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Wildlife

Snakes of Nebraska event set for July 20-21 at Schramm Education Center

LINCOLN – See all 29 species of snakes found in Nebraska July 20-21 at Schramm Education Center. Herpetologist Dennis Ferraro of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln will show live snakes during the annual “Snakes of Nebraska” event. “Snakes are an integral part of our ecosystem, and this event provides an opportunity for visitors to gain knowledge, see Nebraska’s snakes up-close and have fun,” said Nebraska Game and Parks wildlife educator Lindsay Rogers. The live snake exhibits and presentation will run from …

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A Very Cool Job: Nebraska Conservation Officer

A nice package of benefits. A plan for pay advancement. Flexibility with your work schedule. Working outdoors, especially with fish, wildlife, parks and water sports. Sound good? These are all positive facets of being a Nebraska conservation officer or what some still refer to as a “game warden.” And, guess what? Game and Parks is looking to fill up to six conservation officer positions around the state. Interested? You will have until Aug. 26, 2019 to apply. Truly, there are …

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A magical time in northwestern Nebraska

Spring and early summer is a magical time of year that leaves us too quickly. It seems I never get out with the cameras as much as I want to during this period, but usually end up with a few keeper images, anyway. Here is a collection of random photos from recent weeks. I am often amused when any given chamber of commerce or tourism bureau brags on its sunrises and sunsets being the best. (Since we are all watching …

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Wildcat Hills: A Wild Place

Whether you’re looking for state-of-the-art facilities, or just a great view in the pines, this Panhandle park has it. High on the list of Nebraska’s captivating scenery and natural assets are the Wildcat Hills. It seems an understatement to label this topographical spectacle as “hills,” as it is actually a land of rugged buttes, ridges and canyons with topographical elements rising upwards to 1,000 feet above the North Platte Valley. Some of the state’s most recognizable landforms – Chimney Rock, …

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Bird Photography: The First 99

One shutter-button press at a time, the bird photos add up. What the Nebraska Panhandle may lack in diversity of bird life when compared to eastern Nebraska it more than makes up for in its varied landscape. That variation, from the towering sandstone buttes through the pine forests, sandhill lakes, riparian woodlands, grasslands, croplands and even residential areas, is home to a diversity of birds, and some bird-watching gems found nowhere else in the state. Joel Jorgensen, nongame bird program …

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Park speaker series kicking off with osprey program

Osprey

CRAWFORD, Neb. — A summer speaker series in northwestern Nebraska’s state parks kicks off this week with a program about ospreys and other birds of prey. Shelley Mangram, a ranger at Agate Fossil Beds National Monument, will deliver the presentation Friday, May 31, at 7 p.m. at Fort Robinson State Park’s Soldier Creek Campground. The series of presentations, which also includes programs at Chadron State Park, is a collaboration of the National Park Service’s Agate Fossil Beds National Monument, the …

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Northwestern Exposure: The Bright Lights of Cottonwood-Steverson

Lightning at Cottonwood-Steverson

As the weather warms up, I love overnight trips to our great public lands in the region. The more remote the better. For the first trip of the season, I chose Cottonwood-Steverson Wildlife Management Area in the Sandhills between Merriman and Hyannis. Upon arrival, the Cottonwood-Steverson welcoming committee promptly greeted me. While many water-loving species are attracted to Cottonwood-Steverson and its Sandhills lakes, I found myself attracted to the many small birds fluttering among the trees. The warblers were out …

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Hunters, Anglers: Become Bird Watchers!

I am a hunter. I am an angler. I am a bird watcher. I love to watch birds, especially when I am hunting or fishing. I love watching all birds, not just the game birds I hunt. I enjoy viewing them intently and trying to capture some halfway decent photos of them. If you’re a hunter or an angler, you should become a bird watcher. I’ll explain why in a moment. May is a great month to view birds. In …

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Northwestern Exposure: Taking refuge

This is always an especially great time of year to visit the Sandhills, with the landscape greening up and diverse wildlife in abundance. Anyone wanting to do so had better check conditions before going, though. On May 2, I decided to drive the slow road through the Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge from Oshkosh to Lakeside. Once I got to the refuge, I found the road under water in several places and decided to backtrack southward, making for a much …

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Late Season Turkey Tips: Gettin’ That Gobbler

We are in the late season for spring wild turkey hunting in Nebraska. Using a baseball analogy, it is the bottom of the 9th inning, your team is behind, the bases are loaded, there two outs and you are up to bat! I don’t think there is any doubt about it, spring turkey hunting late in the season is challenging. However, there are still plenty of gobbles to be heard and birds to be worked plus amazing experiences to be …

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