Lakecaster Online

Buck Fever Rages in East Texas
By Patty Lenderman

We have a serious epidemic occuring in East Texas. The common name for this phenomenon is "Buck Fever". There are no pills or injections that can be taken to cure this condition. Generally considered a seasonal affliction, it affects men and women but only those who hunt for deer. While not fatal, this condition can be very consuming and distracting from "normal" everyday life.

At the onset of this condition the victim may experience a variety of symptoms including:
- inability to concentrate on work
- strong appetite for deer meat
- dress habits change to a camo effect
- desire to clean guns and sharpen arrows
- relentless dreams of trophy bucks
- peering into wooded areas searching for a "good hunting spot" to find this elusive buck
- long walks in the woods tracking these animals and looking for a good place to sit

Seeking council from other victims of this condition is common and considered helpful. Stories of past experiences exchanged sometimes helps momentarily sooth the symptoms, but more often tends to worsen the condition overall. Then the anxiousness and anxiety of determining when is the best time and place to find the cure for this fever by obtaining this animal begins. You watch moon phases. Talk to other hunters. Sit on your stand and watch, waiting for the opportunity to bag your buck. Every sound in the forest catches your attention as you process the information flowing through your brain and watch for the slightest movement. Through the corner of your eye you see that movement. Slowly, carefuly, quietly you turn to get a better look. A squirrel. Again, you see and hear something. Locating the source it is a bird. Still waiting. Still watching. AH! - there he is. It's a nice sized buck. Maybe not the muy grande you had dreamed of but never the less are now launched into the advanced stages of Buck Fever as you carefully draw up your weapon. The uncontrollable shaking begins and you can hear your own heartbeat. There is a trace of sweat on your palms as you raise your weapon to find your shot. Hoping that your aim is good and he does not run, you take your best shot. BOOM !! (In this story it was a perfect shot and he drops right where you shot him. Great job !!)
The excitement of your accomplishment compounds your condition. Your heart feels like it could beat right out of your chest. You breathe in shorter breaths. Excitement level is skyrocketing. Getting your deer tag out you mark it with deliberance and pride. You now have "bragging rights" and start thinking about who you are going to share the story of your victory with. Gonna have back strap and tenderloins for dinner tonight.

We are very fortunate here in our lakes areas for the many areas and opportunities to hunt, be it on private leases or public hunting lands. The people who live here or just come and enjoy this area fondly call it "God's country". The natural resources abound for any and every type of outdoor activity and enjoyment. It is up to every hunter to do his part in protecting this great pass time by leaving the woods as you found them. Supporting agencies and groups who fight for our right to keep and bear arms, and agencies who manage our all of our wildlife is essential for future generations of hunters. Remember to take a kid hunting when you can. Taking a child hunting not only will expose them to the great outdoors but will teach them to care for, appreciate and protect our natural resources for generations to come while showing them how to provide food for the table.

< photos by Ed Snyder >

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