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I think spring is upon us. Temperatures are sky-rocketing and one of the warmest (and weirdest) winters I can remember is nearly over. As for spring… I just wanted to do a little update on historically related things we are doing.

1.) Maple Syrup: With the dreadfully warm winter and the quick warm up this spring, we did not tap any trees. My father-in-law did and I helped boil down sap this past Sunday. Sugar content is low and we only had a couple days of good sap run. We boiled down about 75 gal. of sap and are now done. Sap is no longer running well and with this warm up, I expect to see buds on the trees SOON.

2.) I pulled the last of my traps yesterday (was going for spring beaver). As past blogs highlighted, this was my first season doing any trapping. I did it with very limited time, limited land to trap, and few traps (thanks to Lee Nelson aka LeRoux for lending some traps and helping coach me and thanks again to Allen Harrison for the historic traps and discussions on their use). I trapped on and off and had a great experience. I ended up with a couple raccoon, a skunk, a possum, a muskrat, and 10 beaver (that was my focus once I located some). Now to finish “putting up” the beaver (fleshing and stretching) and start making the beaver robe I have been wanting.

3.) Gardens: We have a few items started indoors, up, and green. We also have all our other seed ready to go. It will be awhile before planting starts, but I am looking forward to another year of gardens.

4.) Chickens: The hens are producing in full now again!!! We have discussed not raising meat birds and taking a year off of that. We have been back and forth and are not sure. We have also talked about raising up a few of a mixed batch of random birds for fun. If we do that, some will be added to the layers and some to the freezer come fall. I guess we will have to decide soon! ???????

5.) Turkey hunting: I did not apply for a tag, but there are some available over-the-counter for later seasons. I am not sure what I have for time, but I may pick up a tag. I really have a desire to hunt one with my wood bow (bois d’arc flatbow based on a Meskwaki example). I have shot turkeys with flintlock and matchlock musket and would love to try even more “primitive” methods. I will see what I have for time.

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