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Wildlife

Throwback Thursday: Exaggeration Postcards

Fishing and hunting yarns and photos have always been part of Nebraska’s great outdoor scene. Beginning in the early 1900s and for decades thereafter, Nebraska postcards depicted altered, exaggerated images of game, fish and agriculture. These were done to promote the unique aspects of a place or product as well as to document local history. They were also used to lure folks to the Cornhusker State to hunt, fish or visit. Considered western-style humor, these exaggeration postcards were extremely popular …

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Buffalo Bill Ranch SHP and SRA

Trail Rides are a new addition to Buffalo Bill Ranch State Historical Park (SHP) and State Recreational Area (SRA) this year. The rides, provided by Dusty Trails LLC, take visitors through the SRA traveling along the scenic North Platte River. The hour-long rides are a great way to show visitors the beautiful area, some wildlife including deer, turkeys and many bird and plant species. Jason Tonsfeldt, Superintendent of Buffalo Bill Ranch SHP and SRA is pleased with the amount of …

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LIVE Raptors at Great Outdoor Radio Show Broadcast

Join me tomorrow morning for a very special edition of The Great Outdoor Radio Show I host when Denise Lewis and friends from Fontenelle Forest’s Raptor Recovery team come with a few live birds to the Waterford Assisted Living facility at Miracle Hills in Omaha. See LIVE raptors of Nebraska! We’ll be highlighting the tremendous conservation work that Fontenelle Forest’s Raptor Recovery does with injured, sick or orphaned raptors as well as the vital role that nongame wildlife such as raptors have in any ecosystem! The …

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Searching for the Elusive Yellow Lady’s Slipper Flower

On a sunny, but muggy, morning last June, six Game and Parks Commission and Northern Prairies Land Trust biologists gathered at Indian Cave State Park. Our mission for the next two days: trek the park’s rugged, wooded hills in search of the elusive yellow lady’s-slipper orchid (Cypripedium parviflorum). A common and widespread North American species, the yellow lady’sslipper grows in coniferous and deciduous forests and wetlands across much of Canada and the U.S. Nebraska, however, supports only a handful of …

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Salt Creek Jewels

A fog rising through the Salt Creek valley led me quietly out the door and down the driveway, past a series of dirt road intersections and directly to the gate of the Little Salt Fork Marsh Preserve near Raymond, just in time to greet the dawn. It was the barbed-wire spun in silk that first made me stop to consider the hidden creatures residing here that revealed a soft touch in sharp contrast to the tamed highway cutting through the creek. As I crossed …

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Bighorn Sheep Tours Set for Wildcat Hills, Fort Robinson

The public will have an opportunity to view the animals known to be the best rock climbers in western Nebraska’s butte country during morning hikes at two state parks in July. Group hikes to view the region’s wild bighorn sheep are scheduled for two consecutive Saturdays – July 12 at the Wildcat Hills State Recreation Area south of Gering and Fort Robinson State Park near Crawford on July 19. Hikers will meet at the Wildcat Hills Nature Center for the …

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Great Plains Connections: What Is That White Bird?

  Recently I was out taking photos when I came across a strange looking bird – from a distance I couldn’t tell what the bird was. Walking closer to the bird, snapping photos as I gained ground on it, I realized it was a robin that had partial leucism. Out of curiosity I asked TJ Walker, NGPC District Manager, Wildlife Division and avid birder how common this was, his response was “I have seen leucistic birds in many species – …

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Nature Programs Continue at Chadron, Fort Robinson SPs

A series of nature programs continues this week at the two state parks in the northern Panhandle. Park naturalist Jami Campbell will lead eight family-friendly programs at Chadron State Park and Fort Robinson State Park on Thursday, June 5, through Saturday, June 7. The action will start at Chadron State Park’s Trading Post on Thursday at 3:30 p.m. with a program about snakes. At 5:30 p.m. she will tell about the tiniest creatures in the prairies and forests. The programming …

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Wildlife is All Around Us

Many of us who enjoy Nebraska’s great outdoors do so as a result of flora and fauna that we see there. But, I am reminded today, that wildlife is, after all, all around us, even in urban Omaha’s Metcalfe Park neighborhood! I think it’s really neat when we have to go no further than our own homes to thoroughly enjoy and appreciate wildlife, especially in late spring and early summer! Case in point: The mourning dove nest at our Wagner abode. Look! On the ledge of our fireplace chimney we have a …

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Ground Blind Discussions

It’s now the middle of May. Spring turkey season in Nebraska is entering its final weeks.  I have already spent a good number of hours in a ground blind – mostly with members of my family – and I hope to spend several more in the days to come.  For sheer excitement the portable blinds cannot compete with sitting at the base of a tree as a gobbler closes in, but they do give a person plenty of time to …

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