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Cape Gazette
Lewes, Delaware
Jim's Towing Service
October 31, 1997     Cape Gazette
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October 31, 1997
 

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I LI[ 74 - CAPE GAZETI, Friday, October 31 - November 6, 1997 Delaware duck numbers still low, but rebounding The second leg of duck season is upon us and indications are that it should be a bit easier on duck hunters. The first portion of the season was held on Oct. 1-4. The next leg will be Oct. 31 to Nov. 8. Although duck numbers are high nationally, warm weather and drought conditions have made things challenging for many Delaware hunters. George O'Shea, the assistant refuge man- ager at Prime Hook Wildlife Refuge, said that there are about 24,000 ducks on the refuge and about 53,000 ducks statewide, ac- cording to aerial surveys conduct- ed throughout Delaware last week. He said Prime Hook has about 5,300 pintails, 13,000 greenwing teal and smaller numbers of mal- lards, wood ducks and widgeon. Although the number of ducks sounds high, he said the refuge had about 76,000 ducks at this time last year. The culprit isn't low numbers of ducks. Mild fall weather has meant that many ducks have not migrated south, yet. In some cas- OUTDOORS Michael Short es, other ducks may have by- passed Delaware because of drought conditions. Some pintails and greenwing teal may have al- ready moved south, he said. But water quanities are improv- ing and there is plenty of food for ducks on the refuge. Conditions are still good enough that the handful of hunters participating last weekend in a young water- fowler hunt bagged about three birds each. That's not bad hunting # )' Mike Short photo The William W. Frech Memorial Garden was dedicated on Sunday at Prime Hook U.S. Wildlife Refuge. Frech was a well- known birder who compiled the most definitive list of birds found at the refuge. TIDES aa00l Indian River Rehoboth Roosevelt Oak Date I Inlet Beach Inlet Orchard 11/1 I 111/2'9:27,2:5518:46,2:52 19:50,3:50111:37,6:241 11/41 11/51 11/61 in almost any conditions. And O'Shea expects the number of ducks to increase at the refuge. It's just a matter of when, and when will depend heavily upon the weather. "We do not know what it is going to do," he said. Cold weather could drive birds south and conditions could change dramatically by the time duck sea- son opens on Friday, he said. Frech's Garden The next time you are at Prime Hook, pay close attention to the William Frech Memorial Garden. The small, attractive garden is lo- cated beside the new visitor cen- ter. It's meant as a lasting tribute to Frech, one of the area's great birders. It's a quiet spot with blooming chrysanthemums and bustling bird feeders, a good spot for contem- plation only a few feet from thou- sands of acres of pristine marsh- lands. Frech and Bill Fintel found- ed the Sussex Bird Club and Frech went on to compile a list of birds found at the Prime Hook site, a list that numbers over 200 species. The Bird Club paid for the gar- den, a fitting tribute to a fine natu- ralist. Unsung heroes Here's a list of the many volun- teers who work at Prime Hook Wildlife Refuge, volunteers who put in countless hours at the refuge: James Basara, Frank Buck III, Otis Clifton, Richard Clifton, Mathew Cohee, Shawn Colbum, William Daisey, Edward Davis, Daniel Durkin, Dorothy Faus- naught, George T. Lynch, Charlie Fleetwood, Elwood Hackett, Rusty Humbert, John Joswick, Ja- cob Kabino, Gardner Knight, Annabella Larsen, Paul Larsen, Gary Layfield, Joyce Lindsay, Pat Loftus, Dorothy Lynch, George H. Lynch, Richard Malone, Kevin McGee, William McGee, Edward Mihm, George Naegele, Judy Naegele, Martel Inc., Magnum Electronics, the Delaware Electric Cooperative, Avian Aquatics Inc., Richard Wright, Susan Williams, Mary West, James West, George West, Richard Tayrien, James Shockley, Karl Schweiger, James Rowles, Joseph Rothhaupt, Thomas Penuel, Jerry Owens and James O'Connor. The visitor's center complex, orginally planned to cost more than $1 million, actually cost the taxpayers just $475,680. A large portion of the cost was contained through the efforts of some 45 -- BUY SELL volunteers who did all of the inte- rior finishing work for the build- ing in addition to landscaping, concrete work and installation of exterior siding and a new roof on the old office. Prime Hook hunt Nov. 1 Prime Hook Wildlife Refuge will hold a special youth deer hunt for young hunters age 15 and less as well as a special non-ambulato- ry hunt for deer. Both hunts are scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 1. Drawings to participate in either special hunt as well as for duck blinds for duck season will be held, beginning at 4 a.m. at the refuge on Nov. 1. Hunters who want more information about any of the hunts, should call the refuge office at 684-8419. Hunters who use a wheelchair are asked to call before Nov. 1, if possible. 10 Colt Combat J Delta Phone (302) 645-8350 FAX (302) 644-2066 Weekdays: I0 a.m.- 6 p.m. Saturday 10 a.m.- 5 p.m & 7:10- 9 p.m. Evenings. 7:10 p.m.- 9 p.m. Sunday: NOON TO 5 p.m. ONE OF LIFE S PLEASURES IS TO COME HOME TO THE WARMTH OF with purchase of GAS & PEL LET STOVES S 1 gOg ! as low as J f liJ  llJ Hurry! Supplies Are Limited! BLUEWATER POOLS & SPAS Financing Available Installation Not Included 671 Hwy. One (Over the Nassau Bridge) 645-8119