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Outdoor notes: Nebraska wildlife refuges could expand hunting and fishing
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Outdoor notes: Nebraska wildlife refuges could expand hunting and fishing

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has announced proposals to increase public access through new or expanded hunting and sport fishing opportunities at five national wildlife refuges in Nebraska.

Hunting and fishing programs are administered to ensure sustainable wildlife populations on refuge lands where these activities are compatible with the refuge’s management goals and other recreational activities.

In Nebraska, the service proposes the following:

» Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge in Garden County: Open crow, dove, rail, snipe and pronghorn hunting on acres already open to hunting, expand existing migratory bird and upland game to new acres, and expand season dates for existing sport fishing.

» Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge in Cherry County: Open migratory bird, upland game and pronghorn hunting on acres already open to other hunting, and expand existing big game hunting by removing permit requirements.

» John W. and Louise Seier National Wildlife Refuge in Rock County: Open migratory bird, upland game and big game hunting for the first time.

» North Platte National Wildlife Refuge in Scotts Bluff County: Open turkey, prairie dog and porcupine hunting on new acres and acres already open to hunting, expand existing upland game and big game hunting to new acres, and expand method of take for existing big game hunting.

» Valentine National Wildlife Refuge in Cherry County: Open teal, crow, snipe, rail, woodcock, badger, bobcat, rabbit, fox, furbearer, opossum, partridge, quail, raccoon, skunk, squirrel, turkey, elk and pronghorn hunting on acres already open to other hunting, and expand existing migratory bird hunting to new acres.

When developing these proposals, the service said it coordinated with local, state and tribal partners, including the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. The goal, it said, is to streamline regulations, increase public access opportunities and support Nebraska hunters and anglers using public lands.

The proposals are available on each refuge’s website and the public is invited to submit comments until April 30. Please submit comments to Steve Hicks, project leader, Sandhills National Wildlife Refuge Complex, at 402-376-3789 or Steve_Hicks@fws.gov.


Nebraska state parks

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