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March 20, 2018

RIVERBED BUBBLER AND SOUND SYSTEM TO BE USED ON ASIAN CARP

Bill Schroeder of Paducah is shown at left in the photo above after he landed this world record Asian Carp in Lake Barkley in May of 2015. A new study will begin his fall on methods to slow the spread of the invasive species in local waters.Bill Schroeder of Paducah is shown at left in the photo above after he landed this world record Asian Carp in Lake Barkley in May of 2015. A new study will begin his fall on methods to slow the spread of the invasive species in local waters.

The Lake News

Frankfort – Researchers will experiment with a riverbed bubbler and sound system as part of the ongoing effort to slow the spread of Asian carp throughout the Mississippi River basin.

European technology originally designed to steer migrating salmon back into main river channels will be tested below Barkley Dam in western Kentucky as an environmentally friendly way to block passage of Asian carp upstream.

The Bio-Acoustic Fish Fence (BAFF) creates a curtain of bubbles, and in conjunction with a powerful sound signal, produces an underwater “wall of sound” designed to deter the passage of fish.

Fish Guidance Systems,LTD, a company based in the United Kingdom, invented the device to herd migrating fish around water intakes and dams in Europe. The company describes the fence as a behavioral barrier that requires less maintenance than a physical barrier, such as a screen or an electrical barrier.

A multi-agency research group chose the company’s technology for the Barkley Dam test. The Nashville District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Geological Survey, University of Minnesota, Fish Guidance Systems and the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources are combining funding, technology and staff to construct a research plan that should put an acoustic bubbler system below the dam in fall 2018.

Researchers will use an existing telemetry receiver array and other electronic devices to assess the extent of Asian carp movement from the tailwater into Barkley Lake. The existence of the current telemetry array – set up by local Kentucky Fish and Wildlife research staff dedicated to Asian carp – and the large numbers of Asian carp in the tailwater make Barkley Dam the ideal location for the research.

The invasive Asian carp are a major concern throughout the Mississippi River basin, including the Tennessee River, which forms Kentucky Lake, and the Cumberland River, which forms Lake Barkley. These are two of the largest reservoirs in Kentucky.

The lock systems of Kentucky and Barkley dams are the primary sources of reservoir access for Asian carp, which continue to expand their range throughout the Mississippi and Ohio river basins.

Bio-acoustic fish fences below lock chambers in the Mississippi River basin are untested as an Asian carp deterrent. This requires research to assess the technology’s efficiency at reducing fish movement beyond the barriers. While this technology does not require construction of physical barriers such as fences, challenges remain.

The amount of barge and boat traffic through the lock at Lake Barkley’s dam could create logistical challenges for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Water depths during low-flow periods below the lock chamber will be marginally sufficient to pass barges through. A large volume of sizeable debris coming through the lock chambers during floods could pose problems for the sound system and bubble barrier.

Deployment of the fish barrier may affect a few anglers who fish in parts of the lock canal. Because of the potential for considerable damage to the system, the area between the lock walls immediately downstream of the chamber will be off limits to fishing. However, the area downstream of the bubble curtain located at the end of the short wall along shore will remain open.

Testing will occur over a three-year period. Most likely, officials will remove the barrier system after the test and the entire portion of the lock structure will reopen for fishing.

The research goals include determining the effectiveness of a sound barrier system at restricting or reducing movement of Asian carp through lock chambers; assessing the system’s resiliency; and determining the barrier’s effect on movement of native fish species through lock chambers. Information gathered from this research will be important to future tests at other dams in the Mississippi River and Ohio River basins.

 

March 19, 2018

Kentucky Afield Outdoors: Time to scout and develop a game plan as spring turkey season approaches

 

The landscape awakens almost spontaneously from its winter slumber. Winter flocks break up into smaller groups. Innumerable turkey calls and lifelike decoys reappear at sporting goods retailers.

Turkey hunters interpret these occurrences as signs that it will not be long before they are easing into their spots before dawn, filled with anticipation.

In Kentucky, hunters still have ample time to scout and develop a game plan to increase their odds of success in the upcoming spring turkey season. This year, Kentucky’s youth-only season is the weekend of April 7-8. The start of the 23-day general statewide season follows on April 14. It ends May 6.

“Start at the computer then get out in the field to find birds,” said Zak Danks, wild turkey program coordinator with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. “Know some different approaches you might take and where you can move based on gobbling you hear once the season starts. Think about some good set-up spots or places to put your decoys, or vantage points to see birds.”

 

Spring turkey hunting season opens statewide April 14 and closes May 6. The season outlook is promising as a majority of Kentucky counties show a stable to increasing harvest trend over the past decade. Kentucky hunters harvested just over 33,000 birds during last year’s spring turkey season, the third highest on record. (Photo from KyAfield)Spring turkey hunting season opens statewide April 14 and closes May 6. The season outlook is promising as a majority of Kentucky counties show a stable to increasing harvest trend over the past decade. Kentucky hunters harvested just over 33,000 birds during last year’s spring turkey season, the third highest on record. (Photo from KyAfield)

Virtual scouting can save precious time for hunters looking to hunt public land. Topographic maps and satellite views may reveal access points, existing trails, open fields, wooded areas, elevation changes and creeks or fences where approaching gobblers could hang up. Kentucky offers dozens of wildlife management areas and other lands open for public use.

As a reminder, turkey calling is not allowed from March 1 until the opening of the youth-only season, and from the close of that season until the opening of the statewide season. Hunters may still use an owl, crow or other calls to locate turkeys while scouting.

It is always a good practice before the season to shoot your shotgun at a paper turkey head target using different brands of turkey loads. By patterning a shotgun ahead of time, the hunter knows the shotgun will shoot where it is aimed and deliver an acceptable number of pellets to the turkey’s vital area (head and neck).

“One thing I’ve learned over the past several years is just how good the hunting can be later in the season,” Danks said. “Last year, in particular, I had hunters contacting me well after the season ended saying they were still hearing turkeys gobble. So don’t get discouraged if you don’t have success early on. There’s still time to find turkeys throughout the season.”

In Kentucky, the spring hunting seasons are timed to give gobblers enough time to breed hens before subjecting the birds to hunting pressure. Kentucky Fish and Wildlife monitors turkey reproduction on a statewide scale through annual summer brood surveys.

Weather during the nesting period in May and June influences reproductive success. Heavy rains in Kentucky and surrounding states during that timeframe last year affected nesting success, which reflected in a statewide average of 1.2 poults per hen. A figure of 2.0 or higher is optimal. Hunters should expect to encounter fewer of the more easily fooled jakes, as a result, this season.

Kentucky annually ranks first or second among surrounding states in the number of turkeys taken per square mile.
Hunters took a record number of birds during the 2010 spring season and have averaged more than 31,000 birds over the seven seasons since.

Last spring, hunters reported taking 33,061 birds, which represents a 6 percent increase over the previous year and the third highest total on record. Muhlenberg County led all counties with hunters reporting 681 birds taken there. Looking at it differently, Pendleton County led the state with 1.76 birds harvested per square mile.

The majority of counties are showing a stable to increasing harvest trend over the past decade. Some counties are exhibiting lower harvest totals. In response, Kentucky Fish and Wildlife is expanding efforts to monitor the turkey population and reproduction. Feedback from hunters will play an important role.

A new spring hunting log and a post-season survey will soon be available on the department’s website at www.fw.ky.gov. On the homepage, type “Spring Turkey Hunting” into the search box. The log serves to collect information about a hunter’s daily hunting effort, the number of turkeys seen, heard and harvested, observations about weather and other species observed. The post-season survey will include questions about spring hunting experiences.

“Our harvest totals tell us that we’re still in a pretty good situation on a statewide level,” Danks said. “We are hearing from people who tell us they’re not seeing as many turkeys as they had in the past. Most of that is from counties that have shown a decrease in the harvest. What’s the reason? It’s difficult to determine on a statewide scale when all we’ve had to go on is a harvest. We need information on hunter effort on a county level.

“The information gained from these hunter surveys and logs should help us track trends across the state.”

Hunters are allowed a limit of two bearded birds during the spring season, but no more than one bearded bird may be taken in a day.

The 2018 Kentucky Spring Hunting Guide provides information about current regulations, licenses and permits, legal equipment, safety tips and more. Find it online at fw.ky.gov or wherever licenses are sold.

Hunters also will have an opportunity to have their questions about spring turkey season answered during a special “Kentucky Afield” TV call-in show scheduled Saturday, March 24. The live one-hour show will air at 8 p.m. Eastern/7 p.m. Central on Kentucky Educational Television (KET). Joining host Chad Miles for the show will be Danks and pioneering turkey hunter Harold Knight.

By Kevin Kelly
Special to KyForward

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Kevin Kelly is a writer for Kentucky Afield magazine, the official publication of the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. 

 

February 23, 2018

Report: UK basketball players among those linked to potential NCAA violations

LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky basketball players were included in documents published Friday pertaining to NBA agent Andy Miller and his ASM Sports agency that tie top programs and players to activity that appears to violate NCAA rules. 

Yahoo Sports released details from hundreds of pages of documents that specified potential impermissible benefits for current and former players at Kentucky, Duke, North Carolina, Michigan State and other schools. 

Current Wildcats' leading scorer Kevin Knox and former forwards Bam Adebayo and Nerlens Noel were among those linked to ASM Sports. 

From the report: 

An ASM balance sheet in the hands of federal investigators shows accounts through Dec. 31, 2015, with the subheading, “Loan to Players.” It listed several who were in high school or college as receiving four-figure and five-figure payments from ASM Sports. 

... A listing that refers to “BAM” for $12,000 is later identified in the documents as Edrice “Bam” Adebayo, who would go on to play at Kentucky in 2016-17. He did not sign with ASM. There’s a later reference to Adebayo that says he received $36,500. “Bad loan,” reads the document.... A listing that refers to “BAM” for $12,000 is later identified in the documents as Edrice “Bam” Adebayo, who would go on to play at Kentucky in 2016-17. He did not sign with ASM. There’s a later reference to Adebayo that says he received $36,500. “Bad loan,” reads the document.

... A listing that refers to “BAM” for $12,000 is later identified in the documents as Edrice “Bam” Adebayo, who would go on to play at Kentucky in 2016-17. He did not sign with ASM. There’s a later reference to Adebayo that says he received $36,500. “Bad loan,” reads the document.

Adebayo averaged 13 points and eight rebounds as a Kentucky freshman last season. He was selected No. 14 overall in the NBA draft by the Miami Heat in June. 

KEVIN KNOXKEVIN KNOXKnox, the freshman forward who is averaging 15.4 points and 5.6 rebounds, was listed among players as meeting with or having meals with Christian Dawkins, an associate of Miller. 

Duke's Wendell Carter, Michigan State’s Miles Bridges, Alabama’s Collin Sexton and North Carolina's Tony Bradley, among others, were included with Knox. 

From the report: 

Additional Dawkins expense reports list meals and meetings with players or their families while in college or high school, and before they turned pro. While small amounts, these could be categorized as extra benefits under NCAA rules. It appears Dawkins paid for the meals, which could be an important distinction.

While three criminal cases tied to the investigation may take years to play out, the documents viewed by Yahoo revealed the extent of the potential NCAA ramifications from the case. The documents show an underground recruiting operation that could create NCAA rules issues – both current and retroactive – for at least 20 Division I basketball programs and more than 25 players.

Noel, who played one season at Kentucky from 2012-13, was listed as receiving a loan totaling $4,350. 

NCAA President Mark Emmert released the following statement Friday morning:

"These allegations, if true, point to systematic failures that must be fixed and fixed now if we want college sports in America," Emmert said in the release. "Simply put, people who engage in this kind of behavior have no place in college sports. They are an affront to all those who play by the rules. Following the Southern District of New York's indictments last year, the NCAA Board of Governors and I formed the independent Commission on College Basketball, chaired by Condoleezza Rice, to provide recommendations on how to clean up the sport. With these latest allegations, it's clear this work is more important now than ever.

The Board and I are completely committed to making transformational changes to the game and ensuring all involved in college basketball do so with integrity. We also will continue to cooperate with the efforts of federal prosecutors to identify and punish the unscrupulous parties seeking to exploit the system through criminal acts.”

By Fletcher Page
Louisville Courier Journal

 

CALAPARI SAYS HE 'HAS NOT HAD ANY RELATIONS' WITH AGENT: --CATS PAWS.COM

“I have no relationship with Andy Miller or any of his associates," Kentucky coach John Calipari said.“I have no relationship with Andy Miller or any of his associates," Kentucky coach John Calipari said.

“I have no relationship with Andy Miller or any of his associates," Kentucky coach John Calipari said. "Neither my staff nor I utilized any agent, including Andy Miller or any of his associates, to provide any financial benefits to a current or former Kentucky student-athlete. We will cooperate fully with the appropriate authorities.”   --Cats Paws.com

Knox will play against Missouri Saturday

Kentucky freshman Kevin Knox, who was named in the Yahoo! Sports report on Friday morning, will still play against Missouri.

"At this point I believe so," coach John Calipari said when asked if Knox would play. "If there’s something that I don’t know..” Deputy Director of athletics DeWayne Peevy followed the statement with "there’s nothing additional to what you already know.”  --Cats Paws.com

 

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