Although Saturday’s rain dampened the spirits of south Louisiana hunters and fishermen — that’s only if anything could dampen any spirit after LSU thumped Arkansas — we’ve come through what is the biggest outdoors week in any year.
Ducks and geese were flying, fish were active and, even though the rut is weeks away for most Capital City area deer hunters, there were whitetails showing up at skinning sheds at lots of hunting camps.
That’s why Thanksgiving is an especially joyful holiday around here: Where else in our blessed country can you enjoy family, five-star food, great friends, bountiful fishing and hunting and championship football all in the span of a few days?
Don’t wrack your brain: right now, it’s here.
Yet, when you consider all that’s been provided and given to most of us, there is a lingering void.
Hunger nags at us, hungry children, hungry older folks, hunger that sends folks to bed at night wondering if there’s a better tomorrow.
There’s something we hunters and fishers can do about it. There’s a chance to share our bounty.
It comes in the second phase of the local Hunters for the Hungry annual campaign. The first is the Clean Out Your Freezer Day in late September.
The second is a drive that asks hunters to donate freshly taken deer and feral hogs and fishermen to share their catches.
Here’s how you do that: Six places in the Baton Rouge area will accept field dressed deer and hogs then prepare the meat for the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank, which distributes the meat to soup kitchens and other agencies in an 11-parish area.
The six include:
??Tramonte’s Meat and Seafood, 12451 Jefferson Hwy., Baton Rouge, (225) 751-7665.
??Feliciana Seafood and Deli, 7555 U.S. 61-North, St. Francisville, (225) 635-4279.
??Roucher’s Meat Market, 29435 West Belleview, Plaquemine, (225) 687-4258.
??Frank Mougeot’s Slaughter House, 419 Parent St., New Roads, (225) 638-8228.
??Catoir’s Whitetail Smokehouse, 17192 Be Be Lane, French Settlement, (225) 698-9743.
??Kelly’s Food Mart, 7744 Plank Road, Baton Rouge, (225) 357-1588 (Kelly’s requires deer to be field dressed and quartered).
Hunters pay no fee, get a tax receipt for their donation and, if so desired, can keep the backstrap and the tenderloins.
Fishermen are asked to freeze their donations before turning them in at the Food Bank on Choctaw Drive.
If you have fish or other game to donate, call Amy Sellers at the GBRFB, (225) 359-9940, Ext. 206.
The donation of feral hogs began three years ago after wild pigs began taking over forests and fields across the state since the turn of the century.
These animals can be a source of much needed protein for any of the more than 100 agencies the Food Bank serves.