During the recently held AGM of the SCI Italian Chapter, the new Board of Directors was elected. Lodovico Caldesi, fifth from left, was re-elected President. International Director Uberto d’Entreves, left, congratulated all for their dedication to the Chapter and SCI, and wished buona fortuna (Good Luck) in their future activities.
By Jack McCormick, President, SCI Northern New Mexico Chapter and Herb Atkinson, Region 10 Representative
Like other wildlife agencies across the country, the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish is concerned about the numbers of new hunters and shooters being recruited to those activities. One study showed that nationally only 67 young hunters and shooters are replacing every 100 hunters and shooters who stop being active.
The NM Game Department’s shooting program is one response to help reverse that trend.
This year, department officer, Mark Gruber, took the job as the full time Shooting Program Coordinator. Mark is an avid hunter and shotgun shooter, and has previously been active in the program.
In the early stages of the program, the Department concentrated on training youth shotgun coaches, providing ammunition to the shooting teams, and sponsoring an annual youth fun shoot. Now that the program has a full time manager, the agency wants to recruit more youth shooters by conducting several “First Shot” events. “First Shot” is a program of the National Shooting Sports Foundation designed to introduce as many interested youth as possible to the shooting sports.
Always in a need for funding, the Department approached Jack McCormick, President of the Northern New Mexico Chapter of SCI, about the possibility of financial help for the program. The plan is to assemble an enclosed trailer that can be taken all over the State of New Mexico to conduct “First Shot” events. The Game and Fish Department is going to purchase the trailer and the Northern New Mexico Chapter is donating the money to purchase a very colorful wrap for the trailer. In addition, the chapter is purchasing ten shotguns and a ProMatic clay target trap. Ron Peterson Firearms of Albuquerque has also generously donated $1000.00 to the program.
The total chapter financial contribution to the program is $6,790.00!
Other state Game Departments have similar shooting trailers and find them a great way to attract new shooters. The NM Game Department has had great success using seven archery trailers across the state. The trailers have the same bows, arrows and targets used in the National Archery in the Schools Program. Summer camps and schools that have trained archery instructors, but no equipment, use the trailers until they are able to purchase the supplies and equipment they need.
With the help of Pittman-Robertson Act funds, the department also has plans to help communities build shooting ranges in areas that currently do not have formal places for shooters to sight in their rifles or practice their wing-shooting.
Working with the two Safari Club Chapters in New Mexico, the Department will be investigating new avenues to attract more shooters and hunters to the sport. We cannot think of a better goal than introducing new shooters to the sport that we all love!
SCI is pleased to welcome Paul Cwiklinski, Western & Central New York Chapter member, as a new seminar speaker at the 2013 SCI Convention in Reno, NV, January 23 through 26, 2013. The subject of his seminar will be “Whitetail Food Plots For Small Acreage.” In this seminar, Paul will discuss food plot growing basics. With 50 years of whitetail hunting under his belt, including 23 years of food plotting, Paul has shown consistent success using only 13 acres of property and a 1-acre food plot. He will show in this step-by-step approach, how to attract, grow and hold whitetail deer and other game to properties as small as 7 acres with food plots as little as 3/4 of an acre in size.
This visually informative seminar will educate the “every day hunter” who, with a little “sweat equity,”can maximize the potential for increased body mass and antler growth with minimal expense for a standing food plot. Learn plot placement, maintenance and record keeping techniques that will give the average hunter valuable information from spring through the rut, and right through the winter months when whitetail nutrition is most critical.
The Ninth Annual San Diego Junior Pheasant Hunt, sponsored by San Diego Chapter of SCI and SCI Foundation, was held in the fields near Santa Ysabel, California, in March.
In all, 72 excited and happy youth hunters checked in at 7 a.m. to start their adventure in the field. Each youth was given an orange hat emblazoned with the San Diego Junior Pheasant Hunt logo, a name tag with their team designation number and color, and a drawing ticket for their pheasant to be mounted by a local taxidermist. A volunteer outfitter headed each team and each held a colored flag for the kids to identify as their team.
Volunteers for the day included three presidents of related sporting organizations, two San Diego County Fish and Wildlife Commissioners, two college professors, one medical doctor, one California Game Warden, one veterinarian, three San Diego Chapter Board members, five California Hunter Safety Instructors, 12 dog handlers, and 45 other equally important volunteers.
After a safety briefing, a solemn moment to honor our military wounded and fallen warriors, and the pledge of allegiance, the teams moved to one of eight stations.
The stations included an archery field, .22 rifle range, shotgun trap range, dog retrieving exhibition area by Raney Ranch Retrievers, Department of Agriculture Federal Trappers, a seminar about turkeys and then to the fields for the actual hunt for two pheasants each and finally to the pheasant cleaning station with their birds.
When the last team finished cleaning their birds, lunch was served. Janice Mendenhall and her family from My Country Club were busy serving delicious hamburgers and hotdogs with chocolate chip cookies for dessert. While the kids were eating, tickets were drawn for a bow donated by Jim Connors, owner of Willow Creek Archery, and a 5-day hunt in South Africa with Inyathi Safaris donated by Andy Goudeau.
San Diego Junior Pheasant Hunt thanks the San Diego Chapter of Safari Club International and Safari Club International Foundation for their continued support.