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conservation chatter corner

with ron schroder

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YOUR IN ON THE OUTDOORS FOR WESTERN NEW YORK
www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com

 

5 - 17 – 19

 

Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

TURKEY HUNTING: Well, we’re at the halfway point of the spring wild turkey hunting season and hunter reports are running good and bad.  For some, the season is already over with two birds in the freezer. While others are wondering what their chances are.  That depends on who you talk to.  Some experienced hunters will tell you it’s tougher in the latter part of the season because there are fewer birds left, and those that remain are smarter.  Others claim the remaining toms will be more receptive to your calls because most hens will be on the nest.  Both theories make sense and maybe one factor offsets the other.  One thing that isn’t in dispute is that visibility is decreasing as the leaves come out, making it more of a must that you be sure of your target and don’t take instinctive shots. A past example: One hunter, who was stalking a decoy, learned the hard way as he shot at a movement beyond the decoy, which turned out to be the hunter in wait, waving him away from the decoy. Luckily not a fatality but a very serious injury. It’s also a lesson for the “hunter in wait” don’t move if you see someone coming. Use your voice to let him know you are there. There’s no excuse for incidents like this. Be sure of your target! 

 

BOWFISHING FOR CARP: Season started Wednes, May 15.  You need a small game or fishing license to participate, and you must be in an area where both fishing and the discharge of a bow are permitted.  Only carp may be taken, so the same rule as in all hunting  applies - be sure of your target.  Hitting a fish other than a carp could be expensive.  One final observation: Some bowfishermen have been known to throw the carp back into the water after getting it.  Don’t!  It’s not like angling.  There is no catch and release.  Be considerate of others.  Remember, a rotting fish smells like . . . well, a rotten fish.  Disposing of your catch properly is not just a nice idea, it’s the law.

 

2019 "I BIRD NY" CHALLENGES: From Montauk to Buffalo, New York is home to a wide array of habitats that support more than 450 different bird species. There are also 59 Bird Conservation Areas across the state. Bird watching is one of the fastest growing outdoor recreational activities that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and experiences in any community. The state's I Bird NY program encourages New Yorkers to get outdoors and engage in birding all year long.

DEC is hosting its annual I Bird NY Beginner's Birding Challenge, which is open to anyone 16 years of age and younger. To complete the Beginner's Birding Challenge, participants must identify 10 common New York bird species and submit their challenge sheet to DEC. All participants in this challenge will receive a certificate of participation, an official I Bird NY bracelet, and be entered to win birding accessories.

In addition to the Beginner's Birding Challenge, DEC is offering the I Bird NY Experienced Birder Challenge. To complete the challenge, birders of all ages must identify at least 10 of 50 listed bird species found across New York State. All participants in this challenge will receive a certificate of participation, an official I Bird NY bracelet, and be entered into a drawing for birding accessories.

Nature enthusiasts can visit I Bird NY to access the birding challenge sheets as well as find information on where and how to watch birds, upcoming bird walks, and other events, a downloadable kid's booklet, and additional resources.

                                                  NYSDEC Photo

 

KUDOS:  The 50th World Series of Birding competition was conducted on an excellent spring migration day this past Saturday, when 59 teams competed within 24 hours to see which teams could find the most birds in their respective categories across all or parts of the state of New Jersey. The results are in: Birders set a new world records for the biggest team of people birding during a single day! Although more reports are still being submitted, the current tally shows that more than 33,586 birders from around the world reported 6,843 species in 171 countries on May 4. Collectively, American birders found 719 species and birders in Canada tallied 394 species; but special congratulations are due to birders in Colombia, who collectively found 1,591 species in one day!

The winning team in the Bird Conservation Challenge Category 1: Boundless Birding Search and second overall were the Cornell Redheads with 207 species of birds seen or heard.

All teams competed in the Series in an effort to raise funds for a selected conservation project or organization. The Redheads represented the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Speed Pollutes - Broome County: On May 1, Lt. Kenric Warner responded to a truck rollover on State Route 17 in the town of Windsor. A tractor trailer hauling residential household waste to the Seneca Meadows Landfill overturned on a bridge over Tuscarora Creek, a tributary to the Susquehanna River. Waste spilled over the bridge into the stream, onto the highway, and along the side of the highway. New York State Police (NYSP) found vehicle and traffic law violations and ticketed the driver for speeding and an unsafe lane change. ECO Eric Templeton followed up on the case and charged the driver with a misdemeanor, contravention of water quality standards based on negligent actions that resulted in the trash ending up in the stream. The case will be heard in Town of Windsor Court, and the ECL charge can result in fines ranging from $3,750 to $37,500 and/or up to one year in jail. John Okesson with DEC Spill Response was on scene to monitor the cleanup by National Response Corp. (NRC) out of Syracuse as NRC cleaned up the affected stream and banks. The New York State Department of Transportation helped remove the waste from the roadway.

Garbage and debris spread out on the ground, down an embankment and into a stream.Damaged tractor trailer in a field on the side of the road
Garbage in Tuscarora Creek and wrecked tractor trailer

Wrong Time to Take a Shot - Allegany County: On the morning of May 3, a New York State Trooper was travelling behind a pickup truck in the town of Grove when the truck suddenly stopped in the middle of the road. Much to the Trooper's disbelief, the operator of the truck pointed a gun out the window and fired two rounds at a turkey approximately 10 yards off the road. Both shots missed and the turkey flew away unharmed. The Trooper pulled the truck over. ECO RJ Ward responded to assist After interviewing the shooter, ECO Ward charged the subject with possession of a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle, discharging a firearm from a public highway, illegally attempting to kill a turkey, attempting to take wildlife from a public highway, and attempting to take wildlife from a motor vehicle.

 

BOATUS CHECKLIST: HOW TO RENT YOUR BOAT:  Airbnb has shown that the sharing economy can work. A new report says, in 2018, the peer-to-peer rental company’s annual sales surpassed Hilton, based on data from U.S. travelers (excluding business spending). For boat owners looking to make extra money renting their boats on peer-to-peer boat rental networks like Boatsetter, what can they learn from Airbnb’s success? Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS) offers five tips for the most important things boat owners should consider before renting out their boats.

1. Know your liabilities: If you wish to rent your boat, your first concern should be insurance. Most everyday recreational marine insurance policies don’t cover boat rentals, so you need to see if the peer-to-peer rental company offers coverage for both the boat (hull) and liability, as well as other coverages like medical payments for potential claims such as a trip to the emergency room. Most peer-to-peer boat rental companies, however, simply advise owners that they need to determine if coverage is provided under the owner’s boat policy. The largest peer-to-peer network, Boatsetter, offers both boat (hull) coverage and liability coverage through the BoatUS Marine Insurance program’s peer-to-peer policy, regardless of the boat’s own insurance policy.

2. Know your coverage: Once you have insurance coverage, you need to understand it. It may be different, both in type, coverages and policy limits, from your boat’s own policy. The BoatUS peer-to-peer policy for Boatsetter is underwritten by GEICO Marine Insurance and provides hull coverage on an actual-cash-value basis and includes $300,000 per person liability coverage and $300,000 total liability per accident, $25,000 in medical payments, and $100,000 in uninsured boater coverage. Renters using peer-to-peer networks are typically responsible for any deductibles related to insurance. In the case of Boatsetter, the company takes a $1,000 deposit at every rental for this purpose.

3. Unexpected breakdowns: Recognize that unexpected breakdowns can happen and there may be a need to tow your boat to the dock or launch ramp. If a boat owner has an on-water assistance towing plan provided by a national towing-assistance company, chances are that the service is not extended to a renter, so the owner will likely need to make arrangements and pay separately for this service, which averages about $750 per incident nationwide. BoatUS provides all Boatsetter rentals with 24-hour on-water assistance by TowBoatUS, dispatched through the BoatUS App or by calling 24-hour nationwide dispatch. This service is included with the rental fee.

4. Will you be the captain? While most peer-to-peer boat rentals are “bareboat,” you may want to helm your boat for the rental period or provide a hired captain. Just remember that any captain on a hired vessel must be U.S. Coast Guard-licensed. Having a captain also means the number of guests aboard is limited to six, which complies with regulations for an Operator of Uninspected Passenger Vessels (“6-Pack”) license. To carry more than six passengers, additional regulations and inspections will apply.

5. Do a little checking up: Most peer-to-peer companies require renters to fill out a boating experience questionnaire and will confirm a valid driver’s license. Like Airbnb, peer-to-peer boat rental companies also provide a rating system that’s useful when past renters want to rent your boat. That’s harder to do with new renters. That’s when it’s up to the owner to work on building their comfort level. Set up a phone call way ahead of time or meet the renters, or take them out for a short ride to get a feel for their experience, abilities and any boating safety training. This would also be a good time to familiarize the renter with systems and equipment on the boat. Most peer-to-peer boat rentals give the owner (and renter) the option to cancel for any reason, but it usually must be done by a certain date prior to the beginning of the rental period.

 

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page - http://www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com/events.php)

 

MAY 2019

15 - Start of Bowfishing for Carp Season (A fishing or small game hunting license may be used) Water must be legal for fishing and discharge of a bow. (>9/30)

16 - Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club Banquet at the Camden Rod & Gun Club, 2655 Moron Post Road, Camden, NY. (7:00 pm) (For information call Paul Wenham at 315-964-2888.)

18 - Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium Open House at 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY (10:00 am – 2:00 pm) Have you been wondering what is happening at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium? Join Museum staff, volunteers, and trustees to find out! Tour the Finger Lakes Museum campus and explore the wetlands by land and water on mini guided wetland walks and mini guided eco-paddles from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 to 2 p.m. Visual highlights will show our achievements and future plans. (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

18 - 2nd Annual GCBA Kids' Fishing Derby at Club Terrace, Rochester NY (7;00 – 10:00 am) The event is free and no license is required for parents. Prizes: 1st Place- Longest Fish- Fishing Charter, Okuma Pole; 2nd- Place- Brand New Okuma Rod and Reel Combo, FishUSA Hat; 3rd Place- Brand New Okuma Rod and Reel Combo, FishUSA T-Shirt; 4th Place- Brand New Okuma Rod and Reel Combo, FishUSA donated lures. (For information contact Larry Hammond  captlarry@bullseyecharter.com)

18 - 9th Annual Ray's Kids Day at Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve, 93 Honorine Drive (off Como Park Blvd.), Cheektowaga, NY. (8:30 am) This all day event is sponsored by the Lake Erie Chapter of Fly Fishers International. The event will have seminars on fly casting, fly tying and entomology. After lunch, participants get a chance to fish with the flies they tied and use their fly-casting lessons. Registration is limited and participants must be 9 to 15 years of age.  Applications can be downloaded from the club’s website at www.lake-erie-fff.org. The application deadline is May 11. (For questions and further information call Dave Rosner at 716-675-4766.) 

18 - The Annual Southtowns Walleye Association Perch Contest. The event is open to members only ($35) and the contest fee is $10 per angler. They give away cash prizes and have a fish fry at the end of the contest for the contestants. It’s a great time.

18-19 - Barney and Bear's 33rd Annual Trout Derby on Cayuga Lake. You can sign up at Bear's Baits, located at Myers Park in Lansing New York. (For information call 607-387-5576.)

18-19 – Free Go Outdoors Event at Bass Pro Shops, 1579 Clark Street Road, Auburn, NY and Cabela’s, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY. Summer is near and for those looking to expand their outdoor adventures beyond the neighborhood park and pool, Go Outdoors provides opportunities to learn new skills and gear up for camping, hiking, kayaking, fishing, outdoor cooking and many more summer adventures. Go Outdoors offers a variety of free activities including how-to seminars for kids and adults, workshops, kids’ crafts, giveaways and a chance to win an exclusive 2019 Tracker OFF ROAD vehicle. Scheduled events: Saturday - 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. – Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s present a free BBQ sampling as award-winning teams will showcase their pit master culinary expertise/11 a.m. – Fryers: Learn the facts and functions about fryers and how to fix everything from fish to French fries/1 p.m. – Grilling: Discover outdoor grilling techniques for cooking on the patio or at the tent site/2 p.m. – Smoking: Get the basics of smoking meats and more. Sunday - 1:30 p.m. – Kayaking: From family fun to the tournament trail choose the kayak that fits the fun/2:30 p.m. – Paddle Sports Accessories: Learn how to select the right life jacket, dry bags and more for your next adventure. (For information call – Bass Pro Shop 315-258-2700 and Cabela’s - 716) 608-4770)

19 - Jimmy Griffin Memorial “Teach Me to Fish” Day at the Bison City Rod & Gun Club, 511 Ohio Street, Buffalo, NY. (2:00 – 5:00 pm)  The event is for kids 15 years of age and under, who would like to learn about fishing. There will be numerous hands-on learning stations, free prizes hand outs and Sahlen hotdogs. The event is free. (For information contact Dave Barus at 716-597-4081.)

20 - Ospreys Across the Pond–A European Osprey Tourat the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, 159 Sapsucker Woods Road, Ithaca, NY (7:30 pm) The speaker will be Dr. Alan Poole, Retired Editor: Birds of North America, Cornell Lab of Ornithology. The extraordinary revival in Osprey numbers that we are witnessing here in North America has not been restricted to our shores. Nearly eliminated from most of Europe half a century ago, Ospreys are staging a remarkable comeback there as well—from Scotland to Spain and from France to Finland. Follow local Osprey expert Alan Poole as he leads us along on a 3-week summer trip through Europe, visiting Osprey researchers and gathering material for his recently published book: Ospreys: The Revival of a Global Raptor. Part travelogue, part natural history—this beautifully illustrated lecture will give us glimpses of Europe through an Osprey lens. Come celebrate the revival of a global raptor! This event is free and open to the public. Join us in person in the Cornell Lab of Ornithology's auditorium, or watch online. (For information call 800-843-2473.)

21 - 2019 Third Annual Arc Foundation’s Sporting Clays and Clinic Event at the Rochester Brooks International Trap and Skeet Club, 962 Honeoye Falls #6 Rd, Rush, NY (11:00 am – 6:00 pm) Please join us in the great outdoors for The Arc Foundation’s Sporting Clays Tournament! Arc’s mission is to create an inclusive society where the people we support may live truly integrated lives and reach their full potential as a part of our community. (Fees: $500.00 - Tournament Foursome Entry: Entry for four shooters to the tournament and dinner ; $125.00 - Tournament Single Entry: Entry for one shooter to the tournament and dinner: $75.00 - Skeet Clinic and Dinner Ticket: Participation in skeet clinic and dinner for one; and $50.00 - Dinner Ticket: Dinner for one) (for information go to ARCMONROE.ORG/EVENTS)

22 - Update on Status of Lake Erie and Upper Niagara River Fisheries at Woodlawn Beach State Park's Lodge, S-3580 Lakeshore Road, Blasdell, NY (6;30 – 9:30 pm) This annual event provides an excellent opportunity for anglers to interact with the biologists who study and manage Lake Erie and Niagara River fisheries. This year's meeting will feature emerging results about Lake Erie walleye movement, the Cattaraugus Creek fish passage project, Lake Erie prey base, and upper Niagara River habitat work. The meeting will begin with an informal discussion, followed by a series of presentations on Lake Erie and Upper Niagara River fisheries topics, and will include opportunities for discussion on a variety of fisheries management activities. Key members of Lake Erie and Niagara River's fisheries management and research community will present information on management and assessment activities for prominent Lake Erie sport fisheries. (For information call 716- 851-7201.)

22 - Montezuma Wildlife Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (9:00 – 11:30 am) The Montezuma Wetlands Complex is teeming with migratory songbirds, marsh birds, and other wildlife this time of year. Join us for a van tour around Montezuma’s marshes, forests and grasslands to explore the abundant wildlife. Everything from snapping turtles, to Bald Eagles, to muskrats can be seen. Bring your camera to capture images of the beautiful habitats and wildlife. Binoculars and field guides provided. (Fee: $8/child, $15/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

23 - Seneca County Federation of Sportsmen Banquet at the Waterloo Sportsmen’s Club, 2654 Edwards Road, Waterloo, NY. (6:00 pm) (For information call Fred Beary 351-651-0115.)

25 - Surviving White-tailed Deer at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:30 am) Learn facts and myths about white-tailed deer and how to keep them from destroying your gardens. For adults only. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

25 - Lightning-Fast Hummingbirds at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (1:00 pm) Leap into the stunning physical abilities and light-speed lives of the world’s tiniest birds. Includes a guided pollinator walk and observation at our hummingbird feeders. For adults and children ages 8 and older.(For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov) 

25 - Birding 101: Class #5 at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Learn why some birds stay just for the summer and which ones to look for during the summer season. For adults and children ages 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email einsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

25 - Howland’s Island Birding Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (8:00 – 10:30 am) Spring songbird migration and breeding season is underway so join us for an early morning tour behind the locked gates of Howland’s Island. We’ll drive onto the island and make stops along the way listening and looking for migrants like the Warbling Vireo, Scarlet Tanager, and nearly two dozen Warbler species. We will also highlight the 10,000-year cultural and natural history of this unique island habitat.  Binoculars and bird guides will be provided. (Fee: $8/child; $15/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

25-26 - Free Go Outdoors Event at Bass Pro Shops, 1579 Clark Street Road, Auburn, NY and Cabela’s, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY. Summer is near and for those looking to expand their outdoor adventures beyond the neighborhood park and pool, Go Outdoors provides opportunities to learn new skills and gear up for camping, hiking, kayaking, fishing, outdoor cooking and many more summer adventures. Go Outdoors offers a variety of free activities including how-to seminars for kids and adults, workshops, kids’ crafts, giveaways and a chance to win an exclusive 2019 Tracker OFF ROAD vehicle. Scheduled events: Saturday - 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. – Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s present a free BBQ sampling as award-winning teams will showcase their pit master culinary expertise/12 noon to 5 p.m. – Free catch-and-release pond; Free photo download; Free kids’ craft/1 to 3 p.m. – Free Flossie’s Funnel Cake and Uncle Buck’s Hushpuppy samples/1:30 p.m. – Camping fun workshop—first 50 kids to attend the workshop will receive a free wristband. Sunday - 12 noon to 4 p.m. – Free catch-and-release pond; Free photo download; Free kids’ craft/1 to 3 p.m. – Free Flossie’s Funnel Cake and Uncle Buck’s Hushpuppy samples/1:30 p.m. – Camping fun Workshop—first 50 kids to attend the workshop will receive a free wristband. (For information call – Bass Pro Shop 315-258-2700 and Cabela’s – 716-608-4770)

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for – “Your In on The Outdoors for Western New York.”

What Do You Think? Have something for other sportspeople? Let us know HERE.

 

 

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5 - 10 – 19

 

Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

UPDATE ON STATUS OF LAKE ERIE AND UPPER NIAGARA RIVER FISHERIES: New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) invites the public to learn more about the status of Lake Erie and Upper Niagara River fisheries at a public meeting on Wednesday, May 22, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at Woodlawn Beach State Park's Lodge, 3580 Lake Shore Road, Blasdell, NY .

"This annual event provides an excellent opportunity for anglers to interact with the biologists who study and manage Lake Erie and Niagara River fisheries," said DEC Regional Director Abby Snyder." This year's meeting will feature emerging results about Lake Erie walleye movement, the Cattaraugus Creek fish passage project, Lake Erie prey base, and upper Niagara River habitat work."

The meeting will begin with an informal discussion, followed by a series of presentations on Lake Erie and Upper Niagara River fisheries topics, and will include opportunities for discussion on a variety of fisheries management activities. Key members of Lake Erie and Niagara River's fisheries management and research community will present information on management and assessment activities for prominent Lake Erie sport fisheries.

This annual meeting is sponsored by DEC's Lake Erie Fisheries Research Unit and Region 9 Fisheries offices. Anyone interested is welcome to attend this free event and registration is not required.

The Lake Erie and the Upper Niagara River rank among New York State's top fishing destinations, especially for walleye, smallmouth bass and steelhead. The 2007 statewide angler survey estimated more than 800,000 angler days spent on these waters and the estimated value of these fisheries exceeded $22 million to the local New York economy.

 

WATERFOWL NEWS FOR 2019-2020: Due to a slow, but steady decline in mallards across the northeastern United States, the mallard daily bag limit has been reduced from four birds (two hens) per day to two birds (one hen) per day (PDF)

The Canada goose season length in the Northeast, West Central, East Central, Hudson Valley, and Lake Champlain zones has been reduced from 50 days to 30 days and the bag limit has been reduced from three per day to two per day (PDF)

The northern pintail bag limit has been reduced from two per day to one per day.

Youth Waterfowl Hunting Opportunities

Two ducksDuck hunting seasons begin with designated "youth waterfowl hunts" across the state. These hunts allow youth hunters to spend time afield with experienced adult hunters and gain necessary knowledge and skills to become safe and responsible members of the hunting community. Junior hunters (12 to 15 years of age) accompanied by a licensed adult hunter with up-to-date Harvest Information Program registration and a duck stamp may participate. During the youth hunt, the adult hunter may not possess a firearm or shoot any birds unless the respective regular season is open. Daily bag limits are the same as those allowed during the regular hunting season for all species (excludes September Canada goose bag limits). The youth hunts are held on weekends in each zone of the state, as follows:

Southeastern Zone - Sept. 21-22

Northeastern Zone - Sept. 21-22

Lake Champlain Zone - Sept. 28-29

Western Zone - Oct. 5-6

Long Island Zone - Nov. 9-10

Duck Hunting Season Dates: Each year, DEC works with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the Atlantic Flyway Council to develop waterfowl hunting regulations and season dates. This year, DEC, with the assistance of Cornell University and the waterfowl hunter task forces, implemented a new process for selecting the 60-day duck season dates within the dates allowed by the USFWS. New York duck seasons offer opportunity to hunt from the first week of October through the last Sunday in January, depending on the waterfowl hunting zone. By having five waterfowl zones, it allows DEC to select dates that maximize duck abundance in each zone which varies based on habitat and latitude.

              Waterfowl Hunting Zone                         Ducks, Coots, Mergansers

                            Western                                         Oct. 19 – Nov. 10

                                                                                    Nov. 30 – Jan. 5

                            Northeast                                        Oct. 5 – Oct. 27

                                                                                    Nov. 2 – Dec 8

                            Lake Champlain                              Oct. 10 – Nov. 1

                                                                                    Nov. 23 – Dec. 29

                            Southeast                                      Oct. 19 – Dec. 1          

                                                                                    Dec. 7 – Dec. 22

                            Long Island                                    Nov. 23 – Dec. 1

                                                                                    Dec.7 – Jan. 26

2019-2020 Canada Goose Seasons

Canada goose hunting regulations can often be confusing because of the number of zones, varied bag limits and season lengths. Although some of the boundaries and bag limit differences appear to be random, they were designed using scientific data to maximize opportunity for resident Canada geese, but also to protect migratory populations that are much more sensitive to hunter harvest. Season lengths and bag limits are, again, developed in collaboration between the USFWS and the Atlantic Flyway Council. After the season frameworks are established (e.g., season length, bag limits, outside allowable dates), DEC gathers input from waterfowl hunters and the waterfowl hunter task forces to select dates that maximize opportunity for hunters in each zone.

Map of Canada Goose Seasons for each region in New York.

Bag Limits for all Other Species

There are no changes to season dates or bag limits for any of the other webless migratory game birds (rails, gallinules, snipe, and American woodcock). For more information and season dates for these species, please visit DEC's website.

 

MOST DEER SURVIVED HARSH 2018-19 WINTER CONDITIONS:

A map showing the winter severity index for whitetail deer across New York State. For most, this past winter didn’t appear overly harsh for whitetail deer. Several mid-winter thaws reduced snow depths, and overall temperatures were slightly more moderate than prior winters. The Winter Severity Index (WSI) map confirms these assertions. WSI is calculated by adding the number of days with a snow depth of at least 15’’ to the number of days when the minimum temperature was 0°F or below. However, there are many other factors that play a part in a whitetail’s ability to withstand winter conditions. Here are some reasons why this past winter may have proven a bit harsher than indicated by the WSI:

Limited natural foods in the fall—Portions of NY experienced mild drought which lessened production and nutrition of grasses, forbs, and soft mast (berries, cherries, apples). Then, hard mast (acorns, beechnuts) production was lower than average as well, so many deer went into winter with reduced fat reserve.

Early snow— November’s snowfall was double its average. Deep, heavy snow blanketed much of NY, hampering deer movements to late season food sources. Bucks burned more energy searching for does during the rut as well.

Seemingly, most deer pulled through despite some mortality reports. Hopefully this winter serves as a reminder to the importance of managing deer herds and habitats for a sustainable future. Cutting brush, opening the canopy, and removing adult does when necessary facilitates healthy deer populations. Consider ways you can improve habitat quality through forest management and creation of young forest to better equip deer to withstand New York’s dynamic winters.

 

DEER MANAGEMENT IN URBAN & SUBURBAN NEW YORK:

The cover of the DEC's report on Urban and Suburban Deer Management in New York.DEC published a comprehensive review of deer overabundance and management in urban and suburban areas. You can download this report as a PDF from DEC's website. 

Because deer in developed areas are occupying and using many small private parcels with different landowners, widespread resident support and participation are usually necessary for effective deer management. In some communities, unfamiliarity with deer biology and discomfort with population reduction methods hinder and delay the development of management programs. Expense can also be a significant obstacle.

Due to the nature of biological systems, reducing deer populations is necessary for long-term, community-wide reduction of deer-related impacts (deer-vehicle collisions, overbrowsing forests, damage to landscape plantings). Successful programs include hunting, culling, or both. Continued research on fertility control methods may produce additional useful options in the future. Actions that are taken to reduce deer populations must be maintained, or the problems will quickly return.

With guidance and assistance from DEC biologists, many communities are finding ways to address their problems with overabundant deer, but it's important to recognize at the outset that urban/suburban deer management is a complicated process requiring a long-term commitment. Communities and individuals interested in developing a deer management program can find DEC’s Community Deer Management Guide and other useful resources and contact information on DEC's website.

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:
ECOs Bust Boat Dumper - Niagara County: On March 26, DEC ECOs received a report of a 25-foot-long boat dumped on 15th Street in the city of Niagara Falls. The boat's motor had been removed and the identifying information, including the hull identification number (HIN) and the state registration numbers, had been defaced. The name of the boat, "Road Rage," remained on each side of the boat. A story of the dumping case appeared in the Niagara Gazette on March 30, and led to DEC Bureau of Environmental Crimes Investigation (BECI) unit Investigator Bob Peinkofer receiving an anonymous tip.

Peinkofer conducted an investigation and secured video footage from security cameras at a company in the town of Niagara where a suspect had been identified. Workers at the company reported that employee David Smouse, 53, of Niagara Falls, had been seen with the boat at the facility.

Working with the City of Niagara Falls Police Department and the Niagara County District Attorney's Office, Peinkofer charged Smouse with forgery of a vehicle identification number and possession of a forged instrument in the second degree, both felonies, and unlawful disposal of solid waste in excess of 10 cubic yards, an Environmental Conservation Law misdemeanor. Niagara Falls Police also charged Smouse with a violation of a city ordinance that prohibits unlawful dumping. On April 16, Smouse surrendered himself to the authorities and was arraigned in the Town of Niagara and City of Niagara Falls Courts. The subject was released on his own recognizance and is scheduled to appear in the City of Niagara Falls and the Town of Niagara to face the charges.

Large boat named Road Rage on the side of a residential street.
Boat dumped in City of Niagara Falls;
Photo Credit: Mark Scheer/staff photographer Niagara Gazette

Sucker Poaching - Tompkins County: On April 19, ECO Jeff Krueger responded to a midnight call at the Cayuga Inlet fish ladder in the town of Ithaca. State Troopers Malysa and Theurkauf had responded to a trespassing complaint and found a subject with a large quantity of suckers, a native fish that spawns in shallow rivers and streams in the early spring. Troopers immediately contacted ECO Krueger to respond due to violations of state Environmental Conservation Law. The man, in possession of a crossbow pistol and a homemade pickaxe, said he used the crossbow to take two fish and the pickaxe to take 42 fish. He attempted to justify his actions by saying he was helping DEC by removing the suckers because the suckers eat trout eggs. ECO Kruger educated the subject on restrictions against taking fish at the fish ladder, the Finger Lakes tributary fishing regulations, and New York's angling requirements. ECO Krueger issued two summonses, one for fishing at the fish ladder and one for taking fish by means other than angling. Both charges are returnable to the Town of Ithaca Court and punishable by fines of up to $250 and up to 15 days in jail per charge. The crossbow and pickaxe were seized as evidence.

Prescribed Fire: Towns of Hornby and Orange, Steuben and Schuyler Counties: On April 29, Region 8 DEC staff conducted two prescribed fires to conclude the agency's spring prescribed fire details. The first fire took place at the West Hill State Forest in Steuben County and burned four acres in size. Burning in this unit helps invigorate native warm season grasses while reducing invasive plant species. The second fire took place at the Coon Hollow State Forest in Schuyler County and was nine acres in size. This is the first time this unit has been burned since the Six Nations Prescribed Fire Plan was approved, and DEC anticipates that the introduction of prescribed fire into this unit will revitalize the remaining warm season grasses.

Forest Rangers in a wooded area conducting and monitoring a prescribed fire
Forest Rangers conduct a prescribed fire in Region 8

Wildland Rescue: Town of Persia, Cattaraugus County: On May 4 at 10 p.m., Cattaraugus County 911 contacted Forest Rangers for a report of four lost hikers in the Zoar Valley Multiple Day Use Area Two females, one from Silver Creek and one from Forrestville, and two children became disoriented while hiking. The hikers contacted 911 and their coordinates were relayed to the Rangers. A regional swift water team was deployed, but was unable to reach the group due to rocks in the stream Rangers John Kennedy and Nathan Sprague then proceeded to hike in with crews on each bank to pinpoint the hikers' location. The group was located early Sunday morning and taken out by raft. All were in good health. EMS met the hikers at the parking lot, where they were evaluated and released.

Forest Rangers with two yellow rafts in a river, rescuing disoriented hikers
Rescue crews work to remove lost hikers in Zoar Valley

Be sure to properly prepare and plan before entering the backcountry. Visit DEC's Hiking Safety and Adirondack Backcountry Information webpage for more information.

A Day at the Circus - Broome County: On April 25, Lt. Kenric Warner and ECOs Tony Rigoli and Andy McCormick conducted a compliance inspection of the Garden Bros. Circus before the scheduled afternoon performance at the Floyd L. Maines Veterans Memorial Arena in Binghamton. The inspection focused on the permits required to exhibit elephants in New York State. In 2017, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a law that goes into effect on Oct. 19, 2019, prohibiting DEC from issuing any license or permit authorizing the use of elephants in entertainment acts. Until that time, a permit issued by the DEC is required to exhibit elephants. The officers found that the two elephants traveling with the circus are covered by valid DEC permits. ECOs also found no violations of laws involving other animals travelling with the circus.

 

DEC HOSTS HUNTING 101 WORKSHOP FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS: Instructors show workshop participants the basics of firearm safety and marksmanship.DEC recently hosted a Hunting 101 workshop at Reynolds Game Farm in Ithaca, NY. The purpose of the workshop was to teach college students without any previous hunting experience the basics of hunting, to highlight the broader benefits of hunting, and to inspire students to adopt positive hunting-related attitudes and behaviors.

Workshop participants learned about the role of hunting in wildlife management, hunting ethics, hunting methods, how to look for game sign, the basics of field dressing and game care, the benefits of eating and cooking wild game, and the basics of firearm safety and marksmanship.

The workshop included instructors from the Bureau of Wildlife, volunteer instructors from DEC’s Hunter Education Program, and staff from Cornell Cooperative Extension. Participants’ impressions of the workshop and attitudes about hunting are being evaluated by Cornell University’s Center for Conservation Social Sciences as part of a national project coordinated by North Carolina State University. The goal of the national project is to evaluate the short and long-term efficacy of hunter recruitment, retention and reactivation programs specifically designed for college students.

After the workshop, most participants indicated they are interested in going on to take a DEC Hunter Education course, the first step to becoming a licensed hunter. This was a significant increase from the number that indicated they would take a hunter education course prior to the workshop.

 

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page - http://www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com/events.php)

 

MAY 2019

1 – Start of Spring Turkey Hunting Season (½ hour before sunrise till noon/ Bearded Birds Only) (>5-31)

1-31 - Celebrate Conesus Lake Month at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. The Museum focuses attention on the lake, with an award winning stream bank erosion remediation! (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

8 - Montezuma Birdwatching Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (5:30 – 8:00 pm) The Montezuma Wetlands Complex is teeming with migratory songbirds, marsh birds, and other wildlife this time of year. Join us for an evening van tour through the Montezuma's marshes, forests and grasslands to explore the abundant wildlife as they prepare for their nocturnal activities. Bring your camera to capture images of the beautiful habitats and wildlife. Binoculars and field guides provided. (Fee: $8/child, $15/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

8-11 - 2018 Wild Carp Classic – this event is sold out. Opening Ceremonies will be on May 7, 2019 with 50 teams registered. This tournament is a Big 10 format, with prizes awarded to the teams with the most combined weight of their 10 largest carp caught over 15 pounds. There will also be prizes for the single largest carp caught. There are no prizes for mirror carp. The anglers will be fishing from spots along the river from the village of Baldwinsville down to Long Branch Park at Onondaga Lake. (Entry to the Wild Carp Classic is $1000 per 2 or 3-person team.) (For information email: Paul - paul@carpfishingny.com or Ginny - ginny@carpfishingny.com)

10-19 - Lake Ontario Counties (LOC) Spring Trout and Salmon Derby 2019. 1st of 3 LOC Derbies offering over $30,000 in cash and prizes with a grand prize of $15,000 for the largest overall Salmon caught. (For more information call 888-733-5246 or visit their website at www.loc.org.)

11 - 6th Annual Bird Walk with Mahlon and Eleanor Hurst Townsend-Grady Wildlife Preserve, Townsend Rd, Branchport, NY  (8:00 am – 10:00 pm) Join us for a walk through the FLM&A's Townsend-Grady Wildlife Preserve wetlands to discover what bird species are migrating and nesting there. Last year over 40 species were identified by sight and sound! Please wear sturdy boots that can withstand wet, mud, and uneven ground, and bring your binoculars and journals! Parking is available on either side of Townsend Road. (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.) 

11 - Educator Workshop: Aquatic Wild + Great Lakes Bins at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:30 am -3:00 pm) Join an interactive workshop by NYSDEC and NY Sea Grant with an interdisciplinary curriculum focused on Great Lakes wildlife and ecosystems. Participants receive a curriculum guide and an intro to Great Lakes Educator Ecosystem Exchange (GLEEE) Basin Bins, plus a $75 stipend and lunch. For educators of students in grades K- 12. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

11 - Warblers For Beginners at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Learn about the colorful warblers that migrate to and through Reinstein Woods. For adults and children ages 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

11 - Scouts BSA Merit Badge: Amphibians & Reptiles at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (12:00 – 3:00 pm) Scouts are invited to complete the requirements for the Reptile and Amphibian Study Merit Badge during a fun and interactive program. As always, please be prepared to go outside, and dress appropriately for the weather. Pre-requisites/pre-registration is required.  All scouts must be accompanied by a parent, leader, or chaperone.  (Fee: $8/Scout. PRE- REGISTRATION REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

11 - Warblers and Wine Van Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (1:00 – 4:00 pm) Join us for a trip to Thorpe Vineyard, located along the Lake Ontario shoreline in Wolcott, NY. During the tour, guests will sample award-winning wines at the winery and then explore nearby Chimney Bluffs State Park to search for Cerulean Warblers and nearly two dozen other warbler species. Short distance, easy to moderate hiking will be part of the program. Must be 21+ to participate. (Fee: $20/adult includes wine tasting. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

13- Cayuga Bird Club Presentation - Birding the Caldera of a Supervolcano in Arizona by Meg Richardson and Carl Steckler at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology Auditorium, 159 Sapsucker Woods Road, Ithaca, NY. (7:30 – 9:00 pm) This trip added 43 life birds to Carl’s life list and provided an exceptional look at the life in the desert. Southeast Arizona is truly a birder’s and photographer’s paradise. Arizona is a vast landscape of bold color, formations and piercing beauty. The southeastern corner is no exception. Isolated mountains called “Sky Islands,” the remnants of a supervolcano, rise abruptly from the arid desert highlands and harbor a tremendous variety of plant and animal life. Carl and Meg will give a brief geological history of the Tucson area and its flora and fauna. Club business begins at 7:30 p.m. with the presentation to follow. Everyone is welcome! (For information call 800-843-2473 or email lms9@cornell.edu.)

14 - Timber Frame Raising at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. Join us on this exciting day as we raise our Timber Frame Pavilion in the Townsend Grady Wildlife Preserve. The timbers for this pavilion were tooled to perfection by a great team taught by Rob Hughes in a 2018 workshop. (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.) 

16 - Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club Banquet at the Camden Rod & Gun Club, 2655 Moron Post Road, Camden, NY. (7:00 pm) (For information call Paul Wenham at 315-964-2888.)

18 - Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium Open House at 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY (10:00 am – 2:00 pm) Have you been wondering what is happening at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium? Join Museum staff, volunteers, and trustees to find out! Tour the Finger Lakes Museum campus and explore the wetlands by land and water on mini guided wetland walks and mini guided eco-paddles from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 to 2 p.m. Visual highlights will show our achievements and future plans. (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

18 - 2nd Annual GCBA Kids' Fishing Derby at Club Terrace, Rochester NY (7;00 – 10:00 am) The event is free and no license is required for parents. Prizes: 1st Place- Longest Fish- Fishing Charter, Okuma Pole; 2nd- Place- Brand New Okuma Rod and Reel Combo, FishUSA Hat; 3rd Place- Brand New Okuma Rod and Reel Combo, FishUSA T-Shirt; 4th Place- Brand New Okuma Rod and Reel Combo, FishUSA donated lures. (For information contact Larry Hammond  captlarry@bullseyecharter.com)

18 - 9th Annual Ray's Kids Day at Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve, 93 Honorine Drive (off Como Park Blvd.), Cheektowaga, NY. (8:30 am) This all day event is sponsored by the Lake Erie Chapter of Fly Fishers International. The event will have seminars on fly casting, fly tying and entomology. After lunch, participants get a chance to fish with the flies they tied and use their fly-casting lessons. Registration is limited and participants must be 9 to 15 years of age.  Applications can be downloaded from the club’s website at www.lake-erie-fff.org. The application deadline is May 11. (For questions and further information call Dave Rosner at 716-675-4766.) 

18 - The Annual Southtowns Walleye Association Perch Contest. The event is open to members only ($35) and the contest fee is $10 per angler. They give away cash prizes and have a fish fry at the end of the contest for the contestants. It’s a great time.

18-19 - Barney and Bear's 33rd Annual Trout Derby on Cayuga Lake. You can sign up at Bear's Baits, located at Myers Park in Lansing New York. (For information call 607-387-5576.)

18-19 – Free Go Outdoors Event at Bass Pro Shops, 1579 Clark Street Road, Auburn, NY and Cabela’s, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY. Summer is near and for those looking to expand their outdoor adventures beyond the neighborhood park and pool, Go Outdoors provides opportunities to learn new skills and gear up for camping, hiking, kayaking, fishing, outdoor cooking and many more summer adventures. Go Outdoors offers a variety of free activities including how-to seminars for kids and adults, workshops, kids’ crafts, giveaways and a chance to win an exclusive 2019 Tracker OFF ROAD vehicle. Scheduled events: Saturday - 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. – Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s present a free BBQ sampling as award-winning teams will showcase their pit master culinary expertise/11 a.m. – Fryers: Learn the facts and functions about fryers and how to fix everything from fish to French fries/1 p.m. – Grilling: Discover outdoor grilling techniques for cooking on the patio or at the tent site/2 p.m. – Smoking: Get the basics of smoking meats and more. Sunday - 1:30 p.m. – Kayaking: From family fun to the tournament trail choose the kayak that fits the fun/2:30 p.m. – Paddle Sports Accessories: Learn how to select the right life jacket, dry bags and more for your next adventure. (For information call – Bass Pro Shop 315-258-2700 and Cabela’s - 716) 608-4770)

19 - Jimmy Griffin Memorial “Teach Me to Fish” Day at the Bison City Rod & Gun Club, 511 Ohio Street, Buffalo, NY. (2:00 – 5:00 pm)  The event is for kids 15 years of age and under, who would like to learn about fishing. There will be numerous hands-on learning stations, free prizes hand outs and Sahlen hotdogs. The event is free. (For information contact Dave Barus at 716-597-4081.)

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for – “Your In on The Outdoors for Western New York.”

What Do You Think? Have something for other sportspeople? Let us know HERE.

 

 

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5 - 3 – 19

 

Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

EXCEPTIONAL FISHING PREDICTED FOR SEVERAL NEW YORK STATE WATERS: Tomorrow marks the beginning of the fishing season for several popular coolwater sportfish species, including walleye, northern pike, pickerel, and tiger muskellunge. The coolwater conditions of early spring can render walleye and northern pike fishing particularly good and anglers are encouraged to take advantage of the many opportunities New York has to offer.

From Long Island to Lake Erie, walleye occur in every major watershed and more than 140 waters throughout New York State. Three of the state's top walleye fisheries: Lake Erie, Oneida Lake, and Chautauqua Lake, are projected to provide very good fishing again in 2019. In Lake Erie, four exceptional walleye year-classes have occurred since 2010, which should provide excellent walleye fishing this year and for several years to come. The Oneida Lake population is benefitting from lower than normal angler harvest since 2016 and a large 2014 year-class that recruited into the fishery in 2018. A combination of successful stocking and natural reproduction has significantly improved the fishing in Chautauqua Lake in recent years. Walleye from 18 to 21 inches are especially abundant in the lake as a result of large 2014 and 2015 year-classes. Read the 2018 Chautauqua Lake Annual Fall Walleye Survey Fisheries Technical Brief for details

 

CAMPING SEASON IS AROUND THE CORNER: Most of DEC's campgrounds open on May 17, so start planning your visit now. DEC campgrounds provide a wide variety of experiences, including island camping, tent and trailer camping, boat launching facilities, hiking trails, beaches, and day use areas with picnic tables and grills.

CampingVirtual Campground Tours

Want to get a look at a campground before you book a week sight unseen? DEC's website now offers virtual tours of many of its campgrounds so you can see the amenities available.

Newest Campground Accepting Reservations

Reservations for the new Frontier Town Campground, Equestrian and Day Use Area in the Adirondacks are now open. You can make reservations for this coming summer season - June 28 through Columbus Day weekend. DEC encourages interested campers to book campsites early since we expect demand to be high for the State's newest campground.

First-Time Camper Program Announced for 2019

Have you ever wanted to try camping before but just not sure how to start? New York will once again provide First-Time Camper weekends this summer Established in 2017 with eight participating parks, this program will include 11 campgrounds over nine weekends from June until after Labor Day with locations across the state. New campers will receive a family tent, sleeping bags, sleeping pads, camp chairs, lantern, and even firewood. A camping ambassador will meet families upon arrival and help them get set up with a camping 101 lesson. Throughout the weekend, there will be even more opportunities to learn from experts how to fish, hike, paddle, bird watch and more.

To apply, sign up through the online lottery system between May 10 to May 12.

Learn more about the 2019 program. Watch a video, and get inspired to go camping.

NEW YORK HUNTERS INTERESTED IN MORE CROSSBOW OPPORTUNITIES:

CrossbowDEC recently conducted an e-mail survey of 10,000 licensed hunters to gather more information about crossbow use and preferences regarding big game hunting with crossbows in New York. Over 3,800 people responded to the survey. When asked in which wildlife management unit (WMU) they hunt most often, respondents named 81 of the 89 WMUs in the state.
Most survey respondents who don’t currently own a crossbow said that they would get one if crossbows could be used during the entire big game bow season. By a more than 3-to-1 margin, respondents are in favor of purchasing a bowhunting privilege rather than a muzzleloading privilege to hunt with a crossbow. Most respondents are also in favor of allowing 12 and 13-year-olds to hunt with crossbows and allowing crossbow use in archery-only WMUs. With respect to the latter question, respondents who hunt primarily in those WMUs support allowing crossbow use there by a 4-to-1 margin.

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:
Prescribed fire: Town of Lysander, Onondaga County
 On April 25, DEC Forest Rangers conducted a 26-acre prescribed fire in Three Rivers Wildlife Management Area. Staff from several DEC programs assisted with the burn designed to propagate warm season grasses and eliminate invasive species.


DEC Forest Rangers conduct a prescribed fire in Three Rivers Wildlife Management Area

Prescribed fire: Town of Rush, Monroe County: On April 25, DEC Forest Rangers conducted a 62-acre prescribed fire in Rush Oak Openings Unique Area. Staff from several DEC programs and volunteers assisted with the burn in this rare oak savanna. Burning in this unit helps invigorate native warm season grasses while reducing invasive plant species. This prescribed fire also served as training for 14 NYS Excelsior Corps crew members to help complete their field exercise requirements for the federal basic wildland firefighter qualification.

 

THE US FOREST SERVICE IS FUNDING GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE, FOREST HEALTH IMPROVEMENT, AND COASTAL WETLAND ENHANCEMENT PROJECTS IN THE GREAT LAKES BASIN: The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service anticipates that up to $4.1 million in new funds will be available for tree planting and forest health improvement in the Great Lakes Basin. This funding will be competitively awarded to the best proposals received through the June 28, 2019 deadline through grants.gov. Search for Grant Opportunity Number USDA-FS-2019-GLRI.

Funds will be distributed across three program areas, and include the following metrics:

>Forest Insect and Disease Mitigation: Acres treated for mitigation of impacts or control of invasive forest insects and diseases, to enhance biodiversity and water quality.

>Reduce Runoff from Degraded Sites through Green Infrastructure: Gallons of stormwater runoff avoided through improved green infrastructure using trees and other vegetation.

>Enhance Coastal Wetland Filtration: Acres treated in enhancing native tree and vegetation cover to improve coastal wetland function.        

An informational webinar to discuss the application process is scheduled for Thursday, May 2 at 10:00 am. The webinar will discuss the Request for Applications, purpose of the grant Program Areas, eligibility, and how to apply, and will be recorded for future viewing. The webinar can be accessed through adobe connect at: https://usfs.adobeconnectcom/na-500/ (link is external)

More information and applications are available on the USDA Forest Service Great Lakes Restoration Initiative RFA website.

Funding is provided under the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative through an agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency.

Projects implemented through this grant program help move forward key actions identified by the NY Great Lakes Action Agenda, and can achieve goals for environmental quality, habitat restoration, and community resiliency within NY’s Great Lakes basin. To learn more about NY’s Great Lakes Action Agenda, visit: https://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/91881.html

 

SCIENTISTS CALL FOR NEW CAT MANAGEMENT STRATEGY TO REDUCE RISK TO TOXOPLASMOSIS: New research published in EcoHealth by veterinary, public health, and wildlife conservation scientists, including American Bird Conservancy’s (ABC’s) Director of Invasive Species Programs Grant Sizemore, calls for an updated approach to managing human and animal exposure risks to the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which causes the disease toxoplasmosis. Over 1 million people in the United States are infected with T. gondii each year, and research focused on wildlife populations increasingly indicates widespread environmental contamination and endangered species deaths.

To reduce environmental exposure risks for people, wildlife, and domestic animals, the study’s authors identified the importance of policies that reduce the number of domestic cats (Felis catus) outdoors. Domestic cats and other felines are the definitive hosts for T. gondiiand are the only species to excrete the parasite’s infectious eggs (oocysts) into the environment. According to the authors, “Recent studies have demonstrated that environmental oocyst transmission is the major route ofT. gondii transmission, presenting a direct public and animal health problem.”

“The best way to manage infectious disease risks from cats — whether it be toxoplasmosis, rabies, or any other disease — is to keep cats safely contained indoors, on a leash, or in a catio,” said ABC’s Sizemore. “Permitting cats, especially stray and feral cats, to roam the landscape increases risks to the whole community, human and animal alike.”

T. gondii infection has long been recognized as a risk for pregnant women, but new research has emphasized chronic and acute infection risks in all people. Consequences of infection may include miscarriage, premature birth, deafness, cognitive decline, and even death. Toxoplasmosis is also a major cause of blindness, with an estimated 5,000 people developing ocular toxoplasmosis in the United States every year.

(https://www.theoutdoorwire.com/releases/621a18cc-7991-474d-8543-ee24adf4ee88)

 

KUDOS: DU RECOGNIZES OUTSTANDING COLLEGIATE CHAPTERS: Each spring, Ducks Unlimited has announced its All-American list of top-producing collegiate chapters throughout the nation. This elite group is considered the best of the best when it comes to fundraising and overall chapter strength.

To qualify as an All-American, chapters must raise a minimum of $25,000 in event income in a calendar year. Collegiate chapters throughout the country raised more than $2.1 million in 2018, more than $1.5 million of which was from the All-American chapters. Among the 2018 All-American qualifying chapters is  SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry; Syracuse, NY in the Bronze category.

“DU’s university program continues to be a vital part of our organization’s mission. It is a valued revenue generator for our conservation efforts, as well as an important source of organizational awareness and leadership,” said David Schuessler, DU's national director of event fundraising. “I congratulate not only the All-American chapter volunteers, but all college students who have chosen to support DU through university chapters.”

 

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page - http://www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com/events.php)

 

MAY 2019

 

1-31 - Celebrate Conesus Lake Month at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. The Museum focuses attention on the lake, with an award winning stream bank erosion remediation! (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

3 - Greater Lewiston Smelt Festival, at Academy Park, 890 Center Street, Lewiston, NY. (near Niagara Falls). (5:00 – 10:00 pm) Lewiston celebrates one of its natural resources; the Smelt! Enjoy free smelt samples (donations are welcome as they help support programs supported by the Niagara River Anglers) and live music! New this year, a smelt eating contest! Hosted by the Niagara River Anglers and the Niagara River Region Chamber of Commerce. Food and Beverage available for purchase. This event is free to the public. (For information call 716-754-9500 or go to www.niagarariverregion.com)

3 - Central NY Friends of NRA Event at the Barbagallos Restaurant, 6344 East Molloy Road, E. Syracuse, NY (5:30 pm) (Cost: $45.00) (For information call James Middleton at 315-695-3981 or email: jmiddlet@twcny.rr.com)

3-5 – Birds of Prey Days at Braddock Bay, 199 East Manitou Road, Rochester, NY.

4 - Montezuma Audubon Center’s 13th Annual Wildlife Festival at the Montezuma Audubon Center, Route 89, Savannah, NY (10:00 am – 3:00 pm) The 13th Annual Wildlife Festival will celebrate the importance of the Montezuma Wetlands Complex for 300 bird species that are found in this globally significant Important Bird Area. “The Montezuma Wetlands Complex serves as a vital rest stop for hundreds of thousands of waterfowl during the spring and autumn migration, said Chris Lajewski, Montezuma Audubon Center Director. “Additionally, the Complex is home to nine active Bald Eagle nests and an amazing 74 Bald Eagles during the winter months. The Wildlife Festival is an opportunity for nature enthusiasts to explore and celebrate the birds and habitats of this dynamic ecosystem and interact with a variety of vendors from across New York State.” (Festival admission is $5/person, $20/family.) (For information call 315-365-3588, visit http://ny.audubon.org/montezuma or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org.)

4 - Annual Frank Mills Memorial Turkey Shoot at the Pompey Rod & Gun Club, Swift Road, Pompey, NY (For more info call Robert Fallert 315-656-8810.)

4 - Woods Walk: Insects In Sprng at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (1:00 pm) Explore the woods to see what insects are out. (For information call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov) 

4 - Gardening For Migrating Monarchs at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Learn what a monarch waystation is, why they’re important and how to make your own. Provide habitat for butterflies, and register your garden to a nation-wide map! For adults and children ages 12 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

4 - Whitetails Unlimited – Broome County Chapter Hunters Night Out at the Holiday Inn Binghamton, 2 Hawley Street, Binghamton, NY. Deadline for ticket sales – 5-1-19. (Cost: Adult - $50.00/Spouse - $30.00/Youth - $30.00) Through our Grassroots Program, WTU provides grants to local projects and activities that advance our mission. Proceeds from this event will benefit youth conservation and training event. (For information call Adam Hall at, 607-279-0227 or go to http://www.whitetailsunlimited.com/events/banquets/)

4-5 - Women's Hunting 101 Workshop at the Amahami Adventure Center, Girl Scouts of NYPENN Pathways, 434 Page Pond Road, Deposit, NY. Earn your NYS Hunter Education Certification* With Other Women, Taught by Women! Topics include: Learn firearm safety, cleaning, and techniques / Handle and shoot shotguns, rifles and crossbows / Discuss hunting gear and use tree stands / Track a blood trail and field dress a game animal / Game meat preparation and Much More! This Beyond BOW event is an All Women’s Hunting Workshop for women ages 18+ who do not yet have their Hunter Education Certification. You must complete the required homework prior to the workshop, attend all sessions of the weekend, demonstrate proper attitude and safety, and pass a final written exam to receive your Hunter Education Certificate of Qualification, which is required for purchasing a first-time hunting license in New York State. This workshop does not include bowhunter education certification. (Registration Fee: $110 - Includes lunch & dinner on Saturday, lodging Saturday night, breakfast and lunch on Sunday, snacks, drinks, program materials, equipment and supplies.) (For more information, contact: Katrina.talbot@dec.ny.gov 518-402-8963)

4-5 - Oneida Lake Walleye Derby, sponsored by the Chittenango Lions Club. On-Line Registration $15 Entry Fee Ticket purchase deadline is midnight May 3, 2019. CASH AND MERCHANDISE PRIZES Door and Bonus Draw Prizes, 50/50 Raffle, Tagged Fish Contest, Top 25 Size Contest and Measuring Station Awards (For information call 315-699-3187 email info@lionswalleyederby.org or go to www.Lionswalleyederby.org.)

8 - Montezuma Birdwatching Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (5:30 – 8:00 pm) The Montezuma Wetlands Complex is teeming with migratory songbirds, marsh birds, and other wildlife this time of year. Join us for an evening van tour through the Montezuma's marshes, forests and grasslands to explore the abundant wildlife as they prepare for their nocturnal activities. Bring your camera to capture images of the beautiful habitats and wildlife. Binoculars and field guides provided. (Fee: $8/child, $15/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

8-11 - 2018 Wild Carp Classic – this event is sold out. Opening Ceremonies will be on May 7, 2019 with 50 teams registered. This tournament is a Big 10 format, with prizes awarded to the teams with the most combined weight of their 10 largest carp caught over 15 pounds. There will also be prizes for the single largest carp caught. There are no prizes for mirror carp. The anglers will be fishing from spots along the river from the village of Baldwinsville down to Long Branch Park at Onondaga Lake. (Entry to the Wild Carp Classic is $1000 per 2 or 3-person team.) (For information email: Paul - paul@carpfishingny.com or Ginny - ginny@carpfishingny.com)

10-19 - Lake Ontario Counties (LOC) Spring Trout and Salmon Derby 2019. 1st of 3 LOC Derbies offering over $30,000 in cash and prizes with a grand prize of $15,000 for the largest overall Salmon caught. (For more information call 888-733-5246 or visit their website at www.loc.org.)

11 - 6th Annual Bird Walk with Mahlon and Eleanor Hurst Townsend-Grady Wildlife Preserve, Townsend Rd, Branchport, NY  (8:00 am – 10:00 pm) Join us for a walk through the FLM&A's Townsend-Grady Wildlife Preserve wetlands to discover what bird species are migrating and nesting there. Last year over 40 species were identified by sight and sound! Please wear sturdy boots that can withstand wet, mud, and uneven ground, and bring your binoculars and journals! Parking is available on either side of Townsend Road. (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.) 

11 - Educator Workshop: Aquatic Wild + Great Lakes Bins at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:30 am -3:00 pm) Join an interactive workshop by NYSDEC and NY Sea Grant with an interdisciplinary curriculum focused on Great Lakes wildlife and ecosystems. Participants receive a curriculum guide and an intro to Great Lakes Educator Ecosystem Exchange (GLEEE) Basin Bins, plus a $75 stipend and lunch. For educators of students in grades K- 12. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

11 - Warblers For Beginners at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Learn about the colorful warblers that migrate to and through Reinstein Woods. For adults and children ages 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

11 - Scouts BSA Merit Badge: Amphibians & Reptiles at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (12:00 – 3:00 pm) Scouts are invited to complete the requirements for the Reptile and Amphibian Study Merit Badge during a fun and interactive program. As always, please be prepared to go outside, and dress appropriately for the weather. Pre-requisites/pre-registration is required.  All scouts must be accompanied by a parent, leader, or chaperone.  (Fee: $8/Scout. PRE- REGISTRATION REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

11 - Warblers and Wine Van Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (1:00 – 4:00 pm) Join us for a trip to Thorpe Vineyard, located along the Lake Ontario shoreline in Wolcott, NY. During the tour, guests will sample award-winning wines at the winery and then explore nearby Chimney Bluffs State Park to search for Cerulean Warblers and nearly two dozen other warbler species. Short distance, easy to moderate hiking will be part of the program. Must be 21+ to participate. (Fee: $20/adult includes wine tasting. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for – “Your In on The Outdoors for Western New York.”

What Do You Think? Have something for other sportspeople? Let us know HERE.

 

 

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4 - 26 – 19

 

Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

SPRING TURKEY SEASON STARTS MAY 1: Spring turkey season opens May 1 in all of upstate New York north of the Bronx-Westchester County boundary.
wild tom turkey standing in grass, fanning his tailHunters are reminded that they must have a turkey hunting permit, in addition to their hunting license. Shooting hours are from one-half hour before sunrise to noon each day. Hunters may take two bearded turkeys during the spring season, but only one bird per day. Successful hunters must report their harvest within seven days of taking a bird. Call 1-866-426-3778 (1-866 GAMERPT) or report harvest online. For more information, see the Hunting and Trapping Regulations Guide or visit the DEC website.
Poor reproductive success in summer 2017 may mean that hunters see fewer adult gobblers this spring compared to last year, but this may be offset by opportunities for jakes resulting from improved reproductive success in 2018 and good overwinter survival. The estimated turkey harvest for spring 2018 was about 19,000 birds.

When you head afield, be sure to follow the cardinal rules of hunting safety: assume every gun is loaded, control the muzzle, keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot, be absolutely sure of your target and what may be beyond it, and don’t stalk. Set up with your back against a large tree and call birds to you.

 

DEC SEEKS TURKEY HUNTERS FOR RUFFED GROUSE DRUMMING SURVEY:  Turkey hunters in pursuit of that wary gobbler in the spring are ideally suited for monitoring ruffed grouse during the breeding season. Turkey hunters can record the number of grouse they hear drumming while afield to help DEC track the distribution and abundance of this game bird. To get a survey form, visit the DEC website, e-mail wildlife@dec.ny.gov, or call (518) 402-8883.

  

ONONDAGA LAKE RESTORATION PROJECT FUNDS AVAILABLE: The Onondaga Lake Natural Resource Trustees (DEC and USFWS) announce a Request for Proposals for $7 million in Onondaga Lake restoration project funds. These funds are available as a result of the Onondaga Lake Natural Resource Damage settlement that occurred in March 2018. Funds must be used to restore natural resources or public enjoyment and use of natural resources. Information about the Onondaga Lake settlement can be found at https://www.fws.gov/northeast/nyfo/ec/onondaga.htm. Proposals will be accepted until July 31, 2019. Complete information about proposal requirements and how to submit a proposal can be found at https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/search-grants.html?keywords=onondaga.

 

DEC'S SARATOGA TREE NURSERY SPRING SEEDLING SALE NEARS ITS END:

Seedlings being grown at DEC's Saratoga Tree Nursery.There are only a few weeks left to order tree and shrub seedlings from DEC's Saratoga Nursery spring sale! Whether you're looking for seedlings to create a windbreak, enhance wildlife habitat, or simply beautify your property, Saratoga Tree Nursery seedlings can fit your needs. Order by phone for the most up-to-date species availability information. The sale ends May 9th, and any orders made after May 1st must be picked up at the Nursery in Saratoga

  

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Perch Poachers Apprehended - Erie County: After receiving numerous complaints of people illegally netting perch on the Niagara River, ECOs Jamie Powers and Tim Machnica patrolled the area in plain clothes on April 11. The ECOs located a vehicle from a previous complaint and watched as three individuals worked together to scoop large numbers of perch from the water using nets and then take buckets of fish back to the vehicle. When the ECOs identified themselves to the subjects, 3,537 yellow perch, 187 carp, 14 rock bass, and 2 sunfish were found in the subjects' possession. A total of 14 summonses for various fishing violations were issued to the three subjects. Fortunately, most of the fish survived and were returned to the water.

Three buckets of fish, filled almost to the top.
Illegally netted fish found by ECOs Powers and Machnica

 

PENNSYLVANIA RIFLE OPENER CHANGED:  Opening day will now be held on the Saturday following Thanksgiving instead the traditional Monday. The Pennsylvania Game Commission approved the decision with a vote of 5-3, and this change expands the firearms season to a total of 13 days. Because of the opener movingback, the season now contains three Saturdays when the public can hunt, instead of just two.

The thought behind moving the date was to encourage more hunters to get out into the woods. Pennsylvania’s hunting numbers have slowly been dropping since the eighties. When the commission surveyed lapsed hunters – those who bought a license twice in a five-year span, but not in the last two – to see if the change of date would encourage them to hunt again, they found that more than 60% said yes or maybe. By adding an extra Saturday into the season, the Game Commission is hoping this will encourage more people to hunt.

 

KUDOS: NY YOUTH WINS USFWS 2019 NATIONAL JUNIOR DUCK STAMP ART CONTEST:  A talented young artist from Scarsdale, New York, has taken top honors at the National Junior Duck Stamp Art Contest. A harlequin duck painted by Nicole Jeon, 16, will grace the 2019-2020 Junior Duck Stamp, which raises funds to educate and engage our nation’s youth in wildlife and wetlands conservation and outdoor recreation.

Students annually participate in the Junior Duck Stamp Program at school, at home, in after-school groups and at refuges, parks and nature centers. After learning about wetlands, waterfowl and wildlife conservation, they express their learning through a drawing or painting of a duck, goose or swan.

The top piece of art in the nation – chosen at this annual competition – is featured on the Junior Duck Stamp, sales of which support educational programs and activities that nurture our next generation of sportsmen and women and conservationists.

This year, 53 entries were received by the Junior Duck Stamp contests around the nation. For complete contest results, visit http://www.fws.gov/birds/education/junior-duck-stamp-conservation-program.php. A gallery of all state Best of Show entries can be found online.

The First Day of Sale ceremony for the 2019-2020 Duck Stamp and Junior Duck Stamp will be held June 28, 2019, at Bass Pro Shops in Springfield, Missouri. The event begins at 10 a.m. and is free and open to the public. Both winning artists will be available to sign stamps, and the U.S. Postal Service will have a special cancellation for collectors.

 

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page - http://www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com/events.php)

APRIL

26 – National Arbor Day

26 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Oswego River Chapter Dinner at the Oasis at Thunder Island, Route 48. Fulton, NY. (6:00 pm)A great time to help raise vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Bruce Bailey 315-695-5113 dinlepuss@hotmail.com)

26 - Citizen Science: Project Squirrel at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:30 am) Come join us as we learn how to be citizen scientists and record squirrel sightings in the woods. Once you've learned, you can record at home too. For children ages 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

26 - Cornell Lab of Ornithology Van Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (9:00 am – 4:00 pm) Have you ever wondered what goes on behind the closed doors at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology? Wonder no more. Join us in our van as we travel to Ithaca to meet an Audubon NY scientist for a guided birdwatching walk to explore the warblers, vireos and other Neotropical migrants. Afterwards, we will meet with a Research Analyst in the Bioacoustics Research Department for a behind-the-scenes tour of the Lab. Please pack a lunch. (Fee:  $18/child, $25/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

27 - Northern Finger Lakes QDMA Banquet at the Newark Country Club, 2 Country Club Dr , Newark, NY. (4:30 pm) (For information call Ben Williams, 315-879-7802.)

27 - Outdoor Skills at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:00 am) In this program, you will build an emergency shelter from natural materials and practice navigation and fire building techniques. For adults and children age 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

27 - Birding 101: Class #4 at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Who’s in the pond? Who’s flying over the pond? And who’s hiding in the reeds? Learn about the ducks and wetland birds of Reinstein Woods. For adults and children ages 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

27 - Project WILD & Project Flying WILD Educators Workshop at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (9:00 am – 4:30 pm) Educators will be certified in both Project WILD and Project Flying WILD.  The Project WILD K-12 Curriculum and Activity Guide focuses on wildlife and habitat. The newly updated Project WILD is organized into topic units and is based on conceptual framework.  New to Project WILD are “In Step with STEM” Activity extensions and Field Investigation Activities.  Targeted for the middle-school audience, though widely adaptable, Flying WILD offers practical hands-on classroom and outdoor field investigation experiences connecting real-world experiences in bird biology, conservation and natural history.  Please pack a lunch. (Fee:  Free. PRE- REGISTRATION REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

27 – Earth Day Celebration at Tinker Nature Park, 1525 Calkins Road, Pittsford, NY (10:00 am – 2:00 pm) The event includes a live animal program at 11am, presentations by RIT Environmental Science Students and Cornell Master Gardeners, tree planting, and activities for the kids! (For information call 585-359-2540.)

27 - New York State Outdoorsmen Hall Of Fame Annual Banquet at Theodores Restaurant in Canastota, NY. (5:00 pm) The eleven inductees for 2019 will be recognized. (For information/reservations call 315-829-3588 or e-mail sfcf@tds.net by April 21.)  

27 - Niagara Frontier Friends of the NRA Banquet at Salvatore’s Italian Gardens, 6461 Transit Road, Depew,NY (5:00 pm) Half of the proceeds raised comes back into the area for grant programs involved with the shooting sports. (Cost: $50.00) (For information call Bob Siemen 716-870-6871 or email nffnrabob@nffnra.org)

27 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Drumlins Chapter Dinner at Quality Inn, North Main Street, Newark, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Mark Salerno 315-879-8960 msalerno@marshallfarms.com)

27 - Whitetails Unlimited – Stonybrook Chapter Hunters Night Out at the Dansville Fire Department , 11 Franklin Street, Dansville, NY. Deadline for ticket sales – 4-12-19. (Cost: Adult - $45.00/Spouse/Youth - $25.00) Through our Grassroots Program, WTU provides grants to local projects and activities that advance our mission. Proceeds from this event will benefit youth conservation and training event. (For information call Shannon Griese, 585-739-1779 or go to http://www.whitetailsunlimited.com/events/banquets/)

27-28 - Niagara Frontier - Hamburg Gun Show at the Hamburg Fairgrounds, 5820 S Park Avenue, Hamburg, New York ((9:00 am – 4:00 pm/9:00 am - 3:00pm) 300 tables. NICS background checks available. (Cost: $7.00/children under 12 free when accompanied by a paid adult) (90 Tables) (For information call Bruce Johnston  716-542-9929 or email nfgshows@aol.com)

27-28 – Greater Wellsville Trout Derby, Genesee River. (TIMES - Headquarters Opens at 12 pm, Friday April 26/Saturday Fishing 6 am to 7 pm/Sunday Fishing 6 am to 5 pm) (Registration Sites: Wellsville Town Clerk Office - 156 N. Main St., Wellsville Chamber of Commerce - 114 N. Main St., Strope Outdoor Supply - 5 William St. Addison NY. Over $25,000 money and 450 tagged fish. (FEES - If you register before April 1st the fee is $15, after April 1st the fee is $20) (For information/register go online to www.Trout-Derby.com or call 585-596-9274.)

MAY 2019

1-31 - Celebrate Conesus Lake Month at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. The Museum focuses attention on the lake, with an award winning stream bank erosion remediation! (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

3 - Greater Lewiston Smelt Festival, at Academy Park, 890 Center Street, Lewiston, NY. (near Niagara Falls). (5:00 – 10:00 pm) Lewiston celebrates one of its natural resources; the Smelt! Enjoy free smelt samples (donations are welcome as they help support programs supported by the Niagara River Anglers) and live music! New this year, a smelt eating contest! Hosted by the Niagara River Anglers and the Niagara River Region Chamber of Commerce. Food and Beverage available for purchase. This event is free to the public. (For information call 716-754-9500 or go to www.niagarariverregion.com)

3 - Central NY Friends of NRA Event at the Barbagallos Restaurant, 6344 East Molloy Road, E. Syracuse, NY (5:30 pm) (Cost: $45.00) (For information call James Middleton at 315-695-3981 or email: jmiddlet@twcny.rr.com)

3-5 – Birds of Prey Days at Braddock Bay, 199 East Manitou Road, Rochester, NY.

4 - Montezuma Audubon Center’s 13th Annual Wildlife Festival at the Montezuma Audubon Center, Route 89, Savannah, NY (10:00 am – 3:00 pm) The 13th Annual Wildlife Festival will celebrate the importance of the Montezuma Wetlands Complex for 300 bird species that are found in this globally significant Important Bird Area. “The Montezuma Wetlands Complex serves as a vital rest stop for hundreds of thousands of waterfowl during the spring and autumn migration, said Chris Lajewski, Montezuma Audubon Center Director. “Additionally, the Complex is home to nine active Bald Eagle nests and an amazing 74 Bald Eagles during the winter months. The Wildlife Festival is an opportunity for nature enthusiasts to explore and celebrate the birds and habitats of this dynamic ecosystem and interact with a variety of vendors from across New York State.” (Festival admission is $5/person, $20/family.) (For information call 315-365-3588, visit http://ny.audubon.org/montezuma or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org.)

4 - Annual Frank Mills Memorial Turkey Shoot at the Pompey Rod & Gun Club, Swift Road, Pompey, NY (For more info call Robert Fallert 315-656-8810.)

4 - Woods Walk: Insects In Sprng at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (1:00 pm) Explore the woods to see what insects are out. (For information call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov) 

4 - Gardening For Migrating Monarchs at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Learn what a monarch waystation is, why they’re important and how to make your own. Provide habitat for butterflies, and register your garden to a nation-wide map! For adults and children ages 12 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

4 - Whitetails Unlimited – Broome County Chapter Hunters Night Out at the Holiday Inn Binghamton, 2 Hawley Street, Binghamton, NY. Deadline for ticket sales – 5-1-19. (Cost: Adult - $50.00/Spouse - $30.00/Youth - $30.00) Through our Grassroots Program, WTU provides grants to local projects and activities that advance our mission. Proceeds from this event will benefit youth conservation and training event. (For information call Adam Hall at, 607-279-0227 or go to http://www.whitetailsunlimited.com/events/banquets/)

4-5 - Women's Hunting 101 Workshop at the Amahami Adventure Center, Girl Scouts of NYPENN Pathways, 434 Page Pond Road, Deposit, NY. Earn your NYS Hunter Education Certification* With Other Women, Taught by Women! Topics include: Learn firearm safety, cleaning, and techniques / Handle and shoot shotguns, rifles and crossbows / Discuss hunting gear and use tree stands / Track a blood trail and field dress a game animal / Game meat preparation and Much More! This Beyond BOW event is an All Women’s Hunting Workshop for women ages 18+ who do not yet have their Hunter Education Certification. You must complete the required homework prior to the workshop, attend all sessions of the weekend, demonstrate proper attitude and safety, and pass a final written exam to receive your Hunter Education Certificate of Qualification, which is required for purchasing a first-time hunting license in New York State. This workshop does not include bowhunter education certification. (Registration Fee: $110 - Includes lunch & dinner on Saturday, lodging Saturday night, breakfast and lunch on Sunday, snacks, drinks, program materials, equipment and supplies.) (For more information, contact: Katrina.talbot@dec.ny.gov 518-402-8963)

4-5 - Oneida Lake Walleye Derby, sponsored by the Chittenango Lions Club. On-Line Registration $15 Entry Fee Ticket purchase deadline is midnight May 3, 2019. CASH AND MERCHANDISE PRIZES Door and Bonus Draw Prizes, 50/50 Raffle, Tagged Fish Contest, Top 25 Size Contest and Measuring Station Awards (For information call 315-699-3187 email info@lionswalleyederby.org or go to www.Lionswalleyederby.org.)

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for – “Your In on The Outdoors for Western New York.”

 

What Do You Think? Have something for other sportspeople? Let us know HERE.

 

 

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4 - 19 – 19

 

Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

MAY 1 OPENING OF SPRING TURKEY SEASON / ANNUAL YOUTH TURKEY HUNTING WEEKEND SET FOR APRIL 20-21: Spring turkey season opens May 1, in all of Upstate New York north of the Bronx-Westchester County boundary In addition, DEC's annual youth turkey hunting weekend will take place on April 20-21. The youth turkey hunt for junior hunters ages 12-15 is open in all of Upstate New York and Suffolk County.

Turkey hunters took an estimated 19,000 birds in New York during last year's spring season. Of this number, an estimated 2,000 birds were taken by approximately 5,400 junior hunters during last year's two-day, youth-only hunt. Poor turkey reproductive success in summer 2017 may mean that hunters see fewer adult gobblers this spring compared to last year, but this may be offset by opportunities for jakes resulting from improved reproductive success in 2018 and good overwinter survival.

Important Details for the Youth Turkey Hunt on April 20 and 21

Hunters 12-15 years of age are eligible and must hold a hunting license and a turkey permit;

Youth 12-13 years of age must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian, or adult over 21 years of age with written permission from their parent or legal guardian. Youth 14-15 years of age must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian or adult over 18 years of age with written permission from their parent or legal guardian;

The accompanying adult must have a current hunting license and turkey permit. The adult may assist the youth hunter, including calling, but may not carry a firearm, bow, or crossbow, or kill or attempt to kill a wild turkey during the youth hunt;

Shooting hours are from one-half hour before sunrise to noon each day;

The youth turkey hunt is open in all of upstate New York, north of the Bronx-Westchester County boundary and across Suffolk County;

The bag limit for the youth weekend is one bearded bird. This bird becomes part of the youth's regular spring season bag limit of two bearded birds. A second bird may be taken only in upstate New York, north of the Bronx-Westchester County boundary, beginning May 1;

Crossbows may only be used by hunters age 14 or older; and

All other wild turkey hunting regulations remain in effect.

Other Important Details for the Spring Turkey Season, May 1-31, 2019:

Hunting is permitted in most areas of the state, except for New York City and Long Island;

Hunters must have a turkey hunting permit in addition to their hunting license;

Shooting hours are from one-half hour before sunrise to noon each day;

Hunters may take two bearded turkeys during the spring season, but only one bird per day;

Hunters may not use rifles or handguns firing a bullet. Hunters may hunt with a shotgun or handgun loaded with shot sizes no larger than No. 2 or smaller than No. 8, or with a bow or crossbow;

Successful hunters must fill out the tag that comes with their turkey permit and immediately attach it to any turkey harvested; and

Successful hunters must report their harvest within seven days of taking a bird. Call 1-866-426-3778 (1-866 GAMERPT) or report harvest online at DEC's Game Harvest Reporting website.

For more information about turkey hunting in New York, see the 2018-19 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Guide or visit the "Turkey Hunting" pages of DEC's website. 

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Community Outreach: Town of Gerry, Chautauqua County: On April 13, Forest Ranger Nathan Sprague assisted Cub Scouts from Pack #209 with trail clean-up as part of the Cub Scouts' community service projects. Ranger Sprague, the Cub Scouts, and their family members spent the day picking up trash and clearing branches and downed tree limbs on the Earl Cardot Eastside Overland Trail in Harris Hill State Forest.

Cub Scout troops standing around listening to a Forest Ranger giving instructions on the cleanup efforts
The Cub Scouts assemble before going out to clean up the trails.

Wildland Search: Town of Owego, Tioga County: At 12:30 a.m. April 13, New York State Police requested DEC Forest Rangers to respond to a search of a missing 13-year-old boy in Apalachin. The boy had been missing from his home since 8:45 p.m. on Friday, not far from forested lands backing up to Tracey Creek State Forest. Eight Forest Rangers responded to the search and worked with multiple local resources. An alert was put out through NY Alert and a passerby spotted the boy at about 8 a.m. on Saturday morning near a local business. He was safely reunited with his family.

Raptor Success Story - Onondaga County: On April 3, Lt. David McShane and ECO Don Damrath took part in the release of three young red-tailed hawks previously rescued by ECOs. One of the juvenile hawks had been rescued after suffering an infection from squirrel bites. The successful recovery of these majestic birds is due to the time, attention, and care provided by the volunteer DEC-licensed wildlife rehabilitator who cared for the raptors and the help of a network of veterinary professionals. Young red tails in their first year of life can have a 75-80 percent mortality rate. If they survive the first crucial year, many red-tailed hawks can live up to 10 years. The three raptors took to the air easily and quickly acclimated themselves to their surroundings.

ECO standing with his hand in the air as a red-tailed hawk flies off of his arm.
Lt. Dave McShane releases one of the recently rehabilitated red-tailed hawks

Illegal Dumping of E-Waste - Onondaga County: On April 4, ECO Don Damrath worked on a complaint from city of Syracuse officials involving the illegal disposal of flat screen TVs at various locations in the city. Evidence from nine large TVs dumped in the driveway of an abandoned home led ECO Damrath and Syracuse City Police Officer Carlos Romain to a small TV repair shop on the south side of the city. The shop owner admitted to relinquishing broken TVs to at least two individuals for disposal. Working with the information provided by the shop owner, ECO Damrath and Officer Romain located one of the suspects and obtained admissions linking the suspect to several dump sites. ECO Damrath charged both the suspect and the shop owner with unlawful disposal of solid waste. The pair also received tickets for violations of city codes from Officer Romain. The investigation is continuing, and additional arrests are anticipated. Electronic waste (E-waste) such as flat screen TVs, computers, and other electronic wastes, can lead to lead, mercury, cadmium, or other toxins that could contaminate air, water, and soil if not properly recycled. Residents can download the list of registered NYS Electronic Waste Collection Sites sorted by county to find a registered electronic waste collection site near them.

An ECO vehicle and a local police vehicle parked near the dump site where multiple flat screen tvs are on the ground.
Flat screen TVs illegally dumped in Syracuse

Unethical Anglers Snagged - Tompkins County: On April 5, ECO Jeff Krueger responded to a complaint of three individuals in Fall Creek snagging suckers, a bottom-feeding fish commonly found across New York. Snagging involves rapidly pulling weighted hooks through the water to hook into fish, a method both illegal and unethical. During spawning periods when fish are congregated in shallow waters, "snaggers" can catch numerous fish in a short time. ECO Krueger found the three suspects in possession of numerous suckers and they admitted to snagging one rainbow trout, as well, which they claimed they had released. Two of the subjects had been ticketed for similar unlawful activity in the past. All three were issued two tickets apiece for taking fish by means other than angling and failing to immediately release foul hooked fish. The charges are violations and, if convicted, the subjects could face fines of up to $250 and imprisonment for up to 15 days on each charge.

ECO truck with back hatch open and multiple dead fish in the back of the truck
Illegally snagged suckers from Fall Creek in Ithaca

Raptor Rescue Weekend - Tompkins and Oswego Counties: On April 6, ECO Jeff Krueger responded to a call of a great horned owl in a chicken coop in the town of Newfield. ECO Krueger found the owl still in the coop, where it had killed a domestic duck and suffered a broken wing. ECO Krueger carefully extracted the talon-clad raptor from the coop and transported it to the Janet Swanson Wildlife Center at Cornell University for treatment. An initial examination by Cornell veterinarians determined the owl's wing had been broken previously, limiting its ability to hunt and leading the owl to climb into the coop for an easy meal.

On April 7, ECOs Matt Foster and Greg Maneeley responded to a call of an injured adult bald eagle on the banks of the Oswego River. The eagle was acting strangely, sitting low in a tree for three days without moving. The ECOs found the bird clinging to a branch over the river, requiring the officers to request assistance from the Oswego City Fire Department. Approaching the eagle from both the shore on foot and from the water in the Fire Department's boat, the ECOs safely recovered the bird. The eagle was transported to Wildlife Rehabilitator Jean Soprano for treatment, rehabilitation, and future release.

ECO cradling an owl that has been wrapped in a towelTwo ECOs standing side by side, one of them holding a bald eagle
ECO Krueger with injured owl (left); and ECOs Foster and Maneeley with injured bald eagle

 

GOT BIRD NESTS? REPORT TO NESTWATCH:  Around the world, birds are building nests and raising families—even near homes, offices, or in local parks. Anyone who finds a bird's nest can help scientists by reporting to the free NestWatch project at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. NestWatch collects, analyzes, and distributes data, serving as a warehouse of nesting bird information. NestWatchers, in turn, get to witness the start of new life and help to preserve it with their valuable information.

"Every year, scientists use data collected by NestWatchers in published studies," says Robyn Bailey, NestWatch project leader. "For example, in 2018, two studies examined the effects of spring temperatures on the timing of nesting activities, and showed that birds nest earlier when spring temperatures are warmer. Such studies help add to our understanding of how climate change can affect the lives of birds."
Those who find a nest can report its location, the species using it, number of eggs laid, and other important milestones as the adult birds incubate, raise, and fledge their young. The NestWatch website and mobile app now accept reports submitted from anywhere in the world, enabling scientists to compare birds across their global breeding range.
“I love this app, and I'm really looking forward to using it this season,” says Samuel Bressler, a NestWatch participant.
Whether it's a massive web of sticks like the Great Blue Heron's nest, the compact twiggy cup nest of a Blue Jay, or a pair of bluebirds in a nest box, the information NestWatchers gather is more important than ever in this changing world.
You can register for the project at NestWatch.org and learn more about how to monitor nests without disturbing the birds. Download the NestWatch app in the Apple App Storeor from Google Play.

 

ADD A BIG NEST BOX OR TWO: Big Nest Boxes can be a big help for larger cavity nesting birds – Wood Ducks, American Kestrels, Eastern and Western Screech Owls, and others. Suitable cavities are in short supply in many areas and the addition of one or more large nest boxes can help bolster local populations of favorite birds. Wood Ducks are an example of a big conservation success with their recovery from a threatened status during the 20th Century due in part to the installation of artificial nest boxes across their nesting range. You can make a difference on a local scale for Wood Ducks and other exciting birds.

Providing a big nest box is no different than providing a birdhouse for wrens or chickadees. Wood Ducks and screech owls will nest in some neighborhoods and parks. American Kestrels prefer a more open rural area where mice and voles are common, and the owls and ducks will prosper best in a rural setting too. Wood Ducks require a nearby source of water – a marsh is best. Just as you get great satisfaction when bluebirds or Tree Swallows use your nest boxes, you will get even more excited about attracting nesting Wood Ducks, kestrels, or screech owls to a big nest box or two! (http://www.birdingwire.com/releases/0117157e-666c-4e18-beea-eb42a5660e8e/)

 

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page - http://www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com/events.php)

MARCH 2019

30-4/27 – Eagle Watch at the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge at Cayuga Overlook on Route 77, Alabama, NY (1-4 pm) (For information call 585-948-5445.)

 

APRIL 2019

1-30 -  Celebrate Otisco Lake Month at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. The Museum focuses attention on the lake, the only lake you can walk across in every season (via a causeway)! (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

8, 15, 22, &  29 - Free Monday Night Fly Tying Instruction at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club, One Mullett Street (1.5 miles west of Route 60), Dunkirk, NY. (6:00 – 8:00 pm) Classes are for all levels of fly tying, but especially for beginners. No equipment is necessary. All participants get to keep their productions. The classes are open to the public. (For information call 716-366-1772.) 

10, 17 & 24 The Children of the Stream Youth Fly Fishing Program at the Costello Community Room (P84) in the new addition to the Rockefeller Arts Center at SUNY Fredonia, Fredonia, NY. This program is in its 18th year of providing weekly free fly tying and fly fishing classes to both youths and adults in our area. You do not need any prior experience to attend these classes, and the course is geared towards ages 10 and older. For more information contact Alberto Rey at 716-410-7003 or alberto@albertorey.com.)

19 – Good Friday Skeet Fun Shoot at the Tonawanda Sportsmen’s Club, 5657 Killian Road, Pendleton, NY. (9:45 a.m. sign up) $35 Entry fee with Lewis Class Scoring. (For information/sign up contact Mike Smith at 716-435-9937 or Peter Bogdon at 716-807-6007.)

20 - Pompey Rod & Gun Club Annual Sportsmen’s Flea Market at the Club, Swift Road, Pompey, NY (9:00 am – 1:00 pm) (For more info call Robert Fallert 315-656-8810.)

20 – Wonderous Wildlife Photography with Bob Hazen at the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge Visitors Center, Alabama, NY. (1:00 – 3:00 pm) (For information call 585-948-5445.)

20 – U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Paddlers Guide to Safetyat the Buffalo Erie County, County Naval and Military Park, One Naval Park Cove, Buffalo, NY. (10:00 am – noon) (Cost: $10.00) (For information call Kevin Ryan at 716-880-7319.)

20 - Animal Superpowers at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:00 pm) They may not be faster than a speeding bullet or more powerful than a locomotive, but many animals have abilities beyond those of humans. On this walk, you will learn about some of these amazing residents. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

20 - Girl Scout Cadettes Archery Badge at Heritage Outdoor Sports, 1886 Melvin Hill Rd, Phelps, NY. (12:00 – 2:00 pm) Archery is an exciting sport that takes strength, focus, good form and practice. Girl Scout Cadettes are invited to Heritage Outdoor Sports to learn about archery equipment, the proper way to draw a bow, and how to make the bull’s eye.  Scouts will challenge themselves as they build archery skills and learn how to shoot on a range. All scouts must be accompanied by a parent, leader, or chaperone.  (Fee:  $20/Scout. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

20 - Montezuma’s Bird Migration Van Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (1:30 – 4:00 pm) The Montezuma Wetlands Complex is Audubon’s first globally significant Important Bird Area because of the incredible number of ducks, geese and swans that stop here during the spring and fall migrations. Enjoy a leisurely ride in the Audubon van for an excursion to Montezuma’s birding hot spots where a variety of waterfowl, songbirds, shorebirds, and breeding Osprey and Bald Eagles can be seen. Binoculars and field guides will be provided. (Fee: $8/child; $15/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

 20 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Genesee Local Chapter Dinner at the Quality Inn & Suites, 8250 Park Road, Batavia, NY. (6:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Terry Young 585-409-1804 tyoung14143@gmail.com

20 - Pompey Rod & Gun Club Show & Sportsman’s Flea Market at the Club, Swift Road, Pompey, NY (9:00 am – 3:00 pm) (For more info call Robert Fallert 315-656-8810.)

20 - Elmira Beagle Club Beagle Event at their clubhouse at 1485 Breesport-N Chemung Road, Lowman, NY (8:00 am Beagle Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Timothy Hall 607.331.1660  or email moc.evil@selgaebtniopkcehc

20 - Elmira Beagle Club Beagle Event at Orleans County Houndsmen And Conservation Club, 13461 Phipps Road, Albion, NY (3:00 pm Beagle Hunt-World Qualifying Event - $20.00) (For information call Timothy Hall 607-331-1660  or email moc.evil@selgaebtniopkcehc)

20 - Orleans County Houndsmen Beaglers Beagle Eventat their clubhouse at 13461 Phipps Road, Albion, NY (11:00 am – Beagle Hunt-World Qualifying Event - $20.00) (For information call Ed Roggen at 585-948-9483 or email moc.liamtoh@sabrll )

20-21 – NYS Spring Youth Turkey Hunt (Details page 45 18-19 Hunting & Trapping Guide)

20 & 21 – Weekend Wildflower Walk at Baltimore Woods Nature Center, 4007 Bishop Hill Road, Marcellus, NY. (2:00 – 3:00 pm) Baltimore Woods Nature Center’s premier woodland wildflower garden is a local treasure. Join caretaker Audrey Loewer for a pleasant walk through one of the wonders of spring. Each week, new species will bloom and Audrey will reveal their past and present medicinal and culinary uses. Call for accessibility information. Free program; donations appreciated. Program for ages 15 and up. Saturdays and Sundays, starting April 20th through May 5th. (For information call 315-673-1350.)

21 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Tri-County Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at the Ramada Inn, 2310 N. Triphammer Road, Ithaca, NY (5:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Scott Wilcox at 607-533-4707)

22 – National Earth Day

22 - Earth Day Home Energy Action Workshop at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (6:30 pm) Celebrate Earth Day by discovering solar power programs and incentives available in your community. Explore home energy efficiency programs and learn practical tips for saving money by conserving energy at home. Door prizes and refreshments provided. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

24 - CNY Wildfowlers Association Annual Banquet at Traditions at the Links, 5900 North Burdick St., East Syracuse, NY. (6:00 pm) (For information call Ron Falkowski, 315-440-8201.)

25 - The Beauty of Bats sponsored by the Pfeiffer Nature Center, at The Portville Free Library, 2 North Main Street, Portville, NY. (6:30 pm) While it is a fact that bats rank high on the list of disliked species, it is also a fact that bats are greatly misunderstood.   Bats are not the creepy, scary and vicious animals they are sometimes made out to be.  Folks who love animals know that all animals deserve to be treated with kindness and bats are no exception.  Join us for this entertaining and enlightening talk as we explore the world of bats.  We will discover how necessary, beneficial and wonderful bats are to have as neighbors. This program is free and open to the public.   Minors must be accompanied by an adult.  Registration is not required.  Bat Boxes will be available at the program for a $15 donation. (For informatio/register call 716-933-0187 or email naturalist@pfeiffernaturecenter.org)

25 – Birding by Ear at the Baltimore Woods Nature Center, 4007 Bishop Hill Road, Marcellus, NY. (10:00 – 11:30 am) “Cheese-bur-ger!” Learning to recognize bird songs and calls can add a whole new level of enjoyment to your bird watching or hikes, and it’s easier than you might think! This combined talk and bird walk will get you started down the path of avian auditory enlightenment with tips, tricks, and hacks for learning bird calls.  Program for adults. (Costs:$6.00 for members/$9.00 for public) (For information call (315) 673-1350 or go to http://baltimorewoods.doubleknot.com/event/birding-by-ear/2466035)

26 – National Arbor Day

26 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Oswego River Chapter Dinner at the Oasis at Thunder Island, Route 48. Fulton, NY. (6:00 pm)A great time to help raise vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Bruce Bailey 315-695-5113 dinlepuss@hotmail.com)

26 - Citizen Science: Project Squirrel at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:30 am) Come join us as we learn how to be citizen scientists and record squirrel sightings in the woods. Once you've learned, you can record at home too. For children ages 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

26 - Cornell Lab of Ornithology Van Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (9:00 am – 4:00 pm) Have you ever wondered what goes on behind the closed doors at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology? Wonder no more. Join us in our van as we travel to Ithaca to meet an Audubon NY scientist for a guided birdwatching walk to explore the warblers, vireos and other Neotropical migrants. Afterwards, we will meet with a Research Analyst in the Bioacoustics Research Department for a behind-the-scenes tour of the Lab. Please pack a lunch. (Fee:  $18/child, $25/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

27 - Northern Finger Lakes QDMA Banquet at the Newark Country Club, 2 Country Club Dr , Newark, NY. (4:30 pm) (For information call Ben Williams, 315-879-7802.)

27 - Outdoor Skills at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:00 am) In this program, you will build an emergency shelter from natural materials and practice navigation and fire building techniques. For adults and children age 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

27 - Birding 101: Class #4 at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Who’s in the pond? Who’s flying over the pond? And who’s hiding in the reeds? Learn about the ducks and wetland birds of Reinstein Woods. For adults and children ages 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

27 - Project WILD & Project Flying WILD Educators Workshop at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (9:00 am – 4:30 pm) Educators will be certified in both Project WILD and Project Flying WILD.  The Project WILD K-12 Curriculum and Activity Guide focuses on wildlife and habitat. The newly updated Project WILD is organized into topic units and is based on conceptual framework.  New to Project WILD are “In Step with STEM” Activity extensions and Field Investigation Activities.  Targeted for the middle-school audience, though widely adaptable, Flying WILD offers practical hands-on classroom and outdoor field investigation experiences connecting real-world experiences in bird biology, conservation and natural history.  Please pack a lunch. (Fee:  FreePRE- REGISTRATION REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

27 – Earth Day Celebration at Tinker Nature Park, 1525 Calkins Road, Pittsford, NY (10:00 am – 2:00 pm) The event includes a live animal program at 11am, presentations by RIT Environmental Science Students and Cornell Master Gardeners, tree planting, and activities for the kids! (For information call 585-359-2540.)

27 - New York State Outdoorsmen Hall Of Fame Annual Banquet at Theodores Restaurant in Canastota, NY. (5:00 pm) The eleven inductees for 2019 will be recognized. (For information/reservations call 315-829-3588 or e-mail sfcf@tds.net by April 21.)  

27 - Niagara Frontier Friends of the NRA Banquet at Salvatore’s Italian Gardens, 6461 Transit Road, Depew,NY (5:00 pm) Half of the proceeds raised comes back into the area for grant programs involved with the shooting sports. (Cost: $50.00) (For information call Bob Siemen 716-870-6871 or email nffnrabob@nffnra.org)

27 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Drumlins Chapter Dinner at Quality Inn, North Main Street,
Newark, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Mark Salerno 315-879-8960 msalerno@marshallfarms.com)

27 - Whitetails Unlimited – Stonybrook Chapter Hunters Night Out at the Dansville Fire Department 
11 Franklin Street, Dansville, NY. Deadline for ticket sales – 4-12-19. (Cost: Adult - $45.00/Spouse/Youth - $25.00) Through our Grassroots Program, WTU provides grants to local projects and activities that advance our mission. Proceeds from this event will benefit youth conservation and training event. (For information call Shannon Griese, 585-739-1779 or go to http://www.whitetailsunlimited.com/events/banquets/)

27-28 - Niagara Frontier - Hamburg Gun Show at the Hamburg Fairgrounds, 5820 S Park Avenue, Hamburg, New York ((9:00 am – 4:00 pm/9:00 am - 3:00pm) 300 tables. NICS background checks available. (Cost: $7.00/children under 12 free when accompanied by a paid adult) (90 Tables) (For information call Bruce Johnston  716-542-9929 or email nfgshows@aol.com)

27-28 – Greater Wellsville Trout Derby, Genesee River. (TIMES - Headquarters Opens at 12 pm, Friday April 26/Saturday Fishing 6 am to 7 pm/Sunday Fishing 6 am to 5 pm) (Registration Sites: Wellsville Town Clerk Office - 156 N. Main St., Wellsville Chamber of Commerce - 114 N. Main St., Strope Outdoor Supply - 5 William St. Addison NY. Over $25,000 money and 450 tagged fish. (FEES - If you register before April 1st the fee is $15, after April 1st the fee is $20) (For information/register go online to www.Trout-Derby.com or call 585-596-9274.)

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for – “Your In on The Outdoors for Western New York.”

What Do You Think? Have something for other sportspeople? Let us know HERE.

 

 

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4 - 12 – 19

 

Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

2018-19 DEER HARVEST ESTIMATES ANNOUNCED: Hunters in New York harvested an estimated 227,787 deer during the 2018-19 hunting seasons, approximately 12 percent more than the previous season. The estimated deer take included 114,402 antlerless deer and 113,385 antlered bucks. Statewide, this represents a 20-percent increase in antlerless harvest and a five-percent increase in buck harvest from the last season. The increase in antlerless harvest comes on the heels of a lower-than-desired antlerless harvest in 2017 and will help limit growth in areas with an overpopulation. Regionally, hunters took 28,642 deer in the Northern Zone and 199,145 deer in the Southern Zone. With nearly 60 percent of the adult buck harvest 2.5 years or older, hunters took an estimated 66,697 older bucks, setting another record in the percentage and total number of older bucks in the harvest.

In addition, hunters increased the rate at which they reported their harvest in 2018, for the second year in a row. Although harvest reporting is required by law, the portion of successful hunters who report their harvest has averaged around 45 percent for the past decade. Hunters have increased their reporting rates to 50 percent in 2017, and 51 percent in 2018. Along with DEC's Take It · Tag It · Report It campaign, the agency has made the process of harvest reporting easier for hunters by providing phone, internet, and mobile app options. Harvest reports are critically important for accurate monitoring of deer harvests, and DEC hopes hunters continue to contribute to the management process by complying with the reporting requirements.

DEC's 2018 Deer Harvest Summary report (PDF) provides tables, charts, and maps detailing the deer harvest around the state. Past harvest summaries are available on DEC's website.

2018 Deer Harvest Summary & Comparison

                                                        2018                    2017                    Change             5 Year Average

Total Take                                     227,787             203,407             +12.0%              220,340

Adult Male                                     113,385             107,804             +5.2%                  107,540

Adult Female                                 80,584                 67,702                 +19.0%              80,020

Antlerless                                      114,402             95,623                 +19.6%              112,800

DMU Permits Issued                     618,186             617,839             +0.1%                  630,982

DMU Permit Take                         89,639                 74,421                 +20.4%              86,436

DMA Program Take                      9,004                   8,962                   +0.5%                  10,771

Muzzleloader*                               18,131                 15,288                 +18.6%              14,454

Bowhunting*                                  43,832                 43,708                 +0.3%                  40,041

Crossbow                                      10,829                 11,758                 -7.9%                   NA

* Values for Muzzleloader and Bow Season Take include deer taken on Bow/Muzz tags and DMPs. Prior to 2016, the Muzzleloader and Bow values only reflected take on Bow/Muzz tags.

Notable Numbers

>16.1 and 0.7 --- number of deer taken per square mile in the units with the highest (WMU 8R) and lowest (WMUs 5F, 6F and 6J) harvest density.

>58.8 percent --- portion of the adult buck harvest that was 2.5 years or older, the greatest in New York history and up from 40 percent a decade ago, and 30 percent in the 1990s. Excluding units with mandatory antler restrictions, 54.5 percent of the adult bucks harvested were older bucks, still the greatest percentage on record.

>65 percent --- portion of eligible junior hunters that participated in the 2016 Youth Deer Hunt.

>15,499 --- number of hunter-harvested deer checked by DEC staff in 2018.

>2,483 --- deer tested for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in 2018-19; none tested positive. DEC has tested more than 52,000 deer for CWD since 2002.

Deer harvest data are gathered from two main sources: harvest reports required of all successful hunters and DEC's examination of more than 15,000 harvested deer at check stations and meat processors across the state Harvest estimates are made by cross-referencing these two data sources and calculating the total harvest from the reporting rate for each zone and tag type. A full report of the 2018-19 deer harvest, as well as past deer and bear harvest summaries, is available at DEC's Deer and Bear Harvests webpage

No CWD Detections in NYS in 2018

DEC tested 2,483 harvested deer across the state and found no evidence of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in the herd.

CWD has now been found in 26 states, with Mississippi and Tennessee joining the list in 2018. Environmental Conservation Police Officers (ECOs) stepped up enforcement efforts this past year, seizing and destroying hunter-killed deer brought in illegally from states where CWD has been found. CWD continues to pose a threat to New York's wild white-tailed deer herd. Chronic wasting disease is a highly contagious disease that affects deer, elk, moose, and reindeer. CWD is always fatal and there are no vaccines or treatments available. CWD is believed to be caused by a prion, which is an infectious protein, that can infect animals through animal-to-animal contact or contaminated environments.

DEC has tested more than 52,000 wild white-tailed deer for CWD since 2002. In 2005, CWD was found in both captive and wild white-tailed deer in Oneida County. After intensive disease response efforts, no subsequent cases have been detected. In the 2018-2019 surveillance period, 2,371 samples were tested from hunter-harvested deer and 112 from clinical deer that appeared sick or abnormal. DEC partners with cooperating meat processors and taxidermists in obtaining samples for testing each year.

For wildlife diseases like CWD, prevention is the most effective management policy. DEC recommends several practices hunters can take to prevent the introduction of infectious prions:

Debone your deer before you bring it back to New York. This practice removes "high risk" parts (brain, spinal cord) that could potentially spread CWD. If you bring a whole, intact carcass from a prohibited state, province, or any high-fence shooting facility, you will be ticketed and your entire animal (including trophy heads) will be confiscated and destroyed. Meat, hide and cape, antlers, cleaned skull cap with antlers attached, finished taxidermy mounts, tanned hides, and clean upper canine teeth are permitted.

Consider alternatives to natural deer urine or lure products. Prions are shed in a deer's bodily fluids before the deer appears sick. Commercially available urine products are not tested for prions. Prions bind to soil and plants and remain infectious to deer that ingest contaminated soil. There is no method of disinfection.

Dispose of carcass waste, even from New York deer, into a proper waste stream either by putting butcher scraps in with your household trash or otherwise assuring it goes to a licensed landfill. A landowner may dispose of their own deer on their property, but it is illegal in all cases for businesses (butchers and taxidermists) to dispose of waste generated from their business in any way other than a landfill or rendering facility.

Do not feed wild deer or moose. Animals concentrated together can spread disease quickly.

If there is another CWD outbreak in New York, DEC and the State Department of Agriculture and Markets will implement their Interagency CWD Response Plan. The plan will guide actions if the disease is detected in either captive cervids-any species of the deer family-or wild white-tailed deer or moose. There are no documented cases of CWD infecting humans, but DEC urges caution when handling or processing CWD-susceptible animals.

For more of what DEC is doing and what you should know about CWD, visit DEC's website.

 

DEC ENABLES CAMPERS TO MAKE LAST-MINUTE RESERVATIONS FOR 2019 CAMPING SEASON: Camping is a weather-dependent activity for most people and to ensure that anyone deciding at the last minute to visit one of New York’s amazing campgrounds can reserve a spot. With a one-day advanced reservation window, more campers will have the opportunity to explore all of the natural treasures facilities have to offer, which means more camping, hiking, fishing, and exploring for everyone.

This change affords last-minute campers the security and convenience of reserving a campsite at any of DEC's campgrounds, including our newest facility, Frontier Town Campground, Equestrian and Day Use Area in the Adirondacks, which begins its summer season on June 28. The change also brings DEC's Forest Preserve Campgrounds in line with reservations at facilities operated by the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.

DEC operates 52 campgrounds and five day-use areas in the Adirondack and Catskill Forest Preserves. The summer camping season runs through Labor Day, with some facilities remaining open during fall foliage and hunting season. For more information on DEC-operated campgrounds, including a list of campgrounds and schedules, visit DEC website's Camping section, or call DEC's Bureau of Recreation at 518-457-2500. To make reservations at any of these facilities, call ReserveAmerica at 1800-456-CAMP (2267) or visit the ReserveAmerica website.

 

KUDOS: WINNERS OF THE NATIONAL ARCHERY IN THE SCHOOLS PROGRAM STATE TOURNAMENT ANNOUNCED: Female Archer NASPDEC hosted the 11th annual New York National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) state tournament on March 15th at the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse. More than 600 students from 32 school districts across the state enrolled, and they shot more than 20,000 arrows in the event.

Each competitor in the state tournament could achieve a maximum score of 300 points. There are three divisions: high school (grades 9-12); middle school, (grades 6-8); and elementary school (grades 4-5). Both overall top winners were from St. Joseph by The Sea

Scoring BoyHigh School in Richmond County: with a score of 291, the overall top male archer in the tournament was Daniel Pearson; with a score of 284, the top female archer in the tournament was Annalise Loscalzo with a score of 284. Annalise and Daniel each received a trophy, a Genesis bow, NASP® bow case, and a Hurricane target. DEC also gave awards out in each of the three divisions for first through 10th places.

The first-place team in the high school division was St. Joseph by the Sea High School in Richmond County. The first-place team in the middle school division was Norwich City School District in Chenango County. The first-place team in the elementary division was Arkport Central School in Steuben County. DEC also awarded trophies in each of the three divisions for first, second and third places.

Individuals who placed in the top 10 in their division, and teams that placed first in each of the three divisions, qualify to compete and represent New York State at the National NASP® Tournament held in Louisville, Kentucky from May 9th – 11th.

Schools with students who qualified for the National Tournament include: Arkport Central School, Canaseraga Central School, Genesee Valley Central School, Hinsdale Central School District, Holland Central School, Johnsburg Central School, Liverpool Middle School, Midlakes Middle School, Mohawk Valley Christian Academy, Norwich City School District, Salamanca Central School, Schroon Lake Central School, and St. Joseph by the Sea High School.

ArchersNASP® continues to grow at the national level with more than 2.3 million students participating in the program during the 2017-18 school year More than 13,000 schools in 47 states, Washington D.C., Canada, South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia have adopted the program. In New York, 400 schools from 222 school districts participate in the program and more than 40,000 students participated during the 2017-18 school year.

The New York State NASP® Tournament is offered only to students who participated in the NASP archery program during in-school classes taught by certified NASP® teachers. For more information on how schools can become involved in NASP® and to view DEC's photo gallery, visit DEC's website. To learn more about the National Archery in the Schools Program, visit the NASP website.

 

 

TURKEY SEASON’S COMING: Hunting is a great family tradition, and the Youth Hunt for Wild Turkey is a good way to introduce the next generation to this activity. The special Youth Hunt weekend takes place April 20-21, 2019 and offers an excellent opportunity for junior hunters (ages 12-15) to spend time afield with experienced hunters. Eligible youth must possess a hunting license and a turkey permit and be accompanied by an adult, as required by law for a junior hunter (Youth 12 or 13 years of age must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian or person over 21 years of age, with written permission from their parent or legal guardian. Youth 14 or 15 years of age must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian or person over 18 years of age, with written permission from their parent or legal guardian). The accompanying adult must also have a current hunting license and turkey permit. S/he may assist the youth hunter (including calling), but may not carry a firearm, bow or crossbow, or kill or attempt to kill a wild turkey during the youth hunt. Crossbows may not be used by licensees who are under 14 years of age.

The regular spring turkey hunting season runs from May 1 through May 31.

A few tips for turkey hunting:

*  Most successful hunters use a variety of calls.

* Head-to-toe camouflage helps conceal hunters, but wearing hunter orange while moving between hunting locations helps keep hunters safe.

* Before shooting, always identify your target and what is beyond it.

* Don't stalk; let the bird do the walking.

More information about Turkey Hunting is available on DEC's website.

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Wildfire: Town of Danby, Tompkins County: On April 3, Tompkins County 911 notified Forest Rangers of a wildfire off Larue Road. Forest Ranger Joan Oldroyd responded, arrived on scene at 12:35 p.m, and assisted the Danby and West Danby Fire Departments with mop up of the .5-acre fire. After a thorough patrol of the area, the fire was declared out. Residential debris burning that escaped and burned into light hardwood debris was to blame. Environmental Conservation Police Officer (ECO) Osman Eisenburg assisted with enforcement efforts.

Wildfire: Town of Barton, Tioga County: On April 3, Forest Ranger Joan Oldroyd was notified by Tioga County Emergency Services Coordinator Mike Simmons of a three-acre wildfire spreading near Talmadge Hill and Ellis Creek roads. Ranger Oldroyd arrived on scene at 4:25 p.m., and Waverly Fire Department completed the mop-up. Caused by a downed power line, the fire burned approximately three acres of heavy grass fuel.

Wildfire: Town of Harmony, Chautauqua County: On April 7 at noon, Ranger Zachary Robitaille responded to a call from Chautauqua County Dispatch regarding a grass fire on Weeks Road in the town of Harmony. The fire was growing out of control. Ranger Robitaille was on scene by 12:30 p.m., and spoke with the Panama Fire Chief who stated that the grass ignited from a burning garbage pile behind a garage. Panama FD, Bear Lake FD, and Clymer FD extinguished the fire. Ranger Robitaille interviewed the resident, who reported that they burn their winter garbage behind the garage in the spring. The resident stated that the fire from the garbage pile spread into the grass. Ranger Robitaille cold trailed the area of the fire and declared it out. Three minor injuries were reported.

Search Training: Town of Chautauqua, Chautauqua County: Last week, Rangers Robitaille and Nathan Sprague conducted monthly training with the Chautauqua Area Search Team at the Chautauqua Gorge State Forest. The group utilized land navigation skills with maps, compasses, and GPS to traverse a land navigation course. Participants then checked themselves against pre-established points for accuracy and time to complete the course.

Forest Rangers and Chautauqua Area Search Team members standing in the woods getting instructions on land navigation.
Chautauqua Area Search Team members and Forest Rangers
trained in land navigation skills for search and rescue missions

Environmental Quality Detail - Niagara County: On March 28, Niagara County ECOs George Scheer, Shea Mathis, and Kevin Holzle conducted an environmental quality detail in the city of Lockport. The detail was set up in response to a complaint from a local business owner expressing concern about trash and debris falling off vehicles hauling waste to a nearby transfer station. When hauling solid waste, a cover is required to protect against the spillage of waste and emission of odors during transfer and transportation. The ECOs stopped a number of trucks and issued seven tickets - four for transporting uncovered load of solid waste (a violation with penalties of $1,500 to $15,000 and/or up to 15 days in jail) and three for violations of vehicle and traffic laws.

An Over-the-Limit Crappie Day - Chautauqua County: On March 29, ECOs Darci Dougherty and Chris Freeman received a complaint of a fisherman who had kept over his limit of crappie on Chautauqua Lake. The ECOs patrolled to the canal off the lake and quickly identified the vessel in question. Upon questioning the fisherman, the man claimed that some of the 65 crappies in his possession were caught the previous day, which still put the subject over the limit by 15 fish. The fisherman was cited for possessing over the limit of black crappie and failure to carry a valid license while fishing. The ECOs seized the fish that were over the limit and ECO Dougherty successfully released many of the living fish back into the water.

Large amount of fish scattered on the ground.

 

KUDOS: Ducks Unlimited recently announced their top fundraising chapters across the nation honored in four categories: Chairman’s Elite, Chairman’s Roll of Honor, President’s Elite and President’s Roll of Honor. Three regional chapters were recognized: The Hamburg – Southtowns Chapter as a President’s Elite Chapter; Genesee County – Batavia Chapter and Owasco Lake – Moravia Chapter as President’s Roll of Honor Chapters.

The Chairman’s Elite designation is reserved for chapters that raise at least $1 million for DU’s conservation mission. Chapters that raised between $250,000 and $999,999 were recognized in the Chairman’s Roll of Honor category, while those that raised between $100,000 and $249,999 were named as President’s Elite chapters. Rounding out the four categories, President’s Roll of Honor chapters raised between $65,000 and $99,999.

“These fundraising events are the backbone of DU’s habitat conservation efforts, and the volunteers who make up these chapters are the force making a difference for North American waterfowl populations,” said DU President Rogers Hoyt Jr. “It takes a great deal of effort to achieve these levels, and these chapters deserve to be congratulated by every person who enjoys the outdoors.”

The chapters honored this year earned their spots on the nationally recognized lists out of more than 2,400 DU chapters nationwide that hosted more than 3,900 fundraising events. DU’s event fundraising system has become a model for other conservation organizations worldwide and has helped conserve more than 14 million acres of waterfowl habitat since 1937.

“The hard work and dedication from DU’s event system volunteers and staff drive the organization’s conservation mission from a financial, membership and policy strength perspective. DU chapters across the country are showing that the future of waterfowl populations and the wetlands that filter our water and protect us from flooding are important to them and to their communities,” Hoyt said. “The more money we raise, the more habitat we can conserve and the closer we are to preserving our waterfowl hunting heritage. I would like to personally thank our chapters for their achievements and look forward to seeing them among our distinguished chapters next year.”

Ducks Unlimited Inc. is the world's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving North America's continually disappearing waterfowl habitats. Established in 1937, Ducks Unlimited has conserved more than 14 million acres thanks to contributions from more than a million supporters across the continent. Guided by science and dedicated to program efficiency, DU works toward the vision of wetlands sufficient to fill the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever. For more information on our work, visit www.ducks.org.

 

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page - http://www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com/events.php)

MARCH 2019

30-4/27 – Eagle Watch at the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge at Cayuga Overlook on Route 77, Alabama, NY (1-4 pm) (For information call 585-948-5445.)

 

APRIL 2019

1-30 -  Celebrate Otisco Lake Month at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. The Museum focuses attention on the lake, the only lake you can walk across in every season (via a causeway)! (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

15, 22, &  29 - Free Monday Night Fly Tying Instruction at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club, One Mullett Street (1.5 miles west of Route 60), Dunkirk, NY. (6:00 – 8:00 pm) Classes are for all levels of fly tying, but especially for beginners. No equipment is necessary. All participants get to keep their productions. The classes are open to the public. (For information call 716-366-1772.) 

17 & 24 - The Children of the Stream Youth Fly Fishing Program at the Costello Community Room (P84) in the new addition to the Rockefeller Arts Center at SUNY Fredonia, Fredonia, NY. This program is in its 18th year of providing weekly free fly tying and fly fishing classes to both youths and adults in our area. You do not need any prior experience to attend these classes, and the course is geared towards ages 10 and older. For more information contact Alberto Rey at 716-410-7003 or alberto@albertorey.com.)

12 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Oak Orchard River Chapter Dinner at the Carlton Fire Department Rec Hall, Route 98, Albion , NY. (5:30 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Robert St John 585-682-4495 st.johnphilosophy@yahoo.com) 

13 - Family Fishing Festival at Powder Mills Park, 154 Park Road, Pittsford, NY (9:00 am – 1:00 pm) Come spend the morning with WXXI Kids, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and our partners at Powder Mills Park and learn how to FISH! Everyone is welcome. Join Pick up a rod to try your hand at fishing in one of our Monroe County Parks! Partner organizations will be around for fly fishing demonstrations, hands-on activities, and to answer questions about where to fish, what you need to fish, and how to fish with young family members. Get engaged in citizen science and find out how you can help the NYSDEC learn about fish populations by joining the Angler Diary Program! (For information go to WXXI.org.)

13 – Wild Animal Shoot (Archery) at Hawkeye Bowmen, 13300 Clinton St, Alden, NY. (7:00 am) (For information call Nadine Fulle, 716-427-9076.)

13 – U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary About Boating Safety Course at the Buffalo Erie County County Naval and Military Park, One Naval Park Cove, Buffalo, NY (9:00 am – 5:00 pm) (Cost is $10.00) (For information call Kevin Ryan at 7-6-880-7319.)

13 – North Forest Ladies Shoot N’ Hoot at the club house,  6257 Old Niagara Road, Lockport, NY. Starts at 1 p.m. with safe gun handling instruction. Shooting options include skeet, trap or 5-stand. (For information/register contact Colleen Gaskill at 716-628-9023 or shootnhoot@aol.com.)

13 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Forbidden Trail Chapter Dinner at the Addison American Legion Post 730, 85 Maple Street, Addison, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Wayne Metarko  607-359-4278  bowanna41364@yahoo.com)

13 - Vireos For Beginners at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Learn about the vireos that migrate to and through Reinstein Woods. For adults and children ages 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

13-14 - New York State Arms Collectors Association Gun Show at the NYS Fairgrounds Expo Center, 581 State Fair Boulevard, Syracuse , NY (Sat., 9 am-5 pm; Sun., 9 am-3 pm) 1,000 tables. (Admission: $7.00/seniors $5.00/children under 12 free) (For information contact Sandy Ackerman Klinger, 346 Paul Street, Endicott, NY 13760, 607-748-1010 email sandynysac@yahoo.com)

14 -  National Wild Turkey Federation – Springville Strutters Chapter Dinner at the St. Aloysius Church Hall, 186 Franklin Street, Springville, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Richard Gerlach 716-857-0586 r905g@yahoo.com) 

15 – End of Snow Goose Hunting Season in Western New York

16 - Southern Tier Friends of NRA Event at the Double Tree by Hilton, 225 Water Street, Binghamton, NY (5:30 pm) (Cost: $45.00) (For information call Megan Clark 607-738-2574 or email beckme75@gmail.com)

18 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Hardwood Strutters Chapter Dinner at Club 86, Avenue E, Geneva, NY. (5:30 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Scott Mackenzie 315-521-2937 scott.mackenzie30@hotmail.com) 

18 - The Art of Conservation with Jennifer Miller sponsored by the Pfeiffer Nature Center, at The Portville Free Library, 2 North Main Street, Portville, NY. (6:30 pm) Explore how visual art and conservation can benefit one another in this talk by Federal Duck Stamp artist Jennifer Miller. Jennifer will describe her experiences with the Federal Duck Stamp and share her passion for reaching out with her work to inspire the public to care about the natural world. Learn how a love of nature can blossom into a passion and an unusual, adventurous and rewarding, career! (Fee:  Free for members, $5 for non-members and free for children 13 and under.  Minors must be accompanied by an adult.) (Register by 4 PM, Tuesday, April 16th, 2019.) (For informatio/register call 716-933-0187 or email naturalist@pfeiffernaturecenter.org)

19 – Good Friday Skeet Fun Shoot at the Tonawanda Sportsmen’s Club, 5657 Killian Road, Pendleton, NY. (9:45 a.m. sign up) $35 Entry fee with Lewis Class Scoring. (For information/sign up contact Mike Smith at 716-435-9937 or Peter Bogdon at 716-807-6007.)

20 – Wonderous Wildlife Photography with Bob Hazen at the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge Visitors Center, Alabama, NY. (1:00 – 3:00 pm) (For information call 585-948-5445.)

20 – U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Paddlers Guide to Safety at the Buffalo Erie County, County Naval and Military Park, One Naval Park Cove, Buffalo, NY. (10:00 am – noon) (Cost: $10.00) (For information call Kevin Ryan at 716-880-7319.)

20 - Animal Superpowers at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:00 pm) They may not be faster than a speeding bullet or more powerful than a locomotive, but many animals have abilities beyond those of humans. On this walk, you will learn about some of these amazing residents. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

20 - Girl Scout Cadettes Archery Badge at Heritage Outdoor Sports, 1886 Melvin Hill Rd, Phelps, NY. (12:00 – 2:00 pm) Archery is an exciting sport that takes strength, focus, good form and practice. Girl Scout Cadettes are invited to Heritage Outdoor Sports to learn about archery equipment, the proper way to draw a bow, and how to make the bull’s eye.  Scouts will challenge themselves as they build archery skills and learn how to shoot on a range. All scouts must be accompanied by a parent, leader, or chaperone.  (Fee:  $20/Scout. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

20 - Montezuma’s Bird Migration Van Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (1:30 – 4:00 pm) The Montezuma Wetlands Complex is Audubon’s first globally significant Important Bird Area because of the incredible number of ducks, geese and swans that stop here during the spring and fall migrations. Enjoy a leisurely ride in the Audubon van for an excursion to Montezuma’s birding hot spots where a variety of waterfowl, songbirds, shorebirds, and breeding Osprey and Bald Eagles can be seen. Binoculars and field guides will be provided. (Fee: $8/child; $15/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED.) (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

 20 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Genesee Local Chapter Dinner at the Quality Inn & Suites, 8250 Park Road, Batavia, NY. (6:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Terry Young 585-409-1804 tyoung14143@gmail.com

20 - Pompey Rod & Gun Club Show & Sportsman’s Flea Market at the Club, Swift Road, Pompey, NY (9:00 am – 3:00 pm) (For more info call Robert Fallert 315-656-8810.)

20 - Elmira Beagle Club Beagle Event at their clubhouse at 1485 Breesport-N Chemung Road, Lowman, NY (8:00 am Beagle Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Timothy Hall 607.331.1660  or email moc.evil@selgaebtniopkcehc

20 - Elmira Beagle Club Beagle Event at Orleans County Houndsmen And Conservation Club, 13461 Phipps Road, Albion, NY (3:00 pm Beagle Hunt-World Qualifying Event - $20.00) (For information call Timothy Hall 607-331-1660  or email moc.evil@selgaebtniopkcehc)

20 - Orleans County Houndsmen Beaglers Beagle Event at their clubhouse at 13461 Phipps Road, Albion, NY (11:00 am – Beagle Hunt-World Qualifying Event - $20.00) (For information call Ed Roggen at 585-948-9483 or email moc.liamtoh@sabrll )

20-21 – NYS Spring Youth Turkey Hunt (Details page 45 18-19 Hunting & Trapping Guide)

21 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Tri-County Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at the Ramada Inn, 2310 N. Triphammer Road, Ithaca, NY (5:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Scott Wilcox at 607-533-4707)

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for – “Your In on The Outdoors for Western New York.”

What Do You Think? Have something for other sportspeople? Let us know HERE.

 

 

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4 - 5 – 19

 

Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

STATE OF LAKE ERIE MEETING: New York Sea Grant (NYSG) and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) will present the annual State of Lake Erie Meeting on April 11, 2019 from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Southtowns Walleye Association Club House, 5895 Southwestern Boulevard, Hamburg, N.Y. The event is open to the public and is held in cooperation with New York State Assemblymember Sean Ryan and the Southtowns Walleye Association of WNY.

Featured presentations include NYSDEC Aquatic Biologist Jim Markham on cold water fisheries, including rainbow trout, and NYSDEC Lake Erie Unit Leader Jason Robinson on warm water fisheries, including walleye and yellow perch. NYSG Fisheries and Ecosystem Health Specialist Jesse Lepak will provide an update on how fisheries managers, educators and angling associations are addressing barotrauma. Barotrauma is the tissue damage caused by the rapid expansion of the swim bladder of the fish when retrieved from deep water. NYSG co-sponsored a workshop with international fisheries experts in 2018 to address barotrauma in Lake Erie yellow perch. Sandy Smith, a member of the science faculty of the Nichols School, a nationally- recognized college preparatory school in Buffalo, N.Y., will share a case study about inspiring environmental leadership and stewardship in youth.

A complete agenda is posted at www.nyseagrant.org/glsportfish. For more information or directions, contact Jesse Lepak, New York Sea Grant at SUNY Oswego, 315-312-3042, jml78@cornell.edu.

 

DEC BIOLOGISTS TO PROVIDE UPDATES ON STATUS OF SALMON RIVER'S FISHERY:

The public will have the opportunity to learn about the state of the Salmon River fishery at a public meeting to be held in Pulaski, Oswego County, on April 11. The meeting will be held from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the Pulaski High School auditorium, 4624 Salina St., Pulaski. The Salmon River Fisheries Management Plan, developed in 2018 in close consultation with a variety of stakeholders, focuses on objectives and management strategies to maintain and improve the lake-run salmonid fisheries of the 17 miles of the main stem Salmon River and its major tributaries below the Lighthouse Hill Reservoir.

At the meeting, DEC will provide an overview of ongoing activities and report on recent progress toward achieving the objectives outlined in the plan. In addition, staff will review planned activities for the coming year. The meeting will provide ample time at the end of the scheduled program for the audience to ask questions and interact with the presenters.

For additional information, contact David Lemon, DEC Region 7 Fisheries Manager, at the Cortland office, (607) 753-3095 or email fwfish7@dec.ny.gov.

 

WILDFIRE CONDITIONS INTENSIFY ACROSS NEW YORK: New Yorkers are urged to obey the statewide burn ban as conditions for wildfires have become heightened across most of the state, with temperatures and winds increasing. DEC upgraded the fire danger map as a combination of increasing temperatures, strong gusty winds, and low relative humidity were forecasted. DEC posts daily a fire danger rating map and forecast during fire season on its website and on the NY Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife App available on DEC's website. Currently, wildfire conditions are high risk in the southern and eastern parts of the state.

In addition, the National Weather Service today issued a red flag warning for the Southern Tier to the Catskills. A red flag warning is a short-term, temporary warning indicating the presence of a dangerous combination of temperature, wind, relative humidity, fuel, or drought conditions which can contribute to new fires or the rapid spread of existing fires.

Residential brush burning is prohibited March 16 through May 14 across New York State. New York prohibits residential burning during the high-risk fire season to reduce wildfires and protect people, property, and natural resources. The ban has been extremely effective in reducing the number of wildfires, and DEC is encouraging New Yorkers to put safety first. Historically, open burning of debris is the largest single cause of spring wildfires in New York State. When temperatures are warmer and the past fall's debris, dead grass, and leaves dry out, wildfires can start and spread easily and be further fueled by winds and a lack of green vegetation.

New York first enacted strict restrictions on open burning in 2009 to help prevent wildfires and reduce air pollution. State regulations allow residential brush fires in towns with fewer than 20,000 residents during most of the year, but prohibit such burning in spring when most wildfires in New York occur. Since the ban was established, the eight-year annual average number of spring fires decreased by 42.6 percent, from 2,649 in 2009, to 1,521 in 2018.

Violators of the state's open burning regulation are subject to both criminal and civil enforcement actions, with a minimum fine of $500 for a first offense. To report environmental law violations call 1-800-TIPP DEC (1-800-847-7332), or report online on DEC's website.

 

TURKEY SEASON’S COMING: Hunting is a great family tradition, and the Youth Hunt for Wild Turkey is a good way to introduce the next generation to this activity. The special Youth Hunt weekend takes place April 20-21, 2019 and offers an excellent opportunity for junior hunters (ages 12-15) to spend time afield with experienced hunters. Eligible youth must possess a hunting license and a turkey permit and be accompanied by an adult, as required by law for a junior hunter (Youth 12 or 13 years of age must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian or person over 21 years of age, with written permission from their parent or legal guardian. Youth 14 or 15 years of age must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian or person over 18 years of age, with written permission from their parent or legal guardian). The accompanying adult must also have a current hunting license and turkey permit. S/he may assist the youth hunter (including calling), but may not carry a firearm, bow or crossbow, or kill or attempt to kill a wild turkey during the youth hunt. Crossbows may not be used by licensees who are under 14 years of age.

The regular spring turkey hunting season runs from May 1 through May 31.

A few tips for turkey hunting:

*  Most successful hunters use a variety of calls.

* Head-to-toe camouflage helps conceal hunters, but wearing hunter orange while moving between hunting locations helps keep hunters safe.

* Before shooting, always identify your target and what is beyond it.

* Don't stalk; let the bird do the walking.

More information about Turkey Hunting is available on DEC's website.

 

HUNTER EDUCATION COURSES AVAILABLE BEFORE START OF SPRING TURKEY SEASON: DEC reminds all new hunters planning to go turkey hunting this spring they must first complete a mandatory hunter education course before purchasing a hunting license. Hunter Education courses are being offered throughout the state during April, but space is limited and classes fill quickly, so hunters are encouraged not to delay in registering for a course.

DEC works closely with thousands of dedicated DEC-certified instructors statewide to provide these training courses free of charge. DEC's online registration system makes it easy to view a list of all available courses with the student's proximity to course locations. Students can register from any device - smartphone, tablet, or computer - 24 hours a day, seven days a week. To locate a nearby hunter education course, visit DEC's website or contact a local DEC office for assistance.

All hunter education courses require students to complete homework prior to attending the classroom and field session. Proof of the completed homework is required to attend the course. Students should register for the course well in advance of the course date to allow time to complete the homework requirement, which takes approximately three hours. All courses require successful completion of an in-person field day to earn certification for the course.

Access to the homework materials and online homework options can be found on DEC's website or follow the guidelines listed in the various course announcements when registering for a particular course. Course manuals and homework sheets are always available from DEC wildlife offices and hunter education instructors.

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Wildfire: Town of Corning, Steuben County: On March 26 at 4:48 p.m., Forest Rangers were contacted by the Steuben County Deputy Fire Coordinator to respond to a wildland fire. When a Ranger arrived on scene, local volunteer fire departments had established a fire line around the blaze and quickly put down the fire. Two days later, Rangers returned to investigate the cause of the fire and locate the origin. This investigation is ongoing. 

Wildfire: Town of Cincinnatus, Cortland County: On March 26, DEC Forest Rangers and Environmental Conservation Police Officers (ECOs) responded to a reported wildfire on farmland in the town of Cincinnatus. The fire burned 1.3 acres of light grass before the Cincinnatus Fire Department and other local fire departments contained the blaze. Two Rangers responded, completed fire suppression, and declared the fire out approximately three hours after the initial report. ECOs investigated and determined that the landowner had ignited bags of household waste in a burn pit and left the fire unattended. The blaze spread and the landowner was ticketed for several offenses.

DEC reminds residents that a statewide burn ban remains in effect through May 14. With warmer temperatures approaching, conditions for wildfires are increasing. Not only does opening burning raise the risk of sparking wildfires, but residents can incur tickets and fines. For more information on open burning in New York visit DEC's website.

Wildfire: Town of Arkwright, Chautauqua County: On March 28 at 4:30 p.m., Forest Rangers Nathan Sprague and Zachary Robitaille were notified by County Dispatch of a field fire in the town of Arkwright. When the Rangers arrived, Cassadaga Fire Department personnel were finishing the mop-up of the fire. The homeowner had started a brush pile fire and the flames spread to an adjacent field, burning approximately 1/2 an acre. After Rangers interviewed the homeowner, he admitted to starting the fire to burn papers. Ranger Sprague issued a ticket for illegal burning during the burning ban.

School Archery Tournament - Onondaga County: On March 15, ECOs Paul Sherman and Scott Yacavone assisted staff from the Division of Fish and Wildlife in hosting the 11th Annual National Archery in the Schools Program State Tournament. Nearly 600 students from 32 different schools across New York State attended the event at the NYS Fairgrounds Center of Progress Building. All of the participants have been involved with archery for at least one year and were excited to show off their skills to friends, coaches, and parents. The National Archery in the Schools Program uses archery instruction as a gateway to wildlife conservation and outdoor education. Having ECOs present provided an opportunity for students who are interested in shooting sports and outdoor recreation to interact with local officers and learn about the day-to-day aspects of being an ECO.

Young students lined up in a row in a large room, all aiming with bows at targets
Students show off their skills at 11th Annual National Archery in State Tournament

Something's Fishy on Catharine Creek - Schuyler County: On March 16, ECO John Lifrieri was headed to a complaint in the town of Montour when he observed a pick-up truck parked at one of the access sites to Catharine Creek. As he looked closer, he saw two men near the stream, which is not uncommon this time of year as would-be anglers routinely check to see if spawning trout have begun to arrive. The stream is completely closed to fishing from the end of the year until April 1 to protect spawning fish. On this visit, however, Lifrieri found that that the two were fly fishing weeks before the season opens. Both were ticketed for fishing in closed trout waters, returnable to Montour Town Court.

ECOs Assist At Eighteenmile Creek Fish Sampling - Niagara County: On March 20, ECOs George Scheer and Kevin Holzle assisted DEC's Bureau of Fisheries staff with a fish collection targeting rainbow trout (steelhead) in Eighteenmile Creek near Burt Dam in the town of Newfane. The fish were collected by electrofishing as part of a steelhead study in this popular tributary of Lake Ontario. Numerous residents and sportsmen were on hand to watch. Electrofishing is a common survey method biologists use to catch a large group of fish for sampling. Low level electricity is used to draw fish in, and there is no permanent harm done to the fish. The ECOs assisted with catching and packaging the fish collected so that they could be sent for laboratory analysis. ECOs and fisheries biologists often work together across the state on a variety of environmental work.

ECO on left holding a large pole that is connected to other poles held by biologists in a stream as they stun fish for research
Electrofishing in Eighteenmile Creek

Endicott Man Charged with Damaging Binghamton Flood Control Levees - Broome County: On March 27, Shayne A. Potter, 24, of Endicott was arraigned in Binghamton City Court and charged with criminal mischief in the fourth degree, disturbing the banks of a protected stream without a permit, and excavating lands burdened by flood control easement without a permit. The charges resulted from his illegal excavation of flood control levees along the Susquehanna River while searching for antique bottles and artifacts he was selling online. ECOs began the investigation after DEC became aware of the illegal excavations, which compromised the structural integrity of the flood control levees and put citizens of the city and property at risk should the levees fail during a flood event. The DEC administers and maintains a series of flood control levees along the Susquehanna River and elsewhere in the state. In the spring of 2018, ECOs and DLE Investigators apprehended Potter as he entered the excavated area to begin additional excavation. Potter is accused of excavating nearly 90 cubic yards of soil, causing damage estimated at $7,385. The attorney representing Potter entered pleas of not guilty and the next trial date has not been set.

ECO Helps Bust Scrap Metal Thieves - Tioga County: On March 27, ECO Stanley Winnick assisted Tioga County Sheriff's Deputies with the apprehension of two men involved in the larceny of scrap metal and "cold patch" road repair materials from the Town of Candor Highway Department. ECO Winnick was approached by the town's highway superintendent regarding multiple thefts of scrap metal and cold patch from the highway department property. The thefts were occurring late at night and, knowing ECO Winnick lived nearby, the superintendent asked if he could help watch for suspicious activity. ECO Winnick set up a trail camera near the highway garage, and one night at 11:37 p.m., the trail camera sent a notification to the ECO's cell phone. ECO Winnick contacted Tioga County Sheriff's Deputy Brian Henry and headed to the garage. The officer parked a short distance away and spotted two men shoveling cold patch into a black pickup truck. He alerted Deputy Henry, and when the thieves left the highway department property, the truck was stopped and both subjects were arrested. The driver of the truck was charged with grand larceny in the fourth degree, aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, and operation of an unregistered motor vehicle. The passenger of the pickup truck was arrested for grand larceny in the fourth degree.

 

STATES RECEIVE MORE THAN $1 BILLION FOR RECREATION ACCESS, CONSERVATION: Outdoor recreationists who hunt, shoot, fish and boat are providing more than $1 billion this year to support increased outdoor access and wildlife habitat conservation across the United States. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is distributing the funds to all 50 states and U.S. territories. The funds are generated through excise taxes on hunting, shooting and fishing equipment and boat fuel.

Authorized by Congress through the Pittman-Robertson Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act and Dingell-Johnson/Wallop-Breaux Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act, these dollars support critical state conservation and outdoor recreation projects. They are administered through the Service’s Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program, which is long considered the foundation of fish and wildlife conservation in the United States.

“For many decades funds generated by these programs have consistently supported millions of acres and miles of outdoor recreation access and wildlife habitat in this country,” said Margaret Everson, the Service’s Principal Deputy Director. “Thanks to industry, states and hunters, shooters, anglers and boaters, America’s wildlife and natural resources and the opportunities they provide will be available for generations to come.”

To date the Service has distributed more than $21 billion in apportionments for state conservation and recreation projects. The recipient state wildlife agencies have matched these funds with approximately $7.3 billion throughout the years, primarily through hunting and fishing license revenues.

Click here for the state-by-state listing of the Service’s final apportionment for the Wildlife Restoration Program (NY $17,470,049) and here for the Sport Fish Restoration program funds (NY $8,021,826) for Fiscal Year 2019.

For more information about the WSFR program visit http://wsfrprograms.fws.gov/.

 

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page - http://www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com/events.php)

MARCH 2019

30-4/27 – Eagle Watch at the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge at Cayuga Overlook on Route 77, Alabama, NY (1-4 pm) (For information call 585-948-5445.)

 

APRIL 2019

1 - Start of Statewide Fishing Seasons for Brook, Brown & Rainbow Trout, Hybrids of these Species and Splake, Lake Trout, Landlocked/Atlantic Salmon and Kokanee (>10/15)

1 - Start of Trout Season in Green Lake (Onondaga County), Rushford Lake (Allegany County) (>11/30)

1 – Start Lake, Brown, Rainbow and Atlantic Salmon in the tributaries of Canadice, Canandiagua, Hemlock, Keuka, Seneca, Cayuga, Owasco, Otisco, and Skaneateles Lakes (>12/31)

1-30 -  Celebrate Otisco Lake Month at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. The Museum focuses attention on the lake, the only lake you can walk across in every season (via a causeway)! (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

4 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Lake Plains Chapter Dinner at the Webster Golf Club, 440 Salt Road, Webster, NY. (6:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Richard Vendel 585-872-4565) 

5 - Whitetails Unlimited – Cortland County Chapter Banquet at the, Elks Lodge #748, Cortland, NY. (5:30 pm)Through our Grassroots Program, WTU provides grants to local projects and activities that advance our mission. Proceeds from this event will benefit youth conservation and training event. (For information call Bill Bailey 413-244-2304.)

6 - Second Annual Lake Erie Outdoor & Fishing Show at the Clarion Hotel Marina & Conference Center, 30 Lake Shore Dr E, Dunkirk, NY (10:00 am – 4:00 pm) (For information call 716-366-3000 ext. 420 or email mpatton@observertoday.com.)

6 - Niagara Musky Association’s 25th Anniversary Banquet at the Pearl Street Grill and Brewery, 76 Pearl Street, Buffalo, NY (6:00 pm) (For information/tickets call Scott McKee at 716-225-3816.)

6 – Niagara County Federation of Conservation Clubs Annual Awards Banquet at the Cornell Cooperative Extension - Niagara, 4487 Lake Avenue, Lockport, NY. (5:30 pm) (For information/tickets call Dave Whitt at 716-754-2133 by March 29.)

6 – Birder Boot Camp: Intro to Birding at the Beaver Meadow Nature Center, N. Java, NY. (10:00 am to noon.) (For information/pre-register call 585-457-3228.)

6 -  Family Nature Quest: Busy Beavers at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:30 am) Celebrate International Beaver Day with a short guided walk to visit a beaver lodge and look for clues of active beaver. Try out your engineering skills and build your own beaver dam. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

6 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Tri-County Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at the Ramada Inn, 2310 N. Triphammer Road, Ithaca, NY (5:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Scott Wilcox at 607-533-4707)

6 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Chautauqua Lake Chapter Dinner at the Frewsburg American Legion Post 556, 9 Meadow Lane, Frewsburg, NY. (5:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Patrick Hoover 716-489-6933)

6 - Orleans County Houndsmen And Conservation Club Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on 13461 Phipps Road, Albion, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy - $10.00/8:00 pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $15.00) (For information call Ed Roggen at 585-948-9483)

6 - Elmira Beagle Club Beagle Event at their clubhouse at 1485 Breesport-N Chemung Road, Lowman, NY (8:00 am Beagle Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Timothy Hall 607-331-1660  or email moc.evil@selgaebtniopkcehc)

6 - Ducks Unlimited – Rochester and Western Monroe County Chapter Dinner and Live Auction at the Salmon Creek Country Club, 355 Washington Street, Spencerport NY. (5:30 pm) Waterfowl conservation is facing important challenges as wetlands and other habitats are being degraded and destroyed across the continent. Ducks Unlimited has a vision to reverse this trend. (Cost: $65 Single, $100 Couple) (For information call Sofiea Ayers 585-331-2593  sofiea.ayers@duncanfamilyfarms.net or Tom Kelly  585-727-7679.) 

6 - Brighton Henrietta Pittsford 39th Annual DU Dinnerat the Midvale Country Club, 2387 Baird Road. Penfield, NY (6:00 pm) This year the BHP Chapter is looking to take our yearly event to the next level. Exciting must have items will be found in our various raffles, silent, and main auction events. We are limiting our number of tickets sold to the first 170 people who register, and pay, for this dinner as we focus to provide the optimum experience for our attendees. As previously mentioned advanced payment for dinner tickets is required as we will no longer accepting payments at the door, so it is critical you purchase your reservations by Friday, March 24th. (Cost: Single $90.00/Couple $145.00) (For information call Rae Mungillo 585-671-6888 raemo44@rochester.rr.com or Pete Grondin 585-880-2035  petergrondin@yahoo.com)

6-7 – Little Valley Volunteer Fire Department Sportsmen’s Show at the Cattaraugus County Fair Grounds,  off Route 353, Little Valley NY. (Sat 9:00 am – 4:00 pm/Sun 9:00 am – 3:00 pm) ($5.00 admission) (For information call Jim Miller at 716-938-6928)

7 - Spring Shoot at the Ellery Rod & Gun Club, 4005 Pancake Hill Road, Bemus Point, NY. (9:00 am), The Shoot will include Lucky Shot and Slug. Bring your own size 7 1/2 or size 8 shot shells. Breakfast will be served from 8 a.m. until 11 for $6. Raffles too! Open to the public. (For information call 716-499-1118.)

7 - Finger Lakes Friends of NRA Banquet at the Harbor Hotel, 16 N. Franklin Street, Watkins Glen, NY (3:30 pm) (Cost: $50.00) (For information contact Kayla West 607-351-1382  flfriendsnra@gmail.com)

7 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Niagara County

Gobblers Chapter Dinner at the Youngstown Vounteer Fire Company, 625 Third Street, Youngstown, NY (3:30 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Pamela Lederhouse 716-791-3151 plederhous@aol.com) 

8, 15, 22, &  29 - Free Monday Night Fly Tying Instruction at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club, One Mullett Street (1.5 miles west of Route 60), Dunkirk, NY. (6:00 – 8:00 pm) Classes are for all levels of fly tying, but especially for beginners. No equipment is necessary. All participants get to keep their productions. The classes are open to the public. (For information call 716-366-1772.) 

10, 17 & 24 The Children of the Stream Youth Fly Fishing Program at the Costello Community Room (P84) in the new addition to the Rockefeller Arts Center at SUNY Fredonia, Fredonia, NY. This program is in its 18th year of providing weekly free fly tying and fly fishing classes to both youths and adults in our area. You do not need any prior experience to attend these classes, and the course is geared towards ages 10 and older. For more information contact Alberto Rey at 716-410-7003 or alberto@albertorey.com.)

11 - Lake Erie and Niagara River Fisheries Update at the Southtowns Walleye club located at 5895 Southwestern Blvd, Hamburg, NY (6:30 – 9:00 pm) The meeting will begin with an informal discussion and poster exhibits. The meeting will be followed by a series of presentations on Lake Erie and the Upper Niagara River. Topics covered will include the status of Cold water Communities by DEC Biologist Jim Markham, Warm Water fish communities by NYSDEC Unit leader Jason Robinson, An Update on Barotrauma in Lake Erie Perch by Jesse Lepak of Sea Grant, and Inspiring Environmental Leadership and Stewardship by Sandy Smith from Nichols School Faculty. The meeting will conclude with questions and an open discussion. This seminar is sponsored by DEC's Lake Erie Fisheries Unit and Region 9 Fisheries offices, in co-operation with NYS Assemblyman Sean Ryan and The Southtowns Walleye Association. Anyone interested is welcome to attend this free event and registration is not required. (For information call 716-851-7000.)

11 - Updates on Status of Salmon River's Fishery at the Pulaski High School Auditorium, 4624 Salina St., Pulaski, NY. (6:30 – 9:00 pm) "Report Card" on Progress to Achieving Objectives Outlined in New Salmon River Fisheries Management Plan. The public will have the opportunity to learn about the state of the Salmon River fishery. At the meeting, DEC will provide an overview of ongoing activities and report on recent progress toward achieving the objectives outlined in the plan. In addition, staff will review planned activities for the coming year. The meeting will provide ample time at the end of the scheduled program for the audience to ask questions and interact with the presenters. For additional information, contact David Lemon, DEC Region 7 Fisheries Manager, at the Cortland office, (607) 753-3095 or email fwfish7@dec.ny.gov.

11 - Educator Workshop: Great Lakes Basin Bins at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (4:00 – 6:00 pm) Join an interactive workshop by NYSDEC and NY Sea Grant that provides educators with an intro to the resources and classroom activities in the Great Lakes Educator Ecosystem Exchange (GLEEE) Basin Bins. Participants will receive a $50 stipend and refreshments. For educators of students in grades K- 12. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

12 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Oak Orchard River Chapter Dinner at the Carlton Fire Department Rec Hall, Route 98, Albion , NY. (5:30 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Robert St John 585-682-4495 st.johnphilosophy@yahoo.com) 

13 - Family Fishing Festival at Powder Mills Park, 154 Park Road, Pittsford, NY (9:00 am – 1:00 pm) Come spend the morning with WXXI Kids, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and our partners at Powder Mills Park and learn how to FISH! Everyone is welcome. Join Pick up a rod to try your hand at fishing in one of our Monroe County Parks! Partner organizations will be around for fly fishing demonstrations, hands-on activities, and to answer questions about where to fish, what you need to fish, and how to fish with young family members. Get engaged in citizen science and find out how you can help the NYSDEC learn about fish populations by joining the Angler Diary Program! (For information go to WXXI.org.)

13 – Wild Animal Shoot (Archery) at Hawkeye Bowmen, 13300 Clinton St, Alden, NY. (7:00 am) (For information call Nadine Fulle, 716-427-9076.)

13 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Forbidden Trail Chapter Dinner at the Addison American Legion Post 730, 85 Maple Street, Addison, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Wayne Metarko  607-359-4278  bowanna41364@yahoo.com)

13 - Vireos For Beginners at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Learn about the vireos that migrate to and through Reinstein Woods. For adults and children ages 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

13-14 - New York State Arms Collectors Association Gun Show at the NYS Fairgrounds Expo Center, 581 State Fair Boulevard, Syracuse , NY (Sat., 9 am-5 pm; Sun., 9 am-3 pm) 1,000 tables. (Admission: $7.00/seniors $5.00/children under 12 free) (For information contact Sandy Ackerman Klinger, 346 Paul Street, Endicott, NY 13760, 607-748-1010 email sandynysac@yahoo.com)

14 -  National Wild Turkey Federation – Springville Strutters Chapter Dinner at the St. Aloysius Church Hall, 186 Franklin Street, Springville, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Richard Gerlach 716-857-0586 r905g@yahoo.com) 

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for – “Your In on The Outdoors for Western New York.”

3 - 29 – 19

 

Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

NEW YORK OPENS FOR TROUT AND SALMON FISHING ON APRIL 1: Opening day for trout and salmon fishing is April 1 with moderate level, cold water and muddy banks and streambeds anticipated.    

Early season trout are typically lethargic and anglers will have best success using bait and lures such as spinners that can be fished slow and deep. Fishing will improve markedly once water temperatures warm later in the spring. This also encourages aquatic insect activity, which will improve opportunities for those preferring to use fly fishing gear. Some of the best fishing of the year in lakes and ponds often occurs immediately following ice out.

DEC plans to stock more than 2 million catchable-size brook, brown and rainbow trout in 307 lakes and ponds and roughly 3,000 miles of streams across the state. Two-year-old brown trout 12-13 inches in length will also be stocked into lakes and streams across the state. Roughly 2 million yearling lake trout, steelhead, landlocked salmon, splake and coho salmon will also be stocked by DEC this spring to provide exciting angling opportunities over the next several years. For a complete list of waters planned to be stocked with trout this spring check out listing of 2019 stockings by county.

DEC has a number of new publications that will prove helpful to those new to trout fishing. The I FISH NY Guide to Trout Fishing with Synthetic Bait describes a very effective technique to catch early season trout in ponds. The I FISH NY Guide to Trout Fishing in Streams (PDF) provides good information for those who prefer trout fishing in moving waters. 

In case you didn’t see news on the Naples Creek electro-fishing. Dave Figura, outdoor writer in Syracuse, did a good job covering it. New crew, mostly, but same old scene. Hope it opens.

   https://expo.syracuse.com/life-and-culture/g66l-2019/03/1782bc854ff54/rite-of-spring-dec-electroshocks-trout-on-finger-lake-tributary-video.html#cmpid=nsltr_morestry1headline_single

                                                                                                                                    Photo by John Adamski

 

ANOTHER BILL TO BAN HUNTING CONTESTS, TRIALS: New York Assembly Member Deborah J. Glick (D) has already introduced Assembly Bill 722, and now Senate Member Monica Martinez (D) has joined her by introducing companion legislation in the senate. Senate Bill 4253 and Glick’s AB 722, would ban any sort of hunting contest, including field trials and hunt tests for waterfowl and upland bird dogs. Assembly Bill 722 and Senate Bill 4253 are both currently in their respective Environmental Conservation Committees where they await hearings.

Take Action Today! New York sportspeople should contact their assembly member and ask them to vote NO on AB 722 and SB 4253. Members can contact their Assembly and Senate members by using the Sportsmen’s Alliance Legislative Action Center.

Current New York law allows for hunting competitions, such as organized coyote contests, to take place. Legislation like these two bills, which is being pushed and supported by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), seeks to end all hunting contests nationwide. Any person or organization caught participating in, organizing or promoting a contest, competition, tournament or derby that has the objective of taking wildlife for prizes or entertainment will face a year of jail time and/or a fine of not less than $500 and possibly as much as $2,000.

Both bills are so broadly written that in addition to any sort of contest – including a club’s big-buck contest or even organized youth squirrel hunts if kids track how many they kill (which is legally required for the purpose of bag limits) and the legislation even bans field trials in the Empire State.

Sportsmen depend on quality hunting dogs to maximize conservation. A ban on field trials and hunt tests eliminates the system through which the best breeding lines are trained and objectively evaluated. While anti-hunting groups focus their rhetoric on coyote contests, they are quietly working to ban all hunting, including the use of dogs.  

Additionally, field trials and hunt tests, like almost all hunting-related activities, stimulate local economies where the major events are held. For every field trial and hunt test, hundreds of dog owners and trainers spend a weekend testing their dogs against a standard or other dogs, and in doing so, pump thousands of dollars into the local economy through lodging, meals, fuel and other necessities.

(https://www.sportsmensalliance.org/news/new-york-bills-ban-hunting-contests-and-more/?bblinkid=147679444&bbemailid=12836526&bbejrid=983044924)

 

DEC BIOLOGISTS TO PROVIDE UPDATES ON STATUS OF SALMON RIVER'S FISHERY:

The public will have the opportunity to learn about the state of the Salmon River fishery at a public meeting to be held in Pulaski, Oswego County, on April 11. The meeting will be held from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the Pulaski High School auditorium, 4624 Salina St., Pulaski. The Salmon River Fisheries Management Plan, developed in 2018 in close consultation with a variety of stakeholders, focuses on objectives and management strategies to maintain and improve the lake-run salmonid fisheries of the 17 miles of the main stem Salmon River and its major tributaries below the Lighthouse Hill Reservoir.

At the meeting, DEC will provide an overview of ongoing activities and report on recent progress toward achieving the objectives outlined in the plan. In addition, staff will review planned activities for the coming year. The meeting will provide ample time at the end of the scheduled program for the audience to ask questions and interact with the presenters.

For additional information, contact David Lemon, DEC Region 7 Fisheries Manager, at the Cortland office, (607) 753-3095 or email fwfish7@dec.ny.gov.

 

JOHN’S NEW BOOK:

The reason for my lapse in blogging was because I was focused on finishing up my third photo book, "World of the Whitetail", so that I could get it to the printer as soon as I could. That's how excited I am about this volume. You can preview--and even buy--World of the Whitetail at this link:

http://www.blurb.com/books/9351071-world-of-the-whitetail?fbclid=IwAR165kL1Pf1DaZEAIiCEIcTlGfm5kV5SvCWcaJye2FfrEl5QLuDigCOLugY

When the link opens, click on the diagonal double arrows on the top right of the book cover and the image will enlarge. Then click on the lower right hand side of the book cover itself and you can read the first 15 pages and see the back over. If you like what you see, click on the shopping cart above the center of the book and place your order. It is available in both hardcover and softcover versions. Let me know what you think.

 

REMOVE BIRD FEEDERS TO PREVENT ATTRACTING BEARS: DEC reminds New Yorkers to take steps to prevent bears from easily accessing food sources like bird feeders and garbage. Due to poor natural food availability last fall, many black bears went into their dens with low fat reserves and as they begin to emerge from winter dens, have already begun seeking out food sources around homes.

DEC has already received several reports that bears are knocking down bird feeders to eat the seed. Feeding bears either intentionally, which is illegal, or unintentionally through careless practices around properties, has consequences for entire communities. DEC advises everyone who lives in or visits bear country to remove items that are attractive to bears. People should take down bird feeders by April 1, store garbage inside secure buildings, and feed pets indoors. Allowing bears to find food naturally keeps them out of trouble and reduces negative interactions with people and property.

For more information about how to reduce human/bear conflicts, visit DEC's website.

 

KUDOS: NEW YORK STATE OUTDOORSMEN HALL OF FAME HONORS 11 SPORTSMEN: The New York State Outdoorsmen Hall of Fame proudly announces that it has inducted 11 new members for 2019. Selection for the Outdoorsmen Hall of Fame does not represent individual achievement, but rather service to the causes of conservation or outdoor sports. The NYSOHOF is an organization dedicated to honoring those individuals who have spent many years preserving our outdoor heritage, working for conservation, or enhancing our outdoor sports for future generations. This year’s inductees represent a diverse group from all areas of the state.

Tom Hughes (Onondaga County) has shown untiring dedication in promoting fishing and the outdoor sports to youth and women. Two examples are Co-Founder of W.I.N. (Women in Nature) instructing over 1,000 women in the many outdoor sports and creator of F.O.R.C.E.S. (Friends of Recreation Conservation and Environmental Stewardship) instructing over 800 pre-k-12 students.

Paul Hudson’s (Onondaga County) commitment to refitting and maintaining a fish care release boat has resulted in the successful release of 12,463 fish from bass tournaments across the state. He assists the Carpenter Brook Fish Hatchery with annual stocking efforts. He has created and maintains collection tubes for used fishing line placed at fishing access sites across Region 7.

Chris Nutter (Onondaga County) is a dedicated Hunter Safety and Archery Instructor providing 20 years of service teaching youth and adults and serves as an Instructor Trainer teaching qualified instructors to teach future generations to safely enjoy shooting sports. He has shown a commitment to leading youth hunts for deer and turkey.

Jim Farrell (Chautauqua County) has led NYS Ducks Unlimited (DU) as chairman and as State Chairman of the (DU) Greenwing Program instructing thousands of youth on the DU mission of wetlands protection including safe ethical hunting practices. Known regionally as “Big Daddy Duck”, he attends fairs, county and regional gatherings educating the public on the importance of conservation and habitat protection.

Jack Bouquin (Erie County) is a dedicated NY Certified Instructor of Trapping, Hunting and Bow Hunting educating hundreds of youth and adults for the past 30 years.  He is a Director and founding member of Region 9 Youth Archery Camp which has produced two members of the Olympic Archery team. He serves as lead chaperone and instructor for the BSA annual primitive camping course.

Andrew Jeski (Madison County) has been a key promoter of youth fishing and has actively recruited young hunters through a variety of actions and programs, including W.I.N. N.A.S.P. and Future Anglers Outreach. As a co-founder and president of S.H.O.T.S. (Sportspeople Helping Others Through Sharing) he was responsible for funding and arranging hunting or fishing trips for handicapped or seriously ill sportsmen and women.

Tom Schneider (Onondaga County) has been active in many sportsmen’s organizations, including CNY Wildfowlers, CNY Rod & Gun Club, and Fish Creek Atlantic Salmon Club. He has been a major fund-raiser for several decades, arranged the mandated clean-up of the shooting ranges at CNY R & G Club, and arranged the location and establishment of a new private hatchery that has led to successful stocking of Atlantic salmon in the Fish Creek watershed.

John A. Patane (Madison County) has spent a lifetime volunteering with local sportsmen’s organizations such as Canastota Conservation Club or Pheasants Unlimited.  During his involvement with the Madison County chapter of Trout Unlimited he has been involved in fly tying classes, securing access to Chittenango Creek, and establishing two miles of catch and release regulations. He secured funding through grants and supervised the major stream improvement of Chittenango Creek.

Bill Conners (Dutchess County) has been a leader and spokesman for sportsmen, not only in the lower Hudson Valley but across New York State through his newspaper column, roles in NYS Conservation Council, NYS Conservation Fund Advisory Board, Fish & Wildlife Management Board, and many organizations. He has recruited and set a positive image for sportsmen through his efforts in Deer Search, Hunters Helping the Hungry, and Youth Hunts, and many others.

Ed Gardephe (Clinton County) has been a leader in many conservation causes for decades, including involving 4-H in bluebird education and bluebird house building, earning him the nickname of “Father Bluebird.” He was one of the leaders of trapper training and his written curriculum and displays are still used in trapper education today.

Kenyon Simpson (Warren County) is one of the grassroots instructors and members of the steering committee of NYS 4H Shooting Program. His work and influence have carried over into being a Hunter Education instructor for 40 years, a Director and major instructor in the National Muzzleloader Rifle Association, and an award winner in many shooting programs.

All of these outstanding individuals will be recognized at the NYSOHOF Annual Banquet at Theodores Restaurant in Canastota on Saturday, April 27, 2019. Family and friends are invited to join in this evening of celebration. Registration and social hour will begin at 5 p.m. and dinner will be served promptly at 6 p.m.  For reservations call 315-829-3588 or e-mail sfcf@tds.net by April 21.

 

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page - http://www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com/events.php)

MARCH 2019

1-31 - Celebrate Owasco Lake Month at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. The Museum focuses attention on the lake, home to both cold water & warm water fisheries!  (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

16 - Start of Catch and Release (Artificial Lures Only) Season for Black Bass in all Finger Lakes except Cayuga, Otisco, Owasco and Skaneateles Lakes. (>6/19/16)

16 - Fishing Ban (No Fishing) on Otselic River from mouth to Whitney Point Reservoir Dam, Susquehanna River in Binghamton between Rock Bottom Dam and Exchange Street Bridge, Susquehanna River in the towns of Union and Vestal from the Erie-Lackawanna Railroad bridge downstream to Murphy's Island, Tioughnioga River from New York Route 26 bridge to US Route 11 bridge, Little Choconut Creek from mouth to Goudey Station Building (Broome County), Dutch Hollow Brook from Owasco Lake upstream to the Route 38A bridge (Cayuga County), Scriba Creek from mouth upstream to Fish Hatchery Dam (Oswego County) (>5/4)

30-4/27 – Eagle Watch at the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge at Cayuga Overlook on Route 77, Alabama, NY (1-4 pm) (For information call 585-948-5445.)

 

APRIL 2019

1 - Start of Statewide Fishing Seasons for Brook, Brown & Rainbow Trout, Hybrids of these Species and Splake, Lake Trout, Landlocked/Atlantic Salmon and Kokanee (>10/15)

1 - Start of Trout Season in Green Lake (Onondaga County), Rushford Lake (Allegany County) (>11/30)

1 – Start Lake, Brown, Rainbow and Atlantic Salmon in the tributaries of Canadice, Canandiagua, Hemlock, Keuka, Seneca, Cayuga, Owasco, Otisco, and Skaneateles Lakes (>12/31)

1-30 -  Celebrate Otisco Lake Month at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. The Museum focuses attention on the lake, the only lake you can walk across in every season (via a causeway)! (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

3 - DEC Turkey Study by NYSDEC Biologist Emilio Rende at Michael’s Banquet Facility on Southwestern Blvd., Hamburg, NY. This presentation will be part of the WNY Chapter of the Safari Club Intentional monthly meeting. This meeting is free and open to the public. (For information call 716-649-4038)

3 - How To Avoid Nuisance Bear Encounters at the Frederick Carder Elementary School, 289 State Street, Corning, NY. (6:00 pm) A DEC presentation on black bears and how to avoid nuisance bear encounters. The discussion will include information about black bear ecology and behavior, as well as steps residents can take to avoid conflicts with bears. Black bears have increased in number and range across all of southern New York State, including the Southern Tier over the past 35 years. This has led to an increase in the number of bear conflicts in the area. The presentation is free and open to the public. (For information call 607-776-2165.)

4 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Lake Plains Chapter Dinner at the Webster Golf Club, 440 Salt Road, Webster, NY. (6:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Richard Vendel 585-872-4565) 

5 - Whitetails Unlimited – Cortland County Chapter Banquet at the, Elks Lodge #748, Cortland, NY. (5:30 pm)Through our Grassroots Program, WTU provides grants to local projects and activities that advance our mission. Proceeds from this event will benefit youth conservation and training event. (For information call Bill Bailey 413-244-2304.)

6 - Second Annual Lake Erie Outdoor & Fishing Show at the Clarion Hotel Marina & Conference Center, 30 Lake Shore Dr E, Dunkirk, NY (10:00 am – 4:00 pm) (For information call 716-366-3000 ext. 420 or email mpatton@observertoday.com.)

6 - Niagara Musky Association’s 25th Anniversary Banquet at the Pearl Street Grill and Brewery, 76 Pearl Street, Buffalo, NY (6:00 pm) (For information/tickets call Scott McKee at 716-225-3816.)

6 – Niagara County Federation of Conservation Clubs Annual Awards Banquet at the Cornell Cooperative Extension - Niagara, 4487 Lake Avenue, Lockport, NY. (5:30 pm) (For information/tickets call Dave Whitt at 716-754-2133 by March 29.)

6 – Birder Boot Camp: Intro to Birding at the Beaver Meadow Nature Center, N. Java, NY. (10:00 am to noon.) (For information/pre-register call 585-457-3228.)

6 -  Family Nature Quest: Busy Beavers at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:30 am) Celebrate International Beaver Day with a short guided walk to visit a beaver lodge and look for clues of active beaver. Try out your engineering skills and build your own beaver dam. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

6 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Tri-County Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at the Ramada Inn, 2310 N. Triphammer Road, Ithaca, NY (5:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Scott Wilcox at 607-533-4707)

6 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Chautauqua Lake Chapter Dinner at the Frewsburg American Legion Post 556, 9 Meadow Lane, Frewsburg, NY. (5:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Patrick Hoover 716-489-6933)

6 - Orleans County Houndsmen And Conservation Club Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on 13461 Phipps Road, Albion, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy - $10.00/8:00 pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $15.00) (For information call Ed Roggen at 585-948-9483)

6 - Elmira Beagle Club Beagle Event at their clubhouse at 1485 Breesport-N Chemung Road, Lowman, NY (8:00 am Beagle Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Timothy Hall 607-331-1660  or email moc.evil@selgaebtniopkcehc)

6 - Ducks Unlimited – Rochester and Western Monroe County Chapter Dinner and Live Auction at the Salmon Creek Country Club, 355 Washington Street, Spencerport NY. (5:30 pm) Waterfowl conservation is facing important challenges as wetlands and other habitats are being degraded and destroyed across the continent. Ducks Unlimited has a vision to reverse this trend. (Cost: $65 Single, $100 Couple) (For information call Sofiea Ayers 585-331-2593  sofiea.ayers@duncanfamilyfarms.net or Tom Kelly  585-727-7679.) 

6 - Brighton Henrietta Pittsford 39th Annual DU Dinner at the Midvale Country Club, 2387 Baird Road. Penfield, NY (6:00 pm) This year the BHP Chapter is looking to take our yearly event to the next level. Exciting must have items will be found in our various raffles, silent, and main auction events. We are limiting our number of tickets sold to the first 170 people who register, and pay, for this dinner as we focus to provide the optimum experience for our attendees. As previously mentioned advanced payment for dinner tickets is required as we will no longer accepting payments at the door, so it is critical you purchase your reservations by Friday, March 24th. (Cost: Single $90.00/Couple $145.00) (For information call Rae Mungillo 585-671-6888 raemo44@rochester.rr.com or Pete Grondin 585-880-2035  petergrondin@yahoo.com)

6-7 – Little Valley Volunteer Fire Department Sportsmen’s Show at the Cattaraugus County Fair Grounds,  off Route 353, Little Valley NY. (Sat 9:00 am – 4:00 pm/Sun 9:00 am – 3:00 pm) ($5.00 admission) (For information call Jim Miller at 716-938-6928)

7 - Spring Shoot at the Ellery Rod & Gun Club, 4005 Pancake Hill Road, Bemus Point, NY. (9:00 am), The Shoot will include Lucky Shot and Slug. Bring your own size 7 1/2 or size 8 shot shells. Breakfast will be served from 8 a.m. until 11 for $6. Raffles too! Open to the public. (For information call 716-499-1118.)

7 - Finger Lakes Friends of NRA Banquet at the Harbor Hotel, 16 N. Franklin Street, Watkins Glen, NY (3:30 pm) (Cost: $50.00) (For information contact Kayla West 607-351-1382  flfriendsnra@gmail.com)

7 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Niagara County Gobblers Chapter Dinner at the Youngstown Vounteer Fire Company, 625 Third Street, Youngstown, NY (3:30 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Pamela Lederhouse 716-791-3151 plederhous@aol.com) 

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for – “Your In on The Outdoors for Western New York.”

What Do You Think? Have something for other sportspeople? Let us know HERE.

 

 

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3 - 22 – 19

 

Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

DEC ANNOUNCES 2018 BEAR HARVEST RESULTS:

New York State bear hunters took 1,295 black bears during the 2018 hunting seasons.

Hunters took an estimated 804 black bears in New York's Southern Zone in 2018, about 20 percent fewer than 2017 and the recent five-year average. With reduced natural forage for bears this past fall and deep snows in mid-November prior to the regular firearms season, many bears went into dens a few weeks earlier than normal. As a result, although bear take through the early season and bow season was comparable to 2017, take during the regular season declined by more than 40 percent from 2017.

Similarly, hunters took about 45 percent fewer bears during the Northern Zone regular season in 2018 than they did in 2017. However, bear take during the early season was particularly strong, with nearly a three-fold increase over 2017 and 50 percent increase over the five-year average. Thus, in total, hunters took an estimated 491 bears in the Northern Zone, about 25 percent more than 2017 and on par with the historical average.

Bear Harvest by Zone:

                                          2018                    2017                    Average (2013-2017)

Northern Zone                 491                      383                      476

Southern Zone              804                      1,037                   1,056

Statewide                        1,295                   1,420                   1,532

Notable Numbers

One bear harvested per 3.2 square miles. By DEC Wildlife Management Unit (WMU), the greatest bear harvest density occurred in WMU 3C which mainly covers Ulster County and includes portions of Sullivan and Greene counties. The town of Kingston in Ulster County (WMU 3C) yielded one bear for every 1.5 square miles.

80: the greatest number of bears reported taken on any one day. It happened on November 17 - the opening day of the regular firearms season in the Southern Zone.

585 pounds: the heaviest dressed weight bear reported to DEC in 2018, taken in the town of Shandaken, Ulster County. A 550-pound dressed weight bear was reported taken in Marbletown, Ulster County, and six bears were reported with dressed weights between 400-500 pounds. Scaled weights of dressed bears were submitted for 23 percent of bears taken in 2018.

Six: the number of tagged bears reported in the 2018 harvest. These included one bear originally tagged in Pennsylvania and two from New Jersey. The remainder were originally tagged in New York for a variety of reasons, including research, nuisance response, relocated urban bears, or released rehabilitated bears.

767: the number of hunter-killed bears from which DEC collected teeth for age analysis in 2018. Hunters who reported their harvest and submitted a tooth for age analysis will receive a 2018 Black Bear Management Cooperator Patch. Results of the age analysis is expected to be available by September 2019.

Nine percent: the proportion of bears taken by non-resident hunters. Successful non-resident bear hunters hailed from 19 states, the farthest being Washington.

DEC's harvest estimates rely on successful hunters reporting their harvest. For more information on game harvest reporting, visit DEC's website.

2018 Bear Take Summary Report
A complete summary of the 2018 bear harvest with results and maps by county, town, and WMU is available on DEC's website.

 

PUBLIC INFORMATION SESSION ON HABITAT MANAGEMENT PLANS FOR JOHN WHITE AND OAK ORCHARD WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREAS:  The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) will host a public information session to provide information and answer questions about recently completed habitat management plans for John White Wildlife Management Area (WMA), located in the town of Alabama, Genesee County, and Oak Orchard WMA, located in the towns of Alabama and Oakfield, Genesee County, and the towns of Barre and Shelby, Orleans County.

The session will take place on Wednesday, March 27, from 6:30 to 8 p.m, at the Town of Alabama Fire Department (Station 1), 2230 Judge Road, in the hamlet of South Alabama. The session will begin with an informal open house from 6:30 to 7 p.m., with DEC staff available for discussion. A formal presentation will begin at 7 p.m.

The fire department is wheelchair accessible. Please contact DEC Biologist Michael Palermo at (585) 226-5383 with any specific requests for accommodations.

John White WMA consists of 329 acres that are primarily grassland. Large grasslands are a relatively scarce habitat type in Western New York, and the grasslands on the WMA are important to several species, including bobolinks, grasshopper sparrows, horned larks, northern harriers, and short-eared owls.

Oak Orchard WMA consists of 2,554 acres that are primarily wetland. Wetlands on the WMA are extensive and diverse, composed of emergent marsh, scrub-shrub swamp, and forested wetlands. Some large grassland fields also occur on this WMA.

Habitat management goals for both WMAs are to maintain a diversity of wetland and upland habitats that benefit a wide range of resident and migrating wildlife species, including several rare and declining species. DEC will continue to actively manage these WMAs to benefit wildlife, while using best management practices. Planned management activities include: (1) timber harvests to improve forest health; (2) manipulation of water-levels in wetland impoundments; (3) mowing and replanting of grassland fields; and (4) control of invasive plant species.

The meeting will include a presentation about the history of management on these WMAs, specific activities and locations for the planned management actions, an overview of forest habitat management, and a question and answer period.

The habitat management plan for John White WMA can be found on DEC's website. The habitat management plan for Oak Orchard WMA can also be found on DEC's website. For more information about this event please call (585) 226-5383.

 

2019-2020 FRESHWATER FISHING DIGEST NOW AVAILABLE:

2019 Freshwater Fishing Regulations GuidePick up your copy of the 2019-20 Freshwater Fishing Digest at any license sales vendor.The new guide provides some great information for anyone interested in getting more involved in the sport of fishing, particularly women. The online version will be available April 1.

 

 

PENNSYLVANIA DEER HARVEST REPORT: Pennsylvania hunters posted their highest overall deer harvest in 14 years taking 374,690 deer during the state’s 2018-19 hunting season.

The 2018-19 deer harvest topped the previous year’s harvest of 367,159 by about 10 percent. The last time the total deer harvest exceeded this season’s total was in 2004-05.

After four years of successive annual increases in buck harvests, hunters posted a buck harvest of 147,750, which placed fourth overall since the start of antler restrictions in 2002. The 2018-19 buck harvest represents a 10 percent decline from the 2017-18 buck harvest of 163,750. The largest harvest in the antler-restrictions era – 165,416 – occurred in the first year.

Although the total deer harvest was not impacted by downpours on the opening day of the firearms deer season, the buck harvest seemed to take a hit. About half of the firearms season’s overall buck harvest typically occurs on the season’s opening day, when hunter participation is usually at its highest.

Steady rain in most of the state persisted through the morning if not longer of the firearms season opener, making hunting for deer, as well as staying dry and warm while afield, more difficult. And when hunter participation drops on the best harvest day of any season, the harvest typically does, too.

The 2018-19 overall antlerless deer harvest was 226,940, which is about 10 percent larger than the 2017-18 harvest of 203,409.

The percentage of older bucks in the 2018-19 deer harvest remained amazingly high. About 64 percent of the bucks taken by hunters were at least 2½ years old. The remainder were 1½ years old.

About 66 percent of the antlerless deer harvest was adult females; button-bucks comprised 17 percent and doe fawns made up 17 percent.

Bowhunters accounted for about a third of Pennsylvania’s 2018-19 overall deer harvest, taking 110,719 deer (54,350 bucks and 56,369 antlerless deer) with either bows or crossbows. But the buck harvest also was down in the 2018-19 archery seasons, by 13 percent. The previous license year, bowhunters took 62,830 bucks. Unseasonably warm weather and rain impacted many fall bowhunting days in 2018.

The muzzleloader harvest – 23,909 – was similar to the previous year’s harvest of 23,490. The 2018-19 muzzleloader harvest included 1,290 antlered bucks compared to 1,310 bucks in the 2017-18 seasons.

For additional information on Pennsylvania’s 2018-19 deer harvest, please go to the agency’s website – www.pgc.pa.gov – and go to the “White-Tailed Deer” page, then select 2018-19 Deer Harvest Estimates.

 

PREPARING NEST BOXES FOR SPRING: Nest boxes provide a needed option for nesting birds that require cavities, which are in short supply. Not all birds utilize nest boxes, but 88 species of cavity nesting birds require a cavity for nesting. Cavities are excavated by woodpeckers, and they are created naturally in trees, often in dead branches and snags. But the number of cavities in any location can be a limiting factor for some species, so by providing an artificial cavity – a nest box – you are helping cavity nesting birds, which is a great conservation service. If you already have birdhouses in your yard, it’s time to make sure they are cleaned out and in good repair – ready for the upcoming nesting season. If you wish to add another nest box or two to the mix, now’s the time to start shopping for – or building – new additions.

It’s also necessary to position a nest box in the correct habitat; for example, wrens prefer an overgrown location, while Tree Swallows and bluebirds prefer an open setting. The height where you position the nest box can be important too; for example, American Kestrels usually prefer a higher position than Wood Ducks. It’s usually not suggested to hang bird houses from a wire or line because birds generally don’t like the movement in the wind, which will reduce the chances your bird house will be used.

Of course, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology is a leader in providing helpful information to birders interested in nest boxes and bird houses. For a variety of information and a bunch of inspiration, refer to https://nestwatch.org/learn/all-about-birdhouses/right-bird-right-house/ and associated web pages.

 

VOLUNTEERS TO ASSIST AMPHIBIANS WITH ROAD CROSSINGS: Community volunteers are getting out in anticipation of annual breeding migrations of salamanders and frogs, which typically begin in mid-March. The volunteers will document their observations as part of DEC's Amphibian Migrations and Road Crossings Project.

After the ground has started to thaw in late winter and early spring, species such as spotted salamander and wood frog emerge from underground winter shelters in the forest and walk overland to woodland pools for breeding. In New York's Hudson Valley, this migration usually occurs on rainy nights from mid-March to early April, when the night air temperature is above 40 degrees Fahrenheit. When these conditions align just so, New York can experience explosive "big night" migrations, with hundreds of amphibians on the move, many having to cross roads.

Volunteers of the Amphibian Migrations and Road Crossings Project document Hudson Valley locations where migrations cross roads, record weather and traffic conditions, and identify and count the amphibians on the move. The volunteers also carefully help the amphibians to safely cross roads.

Now in its 11th year, more than 370 project volunteers have counted 20 species of amphibians and helped nearly 12,000 cross roads. Species reported most frequently during migration nights include spotted salamander, spring peeper, and wood frog. To a lesser degree, volunteers have also observed Jefferson-blue spotted salamander complex and four-toed salamander, species of greatest conservation need in New York, as well as more common species like American toad and redback salamander.

Drivers are encouraged to proceed with caution or avoid travel on the first warm, rainy evenings of the season. Amphibians come out after nightfall and are slow moving; mortality can be high even on low-traffic roads Since the project started in 2009, volunteers have counted at least 5,700 migrating amphibians killed by passing vehicles. For more information, including a short video about amphibian migrations, visit DEC's website or contact woodlandpool@dec.ny.gov.

Project volunteers are encouraged to use the hashtag #amphibianmigrationhv in their photos and posts on social media.

Volunteers of Amphibian Migrations using their headlamps to look at a salamader in the hand of a fellow volunteerA brown salamander spotted with bright yellow spots all over its body in the hand of a volunteer

CHECK OUT DEC'S  LAKE STURGEON TAGGING VIDEO:  Take a look at DEC's efforts to tag young lake sturgeon in the hatchery to track them over their long lifespan. Tagging the sturgeon is one tool used to track the overall recovery of the species in New York. When many more untagged sturgeon are collected in our waters than tagged sturgeon, we will know our recovery efforts are working. View the video.

 

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page - http://www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com/events.php)

 

MARCH 2019

1-31 - Celebrate Owasco Lake Month at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. The Museum focuses attention on the lake, home to both cold water & warm water fisheries!  (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

14 - Annual State of Lake Ontario Public Meeting at the SUNY Schenectady County Community College, Stockade Building, Room 101, 78 Washington Avenue, Schenectady, NY (Schenectady County). (6:30 – 9:00 pm) The meeting is co-hosted by the Eastern Lake Ontario Salmon and Trout Association. DEC, United States Geological Survey, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources biologists will make a number of presentations, including updates on the status of trout and salmon fisheries, forage fish, stocking programs, and fisheries management plans. Ample time will be provided at the end of the scheduled program for the audience to interact with the presenters. Information summaries for a host of Lake Ontario fisheries assessment programs will be posted at: http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/27068.html prior to the public meetings. (For information contact Christopher Legard, Cape Vincent Fisheries Research Station 315-654-2147)

14 - Educator Workshop: Plt Environmental Experiences For Early Childhood at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (4:00 7:00 pm) Search Learn how to engage young children in outdoor exploration! Attendees receive an interdisciplinary activity guide and music CD. 3 CTLE hours provided. For educators of children ages 3 to 6.  (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

15 - Deadline for removing Ice Shanties from all waters.

15 - Close of Statewide Fishing Seasons for Northern Pike, Pickerel, Tiger Muskellunge and Walleye

15 - Close of Fishing Season for Muskellunge in the Susquehanna River (Tioga County) & the Chemung River and Tributaries (Chemung County)

15 - Close of Finger Lakes Bass Season.

15 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Canisteo Valley Chapter Dinner at The Main Place, Main Streeet, Hornell, NY (6:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Matthew Wilhelm 585-808-9362) 

15-16 - NYDU State Convention and Conservation Celebration at the Ramada Inn Lakefront, Geneva, New York. A celebration of the achievements during 2018.  (Cost: Single (full weekend) $165/Couple (full weekend) $290/Greenwing (full weekend) $50.00/Adult (Fri only) $75/Adult Sat only) $90) (For information go to www.ducks.org/new-york/events)

16 - Start of Catch and Release (Artificial Lures Only) Season for Black Bass in all Finger Lakes except Cayuga, Otisco, Owasco and Skaneateles Lakes. (>6/19/16)

16 - Fishing Ban (No Fishing) on Otselic River from mouth to Whitney Point Reservoir Dam, Susquehanna River in Binghamton between Rock Bottom Dam and Exchange Street Bridge, Susquehanna River in the towns of Union and Vestal from the Erie-Lackawanna Railroad bridge downstream to Murphy's Island, Tioughnioga River from New York Route 26 bridge to US Route 11 bridge, Little Choconut Creek from mouth to Goudey Station Building (Broome County), Dutch Hollow Brook from Owasco Lake upstream to the Route 38A bridge (Cayuga County), Scriba Creek from mouth upstream to Fish Hatchery Dam (Oswego County) (>5/4)

16 – Eastren Lake Ontario Salmon & Trout Association Annual Flea Market at the Brewerton, NY Fire Hall. (For information call 315-515-8278)

16 - Crown City Bassmasters  Hunting & Fishing Extravaganza at the Dryden Fire Station, Dryden, NY. (9:00 am – 2:00 pm) For more info call Joe Matt, 315-420-8150.

16 - Southwestern NY Friends of NRA Banquet at the Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino, 777 Seneca Allegany Blvd., Salamanca, NY (4:30 pm) (Cost: $50.00) (For information contact Ray Patchkofsky 585-307-9824 or email  raymondpatchkofsky@yahoo.com)

16 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Finger Lakes Bucks N’ Beards Chapter Dinner at J B's Bar & Grill, 10832 Gloades Corners Road, Prattsburgh, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Steve Calderwood 607-522-7991  eot_tradingpost.yahoo.com) 

16 - Chemung County Coon Hunters Association Inc Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on Rumsey Hill Road, Van Etten, NY. (3:00 pm – Coonhound Event Field Trial-Poor Boy - $12.00/5:00 pm – Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy – $12.00/7:00pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $12.00) (For information call Larry Morley at 607-387-9803)

16 - Wine and Wings Raptor Van Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (1:00 – 4:00 pm) The spring migration is here so join us to search for migratory waterfowl, elusive Northern Harriers, breeding Bald Eagles and more! During the tour, we will stop at Izzo’s White Barn Winery and enjoy award-winning wines and learn how vineyards and Important Birds Areas can exist side by side. Fee: $20/adult, includes wine tastings. Must be 21+. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED. (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

16-17 - The 72 Annual Batavia Gun and Sportsman Show at the Quality Inn & Suites, 8250 Park Road, Batavia, NY (Sat-9:00 am – 4:00 pm/Sun-9:00 am – 3:00 pm) This show is hosted by the Alabama Hunt Club. All federal, state and local firearm ordinances and laws must be obeyed. 150+ tables. (Cost: $5.00/under 12 free w/adult) (For information contact Denis Davis  585-798-6089  dwdavis70@gmail.com)

17 - Genesee Valley Trappers Association Fur Auction at the Clubhouse, 4462 County Road 32 (3 miles east of Honeoye, south of 20A), Honeoye, NY (6:30 am fur checkin/10:00 am auction) ($10.00 charge for non-members) (For information call Tom Miller, 585-229-4759)

19 - Annual State of Lake Ontario Public Meeting at the Pulaski High School Auditorium, 4624 Salina Street, Pulaski, NY (Oswego County). (6:30 – 9:00 pm) The meeting is co-hosted by the Eastern Lake Ontario Salmon and Trout Association. DEC, United States Geological Survey, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources biologists will make a number of presentations, including updates on the status of trout and salmon fisheries, forage fish, stocking programs, and fisheries management plans. Ample time will be provided at the end of the scheduled program for the audience to interact with the presenters. Information summaries for a host of Lake Ontario fisheries assessment programs will be posted at: http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/27068.html prior to the public meetings. (For information contact Christopher Legard, Cape Vincent Fisheries Research Station 315-654-2147)

20 - Informational Meeting On The State Of Skaneateles Lake Fisheries at the Homer Intermediate School auditorium, 58 Clinton Street, Homer, NY. (6:30 – 8:30 pm) At the meeting, DEC will present summaries of the latest available fisheries research and management strategies and actions on Skaneateles Lake, including future management of the recently established walleye population and contributions from the Citizens Statewide Lake Assessment Program and Eastern Finger Lakes Angler Diary Cooperator Program. The formal presentation is expected to last approximately one hour. An informal question and answer session related to Skaneateles Lake fisheries will follow DEC's presentation. DEC annually stocks Skaneateles Lake with trout. An ongoing Angler Diary Cooperator Program for gamefish provides DEC Fisheries staff with useful data on population trends. Information on the Angler Diary Program and recent reports can be viewed on DEC's website. DEC is continually seeking new cooperators and interested volunteers are encouraged to contact the Region 7 Fisheries Office at (607) 753-3095 ext 213 or fwfish7@dec.ny.gov

21 - Migration Mania Birding Van Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (1:00 – 3:30 pm) The Montezuma Wetlands Complex is Audubon’s first globally significant Important Bird Area because of the incredible number of waterfowl that stop here during the migration seasons. Enjoy a leisurely ride in our van to explore Montezuma’s birding hot spots where thousands of ducks, geese and swans can be seen. Bald Eagles, Northern Harriers, and other raptors are a possibility too. Binoculars and bird guides will be provided. Fee: $8/child; $15/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED. (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

21 - NYSDEC Electro Shocking of Naples Creek – Crew starts just north of the Village of Naples, Ontario County, at the Route 245 bridge. (9:00 am) The sampling is conducted to aid in the ongoing assessment of Finger Lakes fisheries management practices and to provide up-to-date information for the opening day fishing forecast.  (For information call 585-226-5324)

22 – NYSDEC Electro Shocking of Cold Brook (Keuka Inlet) – Crew starts in the hamlet of Pleasant Valley, Steuben County. (10:00 am) The sampling is conducted to aid in the ongoing assessment of Finger Lakes fisheries management practices and to provide up-to-date information for the opening day fishing forecast.  (For information call 585-226-5324)

22 – Registration Deadline for April 12th Falconry, Wildlife Rehabilitator And Leashed Tracking Dog Examinations: The exams are scheduled for 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at most DEC Regional Offices across the state. To apply for any of these exams, visit the DEC Special Licenses Unit website and complete an exam registration form. Applicants can mail, fax, or email the completed form to: NYS DEC Special Licenses Unit, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4752 Phone: 518-402-8985, Fax: 518-402-8925, Email: SpecialLicenses@dec.ny.gov.

22 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Chemung Valley Ridgerunners Chapter Dinner at the Elmira Holiday Inn Riverview, 760 E. Water Street, Elmira, NY. (6:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Chad McDonald 607-738-2050 cltcmcdolald24@yahoo.com) 

23 - 8th Annual Fisherman’s Paradise Flea Market/Swap Meet at the Alexander Firemen’s Rec Hall, 10708 Route 98, Alexander, NY.

23 – Lake Ontario Fisheries Symposium sponsored by NY Sea Grant and the Lake Ontario Sportfishing Promotion Council at the Finger Lakes Mall (adjacent to Bass Pro), Auburn, NY. (10:00 am – 4:00 pm)  Come see presentations and expert panels to learn about everything from fish basics to cutting edge technology. Door prizes, kids activities, fish tanks and displays, outdoor and fishing gear vendors, and more. Something for everyone from beginners to seasoned veterans. Presenters and panelists will include professional anglers, managers, and scientists from around Lake Ontario. (For information/register for free go to https://reg.cce.cornell.edu/LakeOntarioFisheriesSymposium_112.)

23 - Make A Reusable Bag at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:00 - 4:00 pm) Stop in with your old t-shirts and plastic bags and we’ll help you transform them into reusable bags for all your shopping needs. (For information call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

23 - National Wild Turkey Federation – CrossRoads Limbhangers Chapter Dinner at the Lima Country Club, 7470 Chase Road, Lima, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Neil Gottfried  585-245-3051  longbeardg@gmail.com)

23 – Elmira Beagle Club Beagle Event at their clubhouse at 1485 Breesport-N Chemung Road, Lowman, NY (8:00 am Beagle Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Timothy Hall 607-331-1660  or email moc.evil@selgaebtniopkcehc)

23 - Greater Rochester QDMA Banquet at the Double Tree, Rochester. (4:30 pm) (For information call David Perotto, 585-410-5551.)

23-24 – 41st Annual Maple Sugaring at the Cumming Nature Center, 6472 Gulick Road, Naples, NY. (Breakfast 9:00 am-1:00 pm/Trail Demonstrations 10:00 am – 2:00 pm) Explore the science and lore of maple syrup production with volunteer guides along the CNC Pioneer Trail and also enjoy a pancake breakfast. On the trail, participants learn how a tree makes sap and discover the different processing techniques while enjoying the outdoors. Other highlights include a 100 percent pure maple syrup tasting in the sugarhouse, and a pancake meal in the visitors center. All meals include pure maple syrup and a choice of beverage. Maple Sugaring is the CNC’s major annual fundraising event and helps maintain CNC operations. (Meal Cost: Adult - $10.00/Kids - $8.00) (For information call 585-374-6160)

30 - Otisco Lake Rod & Gun Club Traders Day at the Club, Rte. 174 (3015 Marietta Rd.), Marietta, NY (one mile south of Rte. 20). For more info call Keith Severson, 607-343-1906.

30 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Genesee Local Chapter Dinner at the Quality Inn & Suites, 8250 Park Road, Batavia, NY. (6:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Terry Young 585-343-8350 tyoung14143@gmail.com)  

30 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Catharine Valley Long Spurs Chapter Dinner at the Watkins Glen Community Center, Route 414, Watkins Glen, NY. (5:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Wally Wasson 607-546-4859 wasson3970@aol.com)

30 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Springville Strutters Chapter Dinner at the St. Aloysius Church Hall, 186 Franklin Street, Springville, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Richard Gerlach 716-857-0586 r905g@yahoo.com) 

30 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Springville Strutters Chapter Wito at Erie County Conservation Club, Miller Avenue, Chaffee, NY (9:00 am) A great time to help raise vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Becky Werchowski 716-942-6858 viewofcountry@yahoo.com)

30 - Chemung County Coon Hunters Association Inc Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on Rumsey Hill Road, Van Etten, NY. (3:00 pm – Coonhound Event Field Trial-Poor Boy - $12.00/5:00 pm – Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy – $12.00/7:00pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $12.00) (For information call Larry Morley at 607-387-9803)

30 - Elmira Beagle Club Beagle Event at their clubhouse at 1485 Breesport-N Chemung Road, Lowman, NY (8:00 am Beagle Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Timothy Hall 607-331-1660  or email moc.evil@selgaebtniopkcehc)

30 - Who’s Awake at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:00 am) On this walk we will search for early risers and migrants in the woods. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov) 

30 – Birding 101: Class #3 at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) What bird am I? Come learn the general types of birds found in the woods. For adults and children ages 8 and older. (For information and register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

30 - Braddock Bay Hawk Watch Trip meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (9:00 am – 4:00 pm) Braddock Bay is a bird migration hot spot located on the southern shore of Lake Ontario just west of Rochester, New York and early spring is the perfect time to look to the skies for many species of raptors migrating through the area. Join us for a day-long van trip to Braddock Bay Raptor Research (BBRR) for the chance to see hundreds (thousands if the conditions are right) of hawks, vultures, eagles, owls, waterfowl and songbirds migrating overhead. We’ll meet with BBRR President Daena Ford for a live bird of prey presentation, take a short walk through Owl Woods searching for roosting Saw Whet Owls and Long-eared Owls, and we’ll also explore the raptor banding station. Please pack a lunch, wear sturdy shoes, and dress for the weather. Fee: $20/child, $30/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED. (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

30-31 – 41st Annual Maple Sugaring at the Cumming Nature Center, 6472 Gulick Road, Naples, NY. (Breakfast 9:00 am-1:00 pm/Trail Demonstrations 10:00 am – 2:00 pm) Explore the science and lore of maple syrup production with volunteer guides along the CNC Pioneer Trail and also enjoy a pancake breakfast. On the trail, participants learn how a tree makes sap and discover the different processing techniques while enjoying the outdoors. Other highlights include a 100 percent pure maple syrup tasting in the sugarhouse, and a pancake meal in the visitors center. All meals include pure maple syrup and a choice of beverage. Maple Sugaring is the CNC’s major annual fundraising event and helps maintain CNC operations. (Meal Cost: Adult - $10.00/Kids - $8.00) (For information call 585-374-6160)

31 - Close of Catch and Release (Artificial Lures Only) Season for Trout in Salmon Creek (Cayuga County), Salmon Creek Above Ludlow Falls & West Branch Owego Creek (Tompkins County), Spring Creek on Caledonia State Fish Hatchery Property (8:00 am B 4:00 pm) (Livingston County), Oatka Creek from Bowerman Road Upstream to Union Street and from the Wheatland Center Road Upstream to the Mouth of Spring Creek, and Spring Creek (Monroe County), East Koy & Wiscoy Creeks (Allegany County), Clear Creek, Lime Lake Outlet, McKinstry Creek, Elm Creek, Elton Creek, Mansfield Creek and Cattaraugus Creek Upstream of Springville Dam (Cattaraugus County), Hosmer Brook and Cattaraugus Creek Upstream of Springville Dam (Erie County), Wiscoy Creek (Minus Section 2 mile Each Side of East Hillside Road Bridge), East Koy Creek, Cattaraugus Creek Upstream of Springville Dam and Clear Creek from Mouth to County Line (Wyoming County)

31 – Close of Crow Hunting Season

31 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Between-the-Lakes Chapter Dinner at the South Seneca Sportsman’s Club, 6894 Yamell Road, Ovid, NY. (5:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Shane Hayward 607-351-8830 shanehayward9@gmail.com) 

31 - Finger Lakes Trollers Fishing Tackle, Outdoor Show and Flea Market at the Community Center at Clute Park, Watkins Glen, NY (9:00 am – 2:00 pm) New, used and antique fishing tackle,fishing charters,archery, turkery hunting stuff,etc. There will be about 70 tables set up. (Tables are sold out). (Admission is $2.00 with kids under 10 free. Parking is free.) (For information call Mike Burt 607-765-9866)

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for – “Your In on The Outdoors for Western New York.”

What Do You Think? Have something for other sportspeople? Let us know HERE.

 

 

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3 - 15 – 19

 

Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

RAINBOW TROUT SAMPLING: DEC announced the dates and locations for the annual sampling of the rainbow trout run in Finger Lakes tributaries. This year, sampling is scheduled for: Thursday, March 21, 9 a.m., at Naples Creek, just north of the village of Naples, Ontario County, at the Rt. 245 bridge; and Friday, March 22, 10 a.m., at Cold Brook (Keuka Inlet) in the hamlet of Pleasant Valley, Steuben County. DEC is conducting the sampling to aid in the agency's ongoing assessment of Finger Lakes fisheries management practices and to provide up-to-date information for the opening day fishing forecast.

During sampling, data will be collected for each fish, including length, weight, sex, and spawning condition. A scale from the fish is used to determine age and growth rate. Sampling results will be available to the public at the DEC Region 8 Fisheries Office prior to the April 1 opening of the "inland" trout fishing season. Anglers wanting to fish for trout before April 1 are reminded that trout fishing is open year-round in the main bodies of the Finger Lakes.

 

DEAD FISH MAY SHOW UP AS ICE BEGINS TO THAW:


Winter conditions – very cold temperatures and heavy snow over ice, for example – can kill fish and other aquatic creatures like turtles, frogs, toads and crayfish. When ice and snow start to melt in the spring, it’s likely that people will begin to discover those deaths.

"Winterkill is the most common type of fish kill," said Gary Whelan, the Michigan DNR Fisheries Division’s research manager. "As the season changes, it can be common in shallow lakes, ponds, streams and canals. These kills are localized and typically don’t affect the overall health of fish populations or fishing quality."

Shallow lakes with excess vegetation and soft bottoms are prone to winterkill. When aquatic vegetation under ice and snow dies from lack of sunlight, it uses up dissolved oxygen as it decays, and that creates fish kill conditions. Canals in urban areas also are susceptible due to run-off and pollution from roads and lawns and septic systems, again using up dissolved oxygen through the decay of vegetation and organic materials in sediments.

“Fish and other aquatic life typically die in late winter but may not be noticed until a month after the ice melts, because the dead fish are temporarily preserved on the lake bottom by the cold water. Once the water warms up, bacterial activity results in the dead fish coming to the surface,” Whelan said. “Fish also are affected by rapid water temperature changes due to unseasonably warm weather, leading to stress and sometimes mortality.”

Fish can get easily stressed as they often have low energy reserves in late winter and food is scarce. That equals less adaptability to low oxygen and temperature swings.

Anyone spotting a fish kill in larger quantities – 25 fish or more – should report it using the Sick or Dead Aquatic Species form available under the fish icon at Michigan.gov/EyesInTheField. People also can contact local DNR offices. It’s important to report observations as soon as possible, allowing fisheries staff to collect the best-quality fish for analysis.

For more information, visit Michigan.gov/FishHealth or contact Gary Whelan, 517-284-5840 or Elyse Walter, 517-284-5839.

 

LANDOWNERS INVITED TO PROVIDE INPUT ON FOREST TAX LAW PROGRAM:

NYS landowners with more than 50 acres of private forested land may be eligible for DEC's Forest Tax Law Program. DEC's Division of Lands and Forests is seeking public input on the Forest Tax Law Program, Real Property Tax Law Section 480-a. The Forest Tax Law was enacted in 1974 to give forest landowners with 50 acres or more of qualifying land in New York State and incentive for conducting sustainable timber harvests. Currently, there are 3,400+ forest landowners and more than 1.2 million acres of private forest land enrolled in the program. DEC is seeking public input to determine ways to increase compliance, reduce administrative burdens, and improve forestry outcomes. Program changes under considerations will not alter the annual tax benefit, stumpage tax, commitment period, or penalties for non-compliance.

Since late February, DEC has been gathering comments on the proposed changes at public meetings across the state. DEC will also host a webinar that can be accessed via a computer or phone on April 5th for those who cannot participate in-person. For more information about this program, as well as details on the webinar and remaining meetings, visit our website.

 

SCHOOL SEEDLING PROGRAM APPLICATIONS DUE MARCH 31ST:

Teachers may receive free tree or shrub seedlings to plant with their students. Hey teachers and youth club leaders! Want to help pass on a care for conservation and stewardship to your students? Sign up for DEC's School Seedling Program from the Saratoga Tree Nursery! New York schools and youth-oriented clubs can apply to receive an order of 30-50 trees or shrubs to plant with their students. Looking for some tree planting inspiration? Arbor Day is just around the corner on 4/26 - a planting event is a great way to celebrate this holiday and the many benefits trees provide us with!  Applications for the School Seedling Program are due March 31st. If you need assistance, contact your regional DEC Lands and Forests office for specific information about the program. Each school or organization may receive one order per year.

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Ice is Not an Excuse - Onondaga County:  On March 1, ECO Don Damrath was busy checking ice fisherman on Otisco Lake in the town of Spafford when he observed an excavator in the distance working along the shoreline. A closer inspection revealed contractors repairing and replacing an existing limestone rock wall. The problem was that they were extending the wall a few feet out and placing fill into the lake, all without a permit. The contractors claimed "someone" advised them that if the lake was frozen and that the work did not require a permit or erosion mitigation measures. The subjects could not provide a name or documentation ECO Damrath advised the workers to remove the unlawful fill by hand, install silt fencing to protect water quality, and await further inspection by Region 7 habitat biologist Tiffany Toukatly. Otisco Lake is the most easterly of the 11 Finger Lakes and supports populations of panfish, bass, and tiger muskellunge. As a result of the unauthorized work, the contractor was charged for violating ECL Article 15 and is facing $1,500 in penalties.

Large ditch that has been dug up by large construction machinery
Unpermitted work on shoreline of Otisco Lake

Funeral Detail for Retired DLE Director Donald W. Brewer - Seneca County: On March 8, family, friends, and more than 30 members from DEC's Division of Law Enforcement gathered to pay their respects at funeral services for retired DLE Director Donald "Wayne" Brewer. Director Brewer died unexpectedly but peacefully on Feb. 12 at the age of 69. Brewer began his career with DLE in 1973 and rose through the ranks to be appointed Director in 1997 at 47. Upon retirement, Brewer returned to his beloved Seneca County, fulfilling a promise he made to come home and serve his community. He was a prolific freelance outdoor writer with countless articles published in local and regional newspapers, national environmental magazines, and trade journals. Harboring a deep love for the environment and wildlife, Brewer spent his retirement years encouraging young men and women to revere and protect nature by entering environmental professions. DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said, "Wayne will be greatly missed, but we will honor his legacy by continuing the conservation and preservation efforts he fought for his entire life."

 

PENNSYLVANIA CONTINUES TO LEAD NATION IN DEER-VEHICLE ACCIDENTS:

According to the 2019 QDMA Whitetail Report, the Keystone State continues to far surpass all other states in terms of deer-vehicle collisions, comprising more than 10 percent of the nation’s estimated total of deer-related accidents as a whole.

Based on industry data provided by State Farm Insurance, Pennsylvania filed an estimated 141,777 claims from July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2018, which is a conservative total since it’s based on comprehensive and collision claims, and doesn’t even include policy-holders with solely liability insurance.

Rounding out the top five states of the nation’s 1,330,276 overall deer-vehicle-accident claims during this time period are, in order: Michigan (87,959), New York (72,314), North Carolina (64,200), and Texas (60,857). Pennsylvania tops second-place Michigan by 53,818 accidents.

Pennsylvania also led the pack in terms of deer-vehicle accidents per road mile with 0.57 deer-related crashes per road mile. Maryland was a distant second (0.43), followed by Delaware (0.39), Virginia (0.37), and Michigan (0.34) in the top five. The majority of accidents occurred during spring fawning and fall breeding seasons.

The whopping 141,777 collisions registered in 2017-18 marks a 23-percent increase since 2011-12, when Pennsylvania filed 115,571 claims, and a 28-percent increase since 2002-03, when 111,1142 claims were filed.

With an estimated 367,159 deer harvested in the 2017-18 hunting seasons, the deer-vehicle accident total equated to roughly 39-percent of the overall state harvest. That same year, Pennsylvania hunters ranked third in the nation for both antlered buck harvest (163,750) and antlerless harvest (203,409), and ranked second for antlered buck harvest per square mile (3.7). It was third for antlerless harvest per square mile (4.5).

The annual QDMA Whitetail Report is compiled and written by Quality Deer Management Association staff as a comprehensive resource for reporting the status of white-tailed deer, commonly regarded as the foundation of the hunting industry in North America. It is available for purchase at www.qdma.com.

 

HOW TO AVOID WILDLIFE COLLISIONS: As daylight saving time begins, here are some tips to help you avoid wildlife collisions:

>Be especially alert at dawn and dusk.

>Heed wildlife crossing signs. These signs are usually placed in areas known to have a high volume of wildlife/vehicle collisions.

>Be alert on roadways near wooded, agricultural and wetland areas and also near lakes and streams.

>Scan both sides of the road. Invite passengers to help watch for wildlife.

>Do not drive distracted. Put away food, phones and other distractions.

>When possible, use high beam headlights to illuminate the road.

>Look for an animal's eyeshine, which can be seen from a distance. Slow down once you have spotted an animal near the roadside.

>Some animals travel in groups, so be sure to watch for additional animals if you see one.

>Do not throw trash out of your vehicle. Trash and food scraps can draw animals to roadways.

What to do if you see an animal near or in the road

>Do not swerve for a deer or small animal. Stay in your lane and slow down.

>If several animals are standing in the road, do not try to drive through them or get out of the vehicle to chase or herd them. Honk your horn and flash your lights to encourage them to move on.

>If an animal has crossed the road, continue to drive slowly and be cautious because it may try to cross again

What to do if you hit an animal

>Pull off the road and use your hazard lights if your car is undriveable.

>Do not try to approach an injured animal.

>Call 911 or contact your local police department if you were injured or if the animal is in the roadway and could pose a threat to public safety.

 

VIRAL GATOR IS TRUE: Biologists with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources are letting folks know that a viral gator photo going around the internet lately is no hoax.

“Apparently a lot of people think it’s fake, but I assure you that it is not,” said Brent Howze, a DNR wildlife biologist. “I’m the one in the picture, and you can probably tell that I didn’t get too close to it.”

The 700-pound beast was found in an irrigation ditch near Lake Blackshear after a farmer discovered it and called the DNR. Unfortunately, the reptile was in pretty bad shape with what appeared to be “gunshot wounds,” Howze told the Cordele Dispatch. “It’s an unfortunate situation, but the best thing for the animal was to put it down.”

It was an absolutely massive alligator, which reportedly measured 13-feet, 4-inches and was estimated to weigh roughly 700-pounds.

 

 

THIS WEEK’S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page - http://www.huntfishnyoutdoors.com/events.php)

MARCH 2019
1 - Start of Fishing Ban (No Fishing) on North McMillan Creek and Conesus Inlet WMA from Conesus Lake South to the Dam (Livingston County) except the canal west of the inlet and that portion of the north of the canal. (>5/4)

1-31 - Celebrate Owasco Lake Month at the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium, 3369 Guyanoga Road, Branchport, NY. The Museum focuses attention on the lake, home to both cold water & warm water fisheries!  (Free) (For information email mail@fingerlakesmuseum.org.)

15 - Deadline for removing Ice Shanties from all waters.

15 - Close of Statewide Fishing Seasons for Northern Pike, Pickerel, Tiger Muskellunge and Walleye

15 - Close of Fishing Season for Muskellunge in the Susquehanna River (Tioga County) & the Chemung River and Tributaries (Chemung County)

15 - Close of Finger Lakes Bass Season.

15 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Canisteo Valley Chapter Dinner at The Main Place, Main Streeet, Hornell, NY (6:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Matthew Wilhelm 585-808-9362) 

15-16 - NYDU State Convention and Conservation Celebration at the Ramada Inn Lakefront, Geneva, New York. A celebration of the achievements during 2018.  (Cost: Single (full weekend) $165/Couple (full weekend) $290/Greenwing (full weekend) $50.00/Adult (Fri only) $75/Adult Sat only) $90) (For information go to www.ducks.org/new-york/events)

16 - Start of Catch and Release (Artificial Lures Only) Season for Black Bass in all Finger Lakes except Cayuga, Otisco, Owasco and Skaneateles Lakes. (>6/19/16)

16 - Fishing Ban (No Fishing) on Otselic River from mouth to Whitney Point Reservoir Dam, Susquehanna River in Binghamton between Rock Bottom Dam and Exchange Street Bridge, Susquehanna River in the towns of Union and Vestal from the Erie-Lackawanna Railroad bridge downstream to Murphy's Island, Tioughnioga River from New York Route 26 bridge to US Route 11 bridge, Little Choconut Creek from mouth to Goudey Station Building (Broome County), Dutch Hollow Brook from Owasco Lake upstream to the Route 38A bridge (Cayuga County), Scriba Creek from mouth upstream to Fish Hatchery Dam (Oswego County) (>5/4)

16 – Eastren Lake Ontario Salmon & Trout Association Annual Flea Market at the Brewerton, NY Fire Hall. (For information call 315-515-8278)

16 - Crown City Bassmasters  Hunting & Fishing Extravaganza at the Dryden Fire Station, Dryden, NY. (9:00 am – 2:00 pm) For more info call Joe Matt, 315-420-8150.

16 - Southwestern NY Friends of NRA Banquet at the Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino, 777 Seneca Allegany Blvd., Salamanca, NY (4:30 pm) (Cost: $50.00) (For information contact Ray Patchkofsky 585-307-9824 or email  raymondpatchkofsky@yahoo.com)

16 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Finger Lakes Bucks N’ Beards Chapter Dinner at J B's Bar & Grill, 10832 Gloades Corners Road, Prattsburgh, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Steve Calderwood 607-522-7991  eot_tradingpost.yahoo.com) 

16 - Chemung County Coon Hunters Association Inc Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on Rumsey Hill Road, Van Etten, NY. (3:00 pm – Coonhound Event Field Trial-Poor Boy - $12.00/5:00 pm – Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy – $12.00/7:00pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $12.00) (For information call Larry Morley at 607-387-9803)

16 - Wine and Wings Raptor Van Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (1:00 – 4:00 pm) The spring migration is here so join us to search for migratory waterfowl, elusive Northern Harriers, breeding Bald Eagles and more! During the tour, we will stop at Izzo’s White Barn Winery and enjoy award-winning wines and learn how vineyards and Important Birds Areas can exist side by side. Fee: $20/adult, includes wine tastings. Must be 21+. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED. (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

16-17 - The 72 Annual Batavia Gun and Sportsman Show at the Quality Inn & Suites, 8250 Park Road, Batavia, NY (Sat-9:00 am – 4:00 pm/Sun-9:00 am – 3:00 pm) This show is hosted by the Alabama Hunt Club. All federal, state and local firearm ordinances and laws must be obeyed. 150+ tables. (Cost: $5.00/under 12 free w/adult) (For information contact Denis Davis  585-798-6089  dwdavis70@gmail.com)

17 - Genesee Valley Trappers Association Fur Auction at the Clubhouse, 4462 County Road 32 (3 miles east of Honeoye, south of 20A), Honeoye, NY (6:30 am fur checkin/10:00 am auction) ($10.00 charge for non-members) (For information call Tom Miller, 585-229-4759)

19 - Annual State of Lake Ontario Public Meeting at the Pulaski High School Auditorium, 4624 Salina Street, Pulaski, NY (Oswego County). (6:30 – 9:00 pm) The meeting is co-hosted by the Eastern Lake Ontario Salmon and Trout Association. DEC, United States Geological Survey, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources biologists will make a number of presentations, including updates on the status of trout and salmon fisheries, forage fish, stocking programs, and fisheries management plans. Ample time will be provided at the end of the scheduled program for the audience to interact with the presenters. Information summaries for a host of Lake Ontario fisheries assessment programs will be posted at: http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/27068.html prior to the public meetings. (For information contact Christopher Legard, Cape Vincent Fisheries Research Station 315-654-2147)

20 - Informational Meeting On The State Of Skaneateles Lake Fisheries at the Homer Intermediate School auditorium, 58 Clinton Street, Homer, NY. (6:30 – 8:30 pm) At the meeting, DEC will present summaries of the latest available fisheries research and management strategies and actions on Skaneateles Lake, including future management of the recently established walleye population and contributions from the Citizens Statewide Lake Assessment Program and Eastern Finger Lakes Angler Diary Cooperator Program. The formal presentation is expected to last approximately one hour. An informal question and answer session related to Skaneateles Lake fisheries will follow DEC's presentation. DEC annually stocks Skaneateles Lake with trout. An ongoing Angler Diary Cooperator Program for gamefish provides DEC Fisheries staff with useful data on population trends. Information on the Angler Diary Program and recent reports can be viewed on DEC's website. DEC is continually seeking new cooperators and interested volunteers are encouraged to contact the Region 7 Fisheries Office at (607) 753-3095 ext 213 or fwfish7@dec.ny.gov

21 - Migration Mania Birding Van Tour meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (1:00 – 3:30 pm) The Montezuma Wetlands Complex is Audubon’s first globally significant Important Bird Area because of the incredible number of waterfowl that stop here during the migration seasons. Enjoy a leisurely ride in our van to explore Montezuma’s birding hot spots where thousands of ducks, geese and swans can be seen. Bald Eagles, Northern Harriers, and other raptors are a possibility too. Binoculars and bird guides will be provided. Fee: $8/child; $15/adult. PRE-PAID RESERVATIONS REQUIRED. (For information or register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

21 - NYSDEC Electro Shocking of Naples Creek – Crew starts just north of the Village of Naples, Ontario County, at the Route 245 bridge. (9:00 am) The sampling is conducted to aid in the ongoing assessment of Finger Lakes fisheries management practices and to provide up-to-date information for the opening day fishing forecast.  (For information call 585-226-5324)

22 – NYSDEC Electro Shocking of Cold Brook (Keuka Inlet) – Crew starts in the hamlet of Pleasant Valley, Steuben County. (10:00 am) The sampling is conducted to aid in the ongoing assessment of Finger Lakes fisheries management practices and to provide up-to-date information for the opening day fishing forecast.  (For information call 585-226-5324)

22 – Registration Deadline for April 12th Falconry, Wildlife Rehabilitator And Leashed Tracking Dog Examinations: The exams are scheduled for 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at most DEC Regional Offices across the state. To apply for any of these exams, visit the DEC Special Licenses Unit website and complete an exam registration form. Applicants can mail, fax, or email the completed form to: NYS DEC Special Licenses Unit, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4752 Phone: 518-402-8985, Fax: 518-402-8925, Email: SpecialLicenses@dec.ny.gov.

22 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Chemung Valley Ridgerunners Chapter Dinner at the Elmira Holiday Inn Riverview, 760 E. Water Street, Elmira, NY. (6:00 pm) The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Chad McDonald 607-738-2050 cltcmcdolald24@yahoo.com) 

23 - 8th Annual Fisherman’s Paradise Flea Market/Swap Meet at the Alexander Firemen’s Rec Hall, 10708 Route 98, Alexander, NY.

23 – Lake Ontario Fisheries Symposium sponsored by NY Sea Grant and the Lake Ontario Sportfishing Promotion Council at the Finger Lakes Mall (adjacent to Bass Pro), Auburn, NY. (10:00 am – 4:00 pm)  Come see presentations and expert panels to learn about everything from fish basics to cutting edge technology. Door prizes, kids activities, fish tanks and displays, outdoor and fishing gear vendors, and more. Something for everyone from beginners to seasoned veterans. Presenters and panelists will include professional anglers, managers, and scientists from around Lake Ontario. (For information/register for free go to https://reg.cce.cornell.edu/LakeOntarioFisheriesSymposium_112.)

23 - Make A Reusable Bag at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:00 - 4:00 pm) Stop in with your old t-shirts and plastic bags and we’ll help you transform them into reusable bags for all your shopping needs. (For information call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

23 - National Wild Turkey Federation – CrossRoads Limbhangers Chapter Dinner at the Lima Country Club, 7470 Chase Road, Lima, NY. (5:00 pm)The NWTF banquets are where you can buy exclusive merchandise and have a great time with friends. All the while, you will be raising vital funds for wild turkey conservation and important programs that introduce the outdoors to women, children and the disabled. (For more information contact Neil Gottfried  585-245-3051  longbeardg@gmail.com)

23 – Elmira Beagle Club Beagle Event at their clubhouse at 1485 Breesport-N Chemung Road, Lowman, NY (8:00 am Beagle Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Timothy Hall 607-331-1660  or email moc.evil@selgaebtniopkcehc)

23 - Greater Rochester QDMA Banquet at the Double Tree, Rochester. (4:30 pm) (For information call David Perotto, 585-410-5551.)

23-24 – 41st Annual Maple Sugaring at the Cumming Nature Center, 6472 Gulick Road, Naples, NY. (Breakfast 9:00 am-1:00 pm/Trail Demonstrations 10:00 am – 2:00 pm) Explore the science and lore of maple syrup production with volunteer guides along the CNC Pioneer Trail and also enjoy a pancake breakfast. On the trail, participants learn how a tree makes sap and discover the different processing techniques while enjoying the outdoors. Other highlights include a 100 percent pure maple syrup tasting in the sugarhouse, and a pancake meal in the visitors center. All meals include pure maple syrup and a choice of beverage. Maple Sugaring is the CNC’s major annual fundraising event and helps maintain CNC operations. (Meal Cost: Adult - $10.00/Kids - $8.00) (For information call 585-374-6160)

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for – “Your In on The Outdoors for Western New York.”

What Do You Think? Have something for other sportspeople? Let us know HERE.

 

 

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Welcome to this week’s Conservation Chatter Corner – little bits of happenings concerning our outdoors and you, the sportspeople who enjoy being part of that outdoors.

 

 

"STATE OF LAKE ONTARIO" MEETINGS: The public will have the opportunity to learn about the State of Lake Ontario fisheries at public meetings to be held in Niagara, Monroe, Oswego and Schenectady counties in March.

New York's Lake Ontario waters comprise more than 2.7 million acres. The open lake, embayments, and tributaries support thriving populations of sportfish, including trout, salmon, bass, walleye, yellow perch, and panfish. A recent statewide angler survey estimated more than 2.6 million angler days were spent on Lake Ontario and major tributaries, resulting in an estimated economic value of $112 million annually to local communities.

Staff from DEC and the United States Geological Survey will make a number of presentations, including updates on the status of trout and salmon fisheries in the lake and its tributaries, forage fish, and stocking programs. The meetings will provide ample time at the end of the scheduled program for the audience to ask questions and interact with the presenters Information about DEC's Lake Ontario fisheries assessment programs can be found on DEC's website.

Remaining Meeting dates and locations are: