Shed hunting…..

Taking advantage of the later daylight hours, I took the kids shed hunting after dinner this evening. Now most of you are going to be thrown by the term and think that we are out trying to spot little buildings in which you keep garden and yard equipment. While that certainly would be easier to do, what we are actually looking for is our in the woods and treelines. They are the “sheds” or dropped deer antlers that come off the male deer this time of year. It is a perfect opportunity to get the kids involved because you don’t have to dress up in camo, they don’t have to be all that particularly quiet (the sheds aren’t going anywhere), and it gets you outdoors to enjoy nature.

So we all grabbed walking sticks and headed out back. We started on the treeline closest to the house. I instructed the kids on what they were looking for and where some good possible locations are — on either side of fencerows, opposite sides of creeks or streams, and along the wildlife trails especially near trees or low hanging branches. Basically any place where the deer might have some jolt or bump that might knock off their antlers.

About a half hour into our “hunt”, we were along one of the back creeks. The kids were a little bit ahead of me and I was about 3 or 4 feet up along a slanted tree that had fallen during a windstorm but got caught up on another tree leaving the top end suspended and the entire tree at a 45 degree angle. Suddenly, there was a ruckus 20 feet behind us. Quickly emerging from the winter vegetation was a beautiful huge female turkey. The hen took off running away from us and across the neighboring sod farm. I called out to the kids and we all got a really good look at it. She was just beautiful and, for me, it made it a successful outing.

We headed all the way to the pond on the back where I thought we might get lucky. There are several incoming deer trails that lead to the pond and their various bed down locations. We searched intently but did not find anything other than tracks and droppings. We finished the back property as the sun went down. I proceeded to the location where I want to build my environmental, 100% off-the-grid, self sustaining house and watched the first sunset I can remember from that location. The sun eased below the far treeline and we slowly made our way back to the house.

We came home with nothing but memories but had lots of fun on our first shed hunting excursion.

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net

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