Outdoors notebook

Longtime area outdoors writer Charles Searcy has been honored with a Legend of the Outdoors Award.

Searcy honored: Charles Searcy, one of the state's most enduring and endearing outdoor writers, is the recipient of a Legends of the Outdoors award.

The annual awards go to persons who have made a positive and lasting impact on the outdoors. Searcy received his award at a ceremony in Nashville, joining such notable past winners as famed fisherman Bill Dance.

Searcy began his 47-year outdoor writing career with the Chattanooga Times, then joined The Nashville Tennessean where he spent 18 years before retiring.

During that time Searcy also wrote for several national publications and was an advocate for numerous causes, including providing outdoor opportunities for youngsters with special needs.

Searcy's humor and engaging personality was reflected in his writing, making him a favorite with readers across the state.

Searcy resides with wife Joyce in Cottontown.

Another CWD case: Shelby County becomes the fifth county in which a harvested deer has tested positive for Chronic Wasting Disease.

In addition to the five positive-test counties, five other adjacent West Tennessee counties have been designated "high risk" for the deadly deer disease.

No cases of CWD have been diagnosed in Middle Tennessee, but the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency continues to monitor the situation. Part of that monitoring involves testing deer heads for CWD.

Area hunters can drop off deer heads at Cedars of Lebanon State Park's maintenance office during regular park hours. Lebanon Locker processing is also a designated "sampling location" where samples are collected for testing.

Donate venison: The Tennessee Wildlife Federation asks hunters to donate some of their deer to Hunters for the Hungry.

The deer must be commercially processed. Some processors do it for free while others offer a discount. The processor can be contacted to see what its policy is.

The processed venison is distributed to the needy around the state through Second Harvest and church and community organizations.

Details are available on the TWF website.

Small-game hunting: Small-game hunting seasons are in full swing, with quail and rabbit season running through Feb. 29.

Squirrel season also runs through Feb. 29, as does grouse season.

Details about bag limits, license requirements and other regulations are listed in the Tennessee Hunting & Trapping Guide, available for free at most outdoors outlets.

PHOTOS WELCOME: Caught a big bass or bagged a buck? Share your favorite outdoors photos with readers of The Lebanon Democrat by emailing them to areed@lebanondemocrat.com.

Larry Woody is The Democrat's outdoors writer. Email him at larrywoody@gmail.com.

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