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Conservation

Fortenberry co-introduces bipartisan bill to conserve wildlife

LINCOLN, Neb. – Congress took a step to address the critical need for wildlife conservation on Dec. 14. U.S. House Reps. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.) and Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.) introduced a bill to fund state wildlife conservation using existing mineral and energy royalties from federal lands. The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act, if passed, would invest in proactive, voluntary, incentive-based habitat conservation projects with private landowners by implementing Nebraska’s State Wildlife Action Plan, called the Nebraska Natural Legacy Project. Habitat improvements would …

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Fall Review, 2017

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We are well into December now and I am starting to get impatient for fishable ice!  Does not look like that is coming in the next few days, but am hearing some talk about colder weather maybe a couple weeks from now.  I sure hope so!  Regardless, my open-water fishing for this year is winding down; I may still make a trip or two more depending on weather conditions, but right now I would rather be walking on the water. …

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Valentine National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) Update

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As I often do on my blog, let me start with the news release: Aquatic Habitat Project at Valentine NWR begins second phase LINCOLN, Neb. – In preparation for a rotenone treatment in 2018, length limits on largemouth bass and northern pike at Pelican Lake will be rescinded Dec. 1 through Aug. 1, 2018. This action begins the second phase of the Valentine National Wildlife Refuge Aquatic Habitat Project. Pelican Lake anglers may harvest these bass and pike by rod …

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Valentine NWR Update

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Renovations planned for many Sandhills lakes Invasive Carp Native to Europe, bottom-feeding carp stir up sediments and cloud the water, hampering the growth of the aquatic vegetation that is the base of the food web, and the growth and productivity of sight-feeding gamefish, including the bluegill, yellow perch, black crappie, largemouth bass and northern pike that thrive in Sandhills lakes. Carp found their way onto the refuge in the 1930s when a ditch was dug from Gordon Creek northwest of …

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Martial Arts Training

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I was surfing the web the other day looking for a new workout program for both me and my fishing equipment.  I found one, it is pretty rigorous. . . . A behind the scenes peek at our rod blank inspection process 😂 📸 @fishingkakicommunity Posted by Mud Hole Custom Tackle on Tuesday, October 17, 2017 Sure hope that propane tank does not go off. Would hate to see what that guy does when he loses a fish. Reminded me …

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Combodacious, Late Fall 2017

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I am always up on a soap-box promoting the diversity of fish & wildlife, hunting and fishing opportunities we have in Nebraska.  With no closed season for fishing and long hunting seasons for a variety of species, it is very possible, and double the fun, to combine the activities!  Fall is one of the best times to do that. Hunting, fishing, trapping, I love them all and often feel like I have so much to do and so little time.  …

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Updates

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Got a couple of updates on Aquatic Habitat/Angler Access/Renovation projects.  As a matter of fact, I blogged about both of these back in September, Some News Items, September 2017. Merritt Reservoir As noted the boat ramp/angler access project at Merritt Reservoir was long-awaited and postponed for a year or two because of high water levels.  Now, I will NEVER complain about high water in any of our irrigaiton reservoirs, but in this case it did delay the new boat ramp …

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And Now Our Fish Are Stoned!

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Back in June I told you about drunk crayfish, And Now, Even Our Crayfish are Drunk. Well, the unthinkable has happened again!  Check out this headline! Scientest Gave Fish Marijuana to See If It Would Make Them Relax Go ahead, follow the link, read the story.  I ain’t making this stuff up! Wow, I am afraid these kinds of research projects give us pointy-headed biologists bad reputations.  Seems as though all we can think about is getting crayfish drunk and …

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Long Rod River Trout

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I have never fished for steelhead.  Someday?  Maybe, but not yet. However, as a pointy-headed fisheries biologist, I will tell you that rainbow trout and steelhead are the same fish, Oncorhynchus mykiss, a steelhead ain’t nothing more than a rainbow trout that migrates to the sea.  That line of distinction becomes even more blurred when one considers that inland rainbow trout have been documented to have the same migratory behavior.  In fact, some of the inland rainbows most famous for …

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Ice Gear Prep

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Long range forecasting of the weather is filled with uncertainty, so I will not pretend to know how soon it is going to start getting cold.  The calendar is soon to read “December” and chances are there is some cold weather in our future, but how soon we will have enough ice for ice-fishing is anyone’s guess.  In Nebraska “normal” is the average of the extremes, and I have been on the ice as early as Thanksgiving.  However, most years …

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