From the Field

Connecting YOU with Wildlife – Pennsylvania Game Commission


Wild Goose BBQ Sandwich

It’s Wild Game Wednesday!

Raise your hand if you’ve ever felt a special sense of pride when preparing a meal that included fresh, wild game. There is just something satisfying about knowing exactly where your meat came from that makes wild game meals even more appealing – and – appetizing! Oftentimes, there is an exciting story to accompany the game that’s been prepared. Delicious food paired with great conversation, what more could you ask for?

On Wild Game Wednesday, we take a moment to recognize one of the most important reasons people take to the woods and fields to hunt: to fill their freezers with types of fresh, organic meat. These weekly posts include delicious, easy and in-season wild game recipes from the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s Game Cookbook that you and your family can prepare.

For all our goose hunters out there, this one is for you! Let us know if you try this recipe.

BBQ Goose

If you are interested in more wild game recipes submitted by people from around Pennsylvania, visit www.theoutdoorshop.state.pa.us/FBG/ to purchase the second edition of the cookbook for less than $10!

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Wild Game Wednesday: Dove and Bacon Bites

It’s Wild Game Wednesday!

Now that it’s September, and hunting season is officially upon us, we are kicking off our Wild Game Wednesday recipe series.

These posts will include delicious, easy and in-season wild game recipes from the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s Game Cookbook that you and your family can prepare.

With the recent dove opener, we thought it would be appropriate to share a timely recipe that combines two of our favorite things: wild game and bacon. Let us know if you try this recipe. Enjoy!

 

 

Dove and Bacon Bites.jpg - FINAL 3If you are interested in more wild game recipes submitted by people from around PA, visit www.theoutdoorshop.state.pa.us/FBG/ to purchase the second edition of the cookbook for less than $10!


Saving a Life- How to Feed and Care for a Fawn

Being little is hard. Here’s how to lend a helping hand.

fawnCROP

Babies of all shapes and sizes are popping up everywhere.  Fawns are arguably the cutest ones of the bunch. But they are so little and helpless and often abandoned.  If you come across one of these frail creatures, here’s how you can help.

LEAVE IT ALONE! A “saved” fawn is a dead fawn.

The peak of fawning season for adult does (>1 year old) is May 30 with 90% giving birth from May 12th to June 27th.  For fawns (those bred when they were 6 months old and giving birth at 1 year old), the peak is June 19 with 90% giving birth from May 22nd to August 4th.

There are going to be a lot of fawns out there soon. They are not abandoned.  They are not in trouble.  They do not need to be saved by any person!

During the first few weeks of life, does only associate with their fawns briefly usually at sunrise and sunset with fawns nursing only 2 or 3 times a day.  A Fawn selects its own bedding location away from its mother and moves this hiding place frequently ALL BY ITSELF.  The doe is usually within about 90 meters of her resting fawn and makes contact only to nurse.

People often think fawns are abandoned or cold or sick or lonely.  Do it a favor and leave it alone. This is the best way to increase its odds of survival.

Because bad things happened when people mess with wildlife – like imprinting.  Have you read the recent story of the bison calf loaded in a tourist’s SUV in Yellowstone because they thought it looked cold?  Instead of saving the calf, they signed its death certificate.

A doe will imprint upon her fawns in a few hours.  If this critical period is interrupted, the imprinting process breaks down and may lead to abandonment.  But, fawns take several days or longer to imprint on mom.  During this interim, fawns risk being attracted to almost any large moving object – even people.  That’s why does are secretive and aggressive during fawn rearing.

It may be difficult but people need to let fawns be.  If, in fact, the fawn has been abandoned for some reason, nature will “take its course.”  Based on research conducted in Pennsylvania, 57 percent of fawns born in north central Pennsylvania (forested areas) and 72 percent of fawns born in central Pennsylvania (agricultural areas) survive through the summer.  This means that between 28-43% of fawns will not live to 6 months of age in Pennsylvania. The majority of this mortality occurs before they are 3 months old.  Mortality factors include predators, starvation, failure to nurse, infections, and parasites.  It is a harsh reality.

However, in the wild, fawns have a fighting chance. In the arms of a person, they are as good as dead.

So lend a helping hand by keeping YOUR HANDS to yourself. Look but do not touch and you can save a life!

Jeannine Tardiff Fleegle

Wildlife Biologist, Deer & Elk Section

Pennsylvania Game Commission