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In The Wild

Time for Tick Talk

EEEEK! TICK! The ticks are out! In Nebraska, ticks become active early in the spring and are one of the first biting pests we experience as the weather warms. Ticks are part of Nebraska’s environment, and they shouldn’t stop any of us from pursuing our favorite outdoor activities this time of year — wild turkey hunting, morel mushroom picking, bird watching, tent camping, hiking, fishing, etc. We just need to take the necessary precautions to dissuade these little buggers from crawling on us, embedding …

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Creating and Maintaining the Tradition of Hunting

Our traditions are a major part of us. They help to shape who we are. Indeed, when it comes to the hunting lifestyle, they are at the very core of what we are. The wild places, the game animals and birds we seek, how we do that, when we do that, and with whom we do that, all sculpt our outdoor lives. Whenever I think about creating a new hunting tradition I always find myself in kind of a quandary. The word tradition really isn’t about the new, it’s about the old, isn’t it? Or, …

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March Means Migration Near You (Even in the City)

When I was kid, I always looked forward to taking a drive with my grandparents during the March thaw to see the spring migration of birds in Sarpy County, Nebraska. We never had to travel very far from our homes in Gretna to see the migrating birds either. It’s those drives that helped to develop my appreciation for birds. Truth is, you still do not have to venture far at all to enjoy the spectacular March migration of birds in Nebraska. Extraordinary spring migration bird watching awaits you in …

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The Addiction: Spring Wild Turkey Hunting

Truth be told, I’m finding it difficult to cope as I wait anxiously for Nebraska’s spring wild turkey hunting seasons to arrive. The days are getting longer, we’ve had some of those abnormally warm winter days, and hints of green are emerging on my lawn! Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m really looking forward to experiencing the spring migration of waterfowl and sandhill cranes, in addition to hunting snow geese, but it’s hard not to not think about wild turkeys in the springtime when there is …

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Purposes of Camo

As I was rooting through my camouflaged clothing the other day in the Wagner basement/outdoor cave looking for a particular garment, some questions came to mind. Does all of this camouflaged clothing really matter? I am using each of these? What purposes does camouflaged clothing really serve? Why do I end up wearing it much of the time yet I’m not entirely outside? Whether for function or fashion, whether heading to the ground blind or golf course, I do not truly believe that camouflage is ever off-trend or out …

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Sharing the Bounty

I like to share some of the treasured wild game I harvest with others for consumption. Why? Some of you may be asking. I know, I know, I should keep it all for myself, right? After all, it is so healthy and delicious! Well, I like to breakdown stereotypes in the lifestyle of hunting with others, especially when it comes to dining on wild game meat. What I continually find is that some folks are fearful of preparing, cooking and, more so, …

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Collecting Old School Outdoor Things

My wife thinks I am a hoarder. I believe I am a collector of things. Everybody collects stuff, right? Some folks collect baseball cards and other sports memorabilia while still others collect everything from Mason canning jars to antique jewelry to knives. Me, well, I collect outdoor things  –  vintage outdoor things. The outdoor world is rife with items to collect, whether legally obtained from the wild, homemade or manufactured. I even have an old Nebraska Game and Parks Commission …

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Snow Ice Cream

Someone I knew once said: “When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade. When life gives you a snow day, you make snow ice cream!” I couldn’t agree more! With an ever-expanding blanket of snow cover over much of Nebraska, I thought it would be a perfect time to share with you my recipe for making snow ice cream. Creating this scrumptious “snow cream,” as I call it, is a fun activity to do with the kids on a cold winter day here on the Great Plains. They’ll …

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January Turkeys

I am always about learning new things in Nebraska’s outdoor scene. I believe it makes you a better, more knowledgeable, well-rounded outdoor enthusiast. So, one of my New Year’s resolutions was to hunt in a variety of habitat and hopefully harvest a wild turkey (or two) in January, the last month of the fall season, which I have never done. I know, I know. What kind of crazed hunter goes after wild turkeys in the frigid, snow-covered landscape of a Nebraska January, …

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The Splendor of Solitude

I treasure my time spent alone in the woods, especially this time of year in Nebraska. If I don’t get some alone time in the great outdoors, I end up getting a little restless, grumpy and cabin fever-like (just ask my wife, Polly). For the record, I do not advocate venturing outdoors alone because of safety purposes, plus it is more fun and rewarding to share your outdoor adventures with others, but the alone time is essential! If you, like me, enjoy periodically going outdoors by yourself, please take …

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