LINCOLN – Gov. Pete Ricketts signed a proclamation on April 6 declaring that Nebraska is the Best Turkey Hunting Destination in the United States.
The governor signed the proclamation in a ceremony at the Nebraska Capitol and presented it to Nebraska Game and Parks Commission Director Jim Douglas and District 3 Commissioner Mick Jensen of Blair (northeastern Nebraska).
In a recent survey, 90 percent of respondent Nebraska turkey hunters stated they had a satisfying experience. Several factors contribute to hunters’ fondness of turkey hunting in the Cornhusker State:
— Nebraska has an abundant turkey population, with hunting opportunities in all 93 counties. The state is home to three sub-species of wild turkeys – the Merriam’s, the Rio Grande and the Eastern.
— Nebraska is friendly to youth hunters. A youth turkey permit costs just $5. In 2015, 7,267 youth permits were sold.
— Turkey hunting is popular with out-of-state hunters. In 2015, 43,665 turkey hunting permits were sold in Nebraska. Of those, 13,651 were sold to nonresidents.
— Nebraska turkey hunters can enjoy seasons of up to 68 days in the spring and 139 days in the fall, with spring archers getting a longer season. The spring archery season is in progress. Spring shotgun season begins April 16 (April 9 for youth). All spring turkey seasons close May 31.
— Turkey hunting is allowed statewide. More than 400,000 acres of land are open to public hunting in the state.
— An unlimited number of turkey permits are available. A person may purchase up to three permits for the spring season and up to two for the fall season.
Hunting is big business in Nebraska. It has an $848 million annual financial impact in the state, fueling the economy of towns large and small. It also brings family and friends together in a way that encourages appreciation for the natural world.
Turkey permits may be purchased at OutdoorNebraska.org.