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Conservation

Sleeping with the Cranes

An Adventure Story I’m often asked about the best place to see the sandhill cranes during their annual spring stopover in Nebraska. My reply: Do you want to see the cranes or experience them? The former requires getting a reservation in a riverside viewing blind, several of which are available in the central Platte River Valley. But if you really want to experience the cranes, I tell them, you need to spend the night with the birds on the river. …

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The Science of Antlers

Antler Basics Horns and antlers, decorative headgear sported by some of Nebraska’s best-known species, are not the same. Horns are keratin, a hair-like sheath, that grows over a bony core throughout an animal’s life. They are found on pronghorn, bison, cattle, goats and sheep. Antlers, however, are bones that grow each spring and summer and are shed, or cast, late the following winter as the animal’s testosterone levels decrease. You’ll find them on deer and elk. Antlers grow up to …

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A Conservation Dream Come True

A man-made prairie-chicken lek finds success. It was a calm March morning when Dan Leuenberger first heard it: the echoing calls of greater prairie-chickens. Climbing a hill on his Johnson County farm, he spotted a flock of about 20 birds gathered for mating season. Each spring, males congregate on leks, or display grounds, to perform mating rituals that have made the species an icon of the prairie. They stomp, leap, spin in circles, inflate orange air sacs on their neck …

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Release and Return

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I got to looking through some old blog posts and discovered something interesting.  Seems as though in past years about this time, end of February, I have commented about people being in a foul mood and needing to lighten up!  I know that has sure been true again this week; lots of complaining.  I am telling you, people would be so much happier if they would just learn to ice-fish! So, this is for you.  In case you do not …

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Public Fish Meetings 2021

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I know a lot of you have seen this already.  I am just trying to spread the word even more: Participate in virtual fisheries meetings in March LINCOLN, Neb. – Join the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission in a virtual discussion on fisheries management during meetings March 1-4. These public informational sessions – one statewide overview and four others specific to each of Game and Parks’ districts – will provide local updates on the fishing outlook and special projects in …

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Think Like a Buck to Find Shed Deer Antlers

A wildlife biologist I once knew used tell me that to be an effective shed deer antler hunter, you must know white-tailed deer biology and “think like a buck” during winter and early spring. I get the biology part, but “think like a buck?” Hmmm … Luke Meduna who’s the Big Game Program Manager for the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, responds to that shed antler hunting strategy by saying: “Yes, to be successful, a shed deer antler hunter needs …

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Convergence

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Work schedules for my kids converged recently and they both had days off at the same time.  They were going fishing. Of course I found a way to go with them! First, let me play my usual part of “old man” and say a thing or three about ice safety. . . . Our trip was at the beginning of the arctic outbreak.  We still found patches of unsafe ice.  Snow on the ice made that even more difficult to …

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Invasive Species Webinars

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Spreading the word on this: Game and Parks to co-host invasive species webinar series LINCOLN, Neb. – Learn about invasive species during a five-part virtual webinar series during National Invasive Species Awareness Week Feb. 22-26. The series, hosted by the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and the Nebraska Invasive Species Program through the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, will focus on a different topic each day. The webinar schedule is: Feb. 22 – Invasive Species 101, Feb. 23 – Invasive Plants, Feb. …

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Amazing Technology

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I am still just playing around with a depth-finder in my ice hole.  However, I realize that fishing electronics have advanced by leaps in recent years.  It is amazing what you can see on some of the “tools” available right now: You never know what you will find looking down an ice hole! Have a great weekend everyone!  Stay warm!

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Flanagan Opinions

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Anglers in Douglas, Sarpy, Washington, Cass, and Dodge counties; listen up, this blog post is for you. . . . Some of you will be receiving a questionnaire about Flanagan Lake.  That questionnaire will be coming via e-mail. Most of you know that Flanagan is a relatively new reservoir in the Omaha metro.  There has been a total catch & release regulation at Flanagan since it opened.  That regulation was implemented to give the fish community there the best chance …

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