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Trout Slam Update, Summer 2021

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There have not been a lot of Trout Slam entries coming in, but there have been a few.  Time to give an update and get certificates mailed out. . . . In case you forgot, the Trout Slam is an angler recognition program we initiated a couple of years ago.  We started it to highlight our cold-water fisheries around the state.  Those are some beautiful places, and there are beautiful trout in those waters.  All a person has to do …

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Missouri River Sauger and Walleye Tracking

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I want to point out some fisheries research work currently being done on the Missouri River in northeast Nebraska.  The easiest way for me to do that is to “copy and paste” a page from our July 2021 Nebraskaland Magazine: As the article says, if you happen to catch one of these tagged fish, we would like to know about it.  If you do not have any other contact information, you can always let me know about it, daryl.bauer@nebraska.gov. The …

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Trout Stream Gem in Northeast Nebraska

A classic case of misrepresentation keeps occurring. Folks continue to express their disbelief  to me that a crystal clear, cold, spring-fed trout fishing stream exists in northeast Nebraska. “No way,” they’ll say. “Impossible in farm country,” they’ll say. “You’re drinking, can’t be,” they’ll say.  “I’ve driven through there and never seen it,” they’ll say. These are just some of the phrases people have uttered to me about the East Branch of the Verdigre (actual name is Verdigris) Creek flowing through …

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McConaughy White Bass

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There is no doubt “the” topic of the week has been the fish die-off at Lake McConaughy.  Here is our official statement from yesterday: LINCOLN, Neb. – The cause of a fish die-off at Lake McConaughy, Nebraska’s largest reservoir, remains inconclusive. Fisheries biologists from the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission are investigating a die-off, in which approximately 1,000 dead fish were discovered on the west half of the reservoir. Adult white bass comprised 99% of those fish. Point-source pollution – …

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Take ‘Em Fishing 2021

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As I have mentioned in previous blogs, this is the third year of our “Take ‘Em Fishing” promotion.  In previous blogs, I have mentioned the benefits to finding someone and passing your love of hunting and fishing on to them (e.g. Take ‘Em, Passing It On).  I have emphasized the importance of family in establishing those traditions. This time, let me just point out the obvious! Find someone new or someone who has not fished in a while, take ’em …

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Go with the flow and float Nebraska’s water trails

Eager to get on the water? Yeah, me, too. This is a perfect time to float Nebraska’s water trails. There are many reasons to take a float trip on continuously flowing water. You can do it for the openness and space that it offers and the adventure of going somewhere you have never been. You can do it to make connections and memories with people and nature, re-trace history, see a variety of wildlife species, get some fresh air and …

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Twin Lakes Boat Ramps

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One thing you learn as a fisheries manager is that there are a lot of things out of your control.  Take, for example, water levels, either due to “Mother Nature”, power and irrigation districts, or other entities, we have no control over water levels in many Nebraska fisheries. In recent years, we have completed some rehabilitation work at Twin Lakes in the Nebraska sandhills.  Access improvements to both north and south Twin lakes were an important part of that project.  …

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“As Seen on TV”

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I found this YouTube channel called “RetroBassin“.  There is some interesting “stuff” there and a person can even learn a thing or three. This one was kind of fun: Yeah, I know, that video is 18 minutes long.  But, I am betting a bunch of you watched all of it because you remember a bunch of those baits. Some of the were actually good baits, not just gimmicks.  They caught fish! No, I do not have a bunch of Banjo …

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Bluegreen Algae

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It is mid-summer, it is hot, and that means primetime for bluegreen algae blooms.  There is a lot of hysteria and misunderstanding about our waters and algae blooms.  I originally wrote this blog over ten years ago.  Let me dust it off, update some things and hopefully clear up some misconceptions. . . . Bluegreen algae have become a phobia for some folks.  If you are one of those, you better sit down because there is not a body of …

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Freshwater Drum: Not a Trash Fish

I watched closely as the guy excitedly reeled in the fish he had hooked from a local sandpit lake in eastern Nebraska. Upon landing it, I heard him dismally say: “Oh man, it’s a damn drum, that’s a trash fish, I gotta throw this back.” At this point, I walked over to the man and casually said: “Hey, that’s a nice freshwater drum you’ve caught. Did you know those are good eating if you prepare them right?” “Are you kidding …

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