More than 100 hunters complete Upland Slam

Upland slam results

Sean Conaway of Omaha hunts pheasants and quail with his German shorthaired pointer, Sadie, on a USDA Conservation Reserve Program field enrolled in the Open Fields and Waters program in Lancaster County.

Special to the Daily News

LINCOLN — The second year of the Nebraska Upland Slam gave more than 200 hunters a reason to take advantage of the state’s excellent mixed-bag hunting opportunities.

The Nebraska Upland Slam, a partnership between the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and the Nebraska chapter of Pheasants Forever/Quail Forever, challenged hunters to harvest all four of Nebraska’s primary upland game bird species — ring-necked pheasant, northern bobwhite quail, sharp-tailed grouse, and greater prairie-chicken during a single hunting season

In total, 122 hunters completed the Slam, including 107 from Nebraska. The remaining Slams were completed by hunters from nine states, including the only youth to do so, Blake Bohlender of Fort Collins, Colorado.

In an effort to encourage more hunters to go afield, this season, participating hunters who harvested at least one species were entered into monthly drawings for prizes. Awareness of the Slam grew nationwide, as hunters participated from 22 states across both years.

In the Slam’s second season, 274 hunters harvested at least one species, with a total of 764 submissions recorded. Just over half of these occurred on publicly accessible lands. The Slam also provided first-time experiences for 156 individuals across both years. Nearly 14% of all submissions were reported as the first-time a species had been harvested in a person’s lifetime.

Hunters who completed the Slam received an official certificate and pin and were entered into an end-of-year grand prize drawing from Pheasants/Quail Forever, which occurred at the Nebraska State Habitat Meeting on Feb. 1 in Kearney. Grand prize winner Jeff Duffey of Minden, Nebraska drew a Browning Silver 12-gauge semiautomatic shotgun, Lance Goings of Cherokee, Iowa won a Pheasants Forever print, and Benjamin Esker of Effingham, Illinois won an Orca cooler. The names of all hunters who successfully completed the Slam can be found at

The Upland Slam helped promote Nebraska’s excellent mixed bag opportunities and increased awareness of hunting on publicly accessible lands. The challenge also motivated new hunters to participate, providing one more reason to go afield in pursuit of Nebraska’s upland gamebirds.

In other news

LINCOLN — In the coming months, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission’s Fish and Wildlife Education Division will co-host educational events at breweries in southeast Nebraska.

Tyler Thelen of Norfolk caught this catfish — estimated at 25 to 30 pounds — at Grove Lake near Royal on Jan. 25. The fish was much bigger than the normal 5- to 10-pounders normally caught in the lake, said Merl Thelen of Norfolk

February calendar of events

LINCOLN, Neb. – The following is a listing of Nebraska Game and Parks Commission events and important dates in February. Get more event details at Visit for a list of hunter education classes and boating safety classes.

Feb. 1 – Pheasants Forever State Habitat Meeting, Kearney

Feb. 2 – Buffalo Bill’s Nebraska, Fort Atkinson State Historical Park, Fort Calhoun

Feb. 2 – Youth fishing instructor certification, Nebraska Game and Parks Outdoor Education Center, Lincoln

Feb 3, 10, 17, 24 – Learn to Hunt: Turkey course, The Hebron Learning Center, Hebron

Feb. 6 – Growing Up WILD Educator Workshop, University of Nebraska-Lincoln (Henzlik Hall), Lincoln

Feb. 6, 13, 20, 27 – Becoming an Outdoors-Woman, Archery Lunch and Learn, Nebraska Game and Parks Outdoor Education Center, Lincoln

Feb. 8 – Wood Duck Day, Pawnee State Recreation Area (SRA), Lincoln

Feb. 8 – Birds & Binoculars, Eugene T. Mahoney State Park (SP), Ashland

Feb. 9 – Dark goose hunting season closes in East, Niobrara, Panhandle and Platte River units

Feb. 9 – Statewide light goose hunting season closes

Feb. 9 – White-fronted goose season closes

Feb. 10 – Light Goose Conservation Order hunting begins

Feb. 10 – Fisheries public informational meeting, Niobrara Lodge, Valentine

Feb. 10-14 – Valentine’s Day Special, Eugene T. Mahoney SP, Ashland

Feb. 11 – Little Saplings Early Childhood Nature Discovery Program, Schramm Education Center, Gretna

Feb. 11 – Pollinators and Paperbacks Educator Workshop, Elkhorn Valley Museum, Norfolk

Feb. 11 – Live Animal Talk, Kinkaider Brewing, Lincoln

Feb. 14-15 – Birds and Breakfast, Ponca SP, Ponca

Feb. 14-15 – Valentine’s Dinner, Platte River SP, Louisville

Feb. 14-16 – Valentine’s Day Getaway, Lewis and Clark SRA, Crofton

Feb. 15 – Great Backyard Bird Count, Schramm Education Center, Gretna

Feb. 16 – Schramm Sunday Speaker Series, Schramm Education Center, Gretna

Feb. 17 – Fisheries public informational meeting, Cobblestone Inn & Suites, Ord

Feb. 18 – Fisheries public informational meeting, Alma Municipal Golf Course, Alma

Feb. 18 – Math in Nature Educator Workshop, Educational Service Unit No. 2, Fremont

Feb. 20 – Fisheries public informational meeting, Chamber of Commerce Building, Columbus

Feb. 20 – Linking Literature and Science: Insects Educator Workshop, Tabitha Health Care Services, Lincoln

Feb. 22 – Becoming an Outdoors-Woman, Winter Wildlife Tracking, Platte River SP, Louisville

Feb. 22 – Winter Wildlife Tracking, Wildcat Hills SRA, Gering

Feb. 29 – Cottontail and jackrabbit hunting seasons close

Feb. 29 – Bobcat, raccoon, Virginia opossum, long-tailed weasel, mink, red fox, gray fox and badger hunting and trapping seasons close

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