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Protecting your turkey tail mount by vacuum packing
Spaulding Outdoors
By Jack Spaulding

Vacuum packing is a method of preserving meat and fish that many sportsmen use to protect their hard-earned wildlife fare. A lot of wild turkey breast meat will be packed away by sportsmen using this method. With a little ingenuity, the same vacuum packing machine can be put to good use preserving a turkey fan prior to delivering it to the taxidermist.

Simply remove the tail from the turkey by cutting around the base until it detaches. Use a knife to scrape away as much meat, fat and membrane as you can. Generously pour some borax (look in the grocery store for 20 Mule Team Borax) on the skin and quills. Then carefully slide the tail into a section of nylon hose to keep the tail smooth and compact.

Use one of the continuous roll of vacuum bagging material to custom-fit the package to the length of the tail. Vacuum package and freeze the tail feather fan until the opportunity arises for dropping it off at your taxidermist.

NWTF offers discount to military
I remember back-in-the-day, when I was a member of Uncle Sam’s finest. Making due on a Sgt. E-5’s pay was tight, and it left little for dues and subscriptions to my favorite outdoor endeavors.

Thanks to a big discount from the National Wild Turkey Federation, in appreciation for their service, our men and women in uniform can stay in touch with the latest turkey hunting news at minimum cost.

The National Wild Turkey Federation is offering discounted annual memberships to active duty military personnel. The $10 military membership includes the complete membership package - a one-year subscription to Turkey Call magazine, a full-color, bi-monthly publication and The Caller, a quarterly publication featuring regional and national Federation news. A membership card and decal are also included. The offer is for current military servicemen and women.

“Our men and women in uniform understand the meaning of duty and honor and have sacrificed so much,” said Rob Keck, NWTF CEO. “Everyday they are asked to give even more. They are answering the call for our country and, so often, for conservation. This special membership is just a small thank you from everyone here at the NWTF.”

For an additional $5, military members may sign up as a Hunting Heritage Club member. Membership includes a Hunting Heritage Club decal, membership card and the new Get in the Game magazine, a bi-annual publication offering landowners the latest tips for managing their property for wildlife and hunting.

The NWTF also offers a discounted membership for students 18-23 years old. To learn more or join the NWTF, go to ships.html

For more information about the NWTF call 1-800-THE-NWTF.

IBHA honors Officer Stamps
Indiana Conservation Officer Eric Stamps has been named 2005 “Conservation Officer of the Year” by the Indiana Bow Hunters Association. He is assigned to Warrick and Pike Counties.

The Indiana Bow Hunters Association conservation group was formed in 1965, and is dedicated to the art of bow hunting and the conservation of Indiana’s natural resources. The IBHA has been involved with Indiana’s state park deer control hunts, outdoor camps for kids, fund-raising events for Riley Children’s Hospital, the National Bow Hunter Education Founda-tion, the Indiana Sportsman’s Roundtable, and donations for purchases of fish and wildlife properties.

For the past several years, the IBHA has contacted Indiana conservation officers and asked them to nominate a fellow officer who they think puts forth extra effort in the enforcement of Indiana’s fish and wildlife laws.

The nominees are sent to the IBHA board, and a selection is made. Officer Eric Stamps was selected for 2005.

Officer Stamps is an avid archery hunter and quite knowledgeable in the intricacies of the sport. He was involved in several illegal deer hunting cases including illegal baiting, jack-lighting, and illegal road hunting.

ICO Stamp’s biggest case involved an 11-month long investigation in Warrick County, Ind. concerning the illegal shooting of deer from a roadway. Three suspects were eventually caught by Conservation Officer Stamps resulting in the filing of 123 misdemeanor charges.

Property thieves arrested
Indiana Conservation Officers recently busted a major theft ring operating in Southern Indiana. The well-organized theft ring committed a series of break-ins of vehicles at Department of Natural Resources Properties.

As a result of the crimes, a Task Force was formed with Indiana Conservation Officers, Indiana State Police, United States Secret Service, Clarksville Police and the New Albany Police Departments to help track and apprehend six suspects. Over 30 felony charges were filed on members of the theft ring.

Arrested were the ringleader Joseph P. Proctor, 24, of New Albany Ind., along with accomplices Amber L. Kinsey, 28, of New Albany; Sean C. Stager, 20; and Malissa M. Flanagan, 36. This case is still under investigation as more arrests may be forthcoming.

The two-year investigation began with a complaint of a vehicle break-in at Patoka Lake while the victims were spending leisure time on the DNR property. Officers were then able to link several thefts to the suspects through stolen checks and credit card usage at different stores in southern Indiana. Allegedly Joseph Proctor and accomplices would watch visitors park and leave their vehicles, looking for victims observed placing valuables back into their vehicles.

Indiana Conservation Officers want to assure visitors to DNR properties they are constantly on patrol protecting visitors and their personal property, while visitors spend time enjoying themselves.

Conservation Officers do recommend a few pointers as to how to protect your property anytime you leave your vehicle unattended. Always hide valuables from easy view in your vehicle, or better, take them with you when you leave your car. If at all possible lock belongings in the trunk of the vehicle.

Readers with questions or comments can contact Jack Spaulding by e-mail at

This farm news was published in the May 10, 2006 issue of Farm World.