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FARMER — These whitetails have quite a tale. "They were big deer, I know that," said Annette Steilen, who lives in rural Hanson County. On Tuesday night, Annette and her husband, Paul, were out checking cattle when she noticed something didn't quite look right. What they found turned into a heck of a memory. The Steilens found two male whitetail deer with their antlers locked together. As they approached the animals, they noticed one had its head down and was dragging the other, which had already died.
MITCHELL, S.D. — Poachers, beware. Hunters trespassing and anglers fishing without a license continue to be the most-issued citations by state conservation officers. According to a recently released report by the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks Department, there was a 17 percent increase in violations reported by state wildlife officers in 2016 compared to the previous year.
Some hunters and anglers caught more than they bargained for in 2016. Hunters trespassing and anglers fishing without a license continue to be the most-issued citations by state conservation officers. According to a recently released report by the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks Department, there was a 17 percent increase in violations reported by state wildlife officers in 2016 compared to the previous year.
SALEM — McCook Central/Montrose has seen enough of Daymein Lucas. Sioux Valley's senior running back bounced off tackles, broke free for big gains and scored three touchdowns Friday night to keep the No. 1-ranked Cossacks unbeaten this season. The meeting — which included the last two unbeatens in Class 11B — handed MCM its first loss. "He's a horse," McCook Central/Montrose coach Ryan Evans said following his team's 34-7 loss to Sioux Valley. "And he's been a horse for four straight years."
Craig Haiar is determined to pass down hunting knowledge to his children. On a crisp fall morning, the 44-year-old Mitchell native treks across a field with one of his favorite hunting partners, his middle son, Andrew, who holds on tight. Andrew, 12, was born with spina bifida, but he loves to hunt despite limited mobility from using a wheelchair. And his father loves to bring him, even if it means piggybacking his child into the field. "He's come along and sat on top of some round bales on pretty cold mornings," Craig said.
Patience, pheasant hunters. Despite a 45 percent drop in an annual pheasant survey earlier this year, Gov. Dennis Daugaard believes his habitat work group has been a difference-maker in South Dakota. In December 2013, Daugaard hosted a Pheasant Habitat Summit due to concerns from the public over declining numbers in the species across the state that resulted in the formation of the habitat work group.
On Saturday morning, I returned to a small pasture and waterhole where my black Labrador made his first bird retrieve some eight years ago. Fighting dense fog and swarms of mosquitos, a three-man hunting group and the now partially gray-faced lab, Bear, got out hunting for early-goose opener over the weekend. It was nothing spectacular, but we made a few shots and enjoyed the outdoors. After a more-successful hunt Sunday morning, an unwanted realization hit me later in the evening. My lab, my best friend, is getting old. I don't like it.
Significant South Dakota drought has shot down the state’s pheasant population. The South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks Department’s annual survey released Friday morning shows a 45 percent decline statewide in the number of pheasants per mile. The results showed a statewide pheasants-per-mile index of 1.68, down from last year’s index of 3.05.
DELMONT — More than two years after a devastating tornado clobbered Delmont's Zion Lutheran Church, there was celebration and dedication. An estimated 420 people were in attendance Saturday in Delmont to see the new, rebuilt place of worship during a two-hour service that included laughter, tears and memories. "The attendance is overwhelming," said Terry Klumb, the chairman of the church's building committee, who has called Zion his church for 20-plus years.
Dan DeBoer and Pheasants Forever are working to build a community-effort initiative to bring more public hunting opportunities to South Dakota. A farm bill biologist, the 23-year-old DeBoer moved to Mitchell for his new job in the beginning of May. He's one of 13 biologists working for Pheasants Forever in South Dakota, and each of them will play a crucial role attempting to expand the state's Walk In Areas acreage, with a long-term goal to boost community businesses.