Nature’s fireworks show peaks Monday
By Tom Wiest | (firstname.lastname@example.org)
This should be a good year to view the Perseid meteor shower. It peaks on Monday night and the first quarter moon will not interfere, having set a couple of hours after the sun. The nights before and after the peak will be pretty good, too.
The Perseid meteor shower occurs when the Earth passes through the dust from the orbital path of the comet Swift-Tuttle. There should be 60 to 100 shooting stars per hour over the entire sky, and more large “fireballs” than any other meteor shower; their flight paths will appear to travel from the constellation Perseus in the northeast.
Find a dark sky and clear horizon far from city lights and get comfortable. The best viewing is after midnight.
• The fourth Saturday of August is the traditional opening of hunting season, with squirrel beginning on Aug. 24 and ending on Feb. 28. There are three hunted species of squirrels: Gray (most plentiful), fox (largest) and red (smallest, called “boomers”). The daily bag limit for all species combined is ten.
Aug. 24 is also Free Hunting Day in Tennessee. All hunters who are Tennessee residents are exempted from hunting licenses and wildlife management area permits. This is an excellent opportunity to initiate a new hunter, treat an ex-hunter to an outing, or treat yourself to a relaxing day afield. More details are at http://www.tnwildlife.org .
• The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency is seeking fields to lease for public use for the upcoming 2013 dove season. The first phase of dove season begins at noon on Sunday, Sept. 1 and closes on Sept. 26.
Landowners with a harvested grain field or millet hay field, or a partially harvested one, should promptly contact their TWRA regional office for consideration. Our Region IV’s phone number is 800-332-0900. Other contact information is at http://www.tnwildlife.org or contact Tim White, TWRA Migratory Game Bird Program Coordinator at 615-781-6610.
At least three dates for public use are required, Sept. 1 (opening day) and two succeeding weekend days. Rates paid to landowners will be $75 per acre for a maximum field size of 40 acres for a total contract of $3,000 per field.
• For those needing a hunter education certificate — that’s anyone born after 1968 — be advised that now the only way to sign up for a hunter education class is online. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency lists the upcoming classes on its website, which you can see by going to http://www.tnwildlife.org and selecting Hunting, then Hunter Education.
Those wanting to take a class will click the “register for a hunter education class” link; there will be directions to search for classes closest to your area. Registration must be completed prior to the starting date of a class. For those persons without computer access, they are encouraged to visit a local library or call a TWRA regional office for further assistance. Region IV’s phone number is 800-332-0900.
Tom Wiest welcomes news, questions and comments from readers. Contact him at (email@example.com)