More than 2,400 students in grades 6-12 are expected to compete in the 52nd Annual Cornhusker Trap Shoot April 28-30 on the home grounds of the Nebraska Trapshooting Association in Doniphan, Nebraska.

Joining Nebraskans will be shooters from Iowa, Colorado, Kansas and South Dakota. More than 900 junior high and more than 1,500 senior high students are expected to compete.

“It should be another great year of competition at the shoot,” Shoot Director Eric Javins said. “Nebraska’s young shooters always put on a great show at Doniphan.”

Competition will take place in individual and team divisions. Junior high students (grades 6-8) will shoot 100 16-yard targets on April 28. High school competitors (grades 9-12) will shoot 75 16-yard targets on April 29, then 75 handicap targets on April 30. The high school shooter with the highest combined score will earn the Cornhusker Cup. Competition begins at 8 a.m. each day.

The Cornhusker Trap Shoot is open nationwide to all shooters in grades 6-12 who have completed a hunter education course.

The NTA home grounds are 3 miles south of Interstate 80 exit 312 on U.S. 281. The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and the NTA are hosts.

Visit Cornhusker-trap.com for more information.

Omaha peregrine falcon tests positive for Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza

The peregrine falcon that died in a nest box on the WoodmenLife Tower in downtown Omaha tested positive for Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza.

The adult female falcon, named Chayton, died April 18 after being observed, via WoodmenLife’s webcam, behaving oddly. The online webcam provides a live public view of the nest box.

The falcon was retrieved by the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and HPAI testing was performed at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Veterinary Diagnostic Center.

HPAI is a highly contagious virus that spreads easily among birds and has been detected in both domestic poultry and wild birds. Among wild birds, waterfowl and other waterbirds appear more susceptible to HPAI than other species.

Peregrine falcons’ diet consists mostly of other birds, and the species routinely preys upon ducks, shorebirds and other waterbirds. The deceased falcon may have been exposed to HPAI from its prey.

In addition to the peregrine falcon, HPAI has been detected in the following wild birds in Nebraska during this outbreak: several geese, a swan, two bald eagles and an American white pelican.

Sightings of sick or dead wild birds should be reported to your nearest Game and Parks office; find a location at OutdoorNebraska.org/Locations. For domestic bird illness or unusual death, report to the Nebraska Department of Agriculture at 402-471-2351 and the USDA at 866-536-7593.

Find additional information about avian influenza at OutdoorNebraska.org/AI.

Game and Parks names Fields Parks Division administrator

Nebraska Game and Parks has selected Jeff Fields as the agency’s new Parks Division administrator. Fields, a native of Tilden, Nebraska, began his new duties April 11.

Fields came to the agency in 1992, working as a seasonal employee for the Resource Services Division. After working in law enforcement and park management in Iowa for several years, he returned to Game and Parks in 1998 to serve as superintendent of Ponca State Park. In 2017, he became the regional park superintendent for the northeast parks region.

“My life’s passion is to provide opportunities for the public to experience and learn about Nebraska’s natural, recreational and cultural resources,” Fields said. “I am honored to lead an outstanding team of staff, volunteers and partners as we strive to fulfill this mission.”

Said Deputy Director Jim Swenson: “Jeff brings an impressive resume of achievements, leadership skills and partnership development that will allow him to collaborate with the agency team and partners as we work to conserve and protect our natural, cultural and recreational resources. We are excited to watch him apply his passion for family-friendly outdoor recreation and interpretation across our park landscapes.”

To learn more about Game and Parks, visit to OutdoorNebraska.org.

Commission approves 2022 big game hunting recommendations

The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission approved recommendations for 2022 deer, antelope and elk hunting seasons at its meeting April 28 at Niobrara State Park.

Commissioners approved staff recommendations that will help the agency manage big game populations at socially acceptable levels, address declining mule deer populations in some areas of the state, and maintain resident access to hunting permits.

Adopted changes to Commission orders pertaining big game hunting include:

  • adding the Pine Ridge deer management unit into the Mule Deer Conservation Area,
  • creating permit quotas on Statewide Whitetail Buck and Restricted Statewide Buck permits,
  • establishing a sales cap on nonresident either-sex or buck-only deer permits for all permits except landowner and youth,
  • adjustments of elk and antelope limited landowner permit quotas to 75% of the general permit quota to meet statute change, and
  • minor adjustments on other deer, elk and antelope permits to meet management objectives.

The approved 2022 big game season dates are:

Deer:

Archery – Sept. 1-Dec. 31; November Firearm – Nov. 12-20; Muzzleloader – Dec. 1-31; Late Antlerless Only Firearm – Jan. 1-15, 2023; October River Antlerless Firearm – Oct. 1-15; River Antlerless Late Firearm – Jan. 1-31, 2023; Antlerless Only Season Choice – Sept. 1-Jan. 15, 2023; Youth – Sept. 1-Jan. 15, 2023; Limited Landowner – Sept. 1-Jan. 15, 2023; Special Landowner – Nov. 5-7

Antelope:

Archery – Aug. 20-Dec. 31; Muzzleloader – Sept. 17-Oct. 2; Firearm – Oct. 8-23; Late doe/fawn – Nov. 1-Jan. 31, 2023

Elk:

Archery bull – Sept. 1-Oct. 31; Firearm bull – Sept. 21-Oct. 31; Antlerless – Aug. 1-Jan. 31, 2023; Antlerless, Private Land Only – Aug. 1-Sept. 20; Early General Antlerless – Aug. 1-Oct. 31; Late General Antlerless – Nov. 1-Jan. 31, 2023

In other business, the commissioners heard a staff update on the Take ’em Fishing challenge, which recently began its fourth season. The challenge encourages anglers to take beginners fishing, snap a photo, then upload it to a website to be eligible to win prizes.

Staff also gave a report on the change in status of wolves. Following a Feb. 10 court order, gray wolves in the contiguous 48 states and Mexico, except the Northern Rocky Mountain population, now are protected under the Endangered Species Act as threatened in Minnesota and endangered in the remaining states, including Nebraska.

The commissioners heard updates on projects at Fort Atkinson State Historical Park, a fisheries public meeting at Lake McConaughy, walleye spawning, and shooting ranges and programs, and heard from Sen. Tim Gragert, who discussed future recreation opportunities and partnerships to benefit Nebraska.

Dean Rosenthal, Fisheries Division administrator, was honored for his 45 years of service to Game and Parks. Gary Howie and Bill Christiansen, both of Hartington, also were honored for 30 years of volunteer service as Hunter Education instructors.

The commission and Sen. Gragert presented a certificate of appreciation and recognition to Niobrara State Park Superintendent Cogan Thompson for his service to the country. Thompson, a Nebraska Army National Guardsman, recently completed a tour of duty in a conflict zone in East Africa.

Happle shoots perfect 100 to win junior high title at 52nd Cornhusker Trap Shoot

Wyatt Happle of Beatrice was perfect Thursday, breaking all 100 targets during the junior high competition of the 52nd Cornhusker Trap Shoot in Doniphan, Nebraska.

It was no runaway victory for Happle shooting targets at 16 yards at the Nebraska Trapshooting Association home grounds. It was a day of high scores.

Harry Morgan of Kiewit Middle School in Omaha shot a 99. Kahne Packer of 5 Clovers 4-H of Wilber, who finished runner-up last year, took third place with a 98.

The last junior high shooter to record a perfect score was Hayden Baehr of 5 Clovers 4-H in 2015.

Sara Thiellen of Ashland 4-H won a shoot-off over Ava Schmutte of Norris, after both shot 95s, to win the ladies’ competition. Norris 1 repeated as the junior high team champion while Lincoln’s St. Joseph won the 4-H team championship and Ashland 4-H 1 took the ladies’ team crown.

On Thursday, 935 junior high shooters registered to compete, the second-highest total in the history of the event.

On Friday, more than 1,500 senior high students are expected to shoot 75 rounds of 16-yard targets. They will shoot 75 handicap targets Saturday, and the combined scores of the two days will determine the overall champion, the Cornhusker Cup winner.

The junior high results are:

Top 20 Individuals – 1. Wyatt Happle, Beatrice, 100 of 100

  1. Harry Morgan, Omaha Kiewit MS, 99
  2. Kahne Packer, Wilber 5 Clovers 4-H Green, 98
  3. Conner Parrish, Lincoln Irving MS, 97
  4. Jackson Norman, Omaha St. Wenceslaus Silver, 97
  5. Garrett Lange, Broken Bow Karp and Krow 4-H A, 96
  6. Hudson Werkmeister, McCook Republican River 4-H 1, 96
  7. Kade Brauckmuller, Ashland 4-H 1, 96
  8. Nathan Scott, Buffalo County 4-H 1, 96
  9. Trey Stoltenberg, Northwest 1, 96
  10. Logan Beaubier, Lincoln Mickle MS Black, 96
  11. Wyatt Debrie, Gibbon 1, 96
  12. Luke Grollmes, Minden-C.J. Jones 1, 96
  13. Brayden Hulquist, North Platte Adams MS Black, 96
  14. Barrett Smith, Lincoln St. Joseph 4-H 1, 96
  15. Jacob Volpp, Lincoln Pound MS, 95
  16. Boone Elam, Lincoln St. Joseph 4-H 1, 95
  17. Witten Painter, Ainsworth, 95
  18. Garrett Brandt, Papillion MS Titan 1, 95
  19. Jacob Mark, Gering Platte Valley Claybusters 4-H A, 95

Top Six Ladies – 1. Sara Thiellen, Ashland 4-H 1, 95 of 100 (won shoot-off)

  1. Ava Schmutte, Norris Ladies 1, 95
  2. Lillee Ludlow, Ashland 4-H 1, 93
  3. Karsyn Bower, Burwell Kittens, 93
  4. Reilly Forsyth, La Vista MS 1, 92
  5. Sydney Gallaway, Maxwell-North Platte, 92

Top Three 4-H Teams – 1. Lincoln St. Joseph 4-H 1 (Boone Elam, Barrett Smith, Bronson Bixenmann, Brady Bixenmann, Samuel Huck), 466 of 500

  1. 5 Clovers 4-H Green, 458
  2. Ashland 4-H 1, 452

Top Ladies Team – 1. Ashland 4-H 1 (Addison Rist, Lillee Ludlow, Ella Stofer, Riley Ruff, Ellie Porter), 411 of 500

  1. Burwell Kittens, 375
  2. Norris Ladies 1, 351

Top Six Junior High Teams – 1. Norris 1 (Maxxwel Schultz, Britton Petersen, Hayden Bauer, Todd Munk, Hunter Knoche), 446 of 500

  1. Beatrice 1, 443
  2. Centura Burgundy, 442
  3. Northwest 1, 433
  4. North Platte Adams Black, 427
  5. La Vista MS Monarch 1, 427

Pierson is individual champion at 16 yards at Cornhusker Trap Shoot

Mitchell Pierson of Lincoln Southeast survived an eight-person shoot-off Friday to win the individual title in the 16-yard competition at the 52nd Cornhusker Trap Shoot at Doniphan, Nebraska.

Pierson and seven others each broke all 75 targets earlier, then, in the shoot-off, the champion failed to miss.

Scotlyn Kincaid of Papillion-La Vista won the ladies’ title after a three-person shoot-off after shooting a 73 earlier. The high school team crown went to Papillion-La Vista, which broke 358 of 375 targets. Malcom 4-H Blue won the 4-H team title with a 359 and Duchesne won the ladies’ team crown with a 323.

There were 1,524 shooters competing Friday. On Saturday, competitors will shoot 75 handicap targets. The high school shooter with the highest combined score from the two days will earn the Cornhusker Cup trophy as the overall champion.

Friday’s results in the 16-yard competition are:

Top 20 Individuals – 1. Mitchell Pierson, Lincoln Southeast Zulu, 75 of 75 (won shoot-off)

  1. Vincent Kuehlthau, Papillion-La Vista Monarch 1, 75
  2. Wyatt Nelson, Elkhorn South Blue, 75
  3. Brennan Teter, Oak Creek 4-H 1, 75
  4. Trevor Lesinski, Millard South A, 75
  5. Tanner Muff, Lincoln Southwest Gold, 75
  6. Dalton Bures, Diller-Odell 1, 75
  7. Ethan Adams, Doniphan-Trumbull A, 75
  8. Cody Zalesky, 5 Clovers 4-H Green, 74
  9. Skye Hoyer, Blue River 4-H White, 74
  10. Tyler Marshall, Lincoln Northeast Black, 74
  11. Clyde Stenglein, Douglas County West Platinum, 74
  12. Hunter Gilbertson, Waverly Maroon, 74
  13. Nicholas Loxterkamp, Tri-County, 74
  14. Richard Gunn, homeschool, 74
  15. Jacob McClellan, Lincoln Lutheran 1, 74
  16. Benjamin Menking, Fremont, 74
  17. Jaxon Thoene, Broken Bow Karp and Krow 4-H, 74
  18. Andrew Stadler, Humboldt-Table Rock-Steinauer, 74
  19. Tyce Pate, North Platte Black, 74

Top Six Ladies – 1. Scotlyn Kincaid, Papillion-La Vista 1, 73 of 75 (won shoot-off)

  1. Janice Tejeda, Ashland 4-H 1, 73
  2. Madelynn Oden, Lincoln Southeast Zulu, 73
  3. Cori Combs, York, 72
  4. Haley Johnson, Gordon-Rushville 1, 71
  5. Ashley Rose, Centura Burgundy, 71

Top Three 4-H Teams – 1. Malcom 4-H Blue (Luke Beckman, Karter Kopecky, Cooper Koeppen, Griffin Anderson, Owen Savicky), 359 of 375

  1. 5 Clovers 4-H Green, 357
  2. Blue River 4-H White, 354

Top Three Ladies Teams – 1. Duchesne 1 (Calla Behney, Delaney Moffitt, Grace Nigro, Izzy Jansen, Ava McQuillen), 323 of 375

  1. Papillion-La Vista 1, 317
  2. Lincoln Southwest Pink, 316

Top Six High School Teams – 1. Papillion-La Vista Monarch 1 (Vincent Timberlake, Vincent Kuelthau, Trent Borer, Caleb Campbell, Aiden Cartwright), 358 of 375

  1. Douglas County West Platinum, 353
  2. Lincoln Southeast Zulu, 351
  3. Millard West A, 350
  4. Gothenburg, 350
  5. Norris 2, 349

Jim Carlisle Memorial Second Generation Individual (traveling trophy) – Tyler Marshall, Lincoln Northeast, 74