Youth ages 15 and younger are encouraged to participate in the statewide youth pheasant, quail and partridge season on Oct. 19 and 20.

The Take ’Em Hunting Challenge encourages hunters to introduce someone to hunting, and this season provides another opportunity to mentor new hunters.

“These special hunts provide an opportunity to share a passion for hunting with the next generation,’’ said wildlife biologist Josiah Dallmann. “Take advantage of this opporutnity to connect a young hunter with the outdoors and get out the week before the regular pheasant and quail opener.”

Rooster pheasants will be released in 14 wildlife management areas before the 2019 youth season. Special youth hunts will be held only in those areas.

These special youth hunts are open to the public, and no registration or special permit is required. Young Nebraska residents (age 15 or younger) do not need a permit to hunt small game, but nonresident youth must have a nonresident youth hunt permit and habitat stamp. All other current youth and regular hunting regulations will be in effect on these designated areas.

Wildlife management areas offering special youth hunts:

Powder Creek, (Dixon County), Oak Valley (Madison County), Wilkinson (Platte County), George Syas (Nance County), Sherman Reservoir (Sherman County), Pressey (Custer County), Cornhusker (Hall County), Kirkpatrick Basin North (York County), Branched Oak (Lancaster County), Yankee Hill (Lancaster County), Arrowhead (Gage County), Hickory Ridge (Johnson County), Twin Oaks (Johnson County), and Rakes Creek (Cass County).

Completing duck slam ‘cool’

Joseph Hart is the first hunter to complete the inaugural Nebraska Duck Slam.

“I think this is cool,” said the 21-year-old electrician from Bellevue. “I love to go duck hunting with my dad. We just hunt. We go after what is available.”

The Nebraska Duck Slam challenges hunters to harvest a teal (blue-winged or green-winged) of either sex, as well as drakes of three other species: an American wigeon, a mallard and a northern pintail. All ducks must be harvested in Nebraska, and hunters must upload a photo of each harvest at OutdoorNebraska.org/DuckSlam.

Hart, who started tagging along with his dad on hunts at age 6 or 7, completed the Slam after harvesting a teal on public land in York County on Sept. 15, then a wigeon, mallard and pintail on private land in Burt County on Oct. 5.

Hart understands the role of hunters and likes the challenge.

“If it weren’t for hunters, there would not be the conservation there is now and there wouldn’t be any public lands,” Hart said. “This gets people a goal to shoot for something.”

Hunters who complete the slam will receive a certificate and a Nebraska Duck Slam pin. They will be registered to win one of several prizes donated by Ducks Unlimited.

Game and Parks meeting

The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission will consider a staff recommendation to change sport fishing orders when it meets Friday in Omaha. The potential changes pertain to daily bag limits, possession limits, length limits and open areas.

The meeting will begin at 8 a.m. at the Hampton Inn and Suites, 11201 Davenport St., in the Husker Room.

Also on the agenda are recommendations to:

» Amend wildlife regulations regarding requirements to obtain a raptor permit for wildlife abatement.

» Approve a permanent easement request from the Custer Public Power District for installation of an underground power line to an existing well at Myrtle Hall Wildlife Management Area in Loup County.

» Approve a 2020 commission meeting schedule.

In other business, a public hearing will be held regarding the potential listing and delisting of state threatened and endangered species within District 2 (Douglas County).

The meeting also will include an environmental report, update on the Open Fields and Waters public access program, and report on preparations for pheasant releases prior to the youth pheasant hunt.

Calendar

SUNDAY

» Youth Hunter Education Challenge, Platte River SP, Louisville

TUESDAY

» Crow hunting season opens statewide

» Kayak Kids Essay Contest deadline, Red Willow SRA, McCook

FRIDAY

» Nebraska Game and Parks Board of Commissioners meeting, Omaha

SATURDAY

» 32nd Annual Pumpkin Carving Festival, Calamus SRA, Burwell

» Fontenelle Family Fishing Frenzy/Discover Trout Fishing, Fontenelle Lake, Omaha

» Jack-O-Lantern Junk and Craft Market, Indian Cave SP, Shubert

» Ranch Life 1860s, Rock Creek Station SHP, Fairbury

» Pink Pumpkin Walk, Indian Cave SP, Shubert

» Trick-or-Treat by the Buses, Indian Cave SP, Shubert

» Youth waterfowl hunting season in Zone 3

» Youth pheasant, quail and partridge hunting seasons open statewide

» Haunted History with the Codys, Buffalo Bill SHP, North Platte

To share your trophy picture or calendar item, send it to Outdoor Sports, World-Herald Sports Dept., 1314 Douglas St., Suite 700, Omaha, NE 68102 or email the photo and details to outdoors@owh.com. A daytime or cellphone number must be included.

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