August marks a summer change, but not an end in Pennsylvania
The last few nights at my home have been different weather-wise. We shut down the air conditioning, opened some windows and fell asleep while a pleasant breeze eased through a bedroom window.
I’m well aware that many more hours of hot weather remain before we’ll experience a general cooling of the overall weather pattern, and the hot afternoons remind me summer still holds a strong grip over the land. Still, cooler evenings and mornings kindle plenty of thoughts toward future months and all the hunting and fishing seasons that unfold then in the outdoor world.
Wildlife seems attuned to the lessened heat of morning and evening. In my travels, I’m seeing more and more fawns, much bigger than a month ago, without the presence of their mothers, although I’m certain mom is never far away.
Bucks seem to be experiencing a mood swing, too. They’re starting to “hang” with other bucks as bachelor groups and appearing more often than just a couple of weeks past.
Just the other day I had a special experience while driving along a back-country road, and when rounding a bend was brought to a halt by the crossing of two mature wild turkey hens and their various-sized poults.
Luckily, I had my camera with and was able to snap a couple of shots before they disappeared into a field of standing corn. The size difference of the poults shows that they were hatched on well-spread-apart days of spring, but that their mothers saw no problem in uniting their broods for improved survival.
And with the Pennsylvania Game Commission just recently announcing that it was seeking help for the annual statewide volunteer turkey count, I plan to report this sighting, and by so doing, help the commission attain information on wild turkey reproduction and survival.
I can now both easily and eagerly foresee days of fishing cool fall waters, dropping duck decoys into some promising large puddles for that fowl’s early season, climbing a tree for some serious early season archery, while knowing full well that small game and the gun seasons for deer are not far behind.
And all it really took to stimulate those thought waves in my aging brain was a cool nighttime breeze sliding over me as I fell asleep.