Shadow: Don’t let the cooler weather get in the way of your outdoor activities | Sports


The forecast is for a temperature drop of about 28 degrees to minimum in the next few days, but let’s not panic and go into hibernation.

Of course, there will likely be freezing early in the morning, but temperatures will rise by midday, leaving plenty of time for fun and outdoor experiences.

One of the advantages at this time of year and at these temperatures is the absence of insects, bees and mosquitoes. In addition, the frost will make great changes in the colors of trees and other flora. Autumn is a time of great color and regeneration so we can look forward to the arrival of spring.

I think the hummingbirds must be far south now and I haven’t seen bees plundering their feeders for a while now. However, there is still plenty of wildlife to enjoy as well as the changing colors of the vegetation. Birds always eat the seeds of Milo plants near Rosalie’s bird feeders as well as considerable amounts of bird food. She’s hoping the very pretty flowers that were spontaneous shoots near the back porch will reseed and come back. They are so pretty.

I have noticed changes in the coat of our horses recently. It’s amazing how they go from sleek, shiny coats to new fuzzy hair growth and then to their longer winter coats. I don’t have a dog currently so I’m not sure but I bet they have more fur as well. It’s not just the cooler weather, but the shorter hours of sunshine that triggers this process, I think.

It’s probably time to roll up the outdoor garden hoses and dump things like lawn rollers etc. Be sure to disconnect the hoses from the outdoor fire hydrants or they could burst the “freeze resistant” fire hydrant. This is because the hose can prevent the hydrant from discharging water at the end of the duty cycle if the hose is still connected. Remember to check for antifreeze in tractors, lawn equipment and vehicles soon.

Obviously the archery season is in full swing and several beautiful deer have been reported. They are nice to look at from the point of view of large racks, but also have a pleasant taste. The cooler weather makes it easier to care for your harvested animal, but there’s still a need to cool it down quickly and get it to a cooler or processor quickly. The “rut,” or mating season, is coming soon, and these activities bring more money to where it is most visible. It also causes more deer activity on the roads, so be on the lookout.

Also, don’t put your fishing rods away just because it’s a little cooler. Wait a bit later in the day and it’s quite pleasant, especially on days when the sun is shining and the temperatures are bearable. Some of the best crappie and sea bass traps I caught were in late October and early November. If the water is not “hard”, the fish will be catchable. It is the fishermen who oppose the cold, not the fish.

Be sure to take the time to observe the pelicans on Mattoon Lake as they forage for their meal. These creatures are incredible to watch for both their majestic stature and their foraging abilities.

We addicted equines must continue to do maintenance and training exercises for our horses. Stall maintenance tasks as well as exercise and training drills are easy to postpone when the weather is cool. Much depends on the horse’s training level, but some of the younger ones or those who are not yet at a stable stage of their training will lose a lot quickly. Consistency is the secret to success in these activities, as is the case with most other activities in life.

Dave Shadow is a National Fishing Champion and Outdoor Columnist. Contact him at [email protected]

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