Outdoor notes: Game and Parks to release pheasants in 13 areas before Thanksgiving

LINCOLN, Neb. – The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission will release rooster pheasants at 13 wildlife management areas in time for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.

The 13 areas are: Oak Valley (Madison County), Wilkinson (Platte County), Sherman Reservoir (Sherman County), Pressey (Custer County), Branched Oak (Lancaster County), Yankee Hill (Lancaster County), Twin Oaks (Johnson County), Hickory Ridge (Johnson County), Cornhusker (Hall County), Kirkpatrick Basin North (York County), Arrowhead (Gage County), Rakes Creek (Cass County) and George Syas (Platte County). Kirkpatrick Basin North and Wilkinson are non-toxic shot only, but otherwise all normal regulations apply.

The pheasants will be released to increase hunting opportunities over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend and to encourage families to go afield together. Thanksgiving is Nov. 22.

The pheasant season runs through Jan. 31, 2019. Permits, including the nonresident two-day hunt permit, may be purchased at OutdoorNebraska.org. The nonresident two-day permit is valid for any two consecutive days of upland game or waterfowl hunting during the calendar year. Applicable stamps must be purchased.

For more information on these and other hunting locations, visit Outdoornebraska.gov/publicaccessatlas or call Game and Parks at 402-471-0641.

UNL students may rent hunting equipment

LINCOLN, Neb. – Students registered at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln may rent hunting equipment at the university’s Outdoor Adventure Center.

The available gear and rental rates are: pop-up blind: $3/day or $6/weekend; layout blind: $3/day or $6/weekend; jake/hen turkey decoy combination: $3/day or $6/weekend; two dozen duck decoys: $3/day or $6/weekend. Weekend rates are for three days.

The equipment is available through a grant partnership between the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF) and the Cabela’s Outdoor Fund.

“We had two focus groups with college students in the spring of 2018, and one of the barriers they noted to participating in hunting and shooting sports in college was gear cost and storage,” said Micaela Rahe, R3 (Recruitment, Retention and Reactivation) coordinator with NWTF and the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission.

To rent hunting equipment, students must visit the Outdoor Adventure Center in person. Students may be part-time, full-time, undergraduate or graduate. Rahe said she hopes online rental will be available in a year.

While rentals currently are available only to UNL students, coordinators are considering options to expand availability to the public. Rahe recommends following the Collegiate Hunters of Nebraska on Facebook for more information on collegiate hunting and shooting sport opportunities.

Family Ice-Fishing Clinics scheduled in January

LINCOLN, Neb. – Learn the basics of ice-fishing or pick up a few new tips from experienced anglers at three free Family Ice-Fishing clinics in January.

The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission’s Youth Fishing Program will host two on-ice events – Jan. 12 at Lincoln’s Holmes Lake from 1-4 p.m. and Jan. 20 at Kearney’s Fort Kearny State Recreation Area (SRA) Lake No. 6 from 8 a.m.-noon.

On Jan. 19, the Nebraska Fish and Game Association will host a classroom clinic at Yanney Heritage Park’s Environmental Resource Center in Kearney from 1- 5 p.m. This clinic will feature presentations by some of Nebraska’s top ice fishermen. Seating is limited, so registration is requested by emailing Harold@nefga.org.

Limited loaner equipment will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Bait and instruction will be provided. Participants are encouraged to bring their own equipment.

A park entry permit is required at Fort Kearny. All fishing regulations apply. Cancellation of an on-ice clinic because of a lack of safe ice would be posted on Game and Parks’ Facebook page.

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