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Jeff Lampe
Jeff Lampe

Jeff Lampe has been outdoor writer at the Journal Star in Peoria for 12 duck seasons. He lives in Elmwood with his wife Monica, sons Henry, Victor and Walter, and Llewellin setter Hawkeye. A native of Buffalo, N.Y., he is an avid fan of the Bills and still has mental scars from four consecutive Super Bowl losses. Outside of hunting and fishing, Lampe's main passion in Illinois was Class A boys basketball (which sadly no longer exists). Former publisher of the Class A Weekly newsletter, Lampe is a co-author of "100 Years of Madness" and "Classical Madness," both books focusing on prep basketball in Illinois.

Illinois Outdoors


A Web log by Jeff Lampe of the Journal Star

Open Blog Thursday

April 30, 2009 at 06:56 AM

Yes, it’s Thursday. To compound my workload, the wife and I went to see Cats last night in Peoria. Surely my Thursday filled with work has nothing to do with spending Monday fishing and searching for morels when I should have been chained to a desk. At any rate, “Help!”

FROM Tom Bodtke of Peoria:

Mushroom season is here again and I wanted to remind everyone to collect their mushrooms in bags that reseed the spores. You can use old onion bags or old ham and turkey netted bags. You reseed your favorite mushroom ground for next year as you look for this years mushrooms. Good hunting to everyone!

FROM Marc Rogers:

I am a tournament angler as many others are but people have to remember that the state laws do allow for anglers to keep fish to eat.  This includes bass and the state laws are followed with creel limits in every tournament I have ever fished. 

There are some people getting carried away with the catch and release on some bodies of water and this results in slot limits to harvest the smaller bass.  Many anglers need to see past the bass being pets and realize it is okay to harvest some of these fish.  Also, these kids were proud of their catch regardless of the live well issues they had that day. 

As far as I am concerned your apology wasn’t needed.  Keep up the good reporting for the kids sake.

FROM Brad Douglas of Mackinaw:

I am writing to you asking if you have heard of a new bill called HR 45 Blair Holt Firearm Licensing & Record of Sales Act of 2009: basically this bill would make it illegal to own a firearm, any rifle, with a clip or any pistol unless: it is registered, you are fingerprinted, you supply a current driver’s license, you supply your social security number, you will submit to a physical and mental evaluation at any time of their choosing, each update- change of ownership through private or public sale must be reported and costs $25.  Failure to do so and you automatically lose the right to own a firearm and are subject to up to a year in jail.  Also there is a child–access provision indicating a gun must be locked and inaccessible to any child under 18.  The government would have the right to come and inspect that you are storing your gun safely away from accessibility to children and fine is punishable for up to 5 years in prison.

FROM Herb Unkrich of Edwards:

Here is what is happening with the bluebirds this spring. Even with the cold spring the box in my yard tied the earliest that I had my first egg which is March 31. There is such a shortage on insects due to the cold weather-that I have seen them take the home made bird food to the nest box to feed the young. I have 54 nest going, 212 eggs and 20 babies. The sparrows have been really bad this year trapping 72, even with that 7 more bluebird nest have been taken over by sparrows. I am guessing next that the buffalo gnats will be coming which can suck the blood out of the babies. I take a cotton ball that is soaked in “pure vanilla” and coat the openings on the boxes. I have also heard of spraying the babies and nest with “eucalyptus oil” to keep the buffalo gnats off, the bluebirds have no sense of smell.




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