The summer or June solstice, the first day of summer, will arrive at 11:54 a.m. EDT (15:54 GMT or UTC) on Friday, June 21. The sun will “stand still” (solstice) in its apparent progress north in the sky and then begin moving southward.

This day has the longest period of daylight of the year in the northern hemisphere and the shortest period of daylight in the southern hemisphere. For this latitude and longitude (Maryville, Tenn.) the sun will rise at 6:19 a.m. and it will be on the northeastern horizon; it will set at 8:56 p.m. on the northwestern horizon.

Even though the solstice is the longest period of daylight of the year, it is not the latest sunset, nor is it the earliest sunrise. Those exact dates vary with latitude, but the sequence is always the same: Earliest sunrise before the summer solstice; longest day on the summer solstice; latest sunset after the summer solstice.

BOATING: For the fifth consecutive year there were no boating-related fatalities over the Memorial Day weekend. During the period from May 24-27, the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency reports that there were five injury incidents and six property damage incidents. TWRA Region IV in East Tennessee had two of the injury and five property damage incidents.

TWRA Boating and Law Enforcement officers made 21 boating under the influence (BUI) arrests, the most since the same number was reported in 2016 over the holiday weekend. The number is an increase from 10 in 2018, a holiday weekend which rain over much of the state slowed activity on the water. TWRA Region II, which encompasses several lakes in Middle Tennessee, reported the most BUI arrests with eight.

CWD: The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency has established the new CWD Unit in West Tennessee to keep chronic wasting disease from spreading. Special regulations in the CWD Unit are intended to increase the deer harvest by empowering hunters to harvest more while targeting high-risk deer and allowing the agency to sample more deer to better understand the disease.

Data collected so far indicates that bucks are twice as likely as does to have CWD. Older bucks are three times more likely to have CWD than younger bucks. Other research indicates that bucks have a much larger home range so the likelihood of bucks transporting CWD to new areas is higher. For all these reasons, the harvest of bucks will help the most with accomplishing these goals; however the harvest of does is also important since they can spread the disease as well. For these reasons the following hunting regulation changes were made to Unit CWD counties:

Earn-A-Buck

• Tennessee’s antlered deer bag limit of two did not change; therefore it still applies to hunters hunting Unit CWD as well as the rest of the state.

• Only hunters hunting in Unit CWD counties may earn additional bucks.

• Unit CWD hunters may earn up to two bucks for harvest, in addition to the statewide antler deer bag limit of two.

• Earned bucks are received by harvesting two Unit CWD antlerless deer, checking them in, submitting them for CWD testing, and being notified by TWRA.

• Earn-A-Buck will increase the number of deer (does and bucks) harvested and the numbers of deer tested for CWD.

Replacement Bucks

• Unit CWD hunters will receive a replacement buck if they harvest a CWD-positive buck and the lab result is confirmed by TWRA.

• There is no limit on the number of replacement bucks.

• Replacement bucks will encourage hunters to continue hunting and harvesting and be an added incentive for hunters to have their deer tested for CWD.

In Unit CWD: The August three-day hunt now allows the use of muzzleloaders in addition to archery, and applies to most public lands (Presidents Island in Shelby County is excluded); muzzleloader season will begin on Oct. 28 and gun season will begin on Nov 9; during the January five-day private lands hunt (traditionally antlerless only) antlered harvest will be included; mandatory physical check weekends will be on Nov. 2-3 and Nov. 9-10, except for Hardeman and Fayette counties.

The CWD hunting regulations only apply to CWD positive counties of Fayette, Hardeman, and Madison and CWD high-risk counties of Chester, Haywood, McNairy, Shelby, and Tipton. Carcass export and wildlife feeding restrictions remain in place for Unit CWD.

For more information on CWD visit CWDinTennessee.com or Ask.TWRA@tn.gov.

Email wiest.tom@gmail.com to share your news and comments with Tom Wiest.

Tom Wiest is a long time columnist on all matters outdoors. He welcomes news, questions and comments from readers.

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