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Flora & Fauna

Flagging for Canadas

Anyone who waterfowl hunts knows that movement in a decoy spread is crucial. Yeah, there are a plethora of motion decoys on the market to buy — battery-powered ones, mechanical flappers, windsocks, bags, kites, moving shells, etc. However, there is another kind of motion decoy used in waterfowl hunting by the hunter — the flag. A longtime waterfowl hunter “flags” to try to entice a flock of Canada geese off in the distance to come within shooting range in his …

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Targeted Conservation for Pheasants

Targeted conservation for ring-necked pheasants in agriculturally dominated landscapes By John Laux, NGPC Upland Game and Access Program Manager Similar to many surrounding states, Nebraska’s ring-necked pheasant populations have experienced long-term declines – a trend driven largely by continued habitat loss. Over time, changes in agricultural land-use (i.e. grassland conversion to cropland, “cleaner” farming techniques, less diverse crop rotations, etc.) have drastically reduced the amount of suitable pheasant habitat on much of Nebraska’s landscape. In recent decades, pheasants have responded …

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What You Need to Know for Late Season Deer Hunting in Nebraska

It is the late period for deer hunting now and things can sure get tougher. So, hear me out. I want to use a football analogy that many of you who hunt deer will understand. For a football team, it is often necessary for coaches to make adjustments to their game plan at halftime. If the defensive backs are locked in on the receivers every play, consideration is given to a few quick-hitters into the line by the running backs. …

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Give Back to the Outdoor Community in 2022

The arrival of 2022 is just around the bend. The new year gives us a segue to reset, recharge and re-focus our energies. In all sincerity, the new year allows us to curb our bad habits, improve ourselves, change our outlook on life to a positive one and see how we can make a difference. As avid outdoors-persons, the new year affords us an opportunity to give back to the outdoor community and natural world in the forms of our …

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So Grateful

The season for gratitude and reflection is upon us. Thanksgiving week is when we remind our families, friends and close associates how much they mean to us and express our sincere appreciation for what positive things we have been given in life. While you are considering what you are thankful for, don’t forget about Nebraska’s outdoor scene. During the nine days of the recent firearm deer hunting season here in Cornhusker State, I selected a dozen key elements to be …

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Are you paying attention to nature’s sounds when deer hunting?

Picture yourself harnessed in a tree stand for deer hunting. You are losing light. It’s nearing sunset. The prime time for deer movement. Suddenly, you hear a squirrel bark and chatter. Then even closer to you, from the same direction, you hear curiosity putts from some wild turkeys. Within a few minutes you hear another squirrel bark and chatter by your location. Then, you hear the guttural grunt of a buck. Out of nowhere appears an adult white-tailed deer doe …

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What you need to know for the firearm deer hunting season

As Nebraska’s largest hunt by participation – the firearm deer hunting season – comes into view from Nov. 13-21, visions of antlers and venison tenderloins can make the mind wander a bit. So before you take to your stand or blind, glance over these deer hunting safety tips and regulation reminders to keep yourself focused, safe, and within the rules. With 42 years at the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and as a landowner and longtime firearm deer hunter in …

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Honoring a Conservation Legend

After 47 years of service, including nine years serving as director of the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, Jim Douglas is retiring. He has celebrated a lifetime of conservation accomplishments. “Ask yourself what kind of world you want to live in and leave for your kids,” said Director Jim Douglas, a statement that says so much about what he has accomplished during his 47 years in conservation. For the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, he has served in a variety …

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One Trail

Many species use a well-worn path between two waters If you’ve ever “blazed a trail” through the woods, or gone “bushwhacking” as some might say, you know it can often be an unpleasant experience pushing your way through branches, brush and tall grass. Life is much easier on a trail. And wildlife agree. That’s why a hike through any woodland or prairie will reveal a series of what we often call game trails. These trails, to put it simply, are …

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Taking the best photos of you and your deer

One would think in this age of cell phone and digital cameras that it would be pretty easy for hunters to get a good quality photo of them with their harvested deer. But, think again. Whether it is the excitement of the moment or the rush to get the animal field dressed, many hunters just flat out fail to successfully capture the cool hunting images of the day. The opportunity is there though for you to properly document the moment …

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