New York – Mike Raykovicz

Another season on the border

Summer’s gone. Well, almost. It’s September and now I have things to do. Get the pool ready for winter, rebuild a few treestands, put away the patio furniture and set some trail cameras, all in anticipation of archery season. I consider myself fortunate because I live so close to the Pennsylvania border and can hunt two states. The Pennsylvania archery…

Carp fishing underrated

Crossing the bridge spanning the Susquehanna River on an afternoon walk, I stopped and peered over the bridge rail to watch several large carp feeding along the river bottom. I knew it was carp from the telltale puff of mud each made as it slowly moved upstream. Carp were originally farm-raised in Asia for food from about 400 B.C. but…

Hunting’s latest challenge

Needing some fresh eggs, I decided to take a ride to one of the Pennsylvania farms I hunt and get a dozen for me and another for the farmer whose land I also hunt. I picked up the eggs, which I doubted the chickens even missed yet, and drove three more miles to the other farm. Expressing his gratitude for…

A different kind of deer drive

“Working on the highway laying down the blacktop, working on the highway all day long I don’t stop.” These lyrics, first sung by Bruce Springsteen back in 1984, kept going through my head as my friend Dave and I worked to repair the dirt road leading from the Tioga County highway down a steep hill to the lower half of…

Sights and sounds in the turkey woods

June is here but it was a good May and full of memorable moments in the woods. The last week of a rather quiet turkey season, I was sitting in a favorite calling location when I had the good fortune to run into one of the least seen birds of the forest, a male scarlet tanager. There's no mistaking one,…

The Turkey Hunting Obsession

Besides being a passionate bowhunter, I'm just as passionate and devoted to spring turkey hunting. Bowhunting is fun, but by nature it's stealthy business. Avoiding detection by a whitetail's nose is always the first order of business when hunting deer but fortunately for us turkey devotees, a turkey can't smell. Someone once said if a turkey could smell like a…

Trucking into spring gobbler season

As I get older I’ve found I’ve become less tolerant of a lot of things. For example, last week I took my year-old truck back to the dealer to see if they could install intermittent windshield wipers as a retrofit. For more money than I paid for my house, I felt the new truck would at least have a necessary…

Falling into the trap

Last week I took advantage of the nice weather we had here in the Southern Tier and headed to the local sportsmen’s club for a few rounds of trap shooting. Trap shooting is something I usually do after the spring turkey season ends and before the fall bow season begins, but the sun and warm breeze got me started earlier than…

Politics often stymies sound wildlife management

It’s often interesting to see how things are done in other parts of the country. A few weeks ago, I was visiting my son and his family in North Carolina and happened to check the sports section of the local newspaper. An outdoor column written by an area writer caught my attention because of the headline: “Most South Carolina Hunters Want…

Pa. joins N.Y. in ‘Compact’

I read a few weeks back where Pennsylvania has now joined 35 other states, including New York, in a united front to put the hammer down on serious poaching violations. What this means is someone who loses his or her hunting license privileges in one of the “Compact” states for certain poaching offenses will lose those hunting license privileges in…

Surrendering to technology

As a hunter, particularly a bowhunter, I always wondered what was happening around my stand in my absence. In the not-too-distant past I stretched sewing thread along deer travel routes and checked to see if any thread was broken. If it was, it told me a deer had passed in the night and the spot was still worth hunting. At…

Those dog-gone coyotes

Saw a lot of coyote tracks last month here in the Southern Tier and even heard packs of them howling after dark during the archery season. I know there are numerous trappers in the area who target them but I can’t help thinking they must be hard to catch. I was a fox trapper when I was in high school…

Woodland walks

I like being in the woods any time of year and the other day I felt like taking a walk. I decided to check some of my bowhunting sites to see if I could discern any wildlife activity.  For wild things, food is at a premium in December and a harvested cornfield always attracts a variety of critters.  From the…