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Little-known hunting and wildlife facts

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Caution: Jackalopes!

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There are some wildlife facts and hunting regulations that most people know, even if they’re not hunters, and then there are those points that many of us would have never guessed.

I’m only using myself as a case in point, because, had I not studied up about certain wildlife matters, I would have guessed wrong.

For example, most people probably realize that there is no closed season in Texas for certain animals, such as rabbits and squirrels. But you do need to have a valid and current hunting license in order to take these animals, unless they are causing loss or damage to personal property.

You may not know, though, the traditional rule of thumb about the best part of the year to eat such rodents. Although, with proper cleaning and cooking, they are said to be safe throughout the year, the rule says that September through April, or all months with an “r” in their name, is the period when these animals are generally free of parasites.

Also, did you know that, in addition to feral hogs, there is no closed season or bag limit in Texas for exotic animals and fowls?

What about the fact that, although rarely sighted, mountain lions are not protected from hunting or with closed seasons in Texas?

Such is not true of the rarely sighted black bear in the state.

With either animal, however, state wildlife authorities insist that you report any sightings.

There is also no bag limit for fur-bearing animals in Texas, although valid hunting or trapper’s licenses or the “nuisance” clause concerning personal property damage does apply.

Finally and sadly, there are no real jackalopes, but have you heard of a practice called “snipe hunting?”

Well, as a kid, I was once taken on such a jaunt--complete with spoons, pots, and pans--by my brother-in-law, but in the right parts of the state, very real snipe are regulated and hunted.

Did you know?

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Caution: Jackalopes!

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