Chicago outdoors: ‘Bohemian business,’ Chinook eggs, hairy woodpecker and water safety

A “bohemian business” quote on fishing, Chinook eggs collected, a tight photo of a hairy woodpecker and a cautionary note on water safety are among the notes from around Chicago outdoors and beyond.

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A hairy woodpecker rewarded for its work on the Northwest Side. Credit: Ron Wozny

A hairy woodpecker rewarded for its work on the Northwest Side.

Ron Wozny

Notes come from around Chicago outdoors and beyond.


Ron Wozny captured this tight view of a hairy woodpecker working diligently on the Northwest Side .”I can’t figure if it’s a carpenter ant or what, but he was drilling the nub for three or four minutes,” he messaged.

WOTW, the celebration of wild stories and photos around Chicago outdoors, runs most weeks in the special two-page outdoors section in the Sun-Times Sports Saturday. To make submissions, email or contact me on Facebook (Dale Bowman), Twitter (@BowmanOutside) or Instagram (@BowmanOutside).



Wednesday, Oct. 27: Anthony Zimmer, “Fall Strategies for Clear Deep Water Lake Walleyes,” Walleyes Unlimited, Gurnee American Legion, 7 p.m.,


Sunday, Oct. 24: Final day, central zone youth waterfowl hunt

Monday, Oct. 25: North zone, light goose season opens

Tuesday, Oct. 26: Late-winter, CWD deer season lottery opens

Thursday, Oct. 28: Crow season opens


“Thirty-three years ago, a good friend drowned after falling in a violent Wolf while pulling up the anchor when the weather was changing. The current took him away so fast that no one could save him and he was found a week later after a two-day search came up with nothing. My fishing group decided on a rule that no one is allowed on a boat without wearing a flotation device.” Excerpt from David Homer email, Evanston

A: His point taken. FYI, I sat on a flotation cushion while under power. I sat, except when stopped and fishing. We weren’t using an anchor. Guide Bill Stoeger has a Minn Kota Spot Lock, which eliminates anyone needing to yank the anchor free.


2.3 million: Chinook egg collection at Wisconsin’s Strawberry Creek during five collection days, the last on Monday.


“I think I fish, in part, because it’s an anti-social, bohemian business that, when gone about properly, puts you forever outside the mainstream culture without actually landing you in an institution.”

John Gierach quote, via

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