Republican City’s David Padgett won the co-angler division of the Bassmasters Central Open last weekend on the Arkansas River in Muskogee, Okla.
Padgett earned a Triton 17 Pro/ Yamaha F115LA rig worth $25,000.
“That and a really big trophy,” he said.
He caught both of his fish the first day working a frog in the grass. The next two days he caught his keepers flipping a Poor Boy Tube, and tricked a key fish the final day with a spinnerbait.
He’s now qualified to compete in the pro division at tournaments, which he had done before taking time off in 2001 to raise his children. He returned to tournament fishing last year.
Padgett (pictured at right), a software developer for the University of Nebraska Medical Center, also finished second at the Nebraska state tournament in the spring.
Pheasant population down
Drought continues to impact pheasant populations in Nebraska mostly through habitat reductions caused by stunted vegetation growth and emergency haying and grazing, according to the Pheasant Forever outlook for the state.
April and July rural mail carrier survey data indicated that pheasant populations are mostly lower compared to 2012 and down 38 percent statewide. Based on these surveys, the southwest and panhandle will again offer the best opportunities. Early and mid-summer rains produced abundant brood rearing habitat.
In the southwest, abundance should be better than last year but still lower than found in previous years. But bobwhite quail abundance increased regionally and statewide compared to 2012, up 16 percent.
The season starts Oct. 26.
Bits and peices
Cabela’s La Vista will celebrate a Ladies Day Out on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The biannual event encourages females of all ages to try the latest outdoor apparel, camping gear, personal firearms and other supplies. See www.Cabelas.com for more details. ... The Nebraska Sportsmen’s Foundation is holding a team trap shoot fundraiser Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Lincoln Izaak Walton League, 1081 S. 134th St. Monies raised will benefit the Nebraska Sportsmen’s Foundation and the Hunters Helping the Hungry Program. Volunteers are needed for the Verdel Missouri River Cleanup on Saturday. The cleanup will comb sandbars and islands for trash along a 39-mile stretch of the river. For more information, contact Dugan Smith at 605-665-0209 or Dugan_Smith@nps.gov. Volunteers will be given T-shirts.
» Crow hunting season opens statewide
» River Antlerless deer hunting season for legal firearms until Oct. 10, but not season choice, landowner or youth permits
» Paddlefish snagging season until Oct. 31
» Becoming an Outdoors-Woman camp, Halsey, 402-471-5482
» Hastings Gun Show, Fairgrounds, Hastings, Neb. Saturday 9 to 5 p.m., Sunday 9 to 4.
Weeping Water Gun Club will host a thirty-shot service pistol match, 2:30 p.m. Go to 402-333-3785 or weepingwatergunclub.com
» Autumn Harvest Art Show, Eugene T. Mahoney State Park (SP), Ashland, 402-944-2523
» Project WILD workshop, Spring Creek Prairie Audubon, Denton, 402-471-5363
» Dark goose hunting season opens in North Central Unit
» Duck and coot hunting seasons open in Zones 2 and 4
» White-fronted goose hunting season opens
» Light goose hunting regular season opens
» Homemade Living Day, Ponca SP, Ponca, 402-755-2284
» Living History Weekend, Fort Atkinson State Historical Park (SHP), Fort Calhoun, 402-468-5611
» Youth waterfowl hunting season in Zone 1
» Muzzleloader antelope hunting season closes
» Living History Day, Arbor Lodge SHP, Nebraska City, 402-873-7222. Also Oct. 13 and 20.
Submit calendar items or trophy pictures to email@example.com or Outdoors Sports, World-Herald Sports Dept., 1314 Douglas St., Suite 700, Omaha, NE 68102. A daytime or cellphone number must be included.