LINCOLN, Neb. – With prairie grouse season in full swing, many upland hunters have accepted the Nebraska Upland Slam challenge, harvesting sharp-tailed grouse and greater prairie-chickens on both public and private lands throughout the state.
“The Upland Slam is meant to bring awareness to the excellent mixed bag opportunities we have in our state,” said John Laux, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission’s upland habitat and access program manager.
The Nebraska Upland Slam concept is simple: Hunters must harvest a ring-necked pheasant, sharp-tailed grouse, greater prairie-chicken and northern bobwhite in Nebraska. Those who complete the Slam will receive an official certificate and pin and will be entered into a drawing to win prizes, including a Browning Silver 12-gauge shotgun.
To date, 89 hunters from Nebraska, Missouri, Colorado, Arkansas and Wyoming have submitted 140 entries, which included 79 greater prairie chickens and 61 sharp-tailed grouse.
According to Laux, prairie grouse are underutilized by Nebraska’s upland hunters. “Pheasants are clearly the most sought after upland game bird in our state,” he said. “Prairie grouse are often in the shadows, but Nebraska is a stronghold for both greater prairie-chickens and sharp-tailed grouse and we have some excellent opportunities to pursue them on public lands, especially in the Sandhills.”
As part of the Upland Slam, hunters have harvested prairie grouse in 33 of Nebraska’s 93 counties and roughly half were taken on publicly accessible lands.
Hunters will be able to pursue the two other species in the challenge when pheasant and quail seasons open Oct. 27. The seasons for all species included in the Nebraska Upland Slam close Jan. 31.
Hunters can visit OutdoorNebraska.org/UplandSlam for more information, official rules and entry details or go to Game and Parks’ Facebook page to view a photo album