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Nebraska’s Big game permit applications Opens June 12

 

LINCOLN, Neb. – Residents and nonresidents may apply for one 2017 Nebraska deer permit in any draw unit beginning June 12, and residents may apply for one elk permit and one buck or either-sex antelope permit in available units.

The application period begins at 1 p.m. Central Time (CT) on June 12. Paper applications must be received by the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission by 5 p.m. CT – or by 11:59 p.m. for online applications – on June 23. One application is allowed per person per species.

Draw units are established to provide equal opportunity to obtain permits in those units. They are determined by the overall demand on a unit’s permits. Residents get preference over nonresidents when these permits are drawn.

Applications may be made at OutdoorNebraska.org, via application form in the 2017 Big Game Guide, or in person at a Game and Parks permitting office. A list of offices is in the Big Game Guide.

Permits will be drawn by early July. Beginning on July 10, residents, nonresidents and eligible landowners may purchase remaining deer and antelope permits, and residents and eligible landowners may purchase remaining elk permits.

In addition, July 7 is the final day to apply for multispecies lottery permits.

Visit OutdoorNebraska.org, which includes a digital version of the Big Game Guide, for more information

 

 

 

 

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Private landowners may enroll in Nebraska’s Open Fields and Waters

 

                                          

LINCOLN, Neb. – Nebraska Game and Parks Commission biologists will be actively enrolling private landowners in the Open Fields and Waters (OFW) Program in June. Through the OFW program, landowners can earn additional income for allowing walk-in hunting or fishing access on their properties. With roughly 97 percent of Nebraska’s land-base in private ownership, finding places to recreate continues to be one of the biggest challenges facing hunters and anglers. OFW helps ensure Nebraska’s rich outdoor heritage is carried forward by expanding public hunting and fishing opportunities on private lands throughout the state. In 2016, Game and Parks biologists enrolled more than 230,000 acres in the program.

Landowners who participate in OFW receive annual, per-acre payments for allowing walk-in hunting and/or fishing access on their properties. Payment rates vary from 50 cents to $15 per acre, depending on habitat type and location. Game and Parks biologists post boundary signs and enrolled property locations are published annually in the Nebraska Public Access Atlas, which is available at http://outdoornebraska.gov/publicaccessatlas/. Participating landowners also receive protection from liability under the Nebraska Recreation Liability Act.

Increasing public hunting access is a primary objective outlined in the Berggren Plan, Game and Parks’ five-year initiative aimed at improving the pheasant hunting experience in Nebraska. New enrollments in OWF will be targeted within the eight priority areas identified in the plan. The plan may be viewed at http://outdoornebraska.gov/pheasantplan/.

Private lands providing hunting opportunities for upland gamebirds are preferred, including undisturbed grasslands and draws, tall stubble fields, and lands enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program. Additional financial incentives are also available to improve habitat on OFW properties.

Private landowners interested in enrolling their land in OWF should contact their nearest Game and Parks district office: Lincoln (402-471-0641), Norfolk (402-370-3374), Alliance (308-763-2940), or North Platte (308-535-8025).

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Report Shows High Numbers of Mallards, Green-winged Teal for 2016

LINCOLN – Nebraska duck hunters will find good news in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s recent 2016 waterfowl population status report. The report shows mallard numbers are near record highs and the estimated green-winged teal population is the highest since estimates began in 1955.

The estimated mallard population this year is 51 percent above the long-term (1955-2015) average, while the green-wing teal numbers are 104 percent higher than the long-term average.

Other dabbling duck species varied in abundances from 2015, but all except northern pintails were well above their long-term averages. Overall, the total duck population estimate is 38 percent above the long-term average.

“For most Nebraska duck hunters, the trends in the dabbling duck species – mallards, teal, gadwall, wigeon, shoveler and pintail – are the most important to examine,” said Mark Vrtiska, waterfowl program manager for the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. “The top two birds in terms of harvest in Nebraska – mallards and green-winged teal – both are doing very well.” [Read more…]

http://outdoorsmenadventures.com/12829-2/