Snow has already come to northern Wisconsin

Snow has been on the ground a week in northern Wisconsin, with some areas having a dusting and others several inches. Some tamaracks are still clinging to their needles, but most other trees, with the exception of oaks, are losing their leaves. In the south only a handful of counties are still reporting peak color, mostly in the southeast on the Wisconsin Department of Tourism’s Fall Color Report.

Biologists across the state are reporting the white-tailed deer rut, or mating season, is in full swing. Deer are moving more each week, in the daylight as well as just before and after sundown. Archery hunters have reported good success in central Wisconsin. Drivers should keep their eyes open as deer are appearing frequently at roadsides.

Fall turkey hunters in southwestern Wisconsin have been reporting good success and plenty of birds. The nut and acorn crop in these counties is tremendously larger than the past several years, so wild turkeys are spending more time feeding in oak woodlands. Wood- cock have apparently started another push south. Ducks and geese have been seen in many fields with the high water levels and waterfowl hunters have been successful lately.

THE VIEW OF THE BOIS BRULE RIVER on Halloween morning seemed more like a Christmas morning view. — Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources photo THE VIEW OF THE BOIS BRULE RIVER on Halloween morning seemed more like a Christmas morning view. — Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources photo Anglers fishing along northern Lake Michigan had cold, wet and windy weather to struggle through this week. The fall salmon run is winding down but an electro-shocking survey showed trout and salmon still active in the Peshtigo River. On the Menominee, brown trout, steelhead, walleye and coho were caught below the Hattie Street Dam.

Fishing is also slowing in Kewaunee and Algoma, though reports of coho and chinook are still coming in on the Kewaunee and Ahnapee rivers along with some brown trout. The run was also slowing on southern Lake Michigan tributaries. Fishing pressure was low due to weather the past week. Anglers fishing the Sheboygan River reported catches of chinook and coho. In Racine, numbers of chinook caught have dropped off, with only a few reported upstream and downstream of the Root River steelhead facility. Overall most fish harvested were coho, with a few chinook and only a couple brown trout reported downstream of the facility.

On Green Bay, boat anglers out of Brown County have been targeting walleye and musky with consistent success. With the water temperature dropping, greater numbers of walleye moved back into the Fox River, leading to a large increase in anglers fishing at Voyager Park with considerable success. Door County anglers were after smallmouth, with a somewhat slower catch off Stone Quarry and Rowley’s Bay and reports of pike from those fishing the Sturgeon Bay Canal. Anglers continue to report good success on the Wolf River with decent catches of crappies and walleyes.

More than 10,000 sandhill cranes were tallied at Fish Lake and Crex Meadows wildlife areas on Oct. 30. Waterfowl diversity is outstanding now, with a wide variety of diving and dabbling species on inland lakes and marshes and the Mississippi River and Great Lakes shorelines. More than 20,000 red-breasted mergansers were counted in Ozaukee County, while 5,000-plus were tallied in Kewaunee, where hundreds of redheads were also found. Large rafts of American coots remain in some locations, including 4,500 reported in Shawano.

This is a great time of year to spot the invasive species buckthorn. This non-native is hanging onto its green leaves, making this the time to spot new and old stands for future control.

It’s the full beaver moon this weekend and night hikes are scheduled at the Southern Kettle Moraine and at the MacKenzie center. For all events, search the DNR website for “Get Outdoors.”

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