Nebraska Turkey Season Opened April 16th
Turkey hunters gave it their best shot when the shotgun season opened April 16. Results were mixed, though, as the season opened on the heels of a spring storm that brought snow, rain and muddy and impassable roads across much of the state.
While access to hunting grounds was difficult to reach in much of the state, the weather improved once the season started.
Hunting pressure and success varied overall, according to reports by Nebraska Game and Parks Commission conservation officers. In many cases, turkeys were not coming to the call, and they still were in groups. Few problems and no accidents were reported.
With plenty of turkeys available, hunters will have many opportunities to bag their limit this season. Hunters, including archers and youth, may hunt turkeys through May 31.
The following is a district summary of reports by officers:
Southwest – Officers in the eastern portion of the district reported observing fewer hunters than in past openers. Many of the hunters who braved the sloppy roads were rewarded with a turkey. One officer checked 19 hunters with 11 turkeys. Most of the hunters were on or near Pressey Wildlife Management Area (WMA) in Custer County. Those hunters represented seven states. Medicine Creek WMA in Frontier County had several hunters on the second day but limited success. Hunting pressure was fair and harvest slow throughout the rest of the district.
Northeast – Much of the district had 4 to 6 inches of snow on the ground on opening morning. Good numbers of turkeys were observed, but they were inactive until temperatures rose in the afternoon. Hunting pressure was light in the areas of Niobrara, Santee and Verdigre. Nonresident hunters from Indiana, Minnesota, Iowa, South Dakota, and Mississippi were checked. Hunters had better success on the second day.
Northwest – Officers reported normal hunting pressure and fair success. Hunters saw plenty of birds. One officer checked 15 hunters – all nonresidents – on Clear Creek WMA on the opening day. Many nonresident hunters also were reported in the Pine Ridge.
Southeast – There were few reports from this district but one noted few hunters in the field along the Platte River in Saunders, Douglas and Sarpy counties on April 17.