BOWFROGIN TROPHY FROGS   Leave a comment

The “belly deep” call of the male bull frog is a definite sign that the hunting trip has not in vain.  The Jug‑o‑rum call of the male frog betrays his presence.  The archer draws and releases the arrow in one fluid motion.  The arrow rockets out of the bow.  The attached line resembles a plume of smoke. 

Buried deep in the mud, the arrow, when retrieved contains no sign of the frog.  From the shoreline a few yards away, another frog calls out as if to say, “You missed him didn’t you?” 

Bull frogs do not gather in groups, but rather scatter around a body of water in individual patches of turf.  They are aggressive defenders of territory.  Their call, mainly for purpose of mating and laying eggs, are achieved by use of a throat pouch that works as a resonating chamber. 

Archers are fond of bowfishing for bull frogs on hot summer evenings.  The reward is fun in the water on hot days and a fine meal of frog legs to be had at the end of a hard days work.  Besides it is fun to mess in the mud a little. 

Standard bowfishing gear composed of bow, arrow, line, reel, waders, and old clothes will get one started in this sport.  The line, arrow and reel can be purchased as a package at any sporting goods store.  Instructions on how to use them are contained in the package. 

Being a cold blooded animal, the frog is usually not at his most wary early in the morning and late in the evening.  These are the cooler hours of the day, more comfortable to the archer, but less so to the frog. 

Since frogs live in the swampy portions of a wetlands area, it is usually necessary for the archer to wade in to get within range.  Normally waders are used, but during real hot days, some people just use old clothes and sneakers.  Old clothes are used as swamp water does not wash out of fabrics very well. 

Some archers find that a given frog hunting area has played out.  They give up and never go back to that area.  That is a mistake.  Frogs travel.  An area without frogs one time will be teaming with them on another try. 

The larger frogs tend to like the most inaccessible areas.  They migrate to those areas where they can find food and not be disturbed.  The two basic needs of the bull frog are food and water.

Frogs eat almost anything that will fit in their mouth.  Such things as:  baby birds, small snakes, hickory nuts, fish and other small frogs, have been found in the stomach of a bull frog. 

Frogs are not very approachable from land.  For some reason they tend to attribute danger to anything coming at them from land.  The best way to approach them is from the water, either wadding or in a boat.  The use of a canoe or one of the two‑man bass boats is very effective.  Jon boats work in some areas but not in really shallow water. 

Laws and bag limits vary from one area to another.  It is a good idea to check local restrictions before taking to the swamp to go bowfroging.  In most areas, a fishing license is required.  Bowfroging is great fun and a good way to send the day or evening.  It also is a good warm up to the bow seasons of the fall.  Youngsters, or a spouse, will often enjoy an introduction to the sport of bowhunting through bowfroging.

 

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