Things have been hopping at Barren River Lake this week. Good catches of both bass and crappie are being reported.
The lake level stood at 534.5 feet Wednesday morning and falling. I heard of a 7-pound bass being taken in a weekend tournament, part of a limit catch. I was told that it didn’t win the poundage prize but did take the big bass award. I was also told that most of the bass were being taken on shad colored crank baits.
One of our Oldtimer group, Larry Spencer, boated a 5-plus pounder last Friday, one of 10 caught by he and his partner. Our first Oldtimer event of the year was scheduled for Monday on the Cumberland River, but was weathered out.
Lots of reports on good catches of Barren River crappie also, both on minnows and jigs.
The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife is hoping to give pond owners some valuable information in workshops beginning this weekend.
Landowners can learn more about managing their ponds for farm, recreational or small-scale aquaculture use at two workshops scheduled for Saturday in Leitchfield or on April 12 in Frankfort. The workshops are free and open to the public.
KDFWR experts and Kentucky State University will provide an overview of fish management, keeping fish alive and healthy, water quality and nutritional needs of fish in existing ponds. They will also discuss pond site selection and proper construction.
Also participants can learn about small-scale and recreational aquaculture for catfish and shrimp.
Preregistration is not required. However, only those participants who preregister for either workshop are assured of receiving all workshop materials.
The Leitchfield workshop will be conducted from 8:30 a.m. to noon (CT) at the Grayson County Extension Office, 123 Commerce Drive. The Frankfort workshop will be held from 7:30-11 a.m. (CT) at the Franklin County Extension Office, 101 Lakeview Court.
For more information or to preregister, contact Dr. William A. Wurts at (270) 365-7541, Ext. 200, or email@example.com; Forrest Wynne at (270) 247-2334 or firstname.lastname@example.org; or Keenan Bishop at (502) 695-9035 or email@example.com.
This week’s Kentucky Afield report discusses the Hunter Education program.
Hunter education courses are offered throughout the state and serve as an important step in the development of responsible, safe, knowledgeable and involved hunters.
Licensed hunters born on or after Jan. 1, 1975 are required to successfully complete the course. A one-year, one-time only exemption card is available for hunters unable to complete coursework by the start of a season. More than 14,000 people took the hunter education course last year in Kentucky, according to Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Hunter Education Supervisor Bill Balda.
The desire to partake in the spring turkey season provides the motivation for many enrollees this time of year, although children wishing to participate in shooting sports offered through 4-H also take the course. The course is offered in a classroom setting, online or on a CD. The classroom option spans 10 hours over two days. It takes a few minutes to register online at fw.ky.gov. The classroom option is a good one for families and those new to hunting. The interaction enhances the learning process.
Sixty people registered for a recent class. There were fathers and sons, fathers and daughters, and entire families. A few students were alone. The class opened with a short film portraying poor hunter behavior that led into a discussion about hunter ethics and responsibility.
The formal instruction included more videos and PowerPoint slides, but an open dialogue kept the class engaged. There are areas of emphasis, the occasional joke and subtle hints about what might appear on the next day’s exam.
Treat every firearm as if it was loaded was one phrase heard, and repeated, often.