedication to outdoors

    The special committee for the 63rd annual Sportsman's Night, set for Nov. 25 at the Kern County Fairgrounds, has made its final selection for Family of the Year. The award is given annually to an individual, group or family who has shown...

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    Sept. 26 fish report

    Kern County, southern San Joaquin Valley LAKE ISABELLA: Light fishing pressure, but the catfish bite continues to provide good action. The fish remain in 15-feet of water or more and the bite is best on garlic shrimp, chicken liver, shad,...

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    STEVE MERLO: Leave these bears alone, and they'll leave us alone

    The first bear I ever saw in all my adventures came in the middle of the night. My best friend, Larry Johnson, and I were unceremoniously awakened by a rustling in the pile of food and gear eight feet away. We were camped under the old...

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    Sept. 19 fish report

    Kern County, southern San Joaquin Valley LAKE ISABELLA: Light fishing pressure, but the catfish bite continues to provide good action. There has also been a surprising crappie bite. Other species slow. KERN RIVER: Upper river has been...

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    STEVE MERLO: Hot bite for ling cod, other bottom fish off Morro Bay

    Owner Denise de Cock of Virg's Sportfishing in Morro Bay is reporting excellent fishing on the half-, three-quarter and all-day boats with limits the rule on the great-eating bottom fish. Ling cod, the fishermen's favorite quarry, have...

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    STEVE MERLO: Positive news on limits for waterfowl seasons

    It's hard to believe, but the official waterfowl seasons have been set in stone and hunters are in for a heckuva surprise. The daily limit on geese has been set at 25 birds: 10 darks (honkers and specks) and up to 15 whites (snows and...

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    Sept. 12 fish report

    Kern County, southern San Joaquin Valley LAKE ISABELLA: Light fishing pressure, but the catfish bite continues to provide good action. The fish remain in 15-feet of water or more and the bite is best on garlic shrimp, chicken liver, shad,...

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    Sept. 5 fish report

    Kern County, southern San Joaquin Valley CARP DERBY: Bob's Bait Bucket's annual month-long August carp derby just ended. The biggest carp weighed in during August was a 12-pound, 10-ounce fish caught by Sem Matt, Bakersfield, and he won...

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