Wednesday, October 31, 2018

2018 Jasper County Rut - Teens Take Big Bucks

As seen in the October 31 newspaper
Seasoned deer hunters understand that the best hunting of each deer season is likely connected to the rut. Bigger bucks may break cover to chase does, causing all other deer to be moving in response to the hierarchy of dominance in nature. It is no coincidence that two veteran deer hunters had their respective children in a deer stand during that first cool down in mid-October. Megan Clark patiently picked out the biggest buck she saw and harvested a 9-pointer, while Walker Smith stopped a quality 11-point buck that will be entered in the S.C. record book.

The Jasper County monster buck weighed 190-pounds and carried an 11-point rack with a 23-inch outside spread. Smith relays that this is also the biggest buck ever seen on the private property they hunt, and that they have practiced passing up smaller bucks over the years. Seeing a mature buck is often cause for an excuse called Buck Fever that causes an errant shot, but this Father is proud that his son made a precise shot. They plan to share the hunt memory in the future after getting a taxidermy mount of the trophy buck.

Megan’s father is rightfully proud of the 150-pound buck she harvested, but so is her grandfather who lives and hunts in Jasper County. The tradition of hunting runs deep in the Clark family and Megan also enjoys target shooting sports with school friends too. She certainly has earned bragging rights within her family for the 2018 deer season thus far, and better understands why her grandfather and father pursue white-tailed deer in the Lowcountry.

To view the entire feature article in the newspaper click on Colletonian.

Friday, October 26, 2018

2018 Inaugural Lowcountry Landowner Association Meeting

Program from Inaugural Meeting
Colleton County provided the setting for the inaugural meeting of a new landowner association with membership from four South Lowcountry counties. Hampton County, Jasper County, Beaufort Count and Colleton County are underserved politically speaking when it comes to forestry without any representation from a landowner association. The inaugural meeting on October 18 at Big Survey Plantation featured leadership from the South Carolina Forestry Association, educating tree growers how to forge cooperatives regarding forestry practices and county government.

Hosts Tania McCleery, Mimi Howe, Wendy McNeil
and Peter Lawson-Johnston with speaker Cam Crawford
The family-owned Big Survey plantation had several representatives at the meeting, and Wendy McNeil delivered a warm welcome and meeting overview. “Our great grandfather put several smaller tracts of land together to form this property in the 1930’s,” said McNeil. “Today our woods serve as a source of income but they are also a refuge for our outdoor heritage such as hunting and horse riding. The Lowcountry Landowner Association will be important moving forward to represent private landowners in our respective counties.”

Outdoor Fellowship at the Landowner Meeting
‘”We are a trade organization but we have a conservation agenda too,” said Crawford. SCFA represents the Tree Farm system in S.C. and readers of the Colletonian recall my article from the Tree FarmLobby Day in February of 2016“This year is a good tome to join us since we are celebrating our 50th Anniversary beginning November 30,” said Crawford. “Our annual meeting is coming up in the South Lowcountry, in Hilton Head, on November 7 – 9. Being a member means that we can automatically advocate for you if any issues arise in your area. When it comes to politics there is strength in numbers and we welcome you to join.” Anyone wanting more information on joining the South Carolina Forestry Association or the Lowcountry Landowner Association can call Janet Steele at 803-798-2340.

To view the entire feature article in the newspaper click on Colletonian.  

To view past blog entries about S.C. tree farm click on 2016 Tree Farm Awards - 2014 Tree Farm Changes - 2012 District 12 Winner - 2010 Volunteer of the Year 

Dinner tent set up on the lawn under the grand live oak

To view past blog entries involving trees click on Laurel OaksDendrochronology - Pine Straw Baling