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Wild Asparagus!

Wild asparagus. Photo by Greg Wagner.

Morel mushrooms may be the heart of foraging activity in Nebraska, but the spring gathering of wild plants in the countryside for the table goes well beyond fungi. Consider, wild asparagus. Tender, succulent and with a flavor zest that combines subtle sweetness and slight bitterness, asparagus growing in the countryside doesn’t taste anything like the asparagus from the produce section of your large supermarket! Wild asparagus has high nutritional value. It is about as Paleo as it gets. Whether cooked or eaten raw, it is packed with …

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Spring Wild Edibles: There’s More Than Morels!

Wild asparagus. Photo by Greg Wagner.

“A weed is a plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson. The morel mushroom picking season is well underway in Nebraska. But, did you know there are other spring delicacies growing wild in the Cornhusker State’s outdoor scene? Oh yes, there sure are! Nebraska offers an abundance and diversity of edible wild plants that can be harvested in the simplest of locations, especially in the springtime. Many of these can be acquired while on a morel mushroom hunt! The spring season (April/May) truly …

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Top 10 Nebraska State Park Lands

Smith Falls State Park. Smith Falls. Photo courtesy of the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission.

Nebraska is chocked full of wonderful state park lands. From the home of the state’s tallest waterfall to the Ozark-like bluffs along the Missouri River, the state’s 77 state park lands encompassing some 72,165 acres are diverse and have much to offer the park goer.  These public areas serve to show us that natural beauty, spectacular scenery and fun outdoor recreation is not far from any point in the state. Compiling a list of the 10 best state park lands in …

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Fish Habitat Update 2016

A new boat ramp, breakwaters, and numerous rock and tree pile and gravel beds built for fish habitat are visible in an aerial photo taken of Burchard Lake WMA before it refilled.

Much to the delight of boat anglers who haven’t been on the water there since 2011, Burchard Lake, one of southeastern Nebraska’s top fisheries, is again open for business following a drawdown for an Aquatic Habitat Program project that was extended by drought. The 8-foot drawdown of the 26-foot deep, 150-acre reservoir in Pawnee County began in 2012 to replace the 60-plus-year-old, leaking outlet structure. While the lake was down, the Game and Parks Commission built a sediment dam across …

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Time for Tick Talk

Tick. Photo by Greg Wagner.

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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Quilters Answering the Call for Fort Robinson

Becky Serres with quilt at Fort Robinson State Park

Overnight visitors to Fort Robinson State Park may notice a special touch to their rooms this summer. The park, with its historical lodging facilities that once housed Cavalry soldiers and officers, has begun a new project to feature the work of quilters from Nebraska and the surrounding region. The park is seeking at least 30 quilts to be placed on beds in two of its officers’ quarters — the big brick buildings at the west end of its horseshoe drive …

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Creating and Maintaining the Tradition of Hunting

From Left to Right, Noah Wagner, Sophie (a Braque du Bourbonnais) and Hunting Guide Tom Floyd. Photo by Greg Wagner.

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)

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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

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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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View Sandhill Cranes at Fort Kearny SHP and SRA

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LINCOLN – Sandhill crane enthusiasts are invited to visit Fort Kearny State Historical Park and State Recreation Area to enjoy the spring migration. The visitor center will open daily March 5 – April 10 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Staff will answer questions and direct visitors to viewing areas. One popular viewing location is the hike-bike bridge over the Platte River at the recreation area. The bridge is one-third mile from the parking area. The best viewing times are a half …

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