"Take 'em Hunting" campaign underway

Hunter numbers are on the decline in Nebraska, and a Game and Parks program aims to change that.

In Nebraska, hunting is a tradition and a way of life. Hunting is also how wildlife is managed, and the sale of hunting permits and stamps fund wildlife conservation efforts. If hunting becomes obsolete, much of that could be lost. So, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission is offering a new program called "Take 'Em Hunting", to expose more people to the pastime.

The program launched September 1, and runs all the way until May 31, 2020, when spring turkey season closes. The concept of the program is simple: take someone new hunting, take a photo of the hunt and upload the photo, along with a bit of info about the hunt, to a form at outdoornebraska.gov. Hunters who do so will be entered into a contest to win tons of prizes, including a John Deere UTV.

We recently talked with Jackson Ellis with Nebraska Game and Parks about the project. "We are encouraging people who are already hunting, to take someone who has not been exposed to it in the past," Ellis said. "It could be a family member, a co-worker, just someone who is interested but never had the opportunity. We are finding there is a growing number of people who want to be outdoors, and they want to give it a try."

"Safety is first and foremost, but you don't necessarily have to be an expert to get involved with this program," Ellis said. "Most people want to get out, enjoy a sunrise, and see some animals. They just need someone to take them."