By: Jake Harvey
As the mornings get cooler and the leaves start falling, you know it’s time for hunting. The action began October 10, with the opening of squirrel for junior hunters only; the main season started the following Saturday. Also, October 10 was the start of pheasant and cottontail rabbit hunting for junior hunters only.
In the meantime, while you’re hunting small game, make sure to get your traps waxed and dyed for the start of the trapping season on October 25, with the season extending all the way to February 21. If you have seen signs of a fisher or bobcat on your trapping property, apply for a special permit to trap one per license year. The fisher trapping season is December 19 to December 24 and the bobcat season is December 19 through January 10.
On November 21, the first big game season opens with the statewide black bear hunt extending only through November 25. The white-tailed deer season opened for archery on October 3 until November 14 to get a chance on a pre-rut buck still following a daily pattern. Archers get another chance at a deer from December 26 to January 9. In late November into early December (depending on where you hunt), the most popular big game hunt begins in one of the top hunting states in the nation, the Pennsylvania white-tailed deer rifle hunt. The season extends to roughly mid-December depending on where you hunt and whether you’re hunting antlered or antlerless deer. If you’re an old school kind of hunter, you can have another opportunity to fill your deer tags with the statewide flintlock hunt from December 26 to January 9.
The Squire caught up with two local hunters and trappers Hunter McNutt and Chris Kibbey to get a personal view on hunting.
The Squire: What tags have you purchased for the upcoming hunting seasons?
Chris Kibbey: I have purchased bear, antlered and antlerless deer, and a furbearer license.
TS: What is your favorite animal to hunt?
CK: The majestic white-tailed deer.
TS: What kind of success did you have hunting last year?
CK: I had great success last year, tagging out with an eight point and getting my doe in the early season.
TS: What do you do over the summer to prepare for the seasons in the fall?
CK: I start in the spring by setting up trail cameras and watch them develop throughout the summer.
TS: What do you do with the animals you harvest? Skin them and sell the furs? Send the meat to get processed to eat?
CK: After getting them home, we take the deer to get processed to eat.
Next, The Squire asked Hunter McNutt about his hunting experiences.
The Squire: When you go hunting, who do you go with?
Hunter McNutt: My dad, and sometimes Owen Nizzi.
TS: What is the biggest animal you have ever killed?
HM: My seven point buck shot on Miller Hill.
TS: Do you usually process the meat of your harvest yourself?
HM: Yes, we process it in my garage.
TS: What would be your dream hunt if you could hunt anything, anywhere in the world?
HM: Grizzly Bear or Moose
Good luck to everybody hunting this year. Contact me by email at HarveyJaA@wcsdpa.org for a chance to be in featured in future articles or on The Squire website.