Illinois Outdoors at
RulesIllinois Outdoors at
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

Illinois hunting and fishing

Ever seen a grass pike before?

November 04, 2008 at 08:36 PM

Flathead is sure getting into this photography stuff. Now he’s even got a fish tank set up to take pictures. Here is the result, the latest Flathead’s Picture of the Week.

This entry is of a Grass Pickerel (Esox americanus). Writes Flathead:

“It is the very small family member of the Northern Pike and Muskie. A very big grass pike would be 12 inches long. The grass pike is still common in Illinois, but confined to quiet pools of streams with aquatic vegetation and clear water. The grass pike still exists in North Spring Lake, even though the muskie population enjoys eating them.”

Story and comments

Sweat, yes. Quail, no.

November 04, 2008 at 02:40 PM

I’m starting to think that shooting a limit of quail in one day might not be so easy after all. That’s been my goal heading into this fall. Just once this upland season I want to shoot a limit of bobwhites. My point is not so much greed, but to show there are still quail out there and to encourage more hunters to chase these fast, tasty and fun little birds.

But today’s effort to prove my point was a complete bust. I hunted with Mace Reardon of Peoria, who in his 80 years has shot more quail than I will shoot if I live to be 200. Maybe 300 if today is any indication.

I’ve hunted with Mace a few times each season for the past few years and he has been kind enough to show me some spots that “always” hold a covey or two. Today put an end to that “always” talk. All told we hunted six spots. Hedgerows, ditches. All had produced for us in the past. None produced today. Oh, I managed to shoot four doves, but we did not see a single quail.

That left both Mace and me baffled and searching for answers. Theories?

1. The dog can no longer smell quail.
2. The quail are all dead.
3. The abundant standing corn and beans is too good a refuge and is holding all the birds.
4. The hot, dry conditions made scenting tough.

I hope the first two are not true. And I tend to believe the second true had a lot to do with today’s lack of birds. But time will tell. Mace and I are making plans to visit the same spots once the crops are out and the thermometer reads like a true November day. Here’s hoping we fare better next time out.

Story and comments

Scattershooting Archive

Lampe's Top 10 Links

Hunting Links

Fishing Links

Birdwatching Links

Other Outdoors Links

Fun stuff

Copyright © 2007-2014 GateHouse Media, Inc.
Some Rights Reserved
Original content available for non-commercial use
under a Creative Commons license, except where noted.
Creative Commons