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The Audubon Society of Omaha is dedicated to the active promotion of environmental awareness to our community through education, conservation, and enjoyment of our natural heritage, especially birds.

Audubon Society Of Omaha, P.O. Box 3542, Omaha NE 68103 - (402)-445-4138
Nebraska Bird Line (402) 721-5487

The Nebraska Birdline is also available on the Nebraska Ornithologist's Union web page http://www.noubirds.org and on the Iowa Ornithologists' Union web page http://www.iowabirds.org . It is also available through e-mail from Nebraska Birds listserver (NEBirds). To sign up for NEBirds, go to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NEBirds  and follow instructions.

If you find a sick or injured raptor, please contact a Raptor Recovery Center volunteer at
402-734-6817 or 402-731-9869
You can also Report an Injured Raptor online.




ASO received a note from Dr. Paul Johnsgard asking me to forward some information about a resource he treasures highly.  This is partly what was sent.  

“You probably saw another mountain lion has been killed in Nebraska; at least the 10th this year, and probably about the 14th, considering the loss of a lactating female.  I think that the open season by Neb. Game and Parks is a disgrace.  The Commissioners are meeting on October 23rd to discuss next year’s possible season.  I am writing to friends to urge them to oppose a season.  If you can get word of it to friends such as the Audubon Society of Omaha before the Oct. 23rd meeting I would be grateful.”  

He then includes a list of reasons for his opposition to another hunting season.  He also provides the website for the article he wrote about Mt. Lions in February.  I don’t know where any of you stand on this issue, but I’m sure you are aware of the controversy.  Do what you want with this information (calls, letters, conversations........).  


Mountain Lion (Cougar) Deaths in Nebraska


 
            Another mountain lion was killed recently in Knox County. This is at least the tenth reported cougar death this year, not counting the unknown number of kittens (probably four) that starved when a lactating female was killed earlier.
1 &2: Two were killed on January 1 and 2, at the start of Nebraska’s first hunting season. Both were killed by treeing the animals with dogs, then shooting them execution-style. One was killed by a man who bought the permit ($13,500) at auction; the other was killed by a teenager who won a Game & Park’s fund-raising lottery.
3: An adult male was accidentally killed by a vehicle on February 1, in Sioux County.
4: An adult was accidently killed by a cable entanglement in Custer County, February 16.
5: An adult female was killed for sport on February 26 in Sioux County, ending the second phase of legal hunting, but leaving most of the state open for the rest of the year.
6: A young male was shot on March 21 when seen "threatening" a chicken coop in Sheridan County.
7: An adult was caught in a trap set in Sioux County sometime in June. The trap was left unattended by federal government trappers, and the decaying carcass was not found until early July.
8. A young female was shot near Chadron, Sioux County, July 19.
9. A lactating female was illegally shot by a hunter in early September, in Sioux County. Her kittens were not found and no doubt starved.
10. An adult male was killed legally by a hunter in Knox County, October 5. It was killed in the prairie hunting unit, which covers about 85 percent of the state, and which remains open to legal hunting for the rest of the year.
            Unless sufficient outrage is made evident over the fact than in less than a year over half of the state's estimated mountain lion population (20-22) has been eliminated, thanks in large part to Game & Parks' concerted efforts to make killing mountain lions, the state’s rarest native mammal, a sport in Nebraska, It is likely that there will be another season next year; It is a real money-maker for the Commission, probably bringing in $15,000 in lottery proceeds and license fees.  I urge the public to make their feelings on this subject known to the Game & Parks Commission and to local media. I believe it was the Game & Parks commissioners who are largely responsible for this debacle, so, if you let the commissioners know your feelings, that is probably most effective. Their next meeting, on Oct. 23, will probably consider next year’s season
            For those who may wish to respond, a good source of information on cougars is the website of The Cougar Fund (founded by Tom Mangelsen): www.cougarfund.org/.  Also, my piece in the February, 2014, issue of Prairie Fire is useful and is available both at the Fund’s website and at Prairie Fire’s site: www.prairiefirenewspaper.com/2014/02/to-kill-a-mountain-lion.
 
Paul A. Johnsgard
402/472-2728

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