OKC youth fishing classes begin Saturday
Oklahoma City’s free youth fishing classes offered throughout the summer begins Saturday.
Each year, the staff from the Oklahoma City’s H.B. Parsons Fish Hatchery, the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation and other volunteer instructors teach kids ages 5 to 15 how to fish on Saturday mornings.
The "Hooked on Fishing" classes have been offered for 37 years in Oklahoma City and at least 37,000 kids and adults have participated in them over the years, said Kristy Jager, spokesperson for the City of Oklahoma City. It's one of the longest running programs ever offered by the Oklahoma City Parks and Recreation Department.
The classes are held from 8 a.m. until 10:30 a.m. and held at various locations in Oklahoma City. This year’s session begins Saturday, May 4, at Edwards Park Lake at 1515 N. Bryant Ave.
The remaining classes are May 11 at Metro Tech Springlake, 1900 Springlake Drive; May 18 at South Lake Pond East, 4302 SW 119 Street;
June 8 at Edwards Park Lake; June 15 at Metro Tech Springlake, June 22 at the Dolese Youth Park Pond, 5105 NW 50th Street;
July 13 at Edwards Park Lake; July 20 at Metro Tech Springlake; and July 27 at Crystal Lake, 6625 SW 15th Street.
Classes are reservation only and children must be accompanied by an adult. Kids receive hand-on instruction in knot tying, casting, fish identification, fish safety and angler ethics.
To register, call the H.B. Parsons Fish Hatchery at 297-1426 or visit okc.gov/parksignup. The event identification number is 20391.
Fishing poles, tackle and bait are provided. A state fishing license or Oklahoma City fishing permit is not required during the classes.
The classes are provided by the Oklahoma City Parks and Recreation Department, the Oklahoma City Police Athletic League, Metro Technology Centers and the Wildlife Department.
CWD discovered on elk farm in Lincoln County
An elk from a farmed herd in Lincoln County tested positive for chronic wasting disease and the rest of the elk herd has been quarantined, officials with the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food & Forestry and the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation announced last week.
The adjacent commercial hunting area associated with this farm was quarantined as well. The 2-year-old bull elk died as the result of an injury. The elk was then tested through routine surveillance in compliance with the breeding facility’s certified herd plan.
Chronic wasting disease is a fatal neurological disease that attacks the brains of elk, deer and other cervid species. No vaccine or treatment for the disease exists. It is not considered a health risk to humans but in other states it has spread to wild deer.
The Wildlife Department will be testing wild deer in the area near the farm, which was not identified, for the presence of chronic wasting disease. Micah Holmes, spokesman for the Wildlife Department, said the agency would shoot some antlerless deer from the properties of willing landowners near the captive elk herd for testing. It would take several weeks before receiving test results, he said.
The adjacent commercial hunting area associated with this farm was quarantined as well.
This is the second confirmed case of CWD in Oklahoma. The first case was confirmed in a farmed elk herd in Oklahoma County in 1998. Surveillance testing around that area since then has not revealed any deer with the disease.
Deer food plot day set May 16 in Lexington
Anyone interested in learning more about planting food plots to attract deer and other wildlife to their land can attend a field day May 16 at Canadian Valley Farms in Lexington.
The OSU Cooperative Extension Center and Ross Seed Company and Chickasha are teaming up to provide the deer plot food day beginning at 5 p.m. Those attending will learn about the varieties and mixes best used for food plots.
Dr. Dwayne Elmore, OSU Professor and Bollenbach Chair for Wildlife Management, will speak about total land management to increase and support the deer population, as well as food plot variety selection, establishment, development, and management.
The field day is free. For more information, call the Cleveland County Extension office at 321-4774.