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June 4, 2010 - Field Notes

Noteworthy Dates

June 12: The Tift Nature Preserve in Erie County will be offering a free fishing day clinic event. Visit the 2010 Free Fishing Day Clinic web page for contact information and to find additional upcoming free fishing clinics.

Health Advisories

2010-2011 Fish and Game Consumption Advisories. Eating certain fish and game species can be harmful to human health based upon higher levels of toxic chemical and contaminants that they contain. The NYS Department of Health (DOH) provides consumption health advisories after analyzing the contaminant levels in both freshwater and saltwater fish and game species. Visit the NYSDOH website at: www.health.ny.gov/environmental/outdoors/fish/fish.htm for a 2010-2011 Health Advisories printable PDF booklet and to review additional information. For a summary of the 2010-2011 advisory changes, please review the NYSDOH press release at www.health.ny.gov/press/releases/2010/2010-05-28_fish_advisory.htm . For questions or concerns, call 1-800-458-1158.

Temporary Shellfish Closure in Eastern Suffolk County. On May 28, 2010, a precautionary closure on all shellfishing activities in waterbodies around the towns of Shelter Island and Southampton was instituted due to the planned pumping of flood waters into Shelter Island Sound. Flood waters may contain bacteria or viruses that are harmful to public health if ingested. Review the press release for information on specific closure locations and how to check the status of the closure.

Shellfish Area Reopens in Town of Huntington. Shellfish areas in Lloyd Harbor, Coast Guard Cove, and Huntington Bay have reopened for harvesting on June 4, 2010. However, an area of approximately 2,000 acres in Northport Bay, Centerport Harbor and Duck Island Harbor remain closed to all shellfishing activities due to harmful levels of a marine biotoxin that causes paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP). Review the press release for more information, and for a detailed map of open and closed shellfish harvesting areas in the Town of Huntington.

Significant Notes

Commercial Marine Fishing Trip Limits. On June 6, 2010, daily trip limits for commercially quota managed species horseshoe crabs and black sea bass will be changing. For details on these changes, visit the Commercial Fishing Limits web page on the DEC website, or contact the Bureau of Marine Resources at 631-444-5621.

Highlights on the Division's Efforts. Interested in finding out the type of research and outreach activities that are conducted by the Division of Fish, Wildlife and Marine Resources (DFWMR)? Review the Division's April Monthly Highlights (PDF) (954 kB), which includes information on the rare tiger beetle survey, tracking pheasants with radio telemetry, collecting walleye (and sauger) data on Lake Champlain, details on the Long Island Spring Fishing Festival and much more!

Conclusion of Wild Turkey Spring Season. May 31st marked the closing of this year's spring hunting season for wild turkey. On average, over 100,000 hunters take about 30,000 birds each spring in New York. This season, preliminary results from reported harvest show that the overall harvest was up about 7%, and the youth hunt harvest was up about 5% from last spring. The increase in the overall reported harvest is likely due to the regular season opening on a weekend (reported take on opening day was 30% higher than last year), rather than more gobblers on the landscape. Good weather and improved awareness of the two-day youth hunting season likely played a role in having an increase in youth hunt harvest. Keep an eye out for final harvest and population data results that will be released later this summer.

Fishing for Black Bass This Season? DEC is recruiting volunteer bass anglers to participate in a Lake Ontario Black Bass Angler Diary Program. The intent of this program is to gain additional insight into the recent declining trend in fishing effort and quality among Lake Ontario's bass anglers. Please visit the Lake Ontario Black Bass Angler Diary Program web page for more information.

Improving Access to Schoharie Creek. DEC will be collaborating with the NYS Department of Transportation (DOT) to improve boating and fishing access to Schoharie Creek in the Town of Florida, Montgomery County. This is just one of many cooperative access projects that DEC/DOT have planned or have completed recently in Region 4. Other recent projects include the Long Flat, Thayer Hollow and East Branch fisherman parking areas along the East Branch Delaware River in Delaware County, and most recently, a new fishing access site on the West Branch Delaware River. For a listing of all DEC boating and fishing access locations, along with a host of other recreational opportunities visit DEC's Outdoor Activities web page. For more information on the DEC/DOT access initiative in Region 4, contact the region at fwfish4@gw.dec.state.ny.us.

Spring Goose Shuffle is Underway! Astute observers may be seeing large flocks of Canada geese flying north in late May and early June and wondering why. These flocks heading north are a common sight in the spring, where they shuffle or move from some areas and appear at others. Many of these are "molt migrants", which are local-nesting or "resident" geese that did not produce young and are now heading north to undergo their summer molt. The molt is when geese shed and regrow their primary flight feathers, a process that renders the birds unable to fly for about 6 weeks. This is the time to chase geese without young away from your property if you do not want them spending the summer there, because once their feathers drop, the birds will be there to stay. Read more about the Canada Goose on the DEC website.

Dunn Memorial Bridge Falcon Eggs Hatch! On May 28, 2010, two of the four falcon eggs hatched in the next box on the Dunn Memorial Bridge between Albany and Rensselaer Counties. Check out live images of the nest box, and maybe you will catch a glimpse of the newly hatched falcon eyasses (chicks)!

Did You Know...?

The common loon requires hundreds of feet (around the length of one or two football fields) of open water to run on before they can take off in flight! Read more fun facts about this Adirondack breeding bird on the DEC website!

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