Local News

July 3, 2013

Having a field day in the Great Outdoors

OSKALOOSA — Children always get to do fun things at the Russell Wildlife Area such as fishing, archery, bow fishing and canoeing; however, adults got the chance to do those activities this weekend.

The Mahaska County Conservation Board held its first Outdoor Adventure Day for adults Saturday.

"I want to do this again," MCCB Naturalist Laura De Cook said. "It gives adults a chance to do what the kids get to do."

About 12 adults attended the first Outdoor Adventure Day that ran from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. They started the day with some fishing. Then, they went to the archery range, and after lunch, they did some bow fishing and canoeing.

After the participants caught some fish, De Cook gave a demonstration on how to fillet a fish.

"I'll show you how to fillet a bluegill," she said.

“The first rule: Always have a sharp knife," De Cook said. A knife with a thin blade works best for fillets, she added.

De Cook made an incision down the side of the fish behind the head and another cut down its back. She then sawed and pushed the knife down the length of the fish's flank until she reached the tail. Once the flank of the fish was exposed, she ran the knife down the outside part of the fillet to remove the layer containing scales. Then you repeat the procedure for the other side of the fish.

People then could cook, refrigerate or freeze the fish fillet, she said.

De Cook gave the participants some fishing advice: "Always be sure to catch the legal limit."

"This area is public, so you can come back here. You're welcome to hike out here and fish," she said.

The group next went to the archery range to learn how to shoot a bow and arrow.

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