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Barbs and Backlashes

It’s Not Too Late!

Still plenty of time! Nebraska anglers still have time to join Midwest Walleye Challenge Nebraska anglers still have plenty of time to enter the Midwest Walleye Challenge and be eligible for prizes, as well as to gather data that biologists can use to help manage walleye populations. Anglers in 13 states and one Canadian province are participating by entering the waters in which they pursue walleyes and photographing fish they catch. The collection of angler catch data during the Nebraska …

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Merritt Road Work


Going to spread some news around some more today.  If you fish Merritt Reservoir, this will affect you this year: Highway project underway around Merritt A highway widening and resurfacing project is underway on Highway 97 around Merritt Reservoir State Recreation Area southwest of Valentine. Visitors can expect delays. The Nebraska Department of Transportation is working on the 5-mile stretch from Merritt Dam Road to Snake River Road. The project will include asphalt resurfacing, pavement widening, culvert work and grading. …

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Race Winner


Time for my first report from this spring’s turkey fields! If you have been reading my blog for some time, you know my attention in the spring gets drawn from fins to feathers–gobbling, turkey feathers.  Our Nebraska spring shotgun season has been open for over a week now.  You may also know that I like to take a casual approach to my turkey hunting.  Oh, I am focused on punching tags, but I like to enjoy the process and every …

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Nebraska Sandhills


I love Nebraska’s sandhills.  The original Bauer homestead was on the western edge of those beautiful hills.  As a child, my first residence was just a couple of miles from there.  Although I have not lived directly in the ‘hills for most of my life, I have always felt I was going home whenever I get back there.  I do that every chance I get. It thrills me that the University of Nebraska Press has recently published The Nebraska Sandhills. …

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Turkey Time


It is that time of year again.  Spring!  The fish are biting, the ‘shrooms are popping, turkeys gobblin’.  I hate that I have to do anything this time of year other than spend time on the water or in the field!  So much to do, and so little time!  I wish I could completely clear my schedule! The urgency of it all, spring is only gonna last for so long, can put me in a poor state of mind.  You …

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Fish Handling Reminder, Again

Believe me, I LOVE fish pictures!  Do not think that I ever get tired of looking at them. Unfortunately, I have to admit, I cringe at many of them. Yes, that is mostly because I am a pointy-headed fisheries biologist.  I know how sensitive fish can be to being caught, handled and released.  On the other hand, let me also say this:  I know that they also can be very robust.  That is especially true when the water is relatively …

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Fly-Fishing Basics


Have a learning opportunity I want to publicize: Ponca SP hosting beginner fly-fishing, fly-tying class Anglers can learn the basics of fly-fishing and fly-tying at a workshop April 27 at Ponca State Park. This workshop, hosted by the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and taught by members of the Cornhusker Fly Fishers Club, will prepare participants to catch trout and panfish this spring. The event will take place 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Education Center. The cost is $25 per …

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Rise Art

Sometimes you just need to pull over, put it in park, and de-stress for a little bit.  Of course the best way to do that is by spending time on the water.  Regrettably, some days a person cannot do that. On days like that, when the next best thing will have to do, why not just take some time to watch some trout rising?! The great thing about that video is that it is over an hour long!  Take as …

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Hybrids, Esocids


I have posted a series of blogs on hybrid fish.  Hopefully, those have increased awareness of these fish in our waters and provided some tips on fish identification.  Want to return to that series today. . . . First, let me define some terms.  If you looked at the title, I used a pointy-headed term, the family name for the pike family, esocids.  Members of the pike family found in Nebraska would be grass pickerel (specifically a subspecies of redfin …

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Meanwhile, On the Walleye Front


Want to mention a couple of things today, both of them related to walleyes. . . . First of all, we are in the middle of our annual walleye egg collections.  If you have been on Sherman or Merritt reservoirs, you likely have, or will see our crews, and nets.  If you want some more idea of what they are doing, may I suggest an old blog post, Walleye Spawn. If you see the nets in the water, please avoid …

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