LINCOLN – Preparation is key to safe and enjoyable hunting trips. The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission reminds hunters of several things to accomplish and be aware of as hunting seasons begin.
Buy Permits and Stamps – Hunting (small game), big game and turkey permits, as well as appropriate stamps, may be purchased at OutdoorNebraska.org or Game and Parks permitting offices across the state. Before purchasing a permit, know what may be harvested with it, what weapons may be used and where you may hunt with it.
Register with Harvest Information Program (HIP) – This is required of residents age 16 and older and all nonresidents who hunt migratory game birds (doves, ducks, geese, snipe, rail, coots and woodcock) in Nebraska between Aug. 1, 2015 and July 31, 2016. Register for the free program at OutdoorNebraska.ne.gov/Hip/ or call toll-free at 877-634-8687.
Know the Regulations – It is the individual’s responsibility to know the hunting regulations. Regulations may be viewed in complete or in summarized forms at OutdoorNebraska.org.
Find a Place to Hunt – View the Nebraska Public Access Atlas and the Public Hunting Lands section of the 2015 Hunting Guide at OutdoorNebraska.org to find public hunting grounds as well as private lands that offer public, walk-in access.
Follow Firearm Safety Tips – Always: 1) treat a firearm as if it is loaded; 2) point the muzzle in a safe direction; 3) know your target and what lies beyond it; and 4) unload guns when not in use and store guns and ammunition under lock and key.
Equipment Check – Make sure your gear is clean, safe and in proper working condition. This includes weapons, tree stands, tools and clothing.
Accommodations – Make plans for places to stay during a hunt. Find lodging or campgrounds. Buy a park entry permit, if needed.
Be an Ethical Hunter – Never take more game than can be used; take only good shots; get landowner permission to hunt private land; leave private land as it was found; and pack out any trash.
Field Care – Know the proper field care for the game you plan on harvesting. Visit http://outdoornebraska.org/hunting/How_2_hunt.asp for information on field dressing big game.
Share Your Photos – Follow Game and Parks on Facebook and Twitter and share photos of your hunting trips.