I've heard only good things about the charles daly rifles/action. Though I have never used one personally. They are based on the Mauser action so the design is definately time proven. I've looked at a few at gun shops and they seem to be well built. The fit and finish is very tight. I've contemplated building a custom on a CD action, simply because they can be purchased reasonably from Brownells. The true test will be seeing how true and square the actions are from the factory.
I saw a review of Charles Daly shotguns on Guns & Ammo TV a few weeks ago and they said it feels and fires like an Ithaca but Im not sure. I have thought about purchasing one myself. If you get onelet me know how you like it.
A perk of majoring in wildlife biology in college is the plethora of hunting knowledge that you collect throughout your course load. One of the most important factors in whether an area can hold large quantities of animals or produce large antlers is forage.
Most universities, state schools and even community colleges offer basic botany courses and plant ID courses. Although it might not be feasable for the average middle age hunter to pay tuition and go back to college to learn hunting...