The Lake Mary Association held its annual Ice Out Contest this past year, and saw 26 contestents correctly pick April 11 as the ice off date for Lake Mary.
Of those 26 contestents, three were randomly drawn for the top three finishers.
Taking home first place was Richard Fasching of Winsted; second place went to Nicole Browman of Rush City; and third place belongs to Nancy Rogers of Minnetonka.
All of the proceeds from this yearly contest are used for the sole purpose of stocking Lake Mary (bi-annually) with six-inch fingerling walleye.
Thus far, with the efforst of the Winsted Sportsmen’s Club, the Watertown Rod and Gub Club, and the Lake Mary Association; over 12,000 walleye have been introduced to Lake Mary since 1999.
Trapshooting is coming up in area
Several clubs around the area will be kicking off their trapshooting season very soon.
The Lester Prairie Sportsmen’s Club is currently looking for interested teams for the 2009 league season, which runs Wednesday nights, April 22 through Aug. 19.
Shooting hours are from 6 to 9:30 p.m. For information, or to enter a team, call (320) 395-2258 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Prairie Archers steak/shrimp dinner
Prairie Archers will be hosting a steak/shrimp dinner at the Dodge House in Lester Prairie Saturday, April 25 from 5 to 8 p.m.
Costs run from $8 to $12. Call in your reservations before 6 p.m. Friday, April 24 to Jim Richardson (320) 395-2721 or to the Dodge House at (320) 395-2877.
Keep birds healthy; clean feeders regulary
From the DNR
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is encouraging people with bird feeders to take several steps to keep birds healthy.
“Moldy birdseed and unclean bird feeders can cause birds to become sick,” said Carrol Henderson, DNR Nongame wildlife program supervisor. “In wet weather, it is common for mold or bacteria to form on wet birdseed either in the feeder or on the ground. Mold can cause fatal avian diseases.”
Henderson said people should rake or sweep up fallen seeds and seed hulls under feeders to prevent bacteria from occurring on the ground.
He offered the following additional tips to minimize the threat of disease:
• Clean a bird feeder, use a solution of two ounces of bleach with one gallon of water and scrub the entire surface.
• Allow the cleaned feeder to dry out in the sun; sunlight will help kill bacteria on the feeder.
• Hummingbird feeders should be cleaned about every week to ten days during the summer.
• Keep the feed dry by using a hopper-type or a fly-through feeder and always scrape out old seed that has accumulated.
More information on attracting and feeding birds is available in “Wild about Birds: The DNR Bird Feeding Guide: and in “Landscaping for Wildlife.”
Both books are for sale at Minnesota’s Bookstore at www.minnesotasbookstore.com, or by calling 800-657-3757.
The production of these books was made possible by donations to the Nongame Wildlife Fund on state income and property tax forms.
MN streams in good shape for state-wide streak trout opener
From the DNR
Trout anglers likely will find good fishing conditions when streams opened statewide Saturday for trout fishing.
“Trout populations are generally in good shape in the southeast streams,” said Mark Ebbers, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) trout and salmon program consultant. “In many streams, adult populations are at the same level as they were before the flood in 2007.”
Anglers can find trout stream locations online at http://mndnr.gov/fishing/trout_streams.
Specific information on the Whitewater River, a popular trout fishing destination in southeastern Minnesota, is available online at www.mndnr.gov/areas/fisheries/crystalsprings_hatchery/stream_cond.html.
Trout streams with special regulations are listed in the DNR’s 2009 Fishing Regulations booklet.
Anglers fishing for stream trout must possess a trout stamp validation in addition to a regular fishing or combination license.
Licenses and trout stamps purchased in 2008 expire at midnight on April 30. The trout stamp validation costs $10.
“Purchasing trout stamps is an investment in Minnesota’s cold water fisheries,” Ebbers said. “Funds raised through the program go directly to benefit trout habitat.”
Questions of the week
From the DNR
Q: It’s not uncommon for lakeshore property owners to return to their cabins in the spring to find damage to their shoreline, docks, boatlifts, retaining walls and sometimes to the cabins themselves. What causes this?
A: This type of property damage is caused by a phenomenon called “ice heaving” or “ice jacking.”
As ice freezes and thaws, cracks form because of the different contraction rates at the top and bottom of the ice sheet.
This is especially true in years when there’s a lack of insulating snow cover.
When water rises in cracks and freezes, the ice sheet expands slightly.
Rising air temperatures warms the ice, which causes the additional expansion to exert a tremendous thrust against the shore.
This powerful natural force forms a feature along the shoreline known as an ice ridge.
These ridges can sometimes reach as high as five feet or more.
Additional warming and cooling of an ice sheet can cause additional pushing and exert enough pressure to nudge bridge masonry piers out of plumb and push houses off their foundations.
For more information, including specifics about when a repair permit is needed, contact your local DNR area hydrologist.