Weekly news, tips, trivia, fun facts, and wild tales from the outdoors
Dec. 17, 2008
Over-Eager Activists Implicate Bad Beavers
We don’t often bring Outdoor News Hound readers stories from other continents,
but we have one this week that’s just too good to ignore. It’s a combination
Polish joke and a story about the naive actions of some green, tree-hugging
activists. This week, you’ll also read about a bass that coughed up a long-lost
class ring, a buck that made a surprise visit to some third-graders, and more!
A Polish Beaver Joke
Did you hear the one about the Polish beavers that were cutting down trees
Bear with the old News Hound for a minute.
It seems that the members of a Polish environmental organization reported an
illegal logging operation they discovered at a nature reserve near the northern
town of Subkowy. They told authorities that the clear-cutting ne’er-do-wells
had already chopped down and neatly stacked 20 trees at the reserve and marked
several more with matching notches, obviously planning to return and mow them
down as well.
When police investigated the report, sure enough, they found the logging
crew at work. In fact, the entire clandestine operation, which included several
tree cutters, was operating quietly, under cover of darkness.
If you guessed it was beavers, you’re right!
The Austrian Times reported that when they were confronted with the news,
the Polish enviros were taken aback.
"The campaigners are feeling pretty stupid," a police spokesman
told the newspaper. "There’s nothing more natural than a beaver."
The News Hound couldn’t agree more (about the natural and beaver thing).
Here’s some advice for extreme environmental activist types everywhere (even
in Poland): Don’t react too quickly when it comes to important matters of
nature and the outdoors.
If nothing else, it gave the greenies something to chew on.
Big Bass Coughs Up 1987 Class Ring
Just weeks after his mother paid $200 for the class ring signifying his
graduation from Houston’s Universal Technical Institute in 1987, Joe Richardson
accidentally dropped the blue-stoned ring into the water while fishing at Lake
Initially he received plenty of grief from his mom over the expensive loss,
but Richardson eventually forgot about the ring and went on to pursue a career
as a mechanic in Buna, Texas.
That is, until last week, when he received a call from a total stranger who
said he had found a ring with "Joe Richardson" engraved inside the
"My first reaction was — you gotta be kidding," Richardson said.
Even more unlikely was the caller’s tale about how he came across
Richardson’s piece of jewelry after 21 years in the East Texas impoundment. It
seems he was fishing at Sam Rayburn on the day after Thanksgiving and landed a
largemouth bass that weighed more than 8 pounds — though it lost a few ounces
after it gave up the gold class ring with the blue stone.
The angler, who was fishing with two other men, said he tracked down
Richardson with the aid of his cell phone-based Internet service. He said the
ring came out of the bass’ mouth and fell into the bottom of the boat.
Beaumont, Texas, television station KFDM reported that the angler called
four Joe Richardson’s before he found the right one. Later that day, the two met
at the Dairy Queen in Buna, where the angler — who said he wished to remain
anonymous — returned the heirloom to its grateful owner.
What are Richardson’s plans for the ring?
"I have not cleaned it," he said. "I told my wife I don’t
want to clean it."
Buck Surprises 3rd Grade Science Class
Teacher Leslie Vanlet was instructing her Coopersville, Mich., East Elementary
students about the demeanor and characteristics of animals when an unannounced
(albeit somewhat appropriate) visual aid entered her third grade classroom — a
6-point whitetail buck!
It was the buck’s method of entry that probably did the most to disrupt the
demeanor among the 23 students seated in the classroom. That’s because it
shattered a double-pane window and began galloping through the classroom,
wildly slinging a set of mini-blinds hooked onto its antlers while leaving a
trail of broken glass, tipped chairs, and dumped desks!
During a lull in the action as the buck stood in a corner, Vanlet was able
to shuttle the children safely out of the room with the help of two other
"There was this horrific crash and glass shards were flying everywhere
and you wonder what in the heck is going on," the first-year teacher told
the Grand Rapids Press. "It happened so quickly and yet it all seemed like
Principal Marty Alexander told the newspaper that one boy was treated for a
small cut he received from flying glass. He said that one little girl was
"emotionally shaken" after the buck brushed against her.
There was no report on the emotional (or physical) impact the whole ordeal
had on the young buck, which exited the room the same way it had entered.
In addition to the mess the estimated 160-pound deer left behind and the
turmoil it created, the children have something else to help remind them about
the day the buck crashed their classroom: a cracked two-point antler that was
discovered on one of the student’s notebooks.
"I’ll be able to tell this story for years," the teacher said.
Teen Catches Bass Species Double
Catching two fish on one dual-treble plug at the same time is an unusual and
randomly occurring fishing phenomenon, but this week a South Florida teen
caught two species of bass on a single swimming bait while fishing at a
The South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports that Luke Volpe, 13, of Southwest
Ranches, hooked a 1.5-pound peacock bass on the front treble hook of his bait,
and as he was reeling it in, a 5-pound largemouth hit the rear treble hook!
The newspaper story noted that Volpe was using a spinning rig with 20-pound
braided line and a Yo-Zuri swimming plug.
Both fish were released after the teen’s fishing buddy, Dalton Edens,
snapped some photos with his cell phone.
Pretty cool, huh?
Quote Of The Week
""When blizzards and storm winds strike, other hunters curl up by the
hearth. Waterfowlers go forth."
“Successful Waterfowling,” 1974
J.R. Absher is a freelance outdoor writer whose articles and columns appear
in numerous national publications. He offers his unique perspective of the
outdoors weekly for sportsmansguide.com. You may contact him at