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February 25, 2011 - Field Notes

Noteworthy News from the Division of Fish, Wildlife and Marine Resources

Laws & Rule-Making

youth hunter with first turkey
Joseph Saskowski, age 13, from
Wyoming County, caught his first
turkey weighing 23 pounds during
the 2010 youth turkey hunt.
Check out the Turkey Hunting
Photo Gallery
to view photos of
other youth hunters with their
prized turkey catch.
~Photo by: David H. Wozniak~
  • New Long Island Youth Turkey Hunt.
    With a new regulation adopted on February 16, 2011, junior hunters (ages 12-15) on Long Island will be able to hunt for wild turkey during the special two-day youth turkey hunt. This year, the special two-day youth turkey hunt season will be April 23-24 for Suffolk County (Wildlife Management Unit 1C) and all upstate areas north of the Bronx-Westchester County boundary. During youth hunts, junior hunters are able to spend time afield with experienced adult hunters to gain valuable and necessary knowledge and skills for becoming a safe and responsible member of the hunting community, and to develop a deeper understanding and appreciation of the natural environment.

    Junior hunters must be fully licensed with a junior hunting license and turkey permit, and must be accompanied by a licensed adult. Before getting the necessary hunting license and turkey permit, all first-time hunters must pass a hunter education course. A list of upcoming classes can be found on the Hunter Education webpage, which will be updated weekly as more classes become available. License fees and information on where to purchase a license can be found on DEC's Sporting License webpage. For additional requirements and details on the spring youth hunt, visit the Youth Turkey Hunt webpage.

Noteworthy Dates

  • Public Meetings to Discuss Lake Ontario Fisheries Status.
    DEC will be conducting three public meetings during the month of March for the annual "State of Lake Ontario" discussions. These meetings provide an opportunity for anglers and others to interact with scientists who study the lake's fisheries. The DEC, United States Geological Survey, and Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources biologists will make a number of presentations, including updates on the status of trout and salmon fisheries, forage fish, lake trout, warmwater fish, and sea lamprey control. There will also be an update on the status of Lake Ontario Sportfishing Restoration Program projects. Meeting details, including dates, times and locations can be found in the DEC press release.

Significant Notes

  • Black Bear Research in New York.
    DEC and the New York Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit (located at Cornell University) are initiating two black bear research projects in south-central New York to (1) estimate bear population density using a genetic (DNA) identification technique, and (2) understand bear movements and habitat selection in core bear ranges and fringe areas in which bears have recently begun to inhabit. This research will help DEC better anticipate and manage changes to bear population size and geographic distribution in the south-central area of the state. The projects are in the early stages of development, but brief descriptions are provided on page three in the December issue of the Coop Unit's newsletter, NY Coop News (PDF, 1.24mb - link leaves DEC website).
  • Fluke Commercial Fishery Trip Limit Change.
    Effective on February 19, 2011, the limit for the weekly fluke/summer flounder program was lowered to 400 pounds with a maximum of two landings per week (Saturday to Friday). This will remain in effect until further notice. For additional commercial trip limits visit the DEC website. For questions or concerns contact the Bureau of Marine Resources by e-mail or by phone at 631-444-5621.

Upcoming Hunting & Trapping Season Reminders

All hunting seasons and trapping seasons can be found on the DEC website.

The following are reminders of the most current seasons that are either opening or closing.

Small Game/Furbearer

-- February 28, 2011 --

  • Last Day for Many Hunting Opportunities in Areas Across the State.
    Visit the Small Game Hunting Season webpage to find the appropriate map for identifying the areas that will be closing for the following:
    • Final day for ruffed grouse hunting in all areas of the state.
    • Final day for squirrel hunting in all areas of the state.
    • Final day for bobwhite quail hunting on Long Island. All areas of the state will be closed.
    • Final day for pheasant hunting in remaining open hunting areas, closing all areas of the state to pheasant hunting.
    • Final day for varying/snowshoe hare hunting in eastern areas of the state. Northern areas remain open.
    • Final day for cottontail rabbit hunting in western, central, eastern, and Long Island hunting areas.
      Attention rabbit hunters in Wildlife Management Units in Rensselaer, Columbia, Dutchess, Putnam and Westchester counties: Consider participating in the New England Cottontail Survey, in which DEC requests rabbit hunters in these areas to submit the heads of rabbits they harvest. The skulls will be used for identification to help DEC determine the distribution of the New England Cottontail. Find out how to participate by visiting DEC's New England Cottontail Survey webpage.
  • Last Day for River Otter Trapping in Eastern Areas of the State.
    View the River Otter Trapping Map online to identify the areas that will be closing.

Waterfowl

-- March 01, 2011 --

Did You Know...?

American marten on porch railing
This American marten photo was taken by
R.W. Tucker in Hamilton County as the
marten was eating bird seed on his porch.
Check out more photos of this marten on
DEC's Conservationist Facebook page by
visiting TheConservationist.org and
clicking on the "Find Us On Facebook" button.

During the winter, American martens often visit bird feeders to eat the seeds and hunt the birds that visit the feeders. With a small body size and a high metabolism, martens are ravenous eaters, consuming squirrels, mice, chipmunks, birds, insects, seeds, and fruits. Often times, they tunnel through the snow in search of mice!

Read more about the American marten!

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