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July 27, 2012 - Field Notes

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

In This Issue:

2012-13 Sporting Licenses on Sale August 13

Beginning Monday, August 13, get your 2012-13 freshwater fishing, hunting and trapping licenses online, by phone or in person where licenses are sold. The 2012-13 licenses are valid through the recreational season, from October 1, 2012 through September 30, 2013. If you plan to fish, hunt or trap prior to October 1, 2012, you must have a valid 2011-12 license. For details on available licenses and to find out how to purchase a license, visit DEC's Sporting Licenses webpage.

Get Involved: Monitor Wild Game Birds this August

Turkey and poults; ring-necked pheasant
Top image:
Turkey hen and poults
(Photo by D. Gordon
E. Robertson;
courtesy of Wikimedia
Commons);
Bottom image:
Male ring-necked
pheasant (Photo by
Dave Menke;
courtesy of USFWS)

During the month of August, you can help DEC monitor wild turkey and ring-necked pheasant populations by participating in one or more of our citizen science surveys described below:

  • Wild Turkey Summer Sighting Survey
    Participants in this survey record their observations of turkey flocks, including sex and age. Information from this survey helps DEC estimate the average number of young wild turkeys (poults) per hen statewide, gauge reproductive success and provide a forecast for the fall harvest potential.
  • Ring-Necked Pheasant Sighting or Farmer-Pheasant Survey (for Genesee Valley)
    Through this survey, participants in Livingston, Genesee, Wyoming or Monroe counties record their observations through the Pheasant Sighting Survey, or if they are farmers, through the Farmer-Pheasant Inventory. Information from these two surveys helps DEC determine the status of pheasant populations and the success of habitat management efforts in this regional focus area.

August 24 - Leashed Tracking Dog License Examination

The next annual leashed tracking dog license examination will be held on Friday, August 24. Registration is required by Friday, August 17. This license authorizes the use of certified, leashed dogs to track and locate wounded, dead or injured deer and bear. An application and information about the license and exam are available on DEC's Leashed Tracking Dog License webpage. Also, new this year, is the New York State Leashed Tracking Dog Guide (PDF) (1 MB) to help applicants prepare for the exam and learn more about New York State's leashed tracking dog program.
bear eating bird seed from a feeder.

Handling Problems with Wildlife

A black bear perched on the top rail of a deck raiding a bird feeder
Black bears often raid bird seed
and suet from bird feeders left out
during the spring and summer

Do you have raccoons or bears raiding your garbage, squirrels living in your garage, bats inhabiting your attic, rodents digging up your yard or deer eating your plants? Problematic encounters with wildlife have become more numerous as human development encroaches upon the natural habitat of animals. These occurrences often result from people unknowingly providing essential resources for an animal's survival, which are food, water and shelter. DEC's Nuisance Species webpage provides an abundance of practical information to help landowners learn how to avoid or eliminate negative encounters with wildlife. You will find best practices tips; contact information for DEC-licensed nuisance wildlife control operators; permit or license requirements for legally eradicating or trapping nuisance, damaging or threatening animals; details on resolving problems with specific wildlife species; and links to other helpful resources.

Upcoming Recreational Sporting Seasons

August 1 - Hickory Shad Fishing Season Opens North of the Tappan Zee Bridge
This season runs through November 1, with a daily harvest limit of five fish and no minimum size limit. When fishing for hickory shad in the tidal Hudson River and its tributaries north of the Tappan Zee Bridge to the Troy Dam, you must have a valid recreational marine fishing registration card. In marine and coastal district waters south of the Tappan Zee Bridge, the hickory shad season is open year-round, with the same fishing limits. A valid recreational marine fishing registration card is also required while fishing these waters.

More Noteworthy DEC News

Below are DEC press releases not to be missed!

A photo of a hummingbird eating nectar from a plant with red flowers
A hovering ruby-throated hummingbird eats nectar
from a cardinal flower - a plant dependent
on hummingbirds for pollination
~Photo by Bill Buchanan; courtesy of USFWS

Did You Know...?

A spectacle to see and typically gone in a flash, the ruby-throated hummingbird flaps its wings about 60 times in one second. To maintain an adequate fuel level, it eats three times its weight each day. Favorite foods include nectar from many kinds of flowers, tree sap and insects, which are sometimes stolen from a spider's web!

Read more cool facts about these speedy, high-energy birds on Cornell's "All About Birds" website (External Link).

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