Columnist recounts longstanding myths and different enjoyable oddities within the Texas outside.
| Day by day Gentle contributor
These of us which have spent a lifetime within the outside have undoubtedly witnessed some sights that we didn’t perceive. By the years, I’ve discovered that there’s normally rhyme and cause to all the pieces within the pure world.
I bear in mind as a teenager watching herons stand immobile for lengthy intervals of time, staring intently into shallow water in a trancelike state. I used to be tremendously puzzled as to WHY these birds stood as nonetheless as statues for prolonged intervals. Later I discovered these slender, lengthy legged birds have been the masters of endurance. You may say their very life relies upon upon them being extraordinarily affected person creatures. It’s of their nature to stay nonetheless for so long as needed for a small hapless minnow, frog or crayfish to swim throughout the “strike zone” of their lengthy, spear like beak!
Did you ever marvel why freshwater drum makes these “drumming” sounds when landed? I grew up being taught that the sound was produced by two unfastened bones within the fish’s head. I later discovered these bones used for steadiness and listening to are referred to as otoliths and people have related however a lot smaller bones of their ears. The “drumming” sound made by drum has nothing to do with these “ear stones.” The sound is definitely produced by belly muscle tissue squeezing towards the fish’s swim bladder. A lot for previous myths!
I’m certain you’ve got heard that the feminine roadrunner lays her eggs in different birds’ nests and permits the “adopted” mother and father to lift their younger? In reality, each the female and male roadrunner shares the responsibility of setting on the clutch of eggs. The male spends the nighttime hours on the eggs and the feminine takes over in the course of the day.
We’ve all been advised all my life in regards to the “black panthers” that roam the east Texas woods. I’ve heard a couple of older particular person give vivid accounts of those black cats they sighted. It’s an accepted truth amongst wildlife biologists that there aren’t any “black wild cats” native to Texas. However, to be utterly sincere, the accounts I’ve heard from a number of completely creditable of us nonetheless trigger me to marvel it there may simply be lengthy tailed jet black cats wandering the backwoods at the moment. I’ve had a number of folks, together with my lifelong good friend Molly Ford, look me sq. within the eye and make statements comparable to “Luke, the cat I noticed had a protracted tail and was jet black. It was NOT a bobcat and undoubtedly not a feral home cat, it was at the least three toes lengthy, much less the tail!” This can be a “fable” that I have to admit I imagine in however can on no account show to be fact.
When tagging alongside on quail hunts in the course of the fall as a child, I discovered that the dry berries of the brilliantly coloured sumac shrub had a beautiful lemony, bitter style. I liked to chew on these berries in the course of the hunt. My dad and a lot of the older hunters suggested me, “Boy, these berries come off the sumac bush, they’re extremely toxic! Spit them out!” I later discovered that the berries from sumac (Staghorn Sumac) have been utilized by Native People to brew a really flavorful tea. I later used the dried berries to concoct the drink, which has a taste very like lemonade.
I grew up believing the Satan’s Using Horse (Praying Mantis) was able to spitting toxic venom into one’s eye which nearly all the time resulted in blindness. Granted, these bugs are extraordinarily scary wanting, particularly within the eyes of kids, however they undoubtedly don’t “spit” and are utterly innocent to people (apart from their scary look).
And, is it actually true that fish feed in the course of the center of the day in the course of the full moon? The idea is that, due to the sunshine created by the complete moon, fish “keep up all evening feeding,” relaxation at dawn and change into hungry once more about eight hours later. Wanting again on about 50 years of fishing experiences, I can really say I’ve caught essentially the most fish in the course of the first three hours of daylight, with or and not using a full moon!
We’ve all heard accounts of untamed hogs attacking hunters. After a lifetime of pursuing these cautious and, tasty critters, I can really say I’ve solely been charged by boar on two events and each instances, canine have been concerned. As soon as whereas searching with a buddy whose canine bayed a boar in a dry creek mattress. I used to be on the excessive financial institution with my bow. The hog noticed me and immediately charged in my path. Because of the problem the hog encountered climbing the steep creek financial institution, I used to be capable of make a effectively positioned shot and cease the cost. One other time, I used to be photographing a rank previous boar that was bayed by a number of hog canine. The enraged boar noticed me and broke by way of the ranks of canine, charging me. I jumped behind an enormous oak and the canine pushed the boar out of the pin oak flat and into some heavy brush.
Getting between a sow and her piglets is asking for hassle however given an opportunity to run, most wild hogs, boars or sows, are extra afraid of people than we’re of them and far choose to run than battle.
If you happen to’ve spent a lot time within the outside, I’m certain you’ll be able to add to this record of myths. The pure world holds many wonders, some large and a few small. And I’m optimistic people won’t ever totally perceive the workings of nature.
Contact Outdoor author Luke Clayton by way of his web site www.catfishradio.org .