quite the morning of fishing (pic heavy)

wanative

Retired, gone fishin'
Left the house at 0330 to try to make the sunrise on a new to me but popular lake. The day got light quick but the smoke lingered: View attachment 290864 I missed a few fish before finally connecting on a chunk: View attachment 290865 The lake was almost totally dead calm. Almost eerie. I never had to set anchor. View attachment 290866 I fished a long ways into the cliffed out area without much action but what a morning to myself. View attachment 290867 The sun started peaking through and I decided to work my way back before it got too hot. View attachment 290868 Not far from the ramp I found a deeper weedline and had the slightest breeze to drift perfectly along. Slammed by a nicer chunk. View attachment 290869 My pattern is simple and it looked like this a few hundred bass ago: View attachment 290870
That deeper weedline quickly became game on and really made my day. Weird because it was getting hot. View attachment 290871 View attachment 290872 View attachment 290873 If you look closely in the last photo you can see a pole. I started hearing a commotion from this nesting box as what I thought was a falcon was hanging upside down with it's mate going bonkers. Although I was on a fun bite I couldn't not do anything. I took the boat out and drove up the hill. No cell service. I drove further up the hill. I dialed 911 and explained I didn't have an emergency but needed to talk to a game warden or wildlife biologist. The dispatcher wasn't sure when they would call me back but she was nice. I felt like with the heat bearing down I needed to see if I could help the bird. I drove back down the hill and hiked carefully through the grass. Shit this isn't good: View attachment 290875 View attachment 290876 I had a tie down hook and a rope and went to trying to throw it up. It felt fruitless. Finally a toss and a connect. But would it work? View attachment 290877 I pulled very hard and stuff started popping and falling down. Then the bird slowly started to drop. View attachment 290878 It's mate buzzed me so close I swear I felt the wind from it. The situation was bad. The bird was hot, panting and I'm sure close to shock. View attachment 290879 I took my shirt and wet it and the bird down with my last cool water and covered it: View attachment 290880 I worked and worked to free the bird. What I truely think was the culprit was fishing line. View attachment 290881 Finally free but was he injured? View attachment 290882 I cleaned up everything. He wasn't flying. I hiked back and again drove up the hill. I called the WDFW Ephrata office. Couldn't get anyone on the phone because it was all pre recorded covid messages. Called the Sheriff and talked to animal control. He texted me a biologist's number. He was a nice guy. Verbalized leaving it and letting nature do it's thing verses trying to get it to rehab and a vet. Now I've hunted my whole life and I wasn't going to leave the bird because I thought maybe it had a broken wing and I just couldn't do it. I drove down and hiked to the bird again with a container if need be to capture it. View attachment 290883 He seemed better and when I got close well...:) View attachment 290884 He flew across the lake!

What a morning!
Billy
Way above and beyond the call of duty
Billy. I'm almost speechless.
A truely heroic effort and deed.
Thank you for putting the bird first.
Made my day reading this.
 

Bruce Baker

Active Member
Wow! What a great story to read. So good of you to rescue the bird and make sure it was okay after the rescue. Way to step up and any positive accolade I can think of is directed towards you @b_illymac. Well done, well done.
 

dustinchromers

Active Member
Right on Billy! Rescuing and attempting to rescue raptors has a heavy energy behind it. I've rescued a couple as well as had some unsuccessful rescues that left me feeling really bummed out. There is nothing sadder than a raptor or bird of any kind that cannot fly. But raptors hold a higher weight in that regard as they are such proud specimens of evolutionary perfection. I'm glad you got a good result.
 

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