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July 16, 2010 - Field Notes

Noteworthy Dates

Wednesday, July 21, 2010:

  • Public Hearing on Striped Bass Fishery Management Plan.
    The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) will hold a public hearing on Draft Addendum II to Amendment 6 of the Interstate Fishery Management Plan for Striped Bass at 7PM at the NYS DEC Marine Resources Headquarters. The Draft Addendum proposes two changes: an increase in the coastal commercial quota, and a revised definition of recruitment failure. For more information, review the draft addendum at http://www.asmfc.org/ under Breaking News (offsite link, leaving DEC website), or contact Carol Hoffman at (631) 444-0476 or Steve Heins at (631) 444-0436.
  • Public Hearing on Overland Transport of Baitfish Restrictions.
    NYS DEC will hold a public meeting to receive input on a component of the fish health regulations pertaining to the overland (motorized) transport of baitfish. The meeting will be held from 7:00 to 9:00 P.M. at the NYS DEC Headquarters in Albany, and by live video feed at additional locations throughout the state. Additionally, the meeting can be viewed from a personal computer via web conference (learn how to participate with a personal computer). Detailed background information regarding this public meeting can be found on the DEC website.

Health Alert

Temporary Shellfish Closure in East Hampton, Suffolk County.
Three Mile Harbor will temporarily close to shellfish harvesting from Saturday, July 17 through Wednesday, July 21. This closure is due to the Three Mile Harbor Fireworks event this weekend, which creates high amounts of boating activity in the area and the possibility of shellfish contamination due to discharges of sewage. Boaters should be aware that Three Mile Harbor is a No Discharge Zone (body of water where discharges of treated or untreated boat sewage is prohibited), and are required to use pump-out facilities in the Peconic-Gardiners Bay area. Review the press release for additional information and to find a detailed map of the closure area.

cover for the August issue of the Conservationist magazine

Outdoor enthusiasts take note!

You won't want to miss the August issue of the Conservationist magazine. In it you'll find a beautiful centerpiece celebrating the whales that can be found in the waters off New York State, and a lovely photo essay about a favorite summer destination. Also, read about the dolphin that was found stranded on Staten Island, two wilderness lakes just south of Rochester, and check out the reader-contributed photos of a rattlesnake swimming across Lake George! Don't miss the funny back page essay about just how much work country life can be. All this and more is in the August issue, so subscribe online today or call 1-800-678-6399.

Regulatory News

New Trapping Regulations For This Fall.
DEC is adopting new trapping regulations that will be in effect beginning with the 2010-2011 trapping season. Working closely with representatives of the New York State Trappers Association over a period of nearly three years, the Department is adopting regulations that:

  • Protects birds of prey by controlling how carcasses may be used for attracting furbearers;
  • Opens additional wildlife management units for pine marten trapping, a species that has expanded its range in northern New York;
  • Lengthens the trapping season for coyotes, foxes, and raccoons in portions of the Northern Zone;
  • Establishes uniform trap check requirements in the Northern Zone;
  • Eliminates the requirement for the pelt sealing of beaver;
  • Provides additional opportunity for trapping near beaver dams;
  • Provides for licensed trappers to keep road-killed furbearers if the season is open at the location where a dead animal is found;
  • Defines several important technical terms needed for the efficient enforcement of trapping laws and regulations.

Trappers should carefully read the new requirements in the upcoming edition of the Hunting and Trapping Law and Regulations Guide (available when licenses go on sale August 16th). A summary of the changes are now available for review on the DEC web-site.

Significant Notes

License Revenue Helps Improve NY's Marine Recreation.
The $2.5 million dollar revenue generated to date from the new recreational marine fishing license (RMFL), along with additional funding from the federal Sportfish Restoration Program (Wallop-Breaux), is helping to enhance New York's marine recreational opportunities. One such benefit includes the renewal of NYS DEC's Artificial Reef Program, which will provide improved fishing and diving experiences by restoring and increasing NY's artificial reef sites. Additionally, the funds have helped, and continue to help improve and rebuild boat launching sites around Long Island. For more details on how your license dollars are working to support our marine resources and recreation, review the press release online!

FDA Recognizes DEC Staff.
Two of NYS DEC's employees, Susan Ritchie, a shellfish inspector for DEC's Bureau of Marine Resources, and Jason Powers, an Environmental Conservation Officer (ECO) in DEC's Region 9 office, received an honor award, known as the Leveraging/Collaboration Award, from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Collaborating with FDA staff in Buffalo and New York City, and with Canada's Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) they were able to locate, seize and destroy uncertified, untagged raw shellfish products from a foreign nation not permitted to export raw shellfish products to the U.S. The award recognizes the collaborative efforts among FDA and other organizations that help to maximize the effectiveness and efficiency of the Agencies (FDA's) mission. With this effective collaboration, the public was protected from potential health issues of consuming the shellfish, and the seizure sent a message to import communities that such activities will not be tolerated by the government.

Did You Know...?

spotted turtle
~Photo © John J. Mossesso,
courtesy of life.nbii.gov

The spotted turtle is very mobile, and it treks great distances of up to a mile to multiple wetlands in search of a mate, or over hundreds of yards in search of food in pools of water (vernal pools) after a rainfall! Even though spotted turtles travel on these long journeys, they are able to navigate to the same hibernating spot year after year that they sometimes share with their kin.

Keep reading more interesting facts about this "polka-dot" turtle!

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