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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

Wild things 5-16-10

May 16, 2010 at 04:30 AM

Boating reminder

Boaters are reminded that all watercraft operated on waters within the jurisdiction of Illinois must be registered and titled.

And if you are purchasing a used boat, make sure to get the clear title from the seller. Personal watercraft and boats of 16 feet or longer purchased from individuals also require an Illinois Dept. of Revenue RUT-75 tax form. Click here to learn more.

Did you know?

The record price paid at auction for an antique duck decoy is $856,000 for an antique merganser hen carved by
Lothrop Holmes in about 1870.

PF chapter shuts down

After eight years of spreading the word of conservation in Marshall and Putnam counties, the Grand Prairie Chapter of Pheasants Forever has closed due to a lack of assistance.

“You can’t run a chapter with two people,” said long-time officer Greg Simmons, who along with Dwight Aussieker and Dave Minnick had been handling all duties for the past year. The chapter sent out mailings to more than 300 people seeking assistance, but had no takers.

“I still believe in PF’s mission and have seen what it can do. Wherever we get habitat in the ground we get birds,” Simmons said. “So this is pretty sad for me. All we were asking for was two days a year from people.”

Birding bits

Birdwatchers in St. Petersburg, Fla. reported seeing 1.45 million robins during the Audubon Society’s four-day Great Backyard Bird Count in February. Only 400,321 robins were counted in the rest of the U.S.

Eureka Lake correction

While Eureka Lake is still limited to trolling motors only, boats with gas motors are allowed on the lake thanks to a rule change. Boat owners with gas motors can launch if they purchase a $40 lake permit, sold Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Eureka City Building, 128 N. Main St. Gas motors cannot be used on the lake, though.

Boats without gas motors do not need to purchase a permit.

Wild on the Web

Need help identifying birds? Check out, a cooperative website run by the U.S. and Canadian governments. The Dendroica module offers pictures and sounds of 642 species of North American birds. While registering is an annoyance, the sound recordings are good and you can sort by state, geographical region and other criteria.

This ‘n that

Powerton Lake will be closed to fishing May 25-27 for levee maintenance and repairs.

...Federal scientists are looking into possibly taking the Kirtland’s warbler off the endangered species list.

... Bob and Karen Fisher spotted a black-bellied whistling duck Friday at Hennepin-Hopper lakes south of the observation tour.




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