Home » greg wagner

greg wagner

A native of Gretna, NE, a graduate of Gretna High School and Bellevue University, Greg Wagner currently serves as the Communications and Marketing Specialist and Manager for the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission's Service Center in Omaha. On a weekly basis, Wagner can be heard on a number of radio stations, seen on local television in Omaha, and on social media channels, creatively conveying natural resource conservation messages as well as promoting outdoor activities and destinations in Nebraska. Wagner, whose career at Game and Parks began in 1979, walks, talks, lives, breathes and blogs about Nebraska’s outdoors. He grew up in rural Gretna, building forts in the woods, hunting, fishing, collecting leaves, and generally thriving on constant outdoor activity. One of the primary goals of his blog is to get people, especially young ones, to have fun and spend time outside!

6 Favorite Wild Foods of Fall

It’s autumn. It’s heavy sweatshirt weather. It’s the season for football and pumpkin-spiced everything. And, it’s time to pick pumpkins and harvest the last of the tender crops from your vegetable garden. But, did you know that beyond the pumpkins, the squash and the tomatoes, fall marks the time of year for gathering and preparing tasty fare from wild places? Sure does. The landscape that surrounds us in Nebraska is actually more lush with wild edible material during autumn than …

Read More »

A Personal Perspective on National Hunting and Fishing Day

National Hunting and Fishing Day is this Saturday, Sept. 24. This is a significant day. No, this is not just another one of those celebratory days, not by a long shot. I grew up hunting and fishing in rural Nebraska. My hunting heritage began 53 years ago this fall as a “quail dog” for my dad and his friend, Jim on our family farm in southeast Nebraska. I am eternally grateful to my dad for taking me hunting! Photo courtesy …

Read More »

Hedge Apples, Hedge Balls, Mock Oranges … What are they exactly and are they good for anything?

They have all sorts of names: Hedge Apples, Hedge Balls, Mock Oranges and others. You’ve probably seen them. But, what really are they? Spider/insect repellents? Hmmm … Dang, they are sure strange looking. What is this bright yellow to yellow-green, grapefruit-sized, brainy-looking fruit-like thing? Fruit? Well, this is actually fruit of the Osage orange tree, an inedible fruit to humans, I might add. Hedge apple, hedge ball or mock orange, in hand. Photo by Greg Wagner/Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. …

Read More »

Venture Outdoors for an Autumn Adventure in Nebraska

The calendar indicates that it is not fall yet. I believe that after Labor Day, the fall season begins. What do you think? For me, unquestionably, fall in Nebraska is one of the best times of the year to spend outdoors. Truth be known, it is my favorite season! The days are definitely getting shorter, the air is getting a bit crisper, the crop harvest will soon start, before long the leaves and other foliage will transform into canopies of …

Read More »

So what do you want to know about Dutch oven cooking?

I love to eat, but admittedly do not cook much. I am the chef’s sampler indeed, but not a chef. There is one thing connected to the great outdoors regarding cooking that truly intrigues and amazes me though – Dutch oven cooking. The lid is lifted off a Dutch oven containing an Apple Butter Pecan Cobbler dish ready to eat! MMMmmm … Photo by Tara Marrero of Ashland, NE. I have been around Dutch oven cooking for some time, but …

Read More »

How to Go About Getting Permission to Hunt on Private Land in Nebraska

Maybe it’s because I am a lifelong Nebraskan with deep farm roots and help my brother manage his farm. Maybe it’s because I am a person with an outgoing, assertive personality who thoroughly enjoys interacting with people. Maybe it’s because of what I do for living and my employer. Maybe it’s because I pride myself on being a legal hunter and an ethical one at that. Maybe it’s because I really work at it. I don’t know for sure. But …

Read More »

Bullfroggin’ in Nebraska

It is a season that is open here in eastern Nebraska. It is an unusual season, but one that just flat out reeks of adventure, challenge and tremendous entertainment value. It is a season tailor-made for kids. And, trust me, this is the season that will create memories and stories like no other! No, it is not a hunting season. “It” is Nebraska’s bullfrog season. “Bullfrog season,” you say, “really?” Yep. Look at the size of this adult North American …

Read More »

Release Big Catfish Unharmed

Why do some people get perplexed when they see someone release a massive, master angler-sized catfish? After all, catfish, even the larger ones, sure taste good, don’t they? So why is it every time we see an angler report or a social media post mention or show a picture of a large catfish they have put back in the water, a spirited discussion most likely ensues over what should or should have not been done with that whopper? So how …

Read More »

Preseason Checklist for Hunters

We are in the “dog days” of summer. In fact, it was so hot in Nebraska the other day I saw a coyote chasing a rabbit and they both were walking! Just kidding. On the serious side of things, wildflowers are in bloom, ears of sweet corn are being harvested and elderberries will soon be ripe. The start of school is also just around the corner. Boating, swimming, tubing and fishing are being widely enjoyed now on the hot weekends. …

Read More »

Get on Top with Top Water Lures for Your Summer Fishing

Chug bug. Jitterbug. Hula popper. Creek chub knuckle-head. Zara spook. They all have very creative names and designs by the companies that manufacture them. They imitate every conceivable critter that could be on, around or just under the surface of the water in a wild environment from baitfish or bugs to mice or lizards to frogs, toads or even small flying mammals. They are the “go-to” fishing lures of mid to late-summer. They are top water lures or surface lures, …

Read More »