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Conservation

Tigers

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Alleged sightings of mountain loins tend to cause a hysteria in some parts. . . . In the future, Nebraska anglers will have to keep their eyes open for tigers too. No, I am not talking about the large, orange and black-striped cats that adorn boxes of breakfast cereal.  I am referring to a fish that is now being stocked in some Nebraska waters.  In fact, some of you may have already heard about tiger trout and in recent blog …

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Commission Awards Watchable Wildlife Grants

LINCOLN — The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission has awarded six grants to enhance watchable wildlife and nature-based opportunities in Nebraska. The watchable wildlife grant program is administered by the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, with support from the Nebraska Wildlife Conservation Fund. This year’s grants totaled more than $13,000. Groups awarded grants in 2016 include: Project Grow; Omaha Youth Birding Group; The Audubon Society of Omaha Experiential Education Program; Prairie Loft Center for Outdoor and Agricultural Learning Sacred Hoop …

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Bald Eagles Break Nest Record Again in 2015

LINCOLN – In 2015, a record 118 active bald eagle nests were documented in Nebraska by the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and its partners. Bald eagles were on federal and state endangered species lists as late as 2007 and 2008, respectively. In less than a quarter century the species has gone from a nonexistent breeding species in the state to one that is relatively numerous, according to Joel Jorgensen, Nebraska Game and Parks’ nongame bird program manager. In the …

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Yellow Perch

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Let me say a few things about one of the most popular species of fish that anglers, especially ice anglers, like to catch, yellow perch.  Most people would tell you that walleyes are one of the best fish on the table and they are right.  Except their smaller “cousin” the yellow perch, is just as good, and maybe even a little bit better.  For that reason word of a hot perch bite during a Nebraska winter travels faster than the …

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Barotrauma on Ice

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I hope many of you have looked at the title of this blog post and wondered, “What in the world is “barotrauma?””.  Barotrauma is the pointy-headed fish biologist term for what happens to some species of fish when they are quickly raised from relatively deep water to the surface.  Most species of our freshwater fish have swim bladders–internal “bags” of gas that the fish use to regulate buoyancy.  Fish living at depths of 20-30 feet or more only have a …

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Winter Is Great Time to View Bald Eagles

LINCOLN – Get out of the house this winter and spend some time viewing Nebraska’s bald eagles. They can be seen year-round across the state, but winter and early spring are the best times to see numbers of eagles. In the winter, there often are concentrations of bald eagles feeding on fish and sick or wounded waterfowl at reservoirs that have some open water. Favored sites include Sutherland Reservoir near Sutherland, Harlan County Reservoir near Alma, and below Gavins Point …

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Tax Check-off Benefits Wildlife, Habitat Conservation

LINCOLN – Tax season provides Nebraskans a unique opportunity to contribute to wildlife and habitat conservation. Line 42 on 2015 state income tax Form 1040N allows individuals to donate all or a part of their tax refund to the Nebraska Wildlife Conservation Fund, which focuses on saving Nebraska’s wildlife and wild places. “The check-off is one of the principal sources of state funding used to conserve more than 95 percent of fish and wildlife species that are considered nongame,” said …

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State Record Summary, 2015

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At the end of each year I like to look back at the state record fish that were certified; kind of a “state record annual report”.  It is time to do that again. . . . Surface Spearfishing Let me start with the surface spearfishing state record category.  We typically do not see a lot of surface spearfishing record fish in a year and 2015 was no exception.  There was one fish certified as a surface spear-fishing record last year, …

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Box Butte Reservoir

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I do not know a lot about this, but I saw a news release just today and there are a bunch of Nebraskans, especially Nebraska anglers, who should be aware of potential dam repairs at Box Butte Reservoir: Bureau seeking comment for possible dam repairs at Box Butte Reservoir The Bureau of Reclamation is seeking comment regarding an environmental assessment document for the dam at Box Butte State Recreation Area north of Hemingford. Engineers have identified problems with sedimentation through …

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This Just In. . . .

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I am heading out of the office here in the next few minutes, but I have a couple of news items to get out before I leave.  Do you want the good news first or the bad news?  Let’s do the bad news first. Discover Ice Fishing On-Ice Clinic in Kearney Canceled LINCOLN – The Discover Ice Fishing on-ice clinic scheduled for Jan. 16 at Kearney’s Yanney Lake has been canceled because of a lack of safe ice. The Nebraska …

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