Squirrel hunting season opened Aug. 1, giving Nebraskans an opportunity to introduce novices to hunting.

Taking a new hunter along on a squirrel hunt in the woods can serve as an introduction to an activity that can last a lifetime. It also may develop a novice’s sense of stewardship of natural resources and appreciation for conservation.

“If you are teaching someone to hunt, do not get caught up in the harvest, let the youth concentrate on that part of the hunt,” said Mike Streeter hunter education coordinator with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. “Just be their teacher, ensuring safety and ethics.”

Streeter has the following tips for a safe hunt:

  • Use insect repellent with DEET.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Call out and identify yourself if you see another hunter stalking the woods.
  • Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.
  • Be careful when loading and unloading a firearm.
  • Know where the muzzle is pointed and never point it at a person.
  • Inspect and clean your firearm before the hunt.

There will be plenty of opportunities to hunt squirrels. The season lasts through Jan. 31, 2013. The daily bag limit is seven squirrels, and the possession limit is 28.

Squirrels prefer to eat the nuts of oaks, hickories and walnuts. They will eat other types of nuts and fruit when preferred food types are not available. Scouting locations for trees that bear mast could pay off when it is time to hunt.

Hunting permits may be purchased at OutdoorNebraska.org.

Logo courtesy of the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission

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