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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 - 26 - 17

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

 

VIRAL HEMORRHAGIC SEPTICEMIA LINKED TO CAYUGA LAKE FISH KILL: Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia (VHS) has been connected to a fish kill involving thousands of round gobies in Cayuga Lake. VHS can cause hemorrhaging of fish tissue, including internal organs, and can cause the death of infected fish. It does not pose any threat to human health.

Cornell University confirmed VHS was present in fish samples collected by DEC on May 12. VHS is a deadly and persistent virus of fresh and saltwater fish that has been causing disease issues in the Great Lakes and connected waters since 2003. It was first documented in New York in 2006. VHS has not been linked to a fish kill in the Finger Lakes in almost a decade and this is the first discovery of the presence of this virus in Cayuga Lake.

VHS is currently responsible for an ongoing fish kill in Lake St. Claire in Michigan and western Lake Erie.

Water temperatures have been optimal for the virus this spring as it replicates prominently in water temperatures between 50 and 58 F. Mortalities usually continue until the water warms above that range. VHS can be spread through a variety of means, including the moving of potentially infected fish from one waterbody to another. This can be done by stocking or the use of bait fish.

To help prevent the spread of VHS, anglers and boaters should:

*follow baitfish regulations developed to prevent the spread of harmful fish diseases;

*only release baitfish into the waterbody it was taken from;

*not discard unused bait purchased commercially into any body of water;

*ot move fish from one water body to another;

*not dispose of fish carcasses or by-products in any body of water; and

Inspect, Drain and Dry and Disinfect boats and gear before moving to another water.

DEC routinely collects and tests fish from approximately 30 waters annually to screen for VHS and other harmful diseases. People can help DEC monitor the health of New York's fish populations by reporting any large number of dead or dying fish (usually 100 or more) to the nearest DEC regional office (ask for the Bureau of Fisheries) or the Rome Fish Disease Control Unit at (315) 337-0910.

For further information visit the DEC VHS in New York web page or contact Andrew Noyes or Geofrey Eckerlin, Rome Fish Disease Control Unit, (315) 337-0910.

 

STILL OPENINGS AT MONTEZUMA CAMPS: Montezuma Audubon Center Youth Sportsman And Wildlife Adventure Summer Camps (July 10 to August 4) at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY. (9:00 am – 4:00 pm daily) For girls and boys ages 11-15. Spaces are limited and fill up fast! Register for one, two, three or all four weeks. Youth will earn their hunter safety, waterfowl ID, bow safety, and trapper safety certificates in two weeks with hands-on learning and outdoor experiences!  These camps will be taught as home study courses to maximize our time in the field.  Campers will be given the course manual and workbook prior to camp. Fisheries Camp participants will learn safe fishing practices with hands-on and fun experiences while fishing for trout, panfish, salmon, bass and more around the Finger Lakes Region. Wildlife Adventure Camp participants will explore the Montezuma Wetlands Complex’s habitats and wildlife through hiking, canoeing, navigating and other outdoor activities.

Schedule:

Week 1:  Hunter Safety / Waterfowl ID Camp   July 10-July 14 Fee: $150 

Week 2:  Bow Safety / Trapper Safety Camp   July 17 –July 21 Fee: $150 

Week 3:  Fisheries Camp   July 24-July 28 Fee: $150 

Week 4:  Wildlife Adventure Camp   July 31-August 4 Fee: $150 

Registration is required! (For information/register call 315-365-3588 or visit http://ny.audubon.org/montezuma )

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Illegal Turkey Taken in Broad Daylight - Seneca County: On May 13, ECO Shea Mathis responded to a shots-fired complaint near the Sampson Veterans Memorial Cemetery in the town of Romulus. Witnesses believed someone had shot a turkey from a white pickup truck and fled the area. ECO Mathis, with the help of a State Trooper, quickly located and stopped the vehicle. One of the three hunters in the vehicle admitted to shooting the turkey on posted property without permission and failing to have his hunting license or turkey tags in his possession. In addition, the driver of the truck admitted to hunting turkeys earlier in the day without a valid turkey permit. The two were issued a total of five tickets for charges including trespass on posted property, failure to tag a turkey, failure to carry a license while hunting, and hunting turkeys without a permit. The mature tom turkey that had been shot in the original complaint was seized as evidence.
State Land Arrests - Town of Chautauqua, Chautauqua County:
On May 19 at approximately 11 p.m., Forest Rangers patrolling Chautauqua Gorge State Forest spotted approximately 30 parked cars. The Rangers hiked into the woods and observed approximately 30 to 40 people, a large bonfire, alcohol, and garbage scattered around the area. Rangers contacted Chautauqua County Sheriff's Deputies for assistance and determined that most of the partygoers were under 21 years of age. The alcohol at the scene was collected and disposed of. Approximately one pound of marijuana was also seized. A number for summonses were issued and the marijuana was turned over to the Sheriff's Department, which arrested one individual.

Too Much Mud, Even for a Jeep - Broome County: On May 6, ECO Andy McCormick received a complaint of a Jeep stuck on a DEC Flood Control easement in the town of Union. He requested a New York State Trooper to respond, as well, and upon arrival found the Jeep stuck in a large pond area. ECO McCormick contacted a towing company to remove the Jeep. With heavy rain still falling, the recovery required two hours and two tow trucks, as the first tow truck became mired in mud. The driver of the Jeep stated he had observed the signs that motor vehicles were not allowed on the flood wall and drove around a locked gate to access the ponding area. ECO McCormick issued him a ticket for operating a motor vehicle on a flood control easement.

 

 

NY SEA GRANT, CORNELL UNIVERSITY TO SURVEY HIGH WATER IMPACT: New York Sea Grant has awarded rapid response funding to Cornell University to develop and conduct a standardized high water impact survey in the areas along southern and eastern Lake Ontario.
This effort is in response to stakeholder requests for a standardized method to collect data on the impacts of high water levels on waterfront properties.
The information collected will be used to identify areas that are most vulnerable to high water levels in the future and to inform future community flood risk planning.
The survey was pilot tested in the Sodus Bay area of Wayne County, NY, and will be made available through municipality email lists and New York Sea Grant social media to property owners in communities along southern and eastern Lake Ontario. Survey responses will be

accepted through August 31, 2017.
Anyone interested in taking the survey may access it at
https://cornell.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6RNKD5WAM0hz3U1 or contact Mary Austerman at 315-331-8415 or mp357@cornell.edu.

TURTLE TIME:  Our native turtles are on the move in May and June seeking sandy areas or loose soil to lay their eggs.  In New York, thousands of turtles are killed each year when they are struck by vehicles as they migrate to their nesting areas.  It may take more than 10 years for a turtle to reach breeding age, and they lay just one small clutch of eggs each year, so the loss of a breeding female can have a significant effect on the local population.  All eleven species of land turtles that are native to New York are declining.

What can I do to help?

*If you see a turtle on the road, please try to avoid hitting it with your car. Do not swerve suddenly or leave your lane of travel, but take care to avoid hitting turtles while driving.

*Be on the lookout for turtles and slow down, especially on roads near rivers and marshy areas.

*If you see a turtle in the road or shoulder and you can safely stop your vehicle, please consider moving it to the shoulder on the side of the road in the direction it is facing.

*Picking the turtle up by its tail may frighten or injure it. Most turtles can be picked up by the side of its shell.

*Use extreme caution when moving snapping turtles; either pick her up at the rear of the shell near the tail using two hands, or slide a car mat under the turtle to drag her across the road.

*Do not take the turtle home. All native turtles are protected by law and cannot be collected without a permit.

 

 

  

TIPS FOR WATCHING WILDLIFE AT NIGHT: The best time to witness nocturnal wildlife is about 30 minutes after sunset. Follow these tips to maximize your nighttime wildlife watch:
-Wear comfortable clothes and sneakers or running shoes so that you can walk around quietly.
-Check which direction the wind is blowing and sit downwind so that the animals won't be able to smell you.
-Bring a blanket—it gets cold sitting on the ground.
-Place a piece of red cellophane paper over your flashlight and secure it with a rubber band. The red light allows your eyes to adjust to the darkness better, and you won't disturb the animals as much as with a bright white flashlight.
-Pick an area where there are a lot of night-flying insects—near water, flood lights or street lights. Certain animals feed on insects, and insects are attracted to light and water.
-Use binoculars to get a close view of animals; binoculars enable you to see animals better from a respectable and safe distance.
-Don't feed the animals!

(NYSDEC Outdoor Discovery)

                                                        Night Wildlife Watching You

 

 

THIS WEEK'S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page)

MAY 2017

17-6/14 – Cumming Nature Center Forest School for Ages 12–15 Pilot at the Cumming Nature Center, 6472 Gulick Road, Naplels, NY. (10:00 am – 3:30 pm daily) In this five-week pilot program students continue fostering a deep, personal relationship with nature as they grow into their role as citizen scientists. Instructors facilitate a variety of experiences that empower students as we: tune into the intricate cycles of nature by studying its patterns; develop a personal philosophy about how to live in nature without causing its degradation; and push our physical and emotional limits as we fully embrace the elements. Previous attendance of CNC Forest school is not required, and all outdoor experience levels are welcome. A basic comfort level with the outdoors will be helpful. (Cost: Non-member $145.00/Member $132) (For information call 585-374-6160.)

26 - Whitney Point Sportsman Association Coonhound Event at the club on NY Route 206, Whitney Point, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Event Water Race - $12.00/7:30 pm – Coonhound Bench Show - $12.00/9:00 pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $15.00) (For information call Ralph Canniff at 607-240-1129 or John Marshall 607-345-5366)   

27 - Start of Statewide Muskellunge Fishing Season (>11/30)

27 - Birding 101: Class #6 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 species to look for during the summer. For adults and children ages 8 and older. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

27-29 - 53nd Annual National Lake Trout Derby On Seneca Lake. Fishing will be from 6 a.m. Saturday to noon Monday, and participants can take their catches to one of three weigh stations – in Geneva, Sampson State Park in Romulus and Watkins Glen. The derby is open to adults and youth 5 and older. The main prizes will be: Grand Prise - $7,500; 1st place lake trout:$3,000 and 1st place brown, rainbow and llS: $1,500. (For information contact: Colin Morehouse, 67 John Street. Geneva, NY 14456  (315) 789-8634)

28 - The 13th annual “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.

31 - Close of Spring Turkey Hunting Season 

JUNE 2017

1 - Birding and Boating: Cayuga Lake Sunset Paddle. Meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (6:00 – 8:30 pm) Join us for a relaxing, sunset canoe/kayak paddle to explore the birds and habitats at the north end of Cayuga Lake. This is a great opportunity to see Bald Eagles and Osprey that are nesting in the area. Bring your own canoe/kayak or rent a boat from us. Fee: $10/child without rental, $18/adult without rental, $25/solo kayak rental, $40/canoe rental (maximum 2 adults plus 1 child). Pre-paid reservations are required. (For information call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

2 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Salmon Rivers Strutters Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at The Elms Golf Club, 2 Country Club Lane, Sandy Creek, 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 William Wilbur   wwilbur551@aol.com   315-440-4351)

2 - Whitney Point Sportsman Association Coonhound Event at the club on NY Route 206, Whitney Point, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Event Water Race - $12.00/7:30 pm – Coonhound Bench Show - $12.00/9:00 pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $15.00) (For information call Ralph Canniff at 607-240-1129 or John Marshall 607-345-5366)

3 - NATIONAL TRAILS DAY

3 - Free Take a Kid Fishing Clinic at Dunkirk Memorial Park/Dunkirk Yacht Club (Lake Erie) sponsored by the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club and others. (8:00 – 10:30 am) (For information call 716-366-1772)

3 - The Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club Take-A-Kid-Fishing Day at the club, (10:00 am – Noon) Applications for attending this event are now available at the Con Club. New kids get a free fishing rod & reel, and all youths 15 years of age and under receive a T-shirt, grab bag of fishing gear, a morning of fishing and hands on activities. Picnic cuisine is also served for all who attend and help. There is a $10 fee to offset the cost, but the smiles and memories are priceless! All kids must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. (For information call 716-366-1772 and leave a name and phone number and a time you can be reached.)

3 - Boy Scout Conservation Day at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (10:00 am – 4:00 pm)  What are invasive species and why do they need to be removed?  Boy Scouts from Bobcats to Eagle Scouts will learn about invasive species management while participating in habitat restoration projects and exploring the birds and other wildlife that benefit from this important work. Each scout must have a leader, chaperone, or parent in attendance. (Fee: $5/Scout.) (For information call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

3 - Educator Workshop: Growing Up Wild at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (9:00 am – Noon) Participants receive an activity guide filled with standards-based, interdisciplinary, hands-on lessons for young children. For educators of students ages 3-7. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

3 - Smoker Madness at Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (12:00 - 1:00 pm) There is nothing like the incredible smells that come from a smoker.  Come see some of the best smokers available to backyard gourmets, and learning just how easy it is to create mouthwatering dishes that will have your friends and family begging for more. (For information call 716-608-4770)

3-4 - Orleans County Houndsmen Beaglers Beagle Event at 3199 Maltby Road, Oakfield, NY. (6/3 6:30 am – Beagle Event Hunt - $25.00/6/3 6:30 am Beagle Event Bench Show - $20.00/6/4 6:30 am – Beagle Event Hunt - $25.00/6/4 6:30 am Beagle Event Bench Show - $20.00/) Highest scoring double cast wins or 1 cast win and your score with plus points will be State Champion. King and queen from Saturday will go head to head with Sunday's king and queen for State Show Champion.  (For information call Ed Roggen at 585-948-9483)     

4 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Seneca Lake Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at the Seneca Lake Duck Hunters Club, Route 14, Dresden, NY (4:00 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 Dale Lane
dalejmt@yahoo.com   315-374-0017)

4-10 - NATIONAL FISHING WEEK

 

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 - 19 - 17

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.

 

2016 DEER HARVEST ESTIMATES:  Hunters in New York State harvested an estimated 213,061 deer during the 2016-17 hunting seasons, an estimated five percent increase over 2015-16 levels. The 2016 deer take included 106,055 antlerless deer and 107,006 antlered bucks. Statewide, this represents a 7.5-percent increase in buck harvest from 2015, reflecting modest population growth following the losses experienced during the harsh winter of 2014-15. Antlerless harvest was similar to 2015 (a 2.6-percent increase), as managers sought increased antlerless harvests in certain parts of the state and reduced harvests in others.

Regionally, hunters in the Northern Zone took 24,674 deer, including 16,495 adult bucks. In the Southern Zone, hunters took 188,387 deer, including 90,511 adult bucks.

DEC's 2016 Deer Harvest Summary report (PDF 3.75 MB) provides a suite of tables, charts, and maps detailing the statewide deer harvest. Past harvest summaries are available on DEC's website.

Last year, DEC kicked off a campaign to encourage hunters to voluntarily pass up shots at young bucks in an effort to grow the population of larger bucks across the state. In areas where hunters had the freedom to choose what type of buck to take, nearly half of the adult bucks taken this past year were 2.5 years or older. Yearling bucks were plentiful, a result of strong survival rates through the 2015-16 winter, yet many hunters voluntarily chose restraint.

DEC also confirmed that bucks of all ages across the state were in good condition, with larger antlers, more mass, and fewer spike-antlered bucks.

2016 Deer Harvest Summary & Comparison:

                                          2016                    2015                    Change             5-Year Ave.

Total Take                      213,061             202,973             5.0%                    231,306

Adult Male                     107,006             99,572                 7.5%                    110,306

Adult Female                 78,288                 75,157                 4.2%                    84,569

Antlerless                      106,055             103,401             2.6%                    120,928

DMP Issued                   588,430             626,389             -6.1%                   617,591

DMP Take                      81,507                 76,928                 6.0%                    91,612

DMAP Take                   9,134                   10,847                 -15.8%                 11,405

Muzzleloader                 15,369                 11,570                                             14,834

Bowhunting                   46,735                 37,697                                             36,458

Crossbow                      9,439                   7,469                   26.4%                  NA

Youth Hunt                    1,162                   1,222                   -4.9%                   1,273

 

Notable Numbers:

54,099 --- estimated number of bucks taken in 2016 that were 2.5 years old or older. Only 49 percent of bucks taken statewide were yearlings (54 percent in units without mandatory antler restrictions).

16.2 and 0.5 --- number of deer taken per square mile in the unit with the highest (WMU 8N) and lowest (WMUs 5C and 5F) harvest density.

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

14,085 --- number of hunter-harvested deer checked by DEC in 2016.

186,110 --- number of hunting hours recorded by 3,805 bowhunters that participated in the annual Bowhunter Sighting Log. Participating bowhunters reported 120,067 deer sightings, for an average of 64.5 deer seen per 100 hours hunted. The Bowhunter Sighting Log provides useful data on regional sighting trends for deer, moose, turkey, and a variety of furbearer species.

2,447 --- deer tested for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in 2016-17; none tested positive. DEC has tested more than 40,000 deer for CWD since 2002.

56.5 percent --- proportion of successful deer hunters that ignored their responsibility to report their harvest as required by law. DEC Environmental Conservation Officers (ECOs) have increased enforcement of non-compliance with the mandatory reporting requirements.

Deer harvest data are gathered from two main sources: harvest reports required of all successful hunters and DEC's examination of more than 14,000 harvested deer at check stations and meat processors. Statewide 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 2016-17 deer harvest, as well as past deer and bear harvest summaries, is available on DEC's website.

 

NY STATE EXPANDS EMERALD ASH BORER QUARANTINE: New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Department of Agriculture and Markets (DAM) announced that eight existing Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) Restricted Zones have been expanded and merged into a single Restricted Zone in order to strengthen the State's efforts to slow the spread of this invasive pest.

The new EAB Restricted Zone includes part or all of Albany, Allegany, Broome, Cattaraugus, Cayuga, Chautauqua, Chenango, Chemung, Columbia, Cortland, Delaware, Dutchess, Erie, Genesee, Greene, Livingston, Madison, Monroe, Niagara, Oneida, Onondaga, Ontario, Orange, Orleans, Oswego, Otsego, Putnam, Rensselaer, Rockland, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben, Sullivan, Tioga, Tompkins, Ulster, Wayne, Westchester, Wyoming, and Yates counties. The EAB Restricted Zone prohibits the movement of EAB and potentially infested ash wood. The map is available on DEC's website.

Emerald Ash Borer (Agrilus planipennis) or "EAB" is a serious invasive tree pest in the United States, killing hundreds of millions of ash trees in forests, yards, and neighborhoods. The beetles' larvae feed in the cambium layer just below the bark, preventing the transport of water and nutrients into the crown and killing the tree. Emerging adult beetles leave distinctive D-shaped exit holes in the outer bark of the branches and the trunk. Adults are roughly 3/8 to 5/8 inch long with metallic green wing covers and a coppery red or purple abdomen. They may be present from late May through early September but are most common in June and July. Other signs of infestation include tree canopy dieback, yellowing, and browning of leaves.

EAB was first discovered in the U.S. in 2002 in southeastern Michigan. It was also found in Windsor, Ontario the same year. This Asian beetle infests and kills North American ash species (Fraxinus sp.) including green, white, black and blue ash. Thus, all native ash trees are susceptible.

EAB larvae can be moved long distances in firewood, logs, branches, and nursery stock, later emerging to infest new areas. These regulated articles may not leave the Restricted Zone without a compliance agreement or limited permit from the Department of Agriculture and Markets, applicable only during the non-flight season (September 1 - April 30). Regulated articles from outside of the Restricted Zone may travel through the Restricted Zone as long as the origin and the destination are listed on the waybill and the articles are moved without stopping, except for traffic conditions and refueling. Wood chips may not leave the Restricted Zone between April 15th and May 15th of each year when EAB is likely to emerge.

For more information about EAB or the emergency orders, please visit DEC's website. If you see signs of EAB attack on ash trees outside of the Restrictive Zone, please report these occurrences to the DEC's Forest Health Information Line toll-free at 1-866-640-0652.

 

DEC ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR VOLUNTEER FIRE ASSISTANCE GRANTS: The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is now accepting applications for federally funded "Volunteer Fire Assistance" grants. The deadline for application is May 31.

The grant program, funded by the U.S. Forest Service and administered by DEC, gives selected fire departments the chance to receive 50/50 matching funds up to $1,500 to help pay for equipment that aids in firefighting. Last year, the program provided $1,500 grants to 289 fire departments across the state. This year, DEC has received a federal appropriation of $402,268 in grant money.

Only expenses directly related to fire suppression efforts are eligible for funding, including purchases such as portable pumps, hand tools, hoses, light-weight fireproof clothing, hard hats, portable radios, generators, and dry hydrants. Expenditures not directly related to firefighting, such as search and rescue, acquisition of land, construction of buildings and facilities, major apparatus purchases, and maintenance are not eligible for funding.

Eligible fire departments include those that serve a single town with a population under 10,000; those that serve multiple communities, one of which is a rural town of less than 10,000 residents; and fire departments in towns with a population of 10,000 or more that meet the requirements listed on the application. Fire departments that receive a grant award must complete all required grant paperwork by Oct. 31, 2017.

For applications or further information about the grant program, contact DEC at (518) 402-8839, or write to NYSDEC, Division of Forest Protection, 625 Broadway 3rd Floor, Albany, NY 12233-2560 or, visit the Volunteer Fire Assistance Grants web page on DEC's website.

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Youth Turkey Hunt - Yates County: On April 22 and 23, Lt. Matt Lochner and ECOs Josh Crain and Kevin Thomas participated in the Eighth Annual Yates County Youth Turkey Hunt. This year's event began with a dinner presentation at the Seneca Lake Duck Hunter's Club during which ECOs Crain and Thomas discussed hunting ethics and firearm safety. The 27 youth hunters received a turkey vest, hat, gloves, facemask, turkey calls, gun case, and Dead Ringer peep sights. The Mossy Oak and Lynch Mob Turkey Calls Pro staff put on a turkey calling seminar to teach the kids how to use the slate calls that Lynch Mob Turkey Calls generously donated to each youth participating in the hunt. After the Sunday morning hunt, during which an impressive 15 turkeys were taken, everyone met up for a picnic lunch. All of the young hunters received prizes ranging from calls and turkey decoys to a lifetime hunting license donated by Eagle Eye Outfitters.

 

Good Training and Quick Thinking Saves a Life - Oswego County: On April 28, ECO David Thomas responded to a 911 call reporting a distressed individual at the intersection of State Rt. 49 and Depot Road in the town of Constantia. ECO Thomas was the first police officer to arrive on the scene. A crew from Southern Oswego County Volunteer Ambulance Corps arrived and together they located a 22-year-old woman unresponsive in the passenger seat of a parked vehicle. A quick evaluation indicated that the victim was likely suffering from an opioid drug overdose. ECO Thomas administered an initial dose of naloxone (Narcan) issued to all Division of Law Enforcement members. A second dose was administered about 10 minutes later after the initial dose failed to sufficiently reverse the opioid effects. The victim was revived by the combined doses and transported by ambulance to St. Joseph's Hospital in Syracuse for further treatment.

 

ADDITIONAL CWD CASES DETECTED IN PENNSYLVANIA-WILD-DEER: The Pennsylvania Game Commission tested 5,707 deer and 110 elk for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) during 2016. Twenty-five wild deer tested positive for CWD. All of the wild CWD-positive deer were in or near Disease Management Area 2 (DMA 2) (parts of Bedford, Blair, Somerset, Fulton, Cambria, and Huntingdon counties), the only area of the state where CWD has been detected in the wild. These 25 deer more than doubled the number of CWD-positive deer detected in DMA 2 from 2012 to 2015. Through 2016, 47 wild deer have tested positive for CWD in DMA 2.

Each year, the Game Commission collects CWD samples from hunter-harvested animals, road-kills, escaped captive cervids, and any cervid showing signs of CWD.

Since 2002, the Game Commission has tested over 61,000 deer for CWD. Although samples are collected from across the state, efforts were increased within the three Disease Management Areas (DMAs), which are areas in the state where CWD has been identified in wild and/or captive deer.

The 25 new CWD-positive wild deer were part of 1,652 deer samples collected within DMA 2 during 2016. CWD-positive deer included 13 road-killed deer, 10 hunter-harvested deer, and two deer showing signs consistent with CWD. No CWD positive wild deer were detected in the remainder of the state in 2016 or in any previous year.

CWD not only is a threat to Pennsylvania’s deer, but also the elk herd; however, no positives have been detected in our elk herd to date. During 2016, 110 wild elk were tested for CWD, including hunter-harvested animals and elk exhibiting clinical signs consistent with CWD.

  

THIS WEEK'S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page)

MAY 2017

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)

17-6/14 – Cumming Nature Center Forest School for Ages 12–15 Pilot at the Cumming Nature Center, 6472 Gulick Road, Naplels, NY. (10:00 am – 3:30 pm daily) In this five-week pilot program students continue fostering a deep, personal relationship with nature as they grow into their role as citizen scientists. Instructors facilitate a variety of experiences that empower students as we: tune into the intricate cycles of nature by studying its patterns; develop a personal philosophy about how to live in nature without causing its degradation; and push our physical and emotional limits as we fully embrace the elements. Previous attendance of CNC Forest school is not required, and all outdoor experience levels are welcome. A basic comfort level with the outdoors will be helpful. (Cost: Non-member $145.00/Member $132) (For information call 585-374-6160.)

19-21 - The 33rd Annual Lake Ontario Pro-Am Salmon Team Tournament will be held out of the ports of Wilson and Olcott. The Pro Division will be going back to the old format of best 12 tournament fish each day with a total score for three days earning the top prize. In the Amateur Open contest, best three fish each day is the focus. Each single day is a contest by itself. Best two scores combined earn a special Cup and an extra cash prize. Deadline to register is May 15 at 5 p.m. You must sign up online at www.lakeontarioproam.net.

20 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Grand Slam Gobblers Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at the Wolcott Elks Club, 6161 W. Port Bay Road, Wolcott, 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 Chris Reed,   jmc604@hotmail.com  315-730-24360)

20 - Saturday Kayak Skills Session at the Olean, NY, Linn Launch, Steam Valley Road, Portville, NY (11:30 am – 1:30 pm) Kayak skills and safety training. (Cost: $80.00) (For information call 716-392-2708 or email seabird.ava@gmail.com)

20 - Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) Workshop - Stalking the Adirondack Ostrich: Ferns, Flowers & Trees of the Adirondacks at Tupper Lake, NY (Cost: $50.00) (For information/register contact Adirondack Foothills Guide Service, LLC  518-359-8194  adkfoothills@yahoo.com  or go to www.adkfoothills.com) 

20 – Grape Country Coonhunters Association Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on Williams Hill Road, Branchport, NY (7:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show - $12.00/8:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $15.00) (For information call Josh Wood at 315-729-4773)

20 - Cattaraugus County Houndsmen and Conservation Club Inc. Coonhound Event at their clubhouse at 10491 Route 240, West Valley, NY (7:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show - $15.00/9:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Joel Nicholas 716-378-1832)

20 - Concealed Carry Class presented by Legal Heat at Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (9:00 am - 1:00 pm) Cabela’s has partnered with Legal Heat, the Nation’s Leading Firearms Training Firm to provide concealed carry classes to meet the qualifying requirements and documentation to obtain the Utah and Arizona concealed carry permits in a fun, informative, non-intimidating class. These permits will allow combined carry reciprocity in approximately 30+ states. Legal Heat's concealed carry class covers firearms safety, handling, transportation, storage, ammunition, self-defense and firearms laws, concealed carry techniques and much more. Legal Heat’s firearm training instructors are all NRA and Utah BCI certified, insured and among the most highly experienced in the industry and can answer your CCW questions. This course typically runs approximately 4 hours. This Legal Heat course does not have a test or range requirement. The Utah and Arizona permits are open to residents of any state and can be applied for by mail. You do NOT have to reside in the state of UT or AZ to qualify to apply for their concealed carry permits. Register TODAY for this fun and informative class. Seating may be limited. (For information/register go to www.MyLegalHeat.com/Cabelas or call 855-GUN-CLASS)

20 - Birding and Boating: Howland’s Island Meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (1:30 – 4:00 pm) Join us for a relaxing canoe/kayak paddle to explore the Seneca River around Howland’s Island. This is a wonderful opportunity to experience the largest population of breeding Cerulean Warblers in NY. Bring your own canoe/kayak or rent a boat from us. (Fee: $10/child with-out rental, $18/adult without rental, $25/solo kayak rental, $40/canoe rental) (maximum 2 adults plus 1 child). Pre-paid reservations are required. (For information call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

20 - Ray’s Kids Day at Reinstein Woods and Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (9:00 am) For youngsters between the ages of 9 and 15 interested in learning more about the art of fly fishing, the Lake Erie Chapter of the International Federation of Fly Fishers will be holding its annual event. Named in honor of the group’s founder, Ray “Marks” Markiewicz, this is an all-day instruction on fly tying, fly casting, entomology and even some fly fishing using the flies you tied! There is a limit of 36 students and each student must have a chaperone age 21 or older. Cost is just $20. There are only a few openings left. (If you are interested call Dave Rosner at 716-675-4766.)

20 – Vessel Examination by the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 3-1 at the Fort Niagara Boat Ramps (10:00 am – 2:00 pm) (For information call Tom Chiappone at 716-772-7242.)

20-21 - Spring Public Black Powder Shoot at the Alabama Hunt Club, Lewiston Road, Alabama, NY.  (Start 8:30 am)

21 – Chautauqua Lake Bassmasters Crappie Tournament at the Lakewood launch. (6:00 am to 1:00 pm) Ten crappie, 9-inch minimum. (For information contact Trevor at 720-6498)

21 – The Annual Chautauqua Lake Team Crappie Tournament at the Lakewood Community Park and Boat Launch sponsored by the  Chautauqua Lake Bassmasters. (6:00 am – 1:00 pm) Open to the public, the team entry fee of $50 will be used for the cash prize payout to the top three finishers and the big fish prize; 10-fish team bag; live fish weigh-in.  Visit chaut-lakebassmasters for an entry application, Trevor Graham is the tournament director (716-720-6498). 

26 - Whitney Point Sportsman Association Coonhound Event at the club on NY Route 206, Whitney Point, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Event Water Race - $12.00/7:30 pm – Coonhound Bench Show - $12.00/9:00 pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $15.00) (For information call Ralph Canniff at 607-240-1129 or John Marshall 607-345-5366)   

27 - Start of Statewide Muskellunge Fishing Season (>11/30)

27 - Birding 101: Class #6 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 species to look for during the summer. For adults and children ages 8 and older. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

27-29 - 53nd Annual National Lake Trout Derby On Seneca Lake. Fishing will be from 6 a.m. Saturday to noon Monday, and participants can take their catches to one of three weigh stations – in Geneva, Sampson State Park in Romulus and Watkins Glen. The derby is open to adults and youth 5 and older. The main prizes will be: Grand Prise - $7,500; 1st place lake trout:$3,000 and 1st place brown, rainbow and llS: $1,500. (For information contact: Colin Morehouse, 67 John Street. Geneva, NY 14456  (315) 789-8634)

28 - The 13th annual “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.

31 - Close of Spring Turkey Hunting Season

 

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 - 12 - 17

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.

 

GANDER MOUNTAIN GOING OUT OF BUSINESS, ALL 126 STORES TO CLOSE: Gander Mountain, the fishing, hunting, and outdoor retailer, which has been a staple in 26 states over the last 57 years, is shutting its doors for good. An announcement on the retailer’s website states that all 126 stores nationwide are going out of business and will be liquidating all inventory. According to the website announcement, ‘Everything Must Go’ and gift cards will only be honored until May 18.

 

CROSSBOW BILL S1386A NEEDS YOUR SUPPORT: The Senate Environmental Conservation Committee  approved S1386A Tuesday May 9 at the committee meeting. This is a major step toward Crossbow Full Inclusion. This bill will now go before the entire Senate for a floor vote. We will update everyone when that date is announced but it can happen as soon as next week. We need to be prepared for the Senate Floor Vote. Please call, write and email your Senator and ask they vote "YES" on S1386A. 
Thank you everyone for your continued support. 

(From the New York Crossbow Coalition - info@nycrossbowcoalition.com.)

2017-18 Waterfowl & Migratory Game Bird Seasons: (All dates are not final until published in the Federal Register in mid-summer. Please check this website prior to going afield this fall.)

Waterfowl Hunting Seasons:

Species                Daily Limit / Possession Limit             Western Zone

Youth Days                                                                          Oct 14 – Oct 15                         

Ducks, Coots & Mergansers 6* / 18 (Coot 15/45)          Oct 28 – Dec 6   /  Dec 26 – Jan 14 

Snow Geese                                25 / No Limit                  Oct 1 – Apr 15

Brant                                                    2 / 6                           Oct 1 – Nov 29

* The daily limit of 6 ducks includes all mergansers and sea ducks (scoters, eiders and long-tailed ducks) and may include no harlequin ducks and no more than 4 mallards (2 of which may be hens), 3 wood ducks, 2 black duck, 1 pintail, 2 scaup, 2 redheads, 2 canvasback, 4 scoters, 4 eiders, 4 long-tailed ducks or 2 hooded mergansers. For all other duck species found in New York, the daily limit is 6.

Canada Geese:

West Central Zone

Sep 1 – Sep 25 (15/day)   Oct 28 – Nov 26 (3/day)   Dec 26 – Jan 14 (3/day)

South Zone

Sep 1 – Sep 25 (15/day)   Oct 28 – Dec 17 (5/day)   Dec 26 – Jan 14 (5/day)   Mar 2 – Mar 10 (5/day)

East Central Zone

Sep 1 – Sep 25 (15/day)   Oct 28 – Nov 17 (3/day)   Nov 23 – Dec 21 (3/day) 

 

NEW RECORD FOR CHANNEL CATFISH:  Using just a nightcrawler, Eric Scordo of Watertown caught a 35-pound, 3-ounce channel catfish measuring 38 ¼ inches in Lake Ontario in Jefferson County on April 29. The fish broke the previous state record caught from Brant Lake (Warren County) in 2002 by nearly 2½ pounds.

Channel catfish are the largest members of the catfish species that live in New York and can be found statewide. They feed primarily on the bottom and are most easily caught using live bait such as worms or baitfish. When hooked, catfish can provide a challenge for even the most experienced anglers. They are also one of the tastiest freshwater fish.

Mr. Scordo submitted details of his winning catch as part of DEC's Angler Achievement Awards Program, which tracks state record fish. Through this program, anglers can enter freshwater fish that meet specific qualifying criteria and receive official recognition of their catch and a distinctive lapel pin commemorating their achievement. Three categories make up the program: Catch & Release, Annual Award, and State Record.

For more information about the Angler Achievement Awards Program, including a downloadable application form, go to DEC's website. Program details and an official entry form can also be found in DEC's current Freshwater Fishing Regulations Guide.

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Right Place, Right Time - Chautauqua County: On April 16, ECOs Darci Dougherty and Jerry Kinney were on patrol in the town of Charlotte when they noticed a pick-up truck with a trailer attached parked near a large pile of construction and demolition debris that did not appear to come from the property. The officers spoke with the property owner who stated the waste had come from another property he owned in North Collins and that he intended to burn the waste. The ECOs found painted wood, plywood, plastic, and floor molding in the pile. The property owner was ticketed for the illegal disposal of solid waste, returnable to the Town of Charlotte Court on May 2.

Way Over the Limit - Erie County: On April 17, ECO Jamie Powers assisted with trout stocking in the town of Sardinia at five locations along Cattaraugus Creek. After the stocking was complete, ECO Powers observed three individuals catching and keeping fish. Two of the fishermen were observed taking fish up to their car, while the third continued to catch fish. ECO Powers approached the fishermen. Initially, the fishermen denied catching more than a few fish but quickly admitted to keeping more than was allowed. One of the individuals caught 11 brown trout and the other two had caught seven trout each. All three individuals were issued summonses for taking more than the daily limit of trout, returnable to the Sardinia Town Court.

Construction and Demolition Fire - Niagara County: While on patrol on April 17 in the town of Hartland, ECO Josh Wolgast observed a house that appeared to be under renovation and a large fire burning with several black plastic construction bags in it. ECO Wolgast stopped and interviewed two individuals on site. One admitted to starting the fire to burn lath from the renovation. However, the fire contained construction debris and trash of all kinds including insulation, particle board, plastics, paint cans, and used motor oil. Several mattresses and a couch meant to go into the fire were piled nearby. ECO Wolgast issued two tickets for unlawful disposal of solid waste and the open burning of garbage, both returnable to the Town of Hartland Court.

 

DEC AND GREAT LAKES RESEARCH CONSORTIUM AWARD $136,591 IN RESEARCH GRANTS: Projects will focus on harmful algal bloom, invasive species, mercury, fish microbiome, endangered plovers, and emerging contaminants.
The Great Lakes Research Consortium, in cooperation with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Great Lakes Program, announces the award of $136,591 for six research projects that address priority areas in the Great Lakes Action Agenda for New York State. Funding for the grants is provided by the state's Environmental Protection Fund to the Great Lakes Research Consortium via an agreement with the College of Environmental Science and Forestry.
The 2017 small research grants are as follow; details of each project are posted on the Consortium website at
www.esf.edu/glrc:
Assessing the Role of Nitrogen in Harmful Algal Blooms in the Great Lakes Basin (Honeoye Lake): $25,000, Finger Lakes Institute at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, NY; collaborator: Wright State University, Dayton, OH;
Economic Value of Controlling Aquatic Invasive Species in New York State: $22,500, Clarkson University, Potsdam, NY;
Mercury Mobilization from Wetlands Along the Upper St. Lawrence River in Support of Ecosystem-Based Management: $20,338.00, Clarkson University, Potsdam, NY; collaborators: St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY; New York Power Authority, Massena; St. Lawrence River Institute of Environmental Sciences, Cornwall, Ontario, Canada;
Influence of Spawning and Nursery Habitat in Shaping the Northern Pike Gut Microbiome, $22,500, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY; Thousand Islands Biological Station, Clayton, NY;
Informing Restoration of the Endangered Piping Plover to Lake Ontario, $21,751.00, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY; collaborators: Audubon New York, Troy, NY; New York State Department of Environmental Conservation; New York State Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation; Onondaga Audubon Society, Syracuse, NY; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Screening and Risk Assessment of Contaminants of Emerging Concern in the Onondaga Lake-Three Rivers System: $24,502.00, Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY; collaborator: Upstate Freshwater Institute, Syracuse, NY.
The Great Lakes Small Grants Research Program is administered by the Great Lakes Research Consortium in cooperation with the DEC and New York Great Lakes Basin Advisory Council. The GLRC, based at SUNY ESF, is a consortium representing 18 colleges and universities in New York State plus nine affiliates campuses in Ontario, Canada. The goal of this small grant research program is to provide seed funding for new, cooperative projects that improve our understanding and management of New York's Great Lakes resources. EPF funding is allocated for the New York Ocean-Great Lakes Ecosystem Conservation Act and New York Great Lakes Action Agenda.
Contacts: Great Lakes Research Consortium Director Dr. Gregory L. Boyer, 315.470.6825
DEC: Megan Gollwitzer, 716.851.7201,
region9@dec.ny.gov
GLRC Publicist Kara Lynn Dunn, 315.465.7578,
karalynn@gisco.net

(http://www.theoutdoorwire.com/story/14939425233sq3eceax0e)

 

LIPPING BASS MAY BE HARMFUL: Black bass Micropterus spp. support popular freshwater sport fisheries in North America. Bass anglers commonly adopt catch and release as a conservation practice, and frequently over 75% of angled black bass are released back into the water. If fish survive the angling event, the practice of catch and release as an alternative to harvest reduces direct mortality, but it has the potential to affect the postrelease feeding behavior and survival of the fish. The act of lifting black bass for handling, hook removal, and photograph opportunities may cause stress and injury, and the degree of injury sustained could be influenced by fish size. Holding fish in a tilted grip by the jaw has raised concern among anglers about potential damage to jaw musculature and tendons, as they may not support the fish's body weight out of water, particularly for trophy bass. We conducted an experiment with Florida Largemouth Bass M. salmoides floridanus to evaluate the relative differences in survival, jaw mechanics, and feeding success after the use of three common handling treatments: (1) a vertical hold using a lip-grip device (vertical treatment); (2) a tilted, one-handed grip using only the lower jaw (horizontal treatment); and (3) two-handed support to the lower jaw and body (support treatment). The time taken by fish to regain equilibrium and resume normal swimming behavior after handling differed among the three treatments; the recovery period was shortest for fish in the support treatment (mean ± SD = 7 ± 10 s; vertical treatment: 33 ± 74 s; horizontal treatment: 12 ± 16 s). Minor injuries (e.g., abrasions and sores) and diseases (e.g., tumors and fungus) tended to increase after handling across the entire sample. Results suggested no evidence of handling-specific differences in fish feeding behavior, jaw adjustments, and mortality after release. However, based on our results, we recommend that anglers use two-handed support to handle Florida Largemouth Bass, thus minimizing the mean amount of time for an individual fish to regain equilibrium after an angling event.

(By Jordan Skaggs, Yasmín Quintana, Stephanie L. Shaw, Micheal S. Allen, Nicholas A. Trippel & Michael Matthews - Read the full report in North American Journal of Fisheries Management here:)

 

IF YOU CARE, LEAVE IT THERE: New Yorkers should keep their distance and not to disturb newborn fawns or other young wildlife as many animals are in the peak season for giving birth, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) cautioned.

 

It is not unusual to see a young bird crouched in the yard or a young rabbit in the flower garden, both apparently abandoned. Finding a fawn deer lying by itself is also fairly common. Many people assume that young wildlife found alone are helpless and need assistance for their survival, however, in nearly all cases this is a mistake and typically human interaction does more damage than good. Those that see a fawn or other newborn wildlife should enjoy their encounter but keep it brief, maintain some distance and do not attempt to touch the animal.

Young wildlife quickly venture into the world on shaky legs or fragile wings. While most are learning survival from one or both parents, some normally receive little or no care. Often, wild animal parents stay away from their young when people are near. For all of these young animals, the perils of survival are a natural part of life in the wild.

White-tailed deer fawns present a good example of how human intervention with young wildlife can be problematic. Most fawns are born during late May and the first half of June. While fawns are able to walk shortly after birth, they spend most of their first several days lying still. During this period a fawn is also usually left alone by the adult female (doe) except when nursing. People occasionally find a lone fawn and mistakenly assume it has been orphaned or abandoned, which is very rare. Fawns should never be picked up. If human presence is detected by the doe, the doe may delay its next visit to nurse.

A fawn’s best chance to survive is by being raised by the adult doe. Fawns nurse three to four times a day, usually for less than 30 minutes at a time, but otherwise the doe keeps her distance. This helps reduce the chance that she will attract a predator to the fawn. The fawn’s protective coloration and ability to remain motionless all help it avoid detection by predators and people.     

By the end of its second week, a fawn begins to move about more and spend more time with the doe. It also begins to eat grass and leaves. At about ten weeks of age, fawns are no longer dependent on milk, although they continue to nurse occasionally into the fall. During August, all deer begin to grow their winter coat and fawns lose their spots during this process.

Should you find a fawn or other young wildlife, If You Care, Leave It There. In nearly all cases that is the best thing for the animal. DO NOT consider young wildlife as possible pets. This is illegal and is bad for the animal. Wild animals are not well suited for life in captivity and they may carry diseases that can be given to people. Resist the temptation to take them out of the wild. For more information and answers to frequently asked questions about young wildlife, visit the DEC website at: www.dec.ny.gov/animals/6956.html.

 

THIS WEEK'S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page)

MAY 2017

5-14 - Lake Ontario Counties (LOC) Spring Trout and Salmon Derby 2017. 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.)

6 - Start of Statewide Fishing Season for Northern Pike, Pickerel, Tiger Muskellunge, and Walleye (>3/15/18)

6 - Start of Fishing Season for Muskellunge in the Susquehanna River (Tioga County), the Chemung River and Tributaries and Tioga River (Chemung County) (>3/15/18)

6 - Start of Special Season on Lake Erie and Tribs for Black Bass (must 20 inches +) (>6/16)

12 - Canandaigua Lake DU Sportsman's Night Out at the Gorham Fire Department, 4676 Kearney Road, Gorham, NY (6:00 – 9:00 pm) (Cost: $35 - Adult Kids 12 & Under Are Free!!) Join us for some great bbq, drinks, raffles for guns, gear and ducks unlimited merchandise all afternoon to raise funds for wetlands conservation. (For information contact Brian Danish 585-746-5766   danishb393@gmail.com   or Taylor Barnes   585-944-8904.)

12 -  Home School Nature Series: Aquatic Critters at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (10:00 am – 12:00 pm)   How can small aquatic critters be an indicator of environmental quality? Homeschooled children ages 5-12 will use microscopes to identify pond and marsh macroinvertebrates and learn how important they are to wetland habitats. Bring your water boots and be prepared to have fun and get wet! (Fee: $8/student.) (For information call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

13 - Orleans County Houndsmen And Conservation Club Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on Phipps Road, Albion, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy - $15.00/8:00 pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Ed Roggen at 585-948-9483)

13 - Chemung County Coon Hunters Association Inc Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on Rumsey Hill Road, Van Etten, NY. (3:30 – Coonhound Event Water Race $15.00/5:00pm – Coonhound Event Field Trial - $15.00/6:30pm – Coonhound Bench Show – $15.00/8:00pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Herschel Burt at 570-596-2149)

13 - Southern Tier Cha Inc. Coonhound Event at the clubhouse at 7359 Rood Road, Sinclairville NY (4:00 pm – Coonhound Event Bench Show-Poor Boy - $10.00/6:00 pm – Coonhound Event Field Trial-Poor Boy - $10.00/6:00 pm –Coonhound Event Water Race-Poor Boy - $10.00/9:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $15.00) (For information call Kevin Noody at 716-595-2053 or 716-679-8783)

13 - Birding By Ear at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (9:30 am) Who’s that singing in the forest or up in the trees? Learn to identify birds by their calls and songs. For adults only. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

13 - Edible And Medicinal Wild Plants Walk at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:00 pm) Learn to identify local wild plants that can be used as food and medicine, and sample some dishes featuring wild foods. (Materials fee: $5; $3 for Friends of Reinstein Woods members.) For adults and children ages 12 and older. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

13 - Ladies' Archery 101 at the Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (11:00 am - 1:00 pm) Learn the basics and much more from our local outfitters. (For information call 716-608-4770)

13 - Ladies' Shotgun101 at the Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (11:00 am - 1:00 pm) Come learn the basics to shoot shotgun from our local outfitters. (For information call 716-608-4770)

13/14 - Fishing Basics for Mom and Kids at Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (Sat. 11:00 am - 5:00 pm/Sun. 11:00 am – 1:00 pm) Come join Pro Staffer Joe Fonzi and his lovely wife Diane for some Mother's Day fun, the outdoors way...

Joe and Diane will teach basics fishing techniques to anyone that would like to learn.  What a great opportunity for all moms to learn how to fish with their kids. (For information call 716-608-4770)

14 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Summer Slam Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at The Hornell American Legion Post #440, 72 Seneca Street, Hornell, NY (3:00 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 Mike Valentine   mvalentine@stny.rr.com   607-661-8709)

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)

17-6/14 – Cumming Nature Center Forest School for Ages 12–15 Pilot at the Cumming Nature Center, 6472 Gulick Road, Naplels, NY. (10:00 am – 3:30 pm daily) In this five-week pilot program students continue fostering a deep, personal relationship with nature as they grow into their role as citizen scientists. Instructors facilitate a variety of experiences that empower students as we: tune into the intricate cycles of nature by studying its patterns; develop a personal philosophy about how to live in nature without causing its degradation; and push our physical and emotional limits as we fully embrace the elements. Previous attendance of CNC Forest school is not required, and all outdoor experience levels are welcome. A basic comfort level with the outdoors will be helpful. (Cost: Non-member $145.00/Member $132) (For information call 585-374-6160.)

18 - Public Meeting on Proposed Projects Restoring Wildlife Habitat and Recreation on Onondaga Lake at the Onondaga Lake Visitors Center, 280 Restoration Way, Syracuse, NY (5:00 pm) The Onondaga Lake Community Participation Working Group (CPWG) meeting is scheduled from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. All CPWG meetings are open to the public, as such the community is welcome to join all or part of the meeting. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and New York State Department of Environmental Conservation are considering a series of projects to restore and protect wildlife habitat and water quality and increase recreational opportunities at Onondaga Lake, as outlined in a draft restoration plan and environmental assessment released for public comment through June 2, 2017. The draft plan and additional information on the Natural Resource Damage Assessment process may be found online at https://www.fws.gov/northeast/nyfo/ec/onondaga.htm. (For more information: DEC Contact:  Sean Mahar 518-402-8000 /  USFWS Contact: Meagan Racey 413-253-8558)

19 - Public Meeting on Proposed Projects Restoring Wildlife Habitat and Recreation on Onondaga Lake at the City Hall Commons Atrium located at 201 E. Washington Street, Syracuse, NY (Enter through side doors to the Atrium via Warren Street.) (7:30 – 8:45 am) The Onondaga Lake Community Participation Working Group (CPWG) meeting is scheduled from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. All CPWG meetings are open to the public, as such the community is welcome to join all or part of the meeting. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and New York State Department of Environmental Conservation are considering a series of projects to restore and protect wildlife habitat and water quality and increase recreational opportunities at Onondaga Lake, as outlined in a draft restoration plan and environmental assessment released for public comment through June 2, 2017. The draft plan and additional information on the Natural Resource Damage Assessment process may be found online at https://www.fws.gov/northeast/nyfo/ec/onondaga.htm. (For more information: DEC Contact:  Sean Mahar 518-402-8000 /  USFWS Contact: Meagan Racey 413-253-8558)

19 - Concealed Carry Class presented by Legal Heat at the Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (4:00 - 8:00 pm) Join Legal Heat as they lead a Concealed Carry Course. (Reservations can be made at www.MyLegalHeat.com or by calling 855-GUN-CLASS.)

20 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Grand Slam Gobblers Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at the Wolcott Elks Club, 6161 W. Port Bay Road, Wolcott, 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 Chris Reed,   jmc604@hotmail.com  315-730-24360)

20 - Saturday Kayak Skills Session at the Olean, NY, Linn Launch, Steam Valley Road, Portville, NY (11:30 am – 1:30 pm) Kayak skills and safety training. (Cost: $80.00) (For information call 716-392-2708 or email seabird.ava@gmail.com)

20 - Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) Workshop - Stalking the Adirondack Ostrich: Ferns, Flowers & Trees of the Adirondacks at Tupper Lake, NY (Cost: $50.00) (For information/register contact Adirondack Foothills Guide Service, LLC  518-359-8194  adkfoothills@yahoo.com  or go to www.adkfoothills.com) 

20 – Grape Country Coonhunters Association Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on Williams Hill Road, Branchport, NY (7:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show - $12.00/8:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $15.00) (For information call Josh Wood at 315-729-4773)

20 - Cattaraugus County Houndsmen and Conservation Club Inc. Coonhound Event at their clubhouse at 10491 Route 240, West Valley, NY (7:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show - $15.00/9:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Joel Nicholas 716-378-1832)

20 - Concealed Carry Class presented by Legal Heat at Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (9:00 am - 1:00 pm) Cabela’s has partnered with Legal Heat, the Nation’s Leading Firearms Training Firm to provide concealed carry classes to meet the qualifying requirements and documentation to obtain the Utah and Arizona concealed carry permits in a fun, informative, non-intimidating class. These permits will allow combined carry reciprocity in approximately 30+ states. Legal Heat's concealed carry class covers firearms safety, handling, transportation, storage, ammunition, self-defense and firearms laws, concealed carry techniques and much more. Legal Heat’s firearm training instructors are all NRA and Utah BCI certified, insured and among the most highly experienced in the industry and can answer your CCW questions. This course typically runs approximately 4 hours. This Legal Heat course does not have a test?or range requirement. The Utah and Arizona permits are open to residents of any state and can be applied for by mail. You do NOT have to reside in the state of UT or AZ to qualify to apply for their concealed carry permits. Register TODAY for this fun and informative class. Seating may be limited. (For information/register go to www.MyLegalHeat.com/Cabelas or call 855-GUN-CLASS)

20 - Birding and Boating: Howland’s Island Meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (1:30 – 4:00 pm) Join us for a relaxing canoe/kayak paddle to explore the Seneca River around Howland’s Island. This is a wonderful opportunity to experience the largest population of breeding Cerulean Warblers in NY. Bring your own canoe/kayak or rent a boat from us. (Fee: $10/child with-out rental, $18/adult without rental, $25/solo kayak rental, $40/canoe rental) (maximum 2 adults plus 1 child). Pre-paid reservations are required. (For information call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

21 – The Annual Chautauqua Lake Team Crappie Tournament at the Lakewood Community Park and Boat Launch sponsored by the  Chautauqua Lake Bassmasters. (6:00 am – 1:00 pm) Open to the public, the team entry fee of $50 will be used for the cash prize payout to the top three finishers and the big fish prize; 10-fish team bag; live fish weigh-in.  Visit chaut-lakebassmasters for an entry application, Trevor Graham is the tournament director (716-720-6498). 

 

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 - 5 - 17

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

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Vulture - Genesee County: On April 2, ECO Gary Wilson received a call from Genesee County Dispatch stating that a concerned motorist had reported an injured Turkey Vulture standing on State Rt. 5 in the town of Stafford. The vulture had been hit by a vehicle and was at risk of being struck again. ECO Wilson responded to the location, found the bird, collected it in a five-gallon pail, and promptly transported it to a local wildlife rehabilitator.

Bobcats are Not Pets - Jefferson County: On March 29, ECOs Kevin Holzle and Peter Jackson were contacted regarding a complaint of a subject in possession of a live bobcat. It is illegal to possess a bobcat without a permit. When the ECOs arrived at the residence, vehicles were parked in the driveway but there was no sign of movement inside. The officers spoke with a neighbor, who stated that the subject was home and that the bobcat was locked in a shed outside of the residence. The subject eventually came out and admitted to keeping a live bobcat in his possession. He claimed that the bobcat was struck by a vehicle three weeks prior and he was caring for the animal. The ECOs, with the help of Lt. Steve Bartoszewski, seized the bobcat and released the uninjured animal back into the woods. The subject was charged with illegal possession of wildlife and is due to appear in Town of Theresa Court in late April.

Prescribed Fire - Town of Rush, Monroe County: On April 26 and 27, DEC conducted a 50-acre prescribed burn at Rush Oak Openings Unique Area. DEC Forest Rangers, staff from divisions of Lands and Forests and Fish and Wildlife, and Fire Wardens worked with the U.S. Forest Service to conduct the burn. The first day's burning operations focused on the eastern portion of the property near the Five Points gate called the Sand Knoll area. The large fields were treated on the second day of burning. The primary purpose of the prescribed burn was to maintain the open character of the land and inhibit the growth of woody stemmed species. In addition to filling required positions on the fire management team, additional positions were filled with trainees working toward certification. An Excelsior Corps crew was integrated into the operations to complete the field exercise portions of their Wildland Fire Suppression courses

Search - Town of Lysander, Onondaga County: On April 29 at about 5:47 p.m., Forest Rangers were notified by Environmental Conservation Officer (ECO) Don Damrath of an attempt to locate a suicidal subject in Labrador Hollow Unique Area on the border of Onondaga and Cortland counties. Forest Rangers responded and contacted Onondaga County 911 for additional details. ECO Damrath responded, as well. Ranger Scott Jackson made contact with an Onondaga Sherriff's Deputy who stated that the subject was believed to be at the Three Rivers Wildlife Management Area. At 6:55 p.m., Onondaga County 911 advised that the subject had been located in good condition. All DEC resources were released.

 

DEC ACCEPTING PUBLIC COMMENTS ON REGULATORY PROPOSALS FOR DIAMONDBACK TERRAPINS AND BOBCATS: 

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced today that the agency is accepting public comments on two regulatory proposals. One proposal is for the closure of the diamondback terrapin season; the other revises the special permit requirements for bobcat hunting and trapping.

The Diamondback terrapin is an aquatic turtle that lives within the brackish waters of the lower Hudson River, Long Island Sound, New York Harbor, and the south shore of Long Island. There is currently an open season for taking the species under a commercial license from August through April. Declines in terrapin populations from harvest and habitat loss has now prompted states to ban the commercial harvest of Diamondback terrapins

A single season of intensive harvesting has the potential to endanger this species in New York. Therefore, DEC is proposing to close the harvest of diamondback terrapins and to give the species the same protections as other native turtles in New York.

Upon completion of the Bobcat Management Plan in 2012, regulations were adopted to establish a hunting and trapping season in select Wildlife Management Units (WMUs) in central and western New York, referred to as the "Harvest Expansion Area" (HEA). In areas open to bobcat hunting and trapping, individuals are required to have a license and to have the animal "pelt sealed" (i.e., have a plastic tag affixed by DEC staff) after harvest.

However, to hunt or trap bobcats in the HEA, licensed hunters and trappers were required to obtain a free "special permit" from their regional wildlife office. This requirement allowed biologists to collect information on participation, harvest, harvest pressure (e.g., number of days afield, number of traps set) through a diary or "log", and to collect biological samples. This robust data set allowed biologists to assess the status of the bobcat population and evaluate harvest.

After three seasons of data collection, sufficient information on harvest pressure and take has been collected such that the special permit is no longer needed. If the regulation is adopted as proposed, hunters and trappers that pursue bobcats in the HEA will still be required to have a hunting or trapping license and to have the animal pelt sealed.

The Notices of Proposed Rulemaking can be viewed on DEC's website and in the New York State Register. The public comment period will be open through June 9, 2017.

Comments must be submitted in writing to:

Proposed Bobcat Regulation: Michael Schiavone, NYSDEC, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4754

Proposed Terrapin Regulation: Kathy O'Brien, NYSDEC, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4754

Or e-mail comments to:wildliferegs@dec.ny.gov; subject line "Bobcat Regulation" or "Terrapin Regulation."

 

FROM THE EMAIL: VETERAN FACES 21 YEARS IN PRISON FOR POSSESSION OF PISTOL MAGAZINES: (By Michael Filozof)  Simeon D. Mokhiber, a Niagara Falls, N.Y. Army veteran, was convicted April 21 on three felony counts of possessing “large capacity ammunition feeding devices” under Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s SAFE Act.
Mokhiber served nine years in the U.S. Army and participated in the 2003 invasion of Iraq. He subsequently worked as an armed private security contractor in Iraq and Afghanistan, and was formerly licensed as an armed security guard in New York. He is the father of an eight-year-old with disabilities, and had no prior criminal record.
Mokhiber was pulled over for speeding in April 2016. Although Mokhiber had not been drinking, police performed field sobriety tests. When Mokhiber requested that officers turn on body cameras, he was arrested and his vehicle was searched without a warrant.
Police found three 17-round Glock handgun magazines in a locked container that was opened without Mokhiber’s consent. Although Mokhiber was the owner of a licensed and registered handgun, no gun was present in the vehicle at the time of the traffic stop – only the magazines.
Under New York law, possessing an “ammunition feeding device” capable of holding more than 10 rounds is a felony carrying a maximum penalty of seven years in prison.
If Mokhiber is sentenced consecutively, he could face up to 21 years in state prison for possession of the magazines.
While New York is busy prosecuting combat veterans of Operation “Iraqi Freedom,” Gov. Cuomo has been actively sympathizing with left-wing criminals. Last December, Cuomo commuted the sentence of Judith Clark, making the avowed communist revolutionary eligible for a parole hearing. Clark was serving a 75-to-life sentence for her role in a 1981 Brink’s robbery that involved the murder of a security guard and two police officers.  (Cuomo, who personally visited Clark in prison prior to commuting her sentence, was quoted as saying “She made a mistake” and “Jesus would pardon her.”)
And the governor’s state budget, passed two weeks ago, appropriated $10 million of taxpayers’ money to provide legal counsel to illegal aliens facing deportation.

 

CAMPING WORLD GROUP WINS GANDER MOUNTAIN BANKRUPTCY AUCTION: The largest U.S. recreational vehicle dealer, Camping World Holdings Inc., and a group of liquidators won a bankruptcy auction for St. Paul-based Gander Mountain Co., according to a bankruptcy court filing. The value of the winning bid for the sporting goods retailer was about $390 million, according to people familiar with the matter who requested anonymity to discuss the details of the auction results.

The Camping World-led group bested a going-concern bid for Gander Mountain from rival Sportsman’s Warehouse Holdings Inc., the sources said.

Camping World, which is run by Marcus Lemonis, a star on CNBC TV’s reality show “The Profit,” plans to operate at least 17 Gander Mountain stores as a going concern, the sources said. An auction for Gander Mountain’s remaining more than 100 leases will be conducted later, the sources said.

The consortium also won all of Gander Mountain’s intellectual property and its Overton’s boating business, the sources said.

Gander Mountain declined to comment, and Lincolnshire, Ill.-based Camping World did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The auction results will require final approval from a U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge.

Gander Mountain filed for bankruptcy in March with a plan to quickly sell itself after struggling with excess inventory and seeing its approximately 160 stores underperform. It listed assets and liabilities each worth up to $1 billion.

(By Jessica DiNapoli , Reuters - April 29, 2017)

 

“WORRY CALLS”: The annual increase in “worry” calls is underway, as people see animals out at odd times of the day and in odd areas. The cause is either the wind down of that urge of nature we call sex (this is the end of the mating season for many of the medium sized mammals such as skunks, raccoons and woodchucks) or the start up of selecting a birth site and finding food for young.

Several Springs ago, I was lucky to have a pair of red fox den in a brush pile 100 feet behind my house. It was a real treat to watch six pups as they started life outside the den. The adults were constantly hunting for food making them more exposed then at other times of the year. As a wildlife biologist, this was pure enjoyment. To others, however, this scenario might be seen as a

threat to their safety. Still others fear damage to their property when they see wildlife. A raccoon moves into the chimney or squirrels invade an attic to raise young. These people want the animal gone. What happens next? People can either call a Nuisance Wildlife Control Agent licensed by New York State or they can do it themselves.

A friend, Barry Ganzhorn from Caledonia, also a Nuisance Wildlife Control Agent, once commented to me about the problem with do-it-your-selfers. “I noticed that more and more folks are buying animal traps and trying to take care of their wild animal problems themselves. There is more to wild animal trapping then buying a trap and a jar of peanut butter. Wild animal trapping has a ton of rules and regulations that the common person doesn’t know about. These rules and regulations have a purpose.” Barry continued, “So you have, what you think is a woodchuck hole in your back yard. You go and buy a live trap from the local hardware and a jar of peanut butter and set up, hoping to get "Woody" the Woodchuck. The next morning you and the kids run out to see if your first venture in trapping has produced good results. You can’t believe what you see. "Peppie-la-Pew" (a very unhappy Skunk) is in the trap. What do you do now? What happened to the woodchuck? Panic sets in and all of a sudden you find yourself calling for help. Things get worse when you find out that it will cost $100 and up for a certified trapper to come and take care of the problem. So then what? The law states that you, as the home owner, have the option to dispatch or release the animal yourself. If you dispatch it you have to bury it on your own property. This is a very complicated decision as contact, with this animal may result in the spread of the rabies virus, if the animal is infected. If you decide to release the skunk, don*t forget that getting sprayed is a very good possibility. If you have never been sprayed, you are in for a treat!! The regulations go on and on, so as you can see, maybe it’s best to just fill in the hole, or call an agent, and forget about trying the art of trapping.”

I, personally had a call very similar to Barry’s example. A man set his neighbor’s cage trap for a woodchuck and caught a skunk. Not knowing what to do, he decided to let it die in the trap. My call came five days later. The skunk was still very much alive and not to happy. When you do anything without knowing what you are doing, problems are going to happen. Knowledge of animal habits, proper types and sizes of traps available, where to set traps and what to do with animals captured is essential to eliminate problems and prevent needless suffering for the wild or domestic animal. Remember also, the trip to the park with the pesky squirrel could cost you a hefty fine if you are caught. It is illegal to move wildlife without a permit.

 

THIS WEEK'S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page)

MAY 2017

5-14 - Lake Ontario Counties (LOC) Spring Trout and Salmon Derby 2017. 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.)

6 - Start of Statewide Fishing Season for Northern Pike, Pickerel, Tiger Muskellunge, and Walleye (>3/15/18)

6 - Start of Fishing Season for Muskellunge in the Susquehanna River (Tioga County), the Chemung River and Tributaries and Tioga River (Chemung County) (>3/15/18)

6 - Start of Special Season on Lake Erie and Tribs for Black Bass (must 20 inches +) (>6/16)

6 - Steuben County Coon Hunters, Inc. Coonhound Event at their clubhouse at 4082 Depot Street, Cameron, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show - $15.00/8:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Roger Barney at 607-695-9024)

6 - Annual Wildlife Festival at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (10:00 am – 3:00 pm) Highlights at the Wildlife Festival will be live animal presentations, delicious food, live music, children’s games, crafts and activities, guided bird watching hikes and canoe trips, a native plant sale, a garlic mustard pulling contest, and over 40 vendors and exhibitors. (Fee: FREE for children under 5, $2/school-aged child, $4/adult.) (For information call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

6 - Warblers For Beginners at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Join us as we learn about and look for migrating warblers, often called the butterflies of the bird world. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

6-7 – 39th Annual Walleye Fishing Derby on Oneida Lake sponsored by the Chittenango Lions Club, Headquartered at Oneida Shores County Park, 9400 Bartell Road, Brewerton, NY (Awards 5/7 at 3:00pm)(Entry fee $15.00) (For information call Carol at 315-699-3187 or email info@lionswalleyederby.org)

8 -  From PA to Africa: Chickadees in Forest Fragments & House Sparrows in Africa by Dan Ardia, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Franklin and Marshall College at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, 159 Sapsucker Woods Road, Ithaca, NY (7:30 – 9:00 pm) Sponsored by the Cayuga Bird Club. Dan will discuss two projects likely to change how you watch local birds. The first looks at movement and survival of Carolina Chickadees in forest fragments in central Pennsylvania. The second project studies how invasive House Sparrows spread across Africa. Two field expeditions (Kenya and Senegal) reveal interesting differences in which birds are at the leading edge of the expansion and how they differ in behavior. (For information email pel27@cornell.edu)

11 - Educator Workshops - Project WILD Workshop at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga). (4:00 - 7:00 pm) Project WILD (Wildlife in Learning Design) - Helping educators prepare students to develop problem-solving skills in exploring responsible human actions toward wildlife and the environment. For educators of students in grades K-12. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

12 - Canandaigua Lake DU Sportsman's Night Out at the Gorham Fire Department, 4676 Kearney Road, Gorham, NY (6:00 – 9:00 pm) (Cost: $35 - Adult Kids 12 & Under Are Free!!) Join us for some great bbq, drinks, raffles for guns, gear and ducks unlimited merchandise all afternoon to raise funds for wetlands conservation. (For information contact Brian Danish 585-746-5766   danishb393@gmail.com   or Taylor Barnes   585-944-8904.)

12 -  Home School Nature Series: Aquatic Critters at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (10:00 am – 12:00 pm)   How can small aquatic critters be an indicator of environmental quality? Homeschooled children ages 5-12 will use microscopes to identify pond and marsh macroinvertebrates and learn how important they are to wetland habitats. Bring your water boots and be prepared to have fun and get wet! (Fee: $8/student.) (For information call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

13 - Orleans County Houndsmen And Conservation Club Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on Phipps Road, Albion, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy - $15.00/8:00 pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Ed Roggen at 585-948-9483)

13 - Chemung County Coon Hunters Association Inc Coonhound Event at their clubhouse on Rumsey Hill Road, Van Etten, NY. (3:30 – Coonhound Event Water Race $15.00/5:00pm – Coonhound Event Field Trial - $15.00/6:30pm – Coonhound Bench Show – $15.00/8:00pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Herschel Burt at 570-596-2149)

13 - Southern Tier Cha Inc. Coonhound Event at the clubhouse at 7359 Rood Road, Sinclairville NY (4:00 pm – Coonhound Event Bench Show-Poor Boy - $10.00/6:00 pm – Coonhound Event Field Trial-Poor Boy - $10.00/6:00 pm –Coonhound Event Water Race-Poor Boy - $10.00/9:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $15.00) (For information call Kevin Noody at 716-595-2053 or 716-679-8783)

13 - Birding By Ear at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (9:30 am) Who’s that singing in the forest or up in the trees? Learn to identify birds by their calls and songs. For adults only. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

13 - Edible And Medicinal Wild Plants Walk at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:00 pm) Learn to identify local wild plants that can be used as food and medicine, and sample some dishes featuring wild foods. (Materials fee: $5; $3 for Friends of Reinstein Woods members.) For adults and children ages 12 and older. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

13 - Ladies' Archery 101 at the Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (11:00 am - 1:00 pm) Learn the basics and much more from our local outfitters. (For information call 716-608-4770)

13 - Ladies' Shotgun101 at the Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (11:00 am - 1:00 pm) Come learn the basics to shoot shotgun from our local outfitters. (For information call 716-608-4770)

13/14 - Fishing Basics for Mom and Kids at Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (Sat. 11:00 am - 5:00 pm/Sun. 11:00 am – 1:00 pm) Come join Pro Staffer Joe Fonzi and his lovely wife Diane for some Mother's Day fun, the outdoors way...

Joe and Diane will teach basics fishing techniques to anyone that would like to learn.  What a great opportunity for all moms to learn how to fish with their kids. (For information call 716-608-4770)

14 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Summer Slam Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at The Hornell American Legion Post #440, 72 Seneca Street, Hornell, NY (3:00 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 Mike Valentine   mvalentine@stny.rr.com   607-661-8709)

 

Until our next meeting in the Corner, have a great time in the outdoors. This is Ron Schroder for B AYour 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 - 28 - 17

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

 

HUNTER SHOOTS TWO PARTNERS WHO WERE HIDING BEHIND TURKEY FAN:

According to this report from The Joplin Globe, three buddies were hunting new land. Two of the shotgun hunters began searching for turkeys on one side of the leased private property, and the other man started hunting elsewhere on the land. Somehow they ended up moving into each other’s space. It appears likely that they were calling to each other, both parties thinking that the other was a real gobbler. While two of the hunters hid behind a turkey fan on the edge of the woods, the third man shot at the fan, hitting his hunting partners.

According to the news story: “Sheriff Dan Peak said the sheriff’s office learned of the matter when the shooter drove the two injured hunters to the hospital in Girard with potentially life-threatening shotgun wounds to their faces and upper bodies. They later were flown by medical helicopter to Freeman Hospital West in Joplin.”

This story serves as a grim reminder of the dangers of reaping/fanning a turkey, even on private land. BE CAREFUL OUT THERE!

 

DEC ACQUIRES 11 ACRES ON WHITNEY BAY ON CHAUTAUQUA LAKE:  Through a partnership with the Chautauqua Watershed Conservancy, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) recently acquired 11 acres of land in the Town of Chautauqua along Whitney Bay in Chautauqua Lake. The newly acquired parcel, called the Whitney Bay Site, will become part of the Chautauqua Lake Fish and Wildlife Management Area.

"Thanks to the Chautauqua Watershed Conservancy, this new parcel will become a valuable addition to the Chautauqua Lake Fish and Wildlife Management Area," said DEC Regional Director Abby Snyder. "Not only will it provide additional recreational opportunities and lake access for the public, it will also help to protect valuable wetland habitat and 300 feet of lake shoreline."

"The Conservancy has worked for over ten years to conserve this site," said John Jablonski, CWC Executive Director. "The directors and members of the Conservancy are very pleased that this wooded wetland lakeshore with valuable native emergent and aquatic vegetation important to the fisheries and waterfowl of the lake has been permanently protected and will be available for public use. With less than ten percent of the lake's shoreline in a natural condition, conserving these last remaining habitat sites is extremely important to the health of the lake and its fish and wildlife populations. We have truly appreciated the opportunity to partner with the DEC to make this project come to fruition."

The Whitney Bay Site is the fourth parcel to be added to the Chautauqua Lake Fish and Wildlife Management area which now comprises 134 total acres along Chautauqua Lake. Other sites composing the Chautauqua Lake Fish and Wildlife Management Area include Tom's Point Site (72 acres), Cheney Farm Site (34 acres), and Stow Farm Site (17 acres). Over the past twenty years, the Chautauqua Watershed Conservancy and DEC have worked collaboratively to conserve over two miles of environmentally-sensitive shoreline and wetland areas along Chautauqua Lake and its outlets.

The new site will provide access to the lake for waterfowl hunting, trapping, fishing and wildlife viewing. Additional information about the Chautauqua Lake Fish and Wildlife Management Area can be found on DEC's website.

 

THE GOOD GUYS AT WORK:

Fish Stocking Detail - Monroe County: On April 14, DEC Bureau of Fisheries conducted its annual stocking of Brown Trout in Irondequoit Creek at various locations in Monroe County. ECOs assisted with traffic control, stocking, and monitoring of fishing activity on the creek. This initial stocking activity provides anglers the opportunity to easily catch their limit for the day in a short period of time. To ensure compliance with fishing regulations, Lt. Bruce Hummel, along with ECOs Paul Blanton, George Scheer, Brian Shea, and Kevin Thomas, conducted patrols along the creek when the stocking was complete. The conditions were ideal and numerous anglers enjoyed a near perfect day of fishing. Although few violations were encountered, two fishermen were issued tickets for fishing without licenses.

 

Prescribed Fire - Town of Rathbone, Steuben County: On April 10, Forest Rangers and other DEC staff treated 45 acres of grass fuels with prescribed fire at the Helmer Creek Wildlife Management Area. The Helmer Creek burn unit is identified for habitat improvement because of the presence of timber rattlesnakes in the area. Little Bluestem, a native warm season grass, grows on this site and is needed for management objectives. The re-introduction of consistent burning will help invigorate these native grasses and slow the spread of invasive species. Early season timing of this prescribed fire must occur before the emergence of rattlesnakes later this spring.

Prescribed Fire - Town of Cameron, Steuben County: On April 17, Forest Ranger Timothy Carpenter supervised a five-acre prescribed fire in the West Cameron Wildlife Management Area assisted by seven additional rangers and five DEC firefighters. This fire burned was conducted to improve wildlife habitat by maintaining grass and eliminating woody plants. The controlled fire went as planned and was out by mid-afternoon. This was the third prescribed fire this spring on DEC lands in Steuben County for a combined treatment of 63 acres.

Enforcement - Town of Ward, Allegany County: On March 27, two Forest Rangers responded to a complaint of underage drinking on state land. Upon arriving at approximately 9:45 p.m. at Vandermark State Forest, the Rangers found a gathering of college students from a nearby campus. Several violations were noted and tickets issued for setting a fire on state land, depositing rubbish on state land, and underage alcohol possession on state land. The young people were advised to put the fire out and clean up the site. The Forest Rangers departed the area after the students complied with these directions.

Trespassing Leads to Drug Arrest - Chemung County: On April 4, Capt. John Burke observed a suspicious vehicle parked on Greatsinger Road in the town of Elmira. The posted property where the vehicle was parked has previously been used for illegal dumping and drug activity. Upon questioning the occupants of the vehicle, Capt. Burke suspected that the subjects were engaged in illegal drug activity in addition to trespassing. Capt. Burke contacted the Chemung County Communication Center and requested assistance. State Troopers from the Horseheads barracks responded with an investigator from the NYS Community Narcotics Enforcement Team. As a result of the investigation, police seized three ounces of methamphetamine oil, two glass stems, and a vial containing methamphetamine residue. Police charged the two suspects with third-degree unlawful manufacturing of methamphetamine, a felony offense. The suspects were arraigned in Elmira Court and remanded to the Chemung County Jail in lieu of $15,000 cash bail or $30,000 property bond. All hazardous items were removed from the scene by the Contaminated Crime Scene Emergency Response Team.

 

NEW FEATURES FOR NYS FISHING, HUNTING AND WILDLIFE MOBILE APP: The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has added a new innovative tool to the official New York Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife App that provides sports license holders a simple, user friendly way to report game harvests with smartphones and mobile devices while afield.

The Fish and Wildlife mobile app, created by ParksbyNature Network, is available free of charge and provides users with the latest fish and wildlife news, detailed hunting and fishing season information, species information, weather alerts, social media connections, GPS mapping capabilities, and more.

With the integration of the new e-License and Game Harvest features, hunters can quickly and easily create game harvest reports, even when the user is out of cellular range. Users will also be able to login to the DEC licensing system for instant mobile access to an electronic version of their current sporting licenses.

To access the new features, users need only click on the HuntFishNY icon within the app. The New York Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife app can be downloaded on the Apple app store or Google Play store (links leave DEC website,) or by going to DEC's website.

The new app features also allow users to share harvest reports with friends and followers on Facebook, send feedback to DEC, and access DEC resources while afield. As a reminder, it is a legal requirement to report all deer, bear and turkey harvests within seven days of harvest. Harvest information is critical to wildlife management and helps determine the overall health and population of a species and set future hunting seasons and limits.

These enhanced game harvest and electronic license app features were developed via a collaborative effort between DEC and the New York Information Technology Systems' Mobile Channel & Cloud Development Services team.

 

ONONDAGA LAKE PROPOSALS TO RESTORE AND PROTECT WILDLIFE HABITAT: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) are considering a series of projects to restore and protect wildlife habitat and water quality and increase recreational opportunities at Onondaga Lake, as outlined in a draft restoration plan and environmental assessment released for public comment through June 2, 2017 The draft plan may be found at http://nyfo.fws.gov/ec/files/onondaga/Onondaga_RPEA_Press_Release.pdf.
For decades, mercury and other hazardous substances were released into Onondaga Lake and its tributaries and uplands.  Due to this industrial pollution, Onondaga Lake was designated a Superfund site in 1994, launching a comprehensive remediation of the Lake and additional sites in the area, and through various court proceedings, the responsible parties must now also pay for the damages to natural resources this contamination has caused.

As part of the Onondaga Lake natural resource damage assessment and restoration process, the Service and NYSDEC assessed contaminant-related injuries to natural resources such as waterfowl and turtles, and quantified the lost use of natural resources to the public, such as fishing. The agencies then solicited restoration project ideas from stakeholders to identify the types and scale of restoration needed to compensate for those injuries. The ultimate goal of this process is to replace, restore, rehabilitate, or acquire the equivalent of injured natural resources and resource services lost due to the release of hazardous substances—at no cost to the taxpayer.
The agencies analyze 20 restoration projects in the draft restoration plan and environmental assessment. These projects, in total, include the following benefits:

*Extension of the Erie Canalway Trail from Camillus to the Loop the Lake Trail (3.2 miles) and from the Honeywell Visitor Center to Harbor Brook (1.2 miles);

*Preservation, habitat restoration and public access to over 1,400 acres along Ninemile and Onondaga Creeks in the Onondaga Lake watershed, including public fishing rights and parking areas;

*Installation of structures within over 275 acres of Onondaga Lake to provide habitat for fish, amphibians and invertebrates;

*Fifteen years of funding for the identification and removal of invasive species within about 1,700 acres of wetlands, lake/river littoral zone and riparian habitat;

*Restoration of wetland and fish habitat at Onondaga County parklands;

100 acres of warm season grassland restoration;

*Deepwater fishing pier on Onondaga Lake;

*Enhancement of jetties at the Onondaga Lake outlet to improve access for all;

*Boat launch to be developed along the Seneca River;

*Transfer of the Honeywell Visitor Center to a public agency;

Future Restoration Projects Fund.

The agencies are soliciting comments on this draft plan through June 2, 2017.  Comments may be submitted by mail to Anne Secord, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 3817 Luker Road, Cortland, New York 13045 and by email to anne_secord@fws.gov. Written comments will also be accepted at a Public Open House, to be held at the Honeywell Visitor Center (280 Restoration Way, Syracuse, New York) on April 27, 2017 from 4:00 PM to 7:30 PM.
Representatives from the Service and DEC will be on hand at the Public Open House to explain the natural resource damage assessment and restoration process, and the draft plan and environmental assessment. After the comment period closes, feedback will be closely reviewed and any necessary changes made to a final document identifying the chosen restoration.
Under federal law, federal and state agencies and Native American tribes are authorized to act as trustees on behalf of the public for natural resources they own, manage or control. In this role, trustees assess and recover damages or implement restoration projects to compensate for injuries to natural resources due to hazardous substance releases (e.g. mercury).The natural resource damage assessment regulations encourage the participation of potentially responsible parties (PRPs) in the assessment process, and Honeywell agreed to cooperatively assess natural resource damages and identify restoration projects at Onondaga Lake with the trustees.

 

THIS WEEK'S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page)

APRIL 2017

28 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Oswego River Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at the Oasis At Thunder Island, Route 48, Fulton, 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 Bruce Bailey   dinklepuss@hotmail.com   315-695-5113)

28 – Arbor Day – New York State

28-30 - Bird of Prey Days at the Braddocks Bay Raptor Research Center, Braddock Bay Park, Greece, NY. Includes a wide variety of activities. (For information go to www.bbrr.org.)

29 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Drumlins Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at Donselaars, Route 31-10257, Clyde, 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
msalerno@marshallfarms.com   315-879-8960)

29 – The Western NY Chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Banquet at Barlett Country Club, 32 Euclid Avenue, Olean, NY (4:00 pm) An entertaining evening while raising money to benefit elk and other wildlife, their habitat and America’s hunting heritage. (For information and reservations, contact Sue Clark at 585-567-8991 or Hanley at 585-968-0142.)

29 - Whitetails Unlimited – Stonybrook Chapter Hunters Night Out at the Loyal Order of Moose Lodge 1130, 6 Main Street, Dansville, NY. Deadline for ticket sales – 4-24-17. (Cost: Adult - $45.00/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 Shannon Griese, 585-739-1779 or go to http://www.whitetailsunlimited.com/events/banquets/)

29 - Seager Marine Perch Tournament headquartered at Seager Marine, 1 City Pier, Canandaigua, NY. (6:00 am – 3:00 pm) Pre-Register is by mail: $40 per team (1 – 3 persons). Teams weigh in 5 perch for total weight. (For information and registration forms visit seagermarine.com or call 585-394-1372 x216.)

29 - Women in Nature (WIN) Outdoor Skills Workshop sponsored by the Onondaga County Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs at the Camillus Sportsmen’s Club, 5801 Devoe Road, Camillus, NY. It is open to women and girls age 12 and up. The event is free but registration is required. (For information and the registration form, click on this link http://wwwfederationofsportsmen.com/wp/?page_id=32)

29 – 22nd Annual 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. (For information call Georgina at 716-866-7656)

29 – Boating Safety Course by U.S. Coast Guard Flotilla 3-1 at the Fort Niagara Officer’s Club, Youngstown, NY (9:00 am – 5:00 pm) This is a required class for anyone born after May 1, 1996 if you want to operate a boat or jet ski. (For information/register call Robert Hasse at 716-954-3453)

29 – Boating and Jet Ski Safety Class by U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 3-2 in the Community Room at the McKinley Mall. (8:00 am – 5:00 pm) There is a new age-related State Law for boaters that went into effect in 2015.  To receive more information about the new law, or to register for this class, contact Eileen Reiner at 716-725-9669 or at reiner7@verizon.net.    Visit the website at www.wnyboatsafe.org for a list of additional classes.

29 - Rod & Gun Auction at Hessney Auction Center, 2741 Route 14N, Geneva, NY (9:30 am) Shotguns, rifles, handguns, military, decoys, knives, mounts, fishing, ammo and swords. (For more information call 315-789-9349 or 585-734-6082 or go to www.hessney.com)

29 - Nature Paints at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:00 pm) Learn how artists made paints efore the introduction of synthetic materials. (Materials fee: $4; $2 for Friends of Reinstein Woods members.) For children ages 10 and older. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

29-30 - Wellsville Lions Charities' Greater Trout Derby in the Genesee River. Registration Sites are: Wellsville Town Clerk Office - 156 N. Main Street; Wellsville Chamber of Commerce - 114 N. Main Street; K-Mart - 121 Bolivar Road; Strope Outdoor Supply - 5 William St. Addison NY (Sat 6:00 am – 7:00 pm/Sun 6:00 am – 5:00 pm) (Fees - If you register before April 1st the fee is $15, after April 1st the fee is $20) (For information call 585-596-9274 or email troutderby@yahoo.com or go to http://www.trout-derby.com)

29-30 - 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 716-542-9929 or email  nfgshows@aol.com)

29-30 – Spring King of the Lake Salmon Tournament out of St. Catharines Marina, Port Weller, Canada. (For more information contact www.kotl.ca.)

30 - Last Day Ice Fishing Tip-Ups Can Be Used Statewide

 

MAY 2017

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

1 - Bird Collisions by Dr. Christine Sheppard,  American Bird Conservancy at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, 159 Sapsucker Woods Road,Ithaca, NY (7:30 – 9:00 pm) As many as a billion birds die each year in the U.S., nearly half of them after colliding with home windows. But new methods are being developed to curb bird injuries and death, not only for existing windows but with special materials and design to create new, bird-friendly buildings. Dr. Christine Sheppard will discuss the tools we have to solve the problem and the big job ahead getting those solutions implemented. However, this is one conservation issue where individuals can take immediate action and see immediate results. (For information email pel27@cornell.edu)

2 – Spring Wildflower Hike with Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper at Whirlpool and DeVeaux Woods state parks in Niagara Falls, NY. (5:30 - 7:30 pm) (For information/pre-registration go to http://bnriverkeeper.org/rivertours.)

3 - Oneida Lake Association Annual Members Meeting at the Gillette Road Middle School, 6150 South Bay Road, Cicero, NY. (6:00 pm) Presentations starting at 7 p.m. by Agency and Cornell speakers; election of officers, and displays and door prizes. (For information email info@oneidalakeassociation.org)

5 - Greater Lewiston Smelt Festival, at the Waterfront in Lewiston, N Y (near Niagara Falls). (5:00 pm) The highlight is the Friday night Smelt Dip and Fry conducted by the Niagara River Anglers Association on the waterfront starting at 6 p.m. Live music. This event is free to the public. (For more info check out www.niagarariverregion.com)

5 - Whitney Point Sportsman Association Coonhound Event at the club on NY Route 206, Whitney Point, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy - $12.00/8:00 pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $12.00) (For information call Ralph Canniff at 607-240-1129 or John Marshall 607-345-5366)

5 - Wyoming County Houndsmen and Conservation Club Coonhound Event at their clubhouse Sage Road, Warsaw, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy - $12.00/8:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $15.00) (For information call Scott Halsted 585-993-5188)

5 - End 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.

5-14 - Lake Ontario Counties (LOC) Spring Trout and Salmon Derby 2017. 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.)

6 - Start of Statewide Fishing Season for Northern Pike, Pickerel, Tiger Muskellunge, and Walleye (>3/15/18)

6 - Start of Fishing Season for Muskellunge in the Susquehanna River (Tioga County), the Chemung River and Tributaries and Tioga River (Chemung County) (>3/15/18)

6 - Start of Special Season on Lake Erie and Tribs for Black Bass (must 20 inches +) (>6/16)

6 - Steuben County Coon Hunters, Inc. Coonhound Event at their clubhouse at 4082 Depot Street, Cameron, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show - $15.00/8:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Roger Barney at 607-695-9024)

6 - Annual Wildlife Festival at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (10:00 am – 3:00 pm) Highlights at the Wildlife Festival will be live animal presentations, delicious food, live music, children’s games, crafts and activities, guided bird watching hikes and canoe trips, a native plant sale, a garlic mustard pulling contest, and over 40 vendors and exhibitors. (Fee: FREE for children under 5, $2/school-aged child, $4/adult.) (For information call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

6 - Warblers For Beginners at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:30 pm) Join us as we learn about and look for migrating warblers, often called the butterflies of the bird world. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

6-7 – 39th Annual Walleye Fishing Derby on Oneida Lake sponsored by the Chittenango Lions Club, Headquartered at Oneida Shores County Park, 9400 Bartell Road, Brewerton, NY (Awards 5/7 at 3:00pm)(Entry fee $15.00) (For information call Carol at 315-699-3187 or email info@lionswalleyederby.org)

6-7 - The 2017 Batavia Gun and Sportsman Show (CANCELLED) at the Falleti Ice Arena, 22 Evans Street, Batavia, NY (Sat-9:00 am – 4:00 pm/Sat-9:00 am – 3:00 pm) Sponsored by the Alabama Hunt Club. 180 tables. (Cost: $6.00/under 12 free w/adult) (For information contact Jim Penland  716-434-6535   jimpenland@verizon.net)

 

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 - 21 - 17

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.

 

Youth Turkey Hunting Weekend is April 22-23/Opening of Spring Turkey Season on May 1: The spring wild turkey season opens on May 1 in upstate New York. The youth turkey hunting weekend is scheduled for April 22-23.

 

 

The youth turkey hunt for junior hunters ages 12-15 is open in all of upstate New York. It is encouraged experienced hunters take a novice hunter afield this spring, whether the novice is a young person or an adult getting into the sport for the first time.

DEC reports that the turkey population experienced reproductive success in the summer of 2015, and combined with relatively mild winters in 2015-16 and 2016-17, it is anticipated that the spring harvest will be up from last year and above the five-year average (about 20,000 birds). The estimated turkey harvest for spring 2016 was 18,400 birds, and nearly 6,000 junior hunters harvested an estimated 1,300 birds during the two-day youth hunt in 2016.

Important Details for the Youth Turkey Hunt on April 22 and 23:

*Hunters 12 to 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 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, beginning May 1.

*Crossbows may only be used by hunters age 14 or older.

*All other wild turkey hunting regulations remain in effect.

Other Important Details for the Spring Turkey Season, May 1-31, 2017:

*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 the turkey permit and immediately attach it to any turkey harvested.

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

For more information about turkey hunting in New York, see the 2016-17 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Guide or visit the "Turkey Hunting" pages at DEC's website.

 

BOATER COOPERATION NEEDED TO HELP PROTECT BALD EAGLES AND HABITAT IMPROVEMENTS: As boating season approaches, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) remind boaters to observe the signage, buoys, and various motorized boating restrictions in place around Strawberry Island in the Niagara River. The restrictions are part of an ongoing, multi-agency effort to protect critical Bald Eagle nesting habitat and to preserve recently installed habitat improvement projects at the island.

Avoiding human disturbance at Bald Eagle nests is critically important to protecting the species and ensuring the success of nesting sites. Disturbance through noise or human proximity to nest sites can cause Bald Eagle nest site failure or even abandonment of nesting territory. In addition, high wakes, propellers and anchors from motorized boats can cause damage to wetland habitat planting projects and sensitive ecosystem areas.

Boaters can help minimize disruptions to the Bald Eagle nesting site by:

*Observing all boating restrictions in place, including federal navigation laws that require maintaining a 5 mph speed limit while traveling within 100 feet of the shoreline.

*Eliminating all motorized activity within 660 feet at the north end of the island's cove area by observing the restricted area marked with buoys.

*Adhering to signage restricting any visitor access (including non-motorized vessels) within 330 feet of the north end of the islands cove area during the Bald Eagle nesting season that lasts from January to the end of September in a typical year.

*Sharing this information with others who recreate in the Niagara River and Strawberry Island Area.

*Reporting any observed illegal activity in the Strawberry Island area to DEC's 24 hour tip hotline at 1-844-DEC-ECOS (1-844-332-3267).

State DEC and OPRHP have collaboratively enacted a plan to protect the Bald Eagle pair nesting on Strawberry Island in the Niagara River. The plan includes a multi-year effort to restore wetland habitat at the island and to minimize the effects of motorized boating activity through the restrictions listed above. The wetland restoration project, which began last year, will be ongoing through the end of 2017.

Law enforcement divisions from OPRHP, DEC and the Erie County Sheriff Department are cooperating in the effort to enforce restricted area rules in place to protect the Bald Eagles and habitat projects at Strawberry Island. Visitors to the island are reminded that any repeated disturbance to Bald Eagles by humans is unlawful under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and under the State Environmental Conservation Law.

The Bald Eagle, currently listed as a threatened species in New York, continues to make a remarkable recovery across the state. New York State was instrumental in the restoration and recovery of the Bald Eagle in the northeast United States and continues to play an important role in providing suitable habitat for our nation's symbol. More information about Bald Eagles can be found on DEC's website.

(For more information please contact OPRHP: Angela Berti | (716) 278-1764)

 

NEW PARTICIPANTS ENCOURAGED TO JOIN THE FINGER LAKES VOLUNTEER ANGLER DIARY PROGRAM: As the 2017 open water fishing season starts, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) encourages anglers to participate in its Finger Lakes Volunteer Angler Diary Program.

The program aims to collect data from fishing trips on all of New York's Finger Lakes and selected Lake Ontario embayments of DEC Regions 7 and 8. This is a year-round program, so anglers pursuing all types of fish and fishing on these waters are encouraged to enlist. Typical program participants fish the lakes anywhere from once to multiple times in a given season, so even occasional anglers are welcome to participate.

"Fisheries management in the Finger Lakes of Central and Western New York is in part guided by angler experiences, success rates, and desires," said Region 7 Fisheries Biologist Ian Blackburn. "This program is an excellent chance for members of the angling public to take an active role assisting DEC to make well-rounded and informed management decisions for the Finger Lakes."

Anglers who fish the Finger Lakes and are willing to contribute to the program by keeping a fishing diary for DEC can contact the Region 7 and Region 8 Fisheries offices at (607) 753-3095 and (585) 226-5343, respectively, or by email at fwfish7@dec.ny.gov or fwfish8@dec.ny.gov. More information on the diary programs, along with annual reports for each lake, can be found online at the Angler Diary Cooperator Program web page and the West Central New York Angler Diary Program web page on DEC's website.

 

NATIONAL ARCHERY IN THE SCHOOLS PROGRAM CONTINUES TO GROW: New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos  announced the 60 New York students who scored high enough in the National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) to compete in the national tournament this May. Students from participating schools and school districts across the state competed in the archery program in March.

NASP is designed to improve participation in outdoor activities among students of all athletic abilities. DEC started this program in 2008 to introduce young people to archery, outdoors, and other shooting sports, including hunting. In New York, 320 schools from 167 school districts currently participate in the program and more than 34,000 students participated during the school year. NASP continues to grow at the national level with 2.4 million students and more than 14,400 schools in 47 states participating in the program.

As part of the New York program, an annual statewide competition is held for participating schools. This year, approximately 700 students from 33 school districts competed during the first two weeks of March. The 2017 statewide event was successfully held as school-based tournaments where the students compete at their respective schools and their scores are compiled by DEC. Each competitor can 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.

The overall top female archer in the tournament was Jordan Sands with a score of 285. Jordan attends Hinsdale High School in Cattaraugus County. The top male archer in the tournament was Jake Hafner with a score of 287. Jake attends Schroon Lake Central (High) School in Essex County.

Students that place in the top 10 in each of the three divisions, by gender, qualify to compete and represent New York at the national NASP tournament in Louisville, Kentucky, on May 11 - 13. This year, New York is sending 60 eligible students from 17 schools to the national tournament.

For more information on NASP and to view the NASP photo gallery, visit DEC's website and contact the sportsman Education Program, the state program coordinator for NY-NASP at 1-888-486-8332 or e-mail at hunter@dec.ny.gov.

 

WAIT UNTIL NEXT WINTER TO PRUNE YOUR OAK TREES:  Many people prune their trees in spring and summer. DEC recommends holding off on pruning oak trees until winter to protect them from oak wilt, a deadly tree disease.

The video, ‘Winter Pruning For Oak Wilt Prevention’ (2 minutes) highlights why it’s important to prune oak trees from October – February instead of during the spring and summer, if pruning is needed. Pruning during the winter can protect oaks from becoming infected because the beetles that spread the disease are dormant. These beetles are active in spring and summer and are attracted to freshly cut or injured healthy trees. Pruning in the spring and summer puts oaks at risk of contracting oak wilt. Oak wilt can kill trees in as little as 4-6 weeks and is one of the most destructive tree diseases.   

What can I do to protect my oak trees?

Prune oaks between October and February – NOT during the growing season.

Follow existing regulations and quarantines meant to protect our trees and forests.

Don’t move firewood. Firewood can transport oak wilt and other deadly pests and diseases to new areas.

Learn to identify the symptoms of oak wilt which include discoloration around the entire leaf edge and sudden loss of a substantial portion of leaves during the summer.

For questions, contact the DEC Forest Health Office at 1-866-640-0652 or email us your photos of tree symptoms.

Visit the DEC website for more information on oak wilt.

 

IN BEAR COUNTRY REMOVE BIRD FEEDERS NOW: Warm spring weather has cause bears to come out of their winter dens in search of food. It is recommended taking down bird feeders to avoid attracting them. Bears are very fond of suet and bird seed, especially black oil sunflower seed. Bringing feeders in at night doesn't work, because bears will still feed on seed that is spilled on the ground.


 

Bird feeders are just one of the things that can attract hungry bears. Other sources of food that bears find appealing are: pet food, barbecue grills, garbage, household trash containers, open dumpsters, and campsites with accessible food and food wastes.
Purposely feeding a bear is not just bad for the bear, it's also illegal.
Residents should take reasonable measures to protect their property from bears before lethal measurers are undertaken. Some of these measures include:
•Keep chickens and honeybees secure within an electric fence or other bear-proof enclosure.
•Never feed bears, deliberately or accidentally.
•Feed your pets indoors.
•Store trash in a secure place. Trash cans alone are not enough!

THIS WEEK
'S EVENTS: (For complete future listings go to the Calendar Page)

21 - Whitney Point Sportsman Association Coonhound Event at the club on NY Route 206, Whitney Point, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy - $12.00/8:00 pm Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $12.00) (For information call Ralph Canniff at 607-240-1129 or John Marshall 607-345-5366)

22 - NATIONAL EARTH DAY

22 - Legal Heat Utah/Arizona Pistol Permit Class at Cabela’s Cheektowaga Store, 2003 Walden Avenue, Cheektowaga, NY (9:00 am - 1:00 pm) Cabela’s has partnered with Legal Heat, the Nation’s Leading Firearms Training Firm to provide concealed carry classes to meet the qualifying requirements and documentation to obtain the Utah and Arizona concealed carry permits in a fun, informative, non-intimidating class. These permits will allow combined carry reciprocity in approximately 30+ states. Legal Heat's concealed carry class covers firearms safety, handling, transportation, storage, ammunition, self-defense and firearms laws, concealed carry techniques and much more. Legal Heat’s firearm training instructors are all NRA and Utah BCI certified, insured and among the most highly experienced in the industry and can answer your CCW questions. This course typically runs approximately 4 hours. This Legal Heat course does not have a test?or range requirement. The Utah and Arizona permits are open to residents of any state and can be applied for by mail. You do NOT have to reside in the state of UT or AZ to qualify to apply for their concealed carry permits. Register TODAY for this fun and informative class. Seating may be limited. (For information go to www.MyLegalHeat.com or call 877-252-1055 ) (This class may qualify you for the NY permit in several NY counties but has not been formally approved by any NY counties yet.)

22 - Spring Into Nature at the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center, 1101 Casey Road, Basom, NY. (9:00 am – 4:00 pm) Annual celebration to welcome spring back to the swamps with a variety of nature-related exhibits including an eagle watch, plus free crafts and games for the kids. (Free) (For information call 585-948-5445 or email iroquois@fws.gov)

22 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Chautauqua lake Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at the Frewsburg Fire Dept., Hazzard Street, 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   phoover@phoenixmetal.com   716-489-6933)

22 - Orleans County Houndsmen Beaglers Beagle Event at their clubhouse at 13461 Phipps Road, Albion, NY (10:00 am – Beagle Event – World Qualifying Event - $20.00) (For information call Ed Roggen at 585-948-9483)     

22 - Derby Hill Hawk Watch Trip, meet at the Montezuma Audubon Center, 2295 State Route 89, Savannah, NY (9:00 am – 4:00 pm)  Visit Lake Ontario for the spectacular spring raptor migration and leave the driving to us.  Travel in the Montezuma Audubon Center van to witness thousands of broad-winged hawks, red-tailed hawks, bald eagles and many more! If weather conditions do not cooperate, the program will be moved to Friday, April 25. This program is offered in cooperation with the Onondaga Audubon Society. Pack a lunch. (Fee: $17.50/child, $22.50/adult) Space is limited for all programs and registration is required. (For information/register call 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org)

22 - Annual Outdoor Gear & Flea Market at the Bison City Rod & Gun Club, 511 Ohio Street, Buffalo, NY (8:00 am - 1:30 pm) Due to NY Safe Act, no guns may be displayed or sold. Loading equipment and components may be sold (powder, shot, primers, brass and bullets), live ammo may be sold: shotgun, pistol and rifle. (Admission: Free) (For information call Paul Stoos at 716-563-9258 or Willie Sieber 716-260-3240)

22 - Whitetails Unlimited – Cortland County Chapter Banquet at the, Elks Lodge #748, Cortland, NY. (4:30 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 John Hunter at 607-426-8292)

22 - Steuben County Coon Hunters, Inc. Coonhound Event at their clubhouse at 4082 Depot Street, Cameron, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show - $15.00/8:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $20.00) (For information call Roger Barney at 607-695-9024)

22 - Wyoming County Houndsmen and Conservation Club Coonhound Event at their clubhouse Sage Road, Warsaw, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show-Poor Boy - $12.00/8:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt-Poor Boy - $15.00) (For information call Scott Halsted 585-993-5188)

22 - Cattaraugus County Houndsmen and Conservation Club Inc. Coonhound Event at their clubhouse at 10491 Route 240, West Valley, NY (6:00 pm - Coonhound Bench Show - $15.00/8:00 pm - Coonhound Event Nite Hunt - $25.00) (For information call Joel Nicholas 716-378-1832)

22 - Fungi With A Fun Gal at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (10:30 am) Enjoy a walk to look at mushrooms, while learning the basics of mushroom identification and how fungi contribute to the ecosystem. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

22 - ALIENS! at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:00 pm) Are there outer space visitors in The Woods? No, just plants and animals that have been introduced from other parts of the world. Come meet some of them. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

22/23 – Spring Youth Turkey Hunt (Details page 46 16-17 Hunting & Trapping Guide)

22-23 - New York State Arms Collectors Syracuse Gun Show, New York State Fairgrounds Expo Center, Syracuse. (9:00 am-5:00 pm Saturday/ 9;00 am-3:00 pm Sunday) (For  information contact Sandy Ackerman at 607-748-1010 (1-6 p.m.)

22-23 - (Delayed to May 6 - 7)The 2017 Batavia Gun and Sportsman Show at the Falleti Ice Arena, 22 Evans Street, Batavia, NY (Sat-9:00 am – 4:00 pm/Sat-9:00 am – 3:00 pm) Sponsored by the Alabama Hunt Club. 180 tables. (Cost: $6.00/under 12 free w/adult) (For information contact Jim Penland  716-434-6535   jimpenland@verizon.net)

25 - Fly Tying Program from the Eastern Waters Council of Fly Fishers International at Orvis in the Eastern Hills Mall, 4545 Transit Road, Williamsville, NY. Featured fly tyers include Sam Decker, Craig Buckbee and Rodney Priddle – casting instructors and/or guides in and around the famed Catskills. The event is co-sponsored by the Lake Erie Chapter of Fly Fishers International and it is free to the general public. (For information/register (by 4/18) call 716-276-7200 or 716-675-4766)

28 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Oswego River Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at the Oasis At Thunder Island, Route 48, Fulton, 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 Bruce Bailey   dinklepuss@hotmail.com   315-695-5113)

28 – Arbor Day – New York State

29 - National Wild Turkey Federation – Drumlins Chapter Hunting Heritage Banquet at Donselaars, Route 31-10257, Clyde, 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 msalerno@marshallfarms.com   315-879-8960)

29 – The Western NY Chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Banquet at Barlett Country Club, 32 Euclid Avenue, Olean, NY (4:00 pm) An entertaining evening while raising money to benefit elk and other wildlife, their habitat and America’s hunting heritage. (For information and reservations, contact Sue Clark at 585-567-8991 or Hanley at 585-968-0142.)

29 - Whitetails Unlimited – Stonybrook Chapter Hunters Night Out at the Loyal Order of Moose Lodge 1130, 6 Main Street, Dansville, NY. Deadline for ticket sales – 4-24-17. (Cost: Adult - $45.00/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 Shannon Griese, 585-739-1779 or go to http://www.whitetailsunlimited.com/events/banquets/)

29 - Seager Marine Perch Tournament headquartered at Seager Marine, 1 City Pier, Canandaigua, NY. (6:00 am – 3:00 pm) Pre-Register is by mail: $40 per team (1 – 3 persons). Teams weigh in 5 perch for total weight. (For information and registration forms visit seagermarine.com or call 585-394-1372 x216.) 29 - Women in Nature (WIN) Outdoor Skills Workshop sponsored by the Onondaga County Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs at the Camillus Sportsmen’s Club, 5801 Devoe Road, Camillus, NY. It is open to women and girls age 12 and up. The event is free but registration is required. (For information and the registration form, click on this link http://wwwfederationofsportsmen.com/wp/?page_id=32)

29 - Nature Paints at the Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center, 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY (Town of Cheektowaga) (2:00 pm) Learn how artists made paints efore the introduction of synthetic materials. (Materials fee: $4; $2 for Friends of Reinstein Woods members.) For children ages 10 and older. (For information/register call 716-683-5959 or email reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov)

29-30 - Wellsville Lions Charities' Greater Trout Derby in the Genesee River. Registration Sites are: Wellsville Town Clerk Office - 156 N. Main Street; Wellsville Chamber of Commerce - 114 N. Main Street; K-Mart - 121 Bolivar Road; Strope Outdoor Supply - 5 William St. Addison NY (Sat 6:00 am – 7:00 pm/Sun 6:00 am – 5:00 pm) (Fees - If you register before April 1st the fee is $15, after April 1st the fee is $20) (For information call 585-596-9274 or email troutderby@yahoo.com or go to http://www.trout-derby.com)

29-30 - 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 716-542-9929 or email  nfgshows@aol.com)

30 - Last Day Ice Fishing Tip-Ups Can Be Used Statewide

 

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 - 14 - 17

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

 

SPRING TURKEY SEASON STARTS SOON:

                   Photo: John Adamski

Hunters are preparing for another great spring of wild turkey hunting in upstate New York. The Youth Hunt for Wild Turkey, April 22 & 23, is a terrific opportunity for adults to mentor youngsters ages 12 through 15. Get the details on the Youth Turkey Hunt webpage. Regular spring turkey season begins May 1 and runs through the month. Head out to New York's expansive fields and woods and enjoy pursuing these big, abundant, popular game birds. See the Turkey Hunting webpage for tips on enjoying a safe and productive time afield.

 

DEC SEEKS PUBLIC INPUT ON DRAFT MANAGEMENT PLAN FOR 23 ALLEGANY COUNTY STATE FORESTS AND THE WAG TRAIL:  A Draft Unit Management Plan (UMP) for 23 state forests located in Allegany County is now available for public review. The public is invited to submit input on the draft plan, which will guide future management of these unique state forest lands in Allegany County and help to ensure healthy, sustainable and biologically diverse forest ecosystems.

The Allegany Unit State Forests include 46,382 acres of forest lands in the towns of Alfred, Allen, Almond, Amity, Angelica, Belfast, Birdsall, Burns, Caneadea, Centerville, Friendship, Granger, Grove, New Hudson, Rushford, Ward, Wellsville, and West Almond. The Unit also includes a 9-mile rail trail, called the WAG Trail, in the town of Willing.

The 23 state forest properties included in the Unit are: Allen Lake, Bald Mountain, Bully Hill, Cold Creek, Coyle Hill, Crab Hollow, English Hill, Gas Springs, Gillies Hill, Hiltonville, Jersey Hill, Karr Valley Creek, Keeney Swamp, Klipnocky, Lost Nation, Palmer's Pond, Phillips Creek, Plumbottom, Rush Creek, Slader Creek, Swift Hill, Turnpike, Vandermark, and the WAG Trail. People can view the Allegany Unit Draft UMP on DEC's website. Copies are also available in electronic format on compact disc and may be requested by calling (585) 466-3241.

DEC will also accept public input on the draft UMP at an open house on April 20 from 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., at the Short Tract Fire Hall, 10355 County Road 15, Fillmore NY. DEC staff will be available at this session to provide information about the Allegany State Forests Unit and its history, ecology and current uses, which include forest product sales and recreational use, and discuss ideas about long-term forest management.

In addition to the open house, public comments on the Allegany Unit Draft UMP can be submitted by mail or email to:

Nathaniel Tucker
2524 County Route 2A
Almond, NY 14804
(585) 466-3241
r9.ump@dec.ny.gov

All comments must be received by May 4, 2017. DEC will review these comments as it finalizes a UMP for the Allegany State Forests Unit.

 

PUBLIC INFORMATION SESSION ON HABITAT MANAGEMENT PLAN FOR TIOUGHNIOGA WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA: The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) will host a public information session to provide information and answer questions about a recently completed habitat management plan for the Tioughnioga Wildlife Management Area (WMA) located in the towns of Cazenovia, Georgetown and Nelson, Madison County.

The session will take place on Wednesday, April 19, from 6:00 - 8:00 pm. at SUNY Morrisville's Bicknell Hall, Room 203, located on Route 20 in Morrisville. DEC staff will be available for questions from 6:00 to 6:30 p.m. with a formal presentation following.

Active habitat management to benefit wildlife populations is fundamental to wildlife management and is an important component of New York's efforts to improve natural resource stewardship. DEC launched the Young Forest Initiative in 2015. The initiative was the catalyst for starting an in-depth planning process for wildlife habitat management projects. Habitat management plans are being developed for all WMAs and other DEC properties, including select Multiple Use and Unique Areas. These plans guide land use management for a 10-year time period, after which time DEC will assess implementation progress and modify the plans as needed.

DEC's Young Forest Initiative aims to establish a minimum of 10 percent of the forested acreage on WMAs as young forest over the next 10 years, and to manage for young forests in perpetuity. Young forests are an important part of the forest landscape, but they have declined over the past 50 years along with the wildlife that depend on this habitat type. While DEC has been managing forests on WMAs to improve wildlife habitat for many years, with this initiative DEC is increasing its efforts and raising awareness about this type of habitat management.

In addition to incorporating aspects of the Young Forest Initiative, the habitat management plan incorporates recommendations from various sources, including unit management plans, existing WMA habitat management guidelines, best management practices, the New York Natural Heritage Program's WMA biodiversity inventory reports, and bird conservation area guidelines.

DEC will continue active management on Tioughnioga WMA to benefit wildlife abundance and diversity, promote best management practices for targeted wildlife and habitats, and provide opportunities for wildlife-dependent recreation, such as hunting and bird watching.

The meeting will include a presentation about Tioughnioga WMA, with specific activities and locations for the management actions planned for the WMA, a brief overview of the Young Forest Initiative and a question and answer period.

The habitat management plan for Tioughnioga WMA can be found on DEC's website.

 

STATE LEGISTATION YOU MIGHT WANT TO KNOW ABOUT:

BILL A00479A SAME  AS S01386-A
in a nutshell, it defines a crossbow as bow, requirements and uses as with any longbow.
BILL # A00477 /  S03156
Relates to lowering the age for universal hunting licenses from 14 years old to 12 years old.

BILL A04699
Amends Penal Law 265.20
Authorizes children 10 years of age or older to load and fire a rifle, shotgun or pistol at a shooting range while under the supervision of a qualified person; increases from 18 to 21 years of age the minimum age of a person who may be designated in writing by the parent or guardian of a child to supervise such child while he or she is shooting.
similar S03708
Authorizes possession of a rifle or shotgun at a shooting range by a person between the ages of ten and twelve under the immediate supervision of certain authorized persons.

BILL # S04739 "Establishes the yearling buck protection program."

In short, it limits the taking of antlered deer to only those with 3 -or 4 points in many areas.

Nutshell version:

a. Any person who hunts or takes antlered deer ... during the bow hunting,regular and muzzleloading deer seasons is restricted to antlered deer with at least one antler with at least three points in wildlife management units 3G, 3M, 3N, 3P, 3R, 4B, 4C, 4F, 4H,4J, 4K, 4L, 4T, 4U, 4Y, 4Z, 5R, 5S, 5T, 7M, 7P, 6A, 6G, 6H, 6C, 6K and

taking of antlered deer with at least one antler with at least four points in wildlife management units 7R, 7S, 8N, 8P, 8R, 8T, 8W, 8Y, 9G,9H, 9J, 9K, 9M, 9N, 9P, 9R, 9S, 9T, 9W, 9X, 9Y, 7A, 7F, 7J, 6P, 6S, 6R,and 4A; ... each point must be at least one inch long measured from the main antler beam.

For full info on any of these bills or others, and to check on status, go to

http://nyassembly.gov/leg/