Tribute to a wonderful lady
Since her passing, Betty Oppenheimer may have left us but she will never be forgotten by many of us in the world of the outdoors in the Yuma area. We will miss her.
It's great remembering all she did while on this earth. She was a go-getter and a doer. If someone ever needed help with anything, Betty was always willing to lend a hand — and always with a smile. We knew we could count on Betty!
I first met Betty with a fishing pole in hand. She was a lifetime member of the Yuma Women's Reel and Rifle Club that so many of us belonged to through the years. As time passed, Betty became a working member of the Yuma Valley Rod and Gun Club – after years and years of “men only,” they finally opened their membership to women and families as well. Betty and Sam (her husband) were always on hand at club events to do whatever was needed and to lend a friendly ear to one and all. Betty always made us feel welcome whenever we got together, and Sam has done the same.
Last year, both Betty and Sam were honored at the annual Arizona Game and Fish Commission Banquet for their achievements through the years while working with firearm safety in the Yuma area. They were presented with the first ever “Buck Appleby Hunter Education Instructor of the Year” award in thanks for their 25 and 30 years (25 years for Betty and 30 years for Sam) of endless effort to further the tradition of hunting in Arizona. Betty and Sam will be well remembered and appreciated by countless youngsters as well as adults who learned about hunting under their guidance.
Thanks, Betty, for all you've done and for being here with us. We'll remember you with a bright smile.
• Last day of Big Breast Contest: Weigh-in your biggest dove breast (white-winged or mourning doves only) to win big prizes today at Sprague's Sports. Remember to leave one wing attached for identification. Call 726-0022.
• Free hunter safety class: The week of Sept. 25 at Sprague's Sports. For complete information, call 726-0022.
• Refuse to be a victim class: For the ladies to learn excellent non-firearms street safety awareness Oct. 6 at Sprague's Sports. The fee is $29. Mark your calendar.
• Illegal shooting of mule deer in Kingman, Ariz.: Arizona Game and Fish is seeking information in the suspected illegal shooting of a mule deer. Third-party information was reported to Game and Fish that an individual witnessed someone shoot at a mule deer in Clack Canyon located behind the Kingman Regional Medical Center near the water towers, several days ago. It is believed the deer was injured and ran off. The hunt season for mule deer has not begun. Operation Game Thief is offering up to a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the individual or individuals responsible for this crime.
Game and Fish needs to hear from the individual(s) who witnessed the shooting. They would like to hear from anyone who may have any information. Arizona wildlife belongs to each and every resident of the state. When poachers attempt to take wildlife out of season, they are stealing from each and every resident. This is not the act of a sportsman, it's the act of a criminal. Anyone with information regarding this case should call the OGT hotline at 1-800-352-0700 or submit information via the internet at www.azgfd.gov/thief with reference number 12-001611.
• Information on current javelina hunt: If you have questions or would like to get in on the current javelina hunt with over-the-counter tags in the Mohawk Valley Sub-Unit of Game Management Unit 41, call the Yuma Regional office of Game and Fish at 342-0091.
• Condor recovery: Do promises matter? Report written by Kathy Sullivan and Chris Parish. When California condors were reintroduced into Arizona in 1996, a special provision of the Endangered Species Act, the 10(J) rule, was used by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to obtain acceptance among communities in Arizona and Utah that strongly opposed the reintroduction. This federal rule legally designated the Arizona population to be experimental and not essential to the species survival. It gave assurances that “current and future land uses shall not be restricted due to ... condors” and that the federal government did “not intend to” modify or restrict “current hunting regulations anywhere ... in the experimental population area.”
All current Arizona lead reduction efforts are voluntary and fully comply with assurances the federal government made when they sought local support for condor conservation.
Reducing lead ingestion in condors is critical to reducing the primary cause of death for these endangered birds. Is a mandated ban of lead ammunition in the condor's range the best solution? Some condor advocates thought a lead ammunition ban was the answer for the state of California's condors. However, a recent study by the University of California, Davis concluded that condor lead poisoning has not been significantly reduced there despite the 2008 ban. The Sierra Club, Grand Canyon Wildlands Council and Center for Biological Diversity have threatened to sue the federal government, seeking a lead ammunition ban in the Kaibab National Forest, which would force the federal government to renege on local commitments.
All this without acknowledging the success of the Arizona Game and Fish department's hunter-supported voluntary non-lead ammunition program that offers non-lead ammunition without charge to hunters in condor country, fostering cooperation, while reducing lead available to condors. With condors now crossing state lines, the state of Utah is joining in lead reduction efforts by offering a program similar to Arizona's highly successful non-lead ammo program. Why would “lead-ban” advocates risk the destruction of trust in the 10(J) promises when 90 percent of Arizona hunters in the condor's range are already taking voluntary measures to reduce lead exposure?
Education and outreach in the condors' expanded range of Utah is where efforts must focus. Sharing information and marketing new, often more effective, non-lead alternatives is key to changing the habits of both hunters and ranchers. Those advocating a lead ammunition ban may not truly comprehend the importance of the 10(J) rule or the impact a judicially-imposed ban would have on future support for condors and other endangered species reintroduction programs. The 10(J) rule provides agencies with wildlife management flexibility that is essential for public support. We encourage those seeking a lead ban to join the efforts of federal and state agencies, nonprofit conservation organizations and sportsmen's groups to extend Arizona's successful education and voluntary non-lead ammo program. Education and cooperation are the keys to condor recovery, not conflict and lawsuits.
• Dove opener: Did you wake up early for the dove opener Saturday and today? There's time to fill your game bag before the sun goes down tonight. We have until Sept. 15 to enjoy this early hunt. There are many great mouth-watering recipes using dove meat, so try something new this year. I'm always looking for new recipes for game meat, so if you'd ever want to share, give me a call at 247-4450.
• Spring regulations: The 2013 spring turkey, javelina, buffalo and bear hunt draw information booklet is available at www.azgfd.gov/draw. Application forms can be downloaded from that page as well. The online application service is anticipated to be available by the first week in September. The deadline to apply is Oct. 9. Printed copies of the information booklets should also be at license dealers and at Game and Fish offices by early September.
• Desert Bass Anglers “The Fun Way to Fish”: Sept. 9 is the day to get on the water for the club's team tournament launching out of Fisher's Landing, open to all anglers with tournament approved boats. Fish for the first time as a non-member, then pay the $15 membership fee ($10 each additional family members). Call Mac or Bobbi McDermott at 726-1984.
• Yuma Pro Am Series: Check for latest results and upcoming tournaments online at Bob@yumaproam.com or call Bob La Londe at 580-1270. Pay $15 membership and reasonable entry fees online as well.
• Wednesday Jackpot Derby at Fisher's Landing: Entry $5 with sign-up at 8 a.m. at the gas dock. Weigh-in around 1 p.m. Winner takes all with one big fish, any species. Also fish the Swede Ferguson Memorial Bass Derby each month with $10 sign-up anytime during each month at Fisher's. Winner takes all for biggest fish determined the last day of the month. Call Jimmy Phipps at 782-2207.
• Yuma Valley Rod and Gun Club: First annual Cats and Carp slime fest from noon Sept. 15 to weigh-in at 9 am. Sept. 16 with launch and weigh-in at Fisher's Landing. $40 entry per two person team with a 10 fish maximum, only 5 fish can be carp. Call David or Jonathan Parrish at 941-6168. If you're interested in hunting and fishing, come to the 6:30 p.m. Wednesday meeting ($10 dinner, 7 p.m. meeting) at American Legion Post 19, 2575 S. Virginia Drive.
• MCAS Recreation Area: Call Mike Castello at 783-3422 to learn about fishing, camping and other outdoor activities at Martinez Lake/Colorado River for Yuma area military personnel and families.
• Bass Class on the Water: To learn how, when and where to catch bass at local waters in all seasons and conditions with a bass boat and all equipment provided, call Dave Willhide at 782-2621. Ask about seminars available for RV parks and home groups.
• Yuma High School Bass Fishing Club/Student Angler Federation is having the first information meeting at 5 p.m. Wednesday at the American Legion. Students, parents, administrators, activity directors, mentors, coaches and boosters should be present to get the information required to make this successful for student anglers. For grades 9-12. All public Yuma area high school students are invited.
• Notice to Junior Shooters: If you are interested in getting into the Yuma County Shooting Sports Program put on by 4-H, you must first become a member of a 4-H club, then get into the safety training and first shoot on Sept. 22 at the Yuma County Fairgrounds. Call Stanley Gourley at 344-0740 or the 4-H office at 726-3904.
• Yuma Young Guns: For ages 9-25 who are enrolled in elementary, middle, junior, high school or college. The Young Guns is open to young men or women who are interested in the Shotgun Shooting Sports with the Yuma Scholastic Clay Target program with the shooting season September 2012 through May 2013. All team members receive instruction by the Arizona Game and Fish certified coaches in shotgun safety (course mandatory for first time club athletes), usage of a club 12-gauge or 20-gauge semi-automatic shotgun during practice, Trap and skeet shooting skills and teamwork/sportsmanship/concentration and focus training at noon, registration Sept. 8 at the Yuma Trap and Skeet clubhouse at Adair Park with a $40 registration fee per athlete that includes shotgun shells for practice and competition, range fees and range insurance fees and the use of team guns. Participation within YYG fundraising events (usually 2-3 per school year) with parental approval on shooting, medical, insurance and liability release forms. Contact head coach H. McNutt at 580-2241, coach John Gross 580-4836 or coach Wes Burch at 580-4495.
• Archery for old and young alike: Come shoot the trail of 3D animals with Renegade Archers at 7:30 a.m. Sunday at the Foothills Archery Range located east of Foothills Blvd. up against the Gila Mountains. Directions: Taking the south Frontage Road from I-8, at south Foothills Blvd., drive 2 miles east to Avenue 15E, turn right and head south 1 mile to just past the Golf Range pond on the right. Turn left at the Archery Range signs and follow the dirt road to the range. Adult fees are now $3 with youngsters always free of charge with free use of equipment by request prior to the shoot. Call Jean Wilson at 247-4450.
• Southwest Bowhunters also shoot archery at 7 a.m. Sundays at Adair Park, open to all archers, with the practice range open all week. Call Wayne Wittenberg at 314-0140.
• Yuma Trap and Skeet Club: Open trap and skeet 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays and Sundays at Adair Park. Call Gary Knight at 210-0805.
• Yuma Territorial Longrifles Club: Open Black Powder Matches at 8:30 a.m. 1st and 3rd Saturdays each month at Adair park. Call Dennis Hansel at 342-7573.
• Cholla Gun Club: Open .22 Rifle and Pistol Silhouette “Fun” Matches at 8:30 a.m. each Friday at the Adair Park metallic silhouette range. Call Rick or Glenda at 502-0736.
• Yuma Rifle and Pistol Club: Matches will resume Sept. 18 with a Vintage Match followed by a High Power Match Sept. 19 at the Adair Park big bore range with sign-up by 7:30 a.m. Open to civilian, service, women, men and junior shooters. Call Paul Lerma at 783-6766 or Gerald Brooker at 305-9681. Ask about their youth shooting program.
• Yuma Matchmasters: Open IPSC Combat Match Sept. 9 at the Adair Park small bore range. Call Ron Gissendaner at 726-0022.
Contact Jean Wilson at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 247-4450.