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Crocus, saffron, 1st shed, HB2783, HB2783, John Muir: Notes, Chicago outdoors

Dan Davies found his first shed antler this month around Griffith, Ind.
Provided

Notes from around Chicago outdoors.

FIELD NOTES

WILD OF THE WEEK

Dan Davies emailed, “I remembered something I read In one of your columns about where to look. I found this about 10 feet past a downed tree. I’m sure he jumped over the tree and the landing caused the antler to drop. I’m 65 years young and this is my first find.”

That made my month.

WOTW, the celebration of wild scenes around Chicago outdoors, runs as warranted on Sundays on the Sun-Times outdoors page. Send nominations by Facebook (Dale Bowman), Twitter (@BowmanOutside) or email straycasts@sbcglobal.net.

DALE’S MAILBAG

“Question, crocuses are in. Can you pick the stamens and dry for domestic saffron?Have you ever heard this?” Anonymous

A: I had not heard of this, but Holly Froning, a master gardener and master naturalist coordinator for University of Illinois Extension, emailed, “I am really into this right now. No, crocus you buy at Walmart will not work. It has to be a special variety. It comes from Iraq. I have ordered some for a fall planting. You harvest in the fall. I will keep you in the loop.” Great, more stuff to try.

BIG NUMBER

12-0: Votes by which HB2783 (which permits limited rifle hunting for deer in Illinois) and HB2778 (which makes each opening weekend for any hunting season at least four days) passed the House Agriculture and Conservation committee last week.

LAST WORD

John Muir.<br>Library of Congress
John Muir.
Library of Congress

“One is constantly reminded of the infinite lavishness and fertility of Nature — inexhaustible abundance amid what seems enormous waste. And yet when we look into any of her operations that lie within reach of our minds, we learn that no particle of her material is wasted or worn out.”

John Muir, in “My First Summer in the Sierra”

WILD TIMES

LAKE MICHIGAN FISHERIES WORKSHOPS

By Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant, 6-8:30 p.m. Contact Mitchell Zischke at mzischke@purdue.edu or (765) 494-9717. Tuesday: Hammond Marina. Wednesday: North Point Marina

The complete flyer on the IISG Lake Michigan fisheries workshops on April 2 and 3.<br>Provided
The complete flyer on the IISG Lake Michigan fisheries workshops on April 2 and 3.
Provided

ILLINOIS PERMITS/SEASONS

Today, March 31: Final day, first of two statewide youth spring turkey hunts

Saturday: Inland trout season opens

Saturday-next Sunday, April 6-7: Second of two statewide youth spring turkey hunts

Now: Remaining spring turkey permits on sale over the counter, click here for more info

Through April 30: Applications (limit of one) accepted for first lottery for resident firearm and muzzleloader deer hunting, click here for more info

HENRY’S COHO DERBY

Saturday: Henry’s Sports and Bait’s 15th annual spring coho derby, Navy Pier on Saturday.

Provided
Provided

KAYAK FISHING

Saturday, April 6: Learn to Kayak Fish for Trout and Salmon with Rob Wendel, Lake Michigan Angler, Winthrop Harbor, 9 a.m.-noon

HUNTER SAFETY

(Click here for full package of northeast Illinois hunter safety classes)

April 9, 11, 16, 18: Downers Grove, (630) 963-1300 Class #271006-01

April 12-13: Morris, philliparnold3@gmail.com or (815) 343-7330

April 18-20: Bonfield, (815) 635-3198

April 27-28: Palatine, palatineparks.org . . . Coal City, (815) 634-4552

U.S. COAST GUARD AUXILIARY

(Click here for full listings of classes in the area)

Saturday, April 6: About Boating Safely, Chicago, Dan O’Connell, cgaux.doc@gmail.com

DUCKS UNLIMITED

(Click here for the general list of Illinois DU events)

Friday, April 5: West Suburban dinner, Royalty West Banquets, Willow Springs, Cathie Stuart,(630) 890-9387 or Rick Scheer, (708) 860-1602

NATIONAL WILD TURKEY FEDERATION

(Click here for general list of banquets and events)

PHEASANTS FOREVER

(Click here for general list of Illinois PF events)

SHOWTIME

(Click here for the list of shows, classes and seminars)