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October 01, 2010 - Field Notes

Hunting and Science

  • Be a "Citizen Scientist" this Hunting Season.
    Did you know that you can be a scientist while enjoying your time hunting? Our New England Cottontail Survey and Cooperator Ruffed Grouse Hunting Log are a couple examples where your hunting experience and observations can help provide valuable information towards the management of our wildlife resources. Read more about these opportunities and learn how you can participate this year. Also, review results from past "citizen scientists" observations and find additional opportunities on DEC's Citizen Science webpage.

Noteworthy Dates

  • October 1. Deer Management Permit Deadline and 2010-2011 Sporting Licenses Required.
    Reminder that today, October 1, 2010, is the last day that all Deer Management Permit (DMP) applications must be submitted in order to be eligible for selection. DMPs are available at license issuing agents and via phone until the close of business today, which is 7PM. Internet applications will be accepted until midnight. Additionally, starting today, all hunting/trapping and freshwater fishing activities require a 2010-2011 sporting license. Find out how to purchase a license and apply for a DMP, and also find more information on the DMP selection process online.
  • October 1. Multiple Small Game Hunting Opportunities Start.
    Beginning today, October 1, 2010, small game hunting will be opening in many areas across the state for species such as: cottontail, wild turkey, ruffed grouse, varying hare, and pheasant. For a quick reference to the specific available hunting areas and season dates, view the Hunting Summary Guide (PDF - 442kb) or visit the Small Game Seasons webpage.
  • October 1. Fall Turkey Hunting Season Begins for Northern Areas of the State.
    Starting today, October 1, 2010, the fall turkey hunting season opens for northern portions of the state. For open hunting area locations and bag limits in these areas, review the Turkey Hunting Season Map online.
  • October 1. Coyote Hunting Season Opens.
    Today, October 1, 2010 marks the opening day for hunting coyote for all areas of the state, except in Long Island and New York City. Coyote hunters are no longer required to pelt seal a coyote or report coyote harvest. Review the Coyote Hunting Season Map for open hunting areas and additional information.
  • October 1. Bowhunting Deer Season Opens for Suffolk County.
    October 1, 2010 is opening day for bowhunting deer in Suffolk County only. Deer hunters in Suffolk County (Wildlife Management Unit 1C) may use their Regular Season Deer Tag, special season either-sex or antlerless tag, or DMP tags, but all deer hunting during the Suffolk County regular season is with bowhunting equipment only (crossbows may not be used). Bonus tags are also available to hunters who take an antlerless deer on a DMP for WMU 1C. Review the Regular and Bowhunting Deer Season Map for additional season dates in other areas of the state. Also, read more information on Deer Hunting such as deer population management, the 2010 deer hunting forecast, junior hunter mentoring program, and much more.
  • October 6. Woodcock Hunting Season Opens.
    On October 6, 2010 the woodcock hunting season begins for most areas across New York State, except for New York City (Bronx, Kings, Queens, New York & Richmond counties). Review the Woodcock Hunting Season Map for details on open hunting areas, bag limits, and additional regulations. Also, remember that all woodcock hunters must register with the federal Harvest Information Program (HIP).
  • October 9-10. Youth Pheasant Hunt for Western Portions of the State.
    The two-day youth pheasant hunt for western and central areas of New York State is October 9 and October 10, 2010. View the Pheasant Hunting Season Map for open hunting areas. Also, visit the DEC web-site for more information on Youth Pheasant Hunting including pheasant release sites and restrictions and regulations.
Report Your Harvest poster

With many hunting opportunities opening across the state, please remember that reporting take on deer, bear, and/or turkey within the first 48 hours of kill is a requirement in New York State. Reporting can be done easily online, or by calling toll-free at 1-866-GAME-RPT (1-866-426-3778).

Click on the icon to get started on your harvest report!
(leaves DEC website)

Laws & Rule-making

  • Emergency Regulations Close Shellfish Harvest Areas.
    Effective on September 22, 2010, there were emergency regulations adopted to close 2,200 acres of shellfish harvest areas in the following towns: Southold (West Creek and Great Peconic Bay), East Hampton (Three Mile Harbor and Hog Creek), Hempstead (Hempstead Bay/East Bay), Brookhaven (Great South Bay/Nicoll Bay) and Islip (Great South Bay/Nicoll Bay). Bureau of Marine Resources water monitoring and shellfish sampling determined that these areas no longer meet the sanitary requirements for safe harvesting and consumption of shellfish. For additional details on these closures review the DEC press release, and refer to the legal descriptions of shellfish closures (6 NYCRR Part 41) for detailed information regarding these areas.
  • Reminder of Regulation Changes in Adirondack State Land Use.
    Hunters and other users of state lands in the Adirondacks should be aware of recent changes to state land use regulations. Using motorized equipment is now prohibited on lands classified Wilderness, Primitive and Canoe. Also placing structures and storing personal property is prohibited on all state lands, unless authorized by DEC. Review further details on these regulations in the DEC press release.

Significant Notes

flock of geese in their typical V formation in flight
  • Canada Geese Wintering Migration Underway.
    If you hear geese flying high overhead in a southward direction over the next several weeks, there's a good chance these are flocks that spent the summer along Hudson Bay and Ungava Bay in northern Quebec. From late September to late October, most of the "Atlantic Population" of Canada geese will fly south across New York to wintering areas in the eastern U.S. Unlike our local-nesting or "resident" geese, these long-distance travelers will typically fly over at higher altitudes, on a north-south wind or cold front, during day or night. Most of our resident geese remain in NY through the fall and continue their lower altitude local movements to and from day-time feeding areas and night-time roosting areas, until winter weather forces them south to find open water and food.
  • Daily Trip Limit Change for Commercial Fishing
    The scup daily trip limit has been lowered from 240 pounds to 140 pounds, effective September 26, 2010. This limit will remain in effect until further notice. View additional commercial trip limit regulations online. For questions or concerns contact the Bureau of Marine Resources by e-mail or call (631) 444-5621.
  • Habitat Restoration for Camillus Unique Area.
    The Camillus Unique Area, located in Onondaga County, NY has recently undergone a three-year project to convert 80 acres of fields from cool-season grass to warm-season grass. The project, overseen by the Division of Lands and Forests, will improve the habitat for grassland breeding birds such as the meadowlark and the bobolink, both species of special concern. Other animals will benefit from this project as well. Compared to cold-season grasses, warm-season grasses are more resistant to flattening during winter allowing for nesting earlier in the season for upland game birds, waterfowl and grassland birds. In addition, warm-season grasses grow later than cold-season grasses, and therefore, allow for more ideal nesting conditions for breeding birds when they arrive in central New York in May.
  • Motorists Be Aware: Moose Populations on the Rise.
    Moose populations in New York State are increasing rapidly. There is an estimated population of 800 moose in the northern areas of the state, compared to a population of only 50-100 moose in the late 1990s and 500 moose just a few years ago. While this is a success, it is also a concern for motorists. Moose activity rises with the cooler season approaching, and therefore, motorists must use more caution while on roadways as the high risk for encounters increases. Review the DEC press release to read more on this story and find some helpful advice for motorists.


  • Saying Farewell to Division Retirees.
    The DFWMR would like to acknowledge and thank the dedicated staff that have decided to take advantage of the Governor's retirement incentive and have now left state service. Our accomplishments as an agency are a reflection of their unwavering commitment and dedication to the natural resources of New York. Visit the DEC website to view a list of DFWMR retirees that we are saying thank you and farewell to and wishing them the best of luck! In addition to the staff listed online, the Division acknowledges the retirements of Natural Resources Supervisor Russ Biss (Region 9), Jerry Rasmussen (Region 7), and Chuck Hamilton (Region 1), as well as, Office of Invasive Species Coordination Director Steve Sanford.

Did You Know...?

two tautog on a Long Island reef
Two blackfish hovering on Hempstead Reef in Long Island.
~photo courtesy of NYSDEC-Christopher Laporta

Blackfish have powerful jaws and large incisor-like teeth to scrape mussels and barnacles from rocks. They also have molar-like teeth at the back of their mouth to easily crush the shells of mussels, which is one of their favorite foods.

Read more about Blackfish, also known as Tautog

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