Thursday, June 27, 2019

Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation 30th Anniversary

The hunting and fishing regulations in South Carolina are always evolving, with input currently being sought on the management of wild turkey and saltwater cobia. The common thread is that the South Carolina Legislature will be the government entity which approves or disapproves these future changes. Some members of the General Assembly are sportsmen who actively hunt and fish, and they joined together for a meeting on June 7 in Edgefield at the National Wild Turkey Federation headquarters for a sporting clays competition. The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation out of Washington, D.C. sponsored this event as part of their 30th anniversary in 2019.

Mark Cherpes, Congressman Jeff Duncan,
CSF's Jeff Crane and Rob Keck with Bass Pro
The Palmetto Shooting Complex is a relatively new state of the art shooting sports facility, that is able to regularly host visiting groups of shooting sports enthusiasts, including lots of S.C. students. The National Wild Turkey Federation runs and maintains the complex that was built with funding from several organizations in a cooperative spirit to promote the shooting sports.  More than 150 participants including elected officials, conservation partners and members of the sporting community, enjoyed shooting sporting clays for the day.

S.C. Representative Brian White addresses the group
United States Congressman Jeff Duncan took home the Top Gun Legislator trophy from the event.  “It was great to gather in South Carolina today with sportsmen and women to discuss our common mission of conservation advocacy efforts both here, and across the country,” said Duncan. “This event brings together men, women and youth shooters working together to ensure that future generations can enjoy the same freedoms to hunt and fish.” Duncan is a member of the Congressional Sportsman’s caucus in Washington, hailing from the upstate of S.C.
Sporting youth at the 3rd Annual S.C. Clays Classic

One issue on the agenda in D.C. right now that may affect saltwater anglers is the amendment put forth by Congressman John Rutherford of Florida that would provide $3.5-million dollars of funding for reef fish data collection. Reef fish are managed on a federal level, and one species of reef fish is the red snapper. A lack of good data contributes to the reef fishery being closed at times, limiting access by recreational anglers who pay fishing license fees. Any voter interested in supporting this call for more federal funding should contact their Congressman today and voice support for the Rutherford Amendment.

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

Thursday, June 20, 2019

2019 Jim Bost Memorial Won By Bad Becky

At the 2019 Jim Bost Memorial Offshore Fishing tournament fished on June 15 out of the Marina at Edisto, tournament Rules chair Calvert Huffines was also the emcee for the weigh-in. He gave a history lesson of all the boats that Jim Bost fished on over the years. “Jim was a special person to all of the saltwater anglers at Edisto, and this tournament educates others about his contributions to our fishing heritage,” said Huffines.
Youth angler Greyson Bullard 
The winner of the 2019 Jim Bost Memorial is a boat from Edisto named the Bad Becky. A 27.5-pound wahoo brought in by Bad Becky tipped the scales enough to claim the first place prize of $1080. Finishing in second place on the strength of their 20.7-pound blackfin tuna is another boat from Edisto, the Dealer’s Choice. A boat named Reel Pipes brought a 19-pound dolphin to the scales to secure third place.

The oceanic conditions were conducive to offshore fishing and several youths were able to make the trip into the deep blue sea and earn their sea legs. Youth angler Jackson Smith caught a 13.9-pound mahi while fishing with Dealer’s Choice, and youth angler Campbell Smith caught a 16.7-pound tuna. Youth angler Greyson Bullard fishing on a boat from Edisto called the Laid Back was able to release his first ever sailfish on this day, and he also reeled in a 12.7-pound dolphin to share with the crew. Youth angler Ben Bronson caught a 12.9-ppund mahi from the Miss Fishin’ and youth angler Louis Bucksa caught a 15.7-pound mahi on the Hot Jelly.
Nice haul of blackfin tuna

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

To view past blog entries from the Jim Bost Memorial click on 2018 2017 - 2016

To view past blog entries from the Edisto Billfish tourney click on 20182017 - 20162015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009 

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Regal Moth and the Hickory Horned Devil

Photo from June 1 at dawn along S.C. coast
A naturalist can identify with the old saying that the early bird gets the worm. Nature enthusiasts recognize that sometimes the best time of day to view critters is the early morning hours. A recent walk to a local beach just after dawn to look for loggerhead sea turtles revealed a nocturnal Regal Moth that was just settling in for a daytime slumber. Despite a stable population range in the Mid-Atlantic states, this chance encounter sent me searching for information about my first ever sighting of this large orange moth with white spots.
Drawing on a lifetime of experience, what I did know is that this was one of the largest moths or butterflies I had ever encountered.  It was not surprising to learn that the Regal Moth is said to be the largest moth by weight north of Mexico. Their scientific name is Citheronia regalis and they are members of the Saturnidae Family, which also includes the Luna moth and Imperial moth. Like most large moths, their lifespan is not much more than seven days, making this sighting even more improbable.

Hickory Horned Devil Caterpillar
Photo credit - Pinterest
The Regal moth is found throughout the deciduous forests of the eastern U.S. and its bright markings make it distinct in the realm of insects. What was surprising to learn is how the caterpillar stage of this adult moth is known as the Hickory Horned Devil for its fierce looking orange horns. The thick and beefy caterpillar can be as large as a small hot dog, and is a handful when picked up for observation. Both the caterpillar and adult phase of the Regal moth are harmless and all the coloration and horns are nature’s way of safeguarding them from hungry birds and other predators.

To view the entire feature article click on Colletonian.

Sunday, June 9, 2019

2019 BMW Charity Pro-Am on Tour

NFL QB Brett Favre on Thursday at Thornblade
Amateur golfer Duane Parrish and caddie
The Tour formed in 1990 as the developmental league for the PGA Tour. The BMW Charity Pro-Am in Greenville, S.C. is their only event that pairs celebrity golfers with the pros. NFL Quarterback Brett Favre made his first appearance at the Thornblade Country Club for the 2019 event, and he made quite a splash for the sports fans at this golf tournament. A rainy forecast brought 3,5-inches to the course on Friday and Saturday, and these challenging conditions hurt attendance and caused several long weather delays.

The format for the 2019 tournament, presented by the Synnex Corporation, changed from a four-course rotation to a two-course rotation. The Thursday and Friday rounds were played at both Thornblade and the Cliffs Valley course, with Saturday and Sunday rounds played only at Thornblade. Top celebrity Brett Favre teed off at Thornblade on Thursday at 12:30 and all players completed play. On Friday played at the Cliffs, but Friday's round was never completed due to weather, and he did not return to play more golf on the weekend.

The tournament concluded after the completion of the third round on Sunday, and the event was declared over. Pro Rhein Gibson wins the 2019 event with a score of 21-under par.

To view past blog entries from the BMW Charity click on 20182016 - 2015 - 2014

To view past blog entries about the RBC Heritage click 20192018 - 2017 - 2016 20152014 - 2013

To view past blog entries from The Masters click on 20192015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2009
Tickets for daily admission

To view past blog entries about the PGA Championship click on 2017 - 2012

To view past blog entries from the Wells Fargo Championship click on 2019
MLB's Fred McGriff on the driving range

Saturday, June 8, 2019

2019 U.S. Women's Open - Dry Lightning Strike

2019 Gift Shop Merchandise
Dry Lightning Strike near the 18th Green
A record heat wave gripped the Lowcountry during the last week of May, with an unprecedented four days in a row of 100-degree temperatures. The LPGA Tour came to Charleston on Memorial Day for the week long U.S. Women’s Open golf tournament, and the conditions during the practice days were oppressive. Lowcountry residents understand that hot summer weather often brings afternoon thunderstorms, but record heat can also create severe weather, like the dry lightning strike that killed a live oak tree at the Country Club of Charleston on May 31, during a severe weather delay at the women’s major tournament.
The U.S. Golf Association made a big announcement on Tuesday that the winner’s purse for the U.S. Women’s Open would be boosted by a further $500,000-dollars, bringing the winner’s check to a whopping 1 million dollars. At the end of the final round on James Island on Sunday, it was Korean golfer Jeongeun Lee6 who claimed the title with three birdies on the back nine holes. The 6 at the end of Lee’s name comes from the Korean LPGA Tour where multiple players have the same name, and they use a numerical denotation for identification purposes.
2019 Official Logo
The City of Charleston came out to support the U.S. Women’s Open, but the seeds for this major golf tournament coming to the Country Club of Charleston were decades in the making. One of the legends of the professional ladies golf tour is Charleston native Beth Daniel, who grew up playing golf at the Country Club, before going on to a stellar college golf career at Furman University. Daniel won 33 LPGA tour events including one major title in 1990, and has been inducted into their hall of fame. Her close ties to the Country Club of Charleston were omnipresent during this 2019 U.S. Women’s Open.

Collectible 2019 T-shirt
The weather on Friday May 31 was a scorcher, but a slight chance of afternoon thunderstorms had been forecast. The second round of the golf tournament was halted during afternoon play when thunderstorms began to appear along the sea breeze frontal line just inland. Players and fans were removed from the golf course as a safety precaution, and not long afterward a strong bolt of lightning struck a live oak tree very near the 18th green where a host of supporters would have been congregating.

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

 To view past blog entries about the RBC Heritage click 20192018 - 2017 - 2016 20152014 - 2013

To view past blog entries from The Masters click on 20192015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2009

To view past blog entries about the PGA Championship click on 2017 - 2012

To view past blog entries from the Wells Fargo Championship click on 2019

To view past blog entries from the BMW Charity click on 2018 - 2016 - 2015 - 2014

To view past blog entries from the Champions Tour click on 2014 2013

To view past blog entries about golf click on S.C. Golf Association - Forest Hills - Augusta National - Barnsley Resort