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NEBRASKAland Magazine

Published by the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission since 1926, NEBRASKAland Magazine is dedicated to an engaging mix of outstanding photography and informative writing, highlighting Nebraska’s outdoor activities, parks, wildlife, history and people.

At-risk Species Spotlight: Northern Saw-whet Owl

At-risk Species Spotlight is a new, monthly blog post that will highlight one Nebraska animal that is at risk of extinction, with the goal of bringing awareness to the incredible diversity of wildlife we have in the state. See the Nebraska Natural Legacy Project to learn more about the conservation needs of these animals and the efforts to conserve them.    By Olivia DaRugna, Watchable Wildlife Biologist Owls are captivating and mysterious creatures of the night. Rarely seen but often …

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She Goes Outdoors Podcast: Here’s To a New Year

Here’s to the New Year filled with outdoor experiences! Start off 2023 with small and achievable goals. Challenge yourself to come with goals for the same categories as we did. She Goes Outdoors Podcast · Here's To a New Year About She Goes Outdoors: Join a team of all-female hosts from Nebraska, Kansas and Iowa to learn a little, laugh a lot and get inspired to get outdoors! To learn more, visit https://www.sgooutdoors.com/ She Goes Outdoors is hosted by Julia …

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Why Kearney Will Become a Second Minneapolis

By David L. Bristow, History Nebraska Kearney was booming in 1889 when city boosters commissioned a promotional book The City of Kearney, Nebraska. A copy of this boastful, lavishly illustrated book is in History Nebraska’s collections. Divided into brief sections, the book covers topics such as “Why Kearney Must Become a Railroad Center,” “Why Kearney Will Be a Large Manufacturing Center,” “Why Kearney Will Become a Second Minneapolis,” and others. Most pages also feature beautiful engravings of local scenes. Kearney …

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The Process of Pellets

By Monica Macoubrie, Wildlife Education Specialist One of my favorite activities to do with students is to dissect owl pellets. Now, before you freak out about children looking through poop or puke, take a step back and know that it is neither. A pellet is a pellet, but what exactly is it? Owls are raptors, or birds of prey. Simply put, they hunt and eat the animals that they catch. These birds will eat a variety of prey, such as …

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Listening for Bats

Surveying and Monitoring Nebraska Species By Leslie Reed, University of Nebraska-Lincoln Elusive creatures of the night, bats fly silently and erratically in the dark. They hide in nooks and crannies and caves. Because of these ghostly qualities, humans often don’t realize when bats are nearby. A University of Nebraska–Lincoln scientist is working with the U.S. Geological Survey, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and other federal and state agencies to use acoustic detectors to survey bat species and populations in …

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Searching for Spotted Skunks

And How Nebraskans Can Help By Alie Mayes, Community Science Specialist What’s black and white, and does stinky handstands when frightened? Why, the eastern spotted skunk (Spilogale putorius), of course! It’s not surprising if you’re not familiar with the eastern spotted skunk – or spotted skunk — as the rare mammal has not been reported in the state since 2017. In fact, there have only been four confirmed sightings of the spotted skunk in Nebraska since 2009, all in the …

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January Wildlife Viewing – Go Owling

By Olivia DaRugna, Watchable Wildlife Biologist Don’t let cold temperatures keep you cooped up inside this winter. January is a great time to look and listen for owls, an activity known as “owling.” Regardless of where you live in Nebraska or your birding skill level, anyone can enjoy watching and listening for owls. Owls are one of the earliest nesting birds in Nebraska, and because of this, winter is a great time to listen for them. Great horned owls (Bubo …

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Cross Nebraska Rivers by Ferry

By David L. Bristow, History Nebraska We take bridges for granted, but river-crossing Nebraskans mostly relied on ferries into the 20th century. The ferry was a seasonal operation. When the river iced over, you could simply drive your team across, as long as you trusted the thickness of the ice. During the westward migration along the Oregon, Mormon, and California trails, emigrants first had to pay ferrymen to take them across the Missouri River. Early ferries were rafts propelled by …

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She Goes Outdoors Podcast: Last-Minute Gift Ideas

Still looking for the perfect gift for the special outdoor enthusiast in your life? Or need to burn money or a gift card on yourself? Your favorite SGO hosts list their top gift ideas. Also, hear what the SGO Facebook followers want from Santa! She Goes Outdoors Podcast · Last Minute Gift Ideas About She Goes Outdoors: Join a team of all-female hosts from Nebraska, Kansas and Iowa to learn a little, laugh a lot and get inspired to get …

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Animal Communication

Secret messages in the natural world By Amber Schiltz, Education Assistant Division Administrator  Communication is how living creatures, including humans and other animals, share information. As humans, we share information with one another in many obvious ways, such as talking, texting or writing. We also communicate through less obvious ways, through music, body language, signals, pictures, other artwork and more. As social creatures, communication is one of our strong suites as a species. But did you know that other animals …

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