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Old Sep 6, 2008, 1:10 AM   #4
Old Engineer
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Join Date: Jun 2007
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Until a few years ago I and my brother owned a large tract of land we had bought at depression prices. It was run down terribly. We improved it over a forty year period, the were offered a great price by the U.S. Government, and sold it to become part of the National Forest System.

From its austere beginnings, practically barren of wildlife, it gradually became populated with wild creatures of many species. There were wood ducks, Canada geese, quail, foxes, coyotes, skunks, and many other small creatures. We built several ponds to provide fish. We would camp on the land, but never were inclined to build any permanet structures.

Your picture of the grouse reminded me of the fact that ruffed grouse had repopulated our land, and it was not unusual to hear them drumming during the breeding season. I only spotted the grouse once or twice. They were very wary of human intrusions on "their" land.

You could see wild turkeys almost any time. During the last years we had an eagle's nest in a remote area of the land. We kep it a secret so people would not disturb them, and they were still there when last I was there.

I didn't photograph any of the creatures there, except for a buck deer I shot for food in about 1953. I still have its mounted head. A really fine taxidermist mounted it for me, and I believe it to be the most perfect white-tail deer mount I have ever seen. I will post a photo of it some day soon.

I wish I still owned the land, for I have grandsons who I would have liked to have inherited it. But as I grew old my brother died, and the land really needed the attention I could not give it but that the Forest Service could. They will publicize it as it is close to populated cities, and the public will rapidly degrade its primitive nature. The wildlife will be reduced, the grouse and eagles will disappear, but such is "progress".

Old Engineer
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