Editor's Letter- March/April 2018

 Bring Spring!


Here I sit on a warm February 16 morning, unlocked from the throes of winter and thinking about spring. There’s a nice breeze brushing the 65-degree morning across our faces. Maybe it’s this hunting blind in far south Texas where the mesquite trees are budding—an absolute sign of spring. Any Texan will tell you, “When the mesquite’s bud, winter is done.”

Debbie and I are guests here for a final hunting season trip. We’re hoping for a management deer, or maybe even one of those elusive nilgai, a true species of antelope native elsewhere, but thriving in this coastal desert brush country. But, for this moment, the serenity and morning sounds have enveloped both of us. We can hear the shrill call of a Red-tailed Hawk as it flies in circles behind us. To the left there’s the collective gobble of a flock of turkeys. A small family of javelinas made their way under a fence just south of the stand. They’re foraging. A sole White-tailed buck wanders in an out of view.

But, most striking on this day is the expectation that winter will soon be in all our rear-view mirrors, and we begin the next season of our lives, so to speak. Spring not only shuts the door on cold temperatures, it ushers in new life—fish spawn, fawns are born, birds hatch, and flowers bloom—and nature’s newest revival brings hope.

Your ponds and lakes revive, too, and bring new energy to whatever inhabits them. You get to admire, observe, and mold where your treasured waters go this year. This issue has several articles to help further equip you for the next stewardship opportunities.

Building a pond, or thinking about it? Be sure to read Mike Otto’s story this issue. Better yet, buy his book: JUST ADD WATER. That’s a must-read for everyone with land that deserves a pond or lake. Order it from the Library page in the back of this issue, or online at www.pondboss.com. Michael Gray tells a landowner, “I told you so…” even though he said it in his truck, under his breath, and by himself. Todd Watts, Pond Boss reader from Hurricane, West Virginia, takes you further into his story about building his pond. He teaches us how to think like a fish in order to figure out what habitat to build and how the fish use it. Another reader, Scott Wren, offers the second installment of his story about his successes and failures as he manages his life and his ponds. His is a story of real life when you own water. Got a pond tucked away down in the woods? Wes Neal offers his thoughts, which are quite different from the way most of us tend to think.

Got a pond in the north country you plan to stock? There’s an article in this issue with some ideas. We also have a good story about yellow perch, courtesy of Eric West and his search through scientific publications. I’ve written several stories, but one of special interest to you is, “Not all Fish are the Same.” The Fish Professor shares some practical science about marking fish. You’ll be interested in that topic, too. Beasley tells of his experiences and thoughts about aquatic plants, and there’s a primer about aquatic plants in these pages as well. Birdman Mel holds an open house for the birds, and we’re proud to welcome back Ty Kleeb, a young, articulate angler of huge fish. His thought process will invigorate you, as long as there’s no lightning—you’ll understand what I mean when you read his story. Dan V. brings practical knowledge about how to identify the predators of your wildlife—if and when you come across a kill. And, yes, we have all the regular columns, with a good lesson on fish kills by Dr. Boyd. And, be sure to taste test our recipe. Debbie and I fell for it, hook, line, and sinker. It doesn’t sound that good, but we now have a perpetual supply of that stuff on the counter.

Don’t forget all the other resources you have available. The “Ask the Boss” forum on the www.pondboss.com website is a fertile supply of outstanding information. Here’s something new you may be interested in, too—I’ll do a live broadcast each Wednesday evening from 6:30-7:30 central time on our Pond Boss Facebook page. Tune in, type in a question, and I’ll do my best to answer it. We’ll have guest speakers from time to time, too. It’s a fast-paced hour with some great information.

And, in the near future, we’re looking at an exciting, practical idea to further help those who crave the information we have. As editor, I’ve now accumulated and archived 14 years worth of articles and stories on a wide variety of topics. We’re looking at the idea of bundling many of those articles and offering them for sale. Plus, we have quite a few outstanding videos, especially some of the best speeches from last fall’s Pond Boss VII Conference and Expo. They’ve been professionally edited and are ready to go—just as soon as we figure out how to make them available at a fair price.

Last, but not least, do you know people who could benefit from a subscription to Pond Boss? If so, give us their name along with their mailing address and we’ll send them a complementary copy of this issue of your favorite magazine. We’d love some new faces and new friends.

Thanks for being a part of this big Pond Boss family. You are appreciated.

Think I’ll wander back to that hunting blind and absorb more of this early-spring weather.


Fish on! 

A series dedicated to Bob Lusk's general musings about land, water and life.

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