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Early Spring, Ice-Out Fishing Tips

The sandhill crane migration is well underway in Nebraska’s central Platte River valley. Flocks of snow geese have been heard and seen already flying high above my house. Wild turkeys have entered their breeding phase on our family farm in southeast Nebraska. Oh, and what about the fish that swim where I fish? Hmmm … Emma Wagner-Nichols, your blogger’s daughter, caught this crappie in chilly, sunny weather in a private sandpit lake in Dodge County, NE. Photo courtesy of Emma …

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March Means Migration Near You (Even in the City)

When I was kid, I always looked forward to taking a drive with my grandparents during the March thaw to see the spring migration of birds along the Platte River in rural Sarpy County, Nebraska. We never had to travel very far from our homes in Gretna to see the migrating birds either. It’s those drives that helped develop my appreciation for birds. Truth is, you still do not have to venture far at all to enjoy the spectacular spring migration of birds …

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Nebraskaland 2021 Photo Contest

Best of Show BEST OF SHOW – Sandhill Crane Preening on Platte River Bank Photo by Britton Bailey, Aurora @bfbinstailey With more than 3,000 entries submitted through Instagram, the 2021 Nebraskaland Magazine Photo Contest drew a record number of stunning images from Nebraska photographers in the categories of Wildlife, Flora, Scenic and Recreation. This year’s Best of Show winner, “Sandhill Crane Preening on Platte River Bank,” by Britton Bailey of Aurora, was shot at Rowe Sanctuary in central Nebraska. “To …

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Why I take My Kids Outside in Winter – Part 3

By Jamie Bachmann, Wildlife Educator This is the third and final installment of why I get my kids outdoors in the winter. Read Part 1 here: https://magazine.outdoornebraska.gov/2022/02/why-i-take-my-kids-outside-in-winter-part-1/ Read Part 2 here: https://magazine.outdoornebraska.gov/2022/02/why-i-take-my-kids-outside-in-winter-part-2/ Reason #4 – Learning Preparedness When I was little, I lost so many gloves and mittens. My mom would get frustrated trying to find replacements on our way out the door. And there were multiple Halloweens when I whined about having to put my coat over my awesome …

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Shed Antlers: A Great Reason to Explore Nature

By Greg Wagner and Brian Peterson. Brian Peterson is a biologist at the University of Nebraska at Kearney and coordinates the M.S Biology Online Program. His research focus is white-tailed deer antler metrics.  He is also an avid hunter and outdoorsman. Maybe you’re a hunter. Maybe you’re not. But, there’s a unique form of hunting you will enjoy. It is a challenging and rewarding pastime that makes for an excellent family outdoor activity this time of year. It is deer shed …

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Winter Scouting for Spring Turkeys in Nebraska

Don’t kid yourself, we are still in the icy, frigid grips of winter. However, the length of daylight is increasing. Deer have begun shedding their antlers. Some sandhill cranes have arrived already along the Platte River in south-central Nebraska. It is calving season on ranches in the Nebraska Sandhills. These are all indicators that spring is just around the bend. For those of us who spring wild turkey hunt, our thoughts are drifting to the woods where we stake our …

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Roadside Viewing in Nebraska

Alternative Routes and Scenic Drives Best Ways to Travel Through State Desoto National Wildlife Refuge Drive the roads through the Desoto National Wildlife Refuge one afternoon and there’s no telling what you’ll see. Located 25 miles north of Omaha on Highway 30, white-tailed deer, wild turkeys, ring-necked pheasants, waterfowl and bald eagles are visible from roads. A vehicle entry fee of $3 is charged, but waived for those with a The DeSoto Refuge annual pass ($15.00), Federal Duck Stamp and …

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15 Ways to Cure Cabin Fever

It’s winter. The daylight is short. The nights are long and dreary. Air temperatures outside are cold, downright frigid at times. There’s probably some snow cover. We are all spending more a lot of time indoors this season, aren’t we? It is that time of year when we get that cooped-up, restless, nothing-to-do feeling that is referred to as “cabin fever.” Stuck inside, too many of us get weary and lethargic and spend long, endless hours watching TV re-runs, binge-watching …

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Ice Fishing: 10 Tips I Learned

Ice fishing. Tis’ the season for it. I sure enjoy ice fishing but admittedly I don’t do much of it. I don’t quite have all the equipment needed for it. So, I guess you would consider me an amateur ice angler. Nevertheless, when there’s an invitation to go with seasoned veterans of the hard water fishing lifestyle for a day, you can bet that I will jump at the opportunity. Such was the case a couple years ago in January …

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Prairie Seeds in Winter

By autumn, the seeds of most prairie plants have fallen, and with luck, pounding rain, digging animals or winter frost heaving will work them into the soil to await germination. Some seeds, however, are stragglers — held in pods, shriveled fruits or tight bracts to face the elements of winter aboveground. Many of these will fall prey to hungry birds and mammals, and a lucky few will pass through the foragers’ gut unharmed and be dispersed about the land. Others …

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