Mule Deer Foundation in Reno on March 15-17

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Are you a big game hunter?

Are you a big game hunter who likes to hunt mule deer?

Are you a big game hunter who has always wanted to hunt for trophy-sized, buck mule deer?

Well, if you answered: "Yes" to all three of those questions, this week's column is right up your alley.

There is something happening in the near future that should attract your immediate attention.

Here is what's happening:

The Mule Deer Foundation (MDF) will hold its second annual national convention in Reno, on March 15-17.

Be sure to mark those dates on your calendar: March 15-17.

That get-together will be headquartered at the Silver Legacy Casino and City Center Pavilion.

The Mule Deer Foundation has nearly 10,000 members nationwide.

The MDF Motto is: "Making a difference in mule and blacktail deer conservation through management, education, information and member involvement."

It is a non-profit conservation organization dedicated to stopping the decline of the deer of the west.

This year's convention will center around March 16, "Mule Deer Awareness Day." In the west, some of the cities that have officially proclaimed Mule Deer Awareness Day include:

Ariz.: Chandler, Scottsdale and Tucson.

Calif.: Los Gatos, Palm Desert and Petaluma.

Mont.: Billings.

Nev.: Sparks.

Texas: El Paso and Houston.

Wash.: Yakima.

The three-day convention will feature a full slate of seminars from a number of outdoor experts and various speakers such as:

Rob Buonamici.

Deputy Chief Game Warden and Operation Game Thief (OGT) Coordinator of the Nevada Division of Wildlife (NDOW). He will address the poaching impacts on Nevada's declining deer populations.

Many years ago, Buonamici and Don Quilici, Outdoors editor for the Nevada Appeal, created the Operator Game Thief Citizens Committee.

This is the select committee of private individuals that awards monetary rewards for information leading to the arrest and conviction of poachers of Nevada's wildlife.

Early in his career with NDOW, Buonamici served for a number of years as the resident game warden for the Carson City area.

Cynthie Fisher.

A noted wildlife artist. Fisher is the Mule Deer Foundation 2002 Artist of The Year. One of her special paintings will be auctioned during the convention.

Her wildlife art works have graced the covers of Cabalea's Safari and Mule Deer magazines.

She is a 10-time featured artist for Ducks Unlimited, has won nine state duck stamp contests, was Selected Artist for the National Wild Turkey Federation and was the 2001 Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Artist of The Year.

"We're elated someone of Cynthie's stature would create a "one-of-a-kind" painting just for the Mule Deer Foundation," said the organization's president, Terry Wayne Cloutier. "Money raised from the auction of her artwork will go a long way toward realizing our mission -- stopping the decline of mule deer and blacktail deer across the United States."

Bruce Morrison.

He is an expert on Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) and will conduct a seminar on that topic.

Texas' recent decision to ban the importation of certain wildlife from the State of Colorado to help deter the spread of CWD and the increasing concern by sportsmen about that disease should attract much attention to this particular seminar.

Wayne van Zwoll.

He is the author of seven books, including "Modern Sporting Rifle Cartridges" and "Elk and Elk Hunting." Van Zwoll's byline has often appeared in industry giants such as Sports Afield, Outdoor Life, Field and Stream and many other publications.

He will also be conducting daily seminars and will be available on the convention floor to answer questions and to autograph books.

In addition:

Arizona Game and Fish Regional Biologist Jim Heffelfinger, Videographer Jim Sessions, Chef Jon McGannon and wildlife calling expert Ed Parodi will be among some of the other individuals who will be speaking and conducting seminars.

The MDF convention will also feature a collection of some of the largest mule deer ever taken.

They are part of the H-H Collection of Dana Hollinger.

If you have never seen world class, buck mule deer, this is an absolutely "Do Not Miss" experience.

You won't believe the size of some of those antlers. From my own personal experience, you'll quickly see that your all-time best trophy buck will be dwarfed by comparison.

That mule deer exhibit can also be viewed on the Internet, in part, at website:

Newsworthy events this year will include announcements regarding the world's largest private land conservation pact-- S.T.A.M.P. in New Mexico, in which the Mule Deer Foundation is a partner.

Also, an innovative Memorandum of Understanding will be publicly signed between the Mule Deer Foundation and the U.S. Forest Service, during Friday Night's activities.

Among the convention's other highlights will be a series of Sensory Safaris, which are designed to offer sight-impaired individuals, the opportunity to finally "see" wildlife through their enhanced sense of touch.

Convention Exhibit Hall hours are as follows:

Friday: Noon to 8 p.m.

Saturday: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Sunday: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Don't forget: March 15-17.

Plan to attend.

And, while you are there, be sure to compare that big "Mulie" that you got with some of those huge monsters that will be on display.

It should be quite an experience! And, I might add, it should be quite a humbling experience. You just won't believe that there are bucks that big, anywhere in this world.

For information, write the Mule Deer Foundation at 1005 Terminal Way, Suite 170, Reno Nevada 89502 or call 322-6558 or (888) 375-DEER or FAX 322-3421 or E-mail at

-- Bet Your Favorite Pigeon

Bet your favorite pigeon that he can't tell you about the largest buck mule deer that I have ever taken.

You know that you are in deep trouble when he grins, takes your money and says, "Heck, that's easy. The largest buck that "Little Donnie Q" ever took was a very nice 6X4 buck at the headwaters of Clear Creek, many years ago. That location is near the top of the mountains, between Carson City and Lake Tahoe."


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