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

Wild Things 3-14-10

March 14, 2010 at 06:40 AM

Wolf sighting?

The first thing Clara Steele noticed was deer, running hard with their white tails straight up.

She and husband Joe Steele were driving home to Kewanee along the Bradford blacktop on Feb. 25 and were east of the Tiskilwa blacktop when the deer caught their eye. Then something even more impressive emerged.

“We waited and then across the road came the largest wolf you’ve ever seen,” Steele said. “It was no coyote. It was a big wolf, mostly dark with a bushy tail. It was awesome.”

The Steeles stopped and got a good look at the big canine, which stopped briefly after running into a nearby patch of trees. “My husband is no novice and he said that was a wolf,” Clara Steele said.

Illinois has had at least five confirmed wolves since 2001 including one shot by Randy Worker in 2002 that was within a few miles of where the Steele’s saw their big canine.


Percent of coots surveyed in the Illinois River Valley last year that were counted at the Emiquon Preserve.

Worm migration

Sure you know robins migrate. But have you ever pondered that their food source also migrates?

Yep. Worms migrate each spring. As snow melts and sun warms the soil, earthworms move up through the soil to find areas that are soft, wet and warmer. Those same areas attract robins.

Tri-County still alive

While Tri-County Ducks and Geese Forever has no plans for a banquet any time soon, the once-thriving conservation organization has not disappeared entirely.
Tri-County still has wood duck boxes for sale, is reordering goose nesting platforms and is planning a Webfoot day program May 22 at Jacob’s Field in St. David.
Any youth interested in the outdoors is welcome. Call John Hill at (309) 346-4278.

Birding bits

Global climate change poses a significant threat to migratory bird populations, which are already stressed by the loss of habitat and environmental pollution, according to, “The State of the Birds: 2010 Report on Climate Change.”

The report says oceanic birds, such as petrels and albatrosses, are at particular risk from a rapidly changing marine ecosystem and rising sea levels.

A 2009 report on bird populations found nearly a third of the nation’s 800 bird species are endangered, threatened or in decline due to challenges such as the loss of wetlands, commercial hunting and pesticides.

This ‘n that

Despite the opening of wolf hunting seasons in the Rocky Mountains, wolf numbers increased in 2009 according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. But the 4 percent increase was the smallest since 1995. ... Trap leagues at Peoria Skeet & Trap club start April 8 and there will be a captain’s meeting Thursday at 6 p.m. at the club. Interested shooters who don’t have a team are also welcome to come join a squad.


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