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Nebraska Approves Big Game Recommendations for 2009

From Nebraska Game and Parks

-- A new October antlerless deer hunting season was authorized by the Nebraska Game and Parks Board of Commissioners on Friday to address a specific population concern. All 2009 big game recommendations were approved.

The October antlerless season is for a portion of eastern Nebraska along the Missouri and lower Platte rivers where too few antlerless white-tailed deer were harvested last year. The Commission hopes this season will add 3,000 antlerless white-tailed deer to the 2009 harvest. Complaints of crop damage remain high in that area.

Specifically, the October antlerless season – Oct. 9-11 – is for hunting only in the Season Choice Areas 18 and 21. Deer may be taken with archery, muzzleloader, rifle or crossbow. Hunters may take two antlerless deer with each permit, and there will be an unlimited number of permits available. Hunter orange is required.

Following are the 2009 big game season dates:

DEER

* Archery – Sept. 15-Nov. 13 and Nov. 23-Dec. 31

* Firearm – Nov. 14-22

* Muzzleloader – Dec. 1-31

* Season Choice (antlerless) – Archery: Sept. 15-Nov. 13 and Nov. 23-Dec. 31; Muzzleloader: Dec. 1-31; Firearm: Nov. 14-22 and Jan. 1-15, 2010

* Youth and Landowner – Archery: Sept. 15-Nov. 13 and Nov. 23-Dec. 31; Muzzleloader: Dec. 1-31; Firearm: Nov. 14-22; Jan. 1-15, 2010 (antlerless only)

* DeSoto Muzzleloader – Oct. 17-18; Dec. 19-20; and Jan. 2-3, 2010

* Boyer Chute – Oct. 24-25 and Dec. 5-6

* October Antlerless (any weapon) – Oct. 9-11

ANTELOPE

* Archery – Aug. 20-Nov. 13 and Nov. 23-Dec. 31, but closed during firearm antelope season in all areas open to firearm antelope hunting

* Muzzleloader – Sept. 19-Oct. 4

* Firearm – Oct. 10-25

ELK

* Bull Permits – Sept. 26-Oct. 25

* Antlerless Permits – Sept. 26-Oct. 25 and Dec. 1-21

* Boyd Unit – Aug. 15-Nov. 13 and Nov. 23-Dec. 31

In other action, the commissioners:

* approved an interlocal cooperative agreement with the Nemaha Natural Resources District to rehabilitate the fish community and its habitat, as well as improve boat access at Iron Horse Trail Lake in Pawnee County;

* approved a schedule of fees to be assessed concession vendors for booth/display space at all of the Commission’s Expos.

* heard an update from Commission staff on the new Open Fields and Waters walk-in access program, as well as the hunter/angler recruitment, development and retention program activities.

* amended regulations to add bodies of water to lists of waters that are open to all boating, open to nonpowered vessels and those powered with conventional outboard electric motors, closed to all motorboats, and closed to all boats.

* amended regulations to allow hunters, who have met their limit of having two deer permits that allow the harvest of a buck, to participate in an auction or lottery.

* amended regulations to make it unlawful to take an antelope or deer with: a rifle smaller than 22 caliber, a rifle that delivers less than 900 foot-pounds of bullet energy at 100 yards, or a muzzleloading handgun that delivers less than 400 foot-pounds of bullet energy at 50 yards.

* amended regulations for trapping furbearing animals to add snares and underwater snare sets to the types of traps that must be checked at least once every two days.

* amended regulations to add the scaleshell mussel to the state’s list of endangered species.

* amended regulations to mandate that portable tree stands, on wildlife management areas, must be taken down from Feb. 1 through Aug. 31 of each year.

* approved recommendations to hold three public hearings regarding wildlife regulations at their next meeting, in May.

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