From the July 2010 issue
Miscellaneous News Items
Public Comment Periods Extended
BTA for Cooling Water Intake Structures
The public comment period for the draft policy, "Best Technology Available (BTA) for Cooling Water Intake Structures" has been extended until July 9, 2010. More information on this proposal can be found on DEC's website.
Sustainable Materials Management Strategy
The public comment period for the draft solid waste management plan, "Beyond Waste: A Sustainable Materials Management Strategy for New York," has been extended until August 16, 2010. More information on this proposal can be found on DEC's website.
Teens Win Timbrook Scholarships to Rushford EEC
Two teens have been chosen for a DEC environmental education camp scholarship created in memory of Emily Timbrook, a former Camp Rushford attendee and volunteer who died in a car accident in 2009. Christopher Berry of Livonia, Livingston County, and Ashlyn Tehoke of Winchester, VA were selected based on essays they wrote about their experiences at Camp Rushford in Caneadea, Allegany County, last summer.
A scholarship fund in Emily's name encourages other young people to get outdoors and appreciate nature the same way she did. Donations to support future camp scholarships in Emily's name can be made to the National Heritage Trust (NHT), a public benefit corporation that receives and manages gifts, grants and contributions to further public conservation programs. To donate to the NHT fund, send a check made out to "NHT-Emily" to Camps Scholarship, c/o Director of Management and Budget Services, NYSDEC, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-5010.
Keeping Humans and Bears Safe
Avoid attracting bears to residential areas by limiting their access to easy meals from trash cans, bird feeders, pet food and other food sources.
In response to recent sightings of black bears in communities around central New York, state Department of Environmental Conservation Regional Director Kenneth Lynch reminded citizens that bears are particularly active at this time, with some young males traveling considerable distances. Local bear sightings include the south side of Syracuse, Lafayette, Manlius, Homer, Lansing and Oneida. If you see a bear, enjoy the viewing opportunity from a distance, and do not pursue or harass it. It is best to let these animals move at their own pace.
DEC also reminds people that bear problems are most often a result of easy meals people make available. Bears can become a chronic nuisance when they have access to bird feeders, garbage cans, dumpsters, barbeque grills, pet foods or compost piles. Although DEC is often asked to relocate problem bears, relocations are rarely effective at ending a bear's nuisance behavior.
For routine sightings of bears, call DEC's Wildlife office in Cortland at 607-753-3095, ext. 247. If you see a bear in an urban/suburban area or a bear you feel poses a threat, please contact DEC's Division of Law Enforcement at 1-877-457-5680. Do not follow or pursue the bear, and try to keep others from doing so.
Oriskany Flats WMA Dedication
Oriskany Flats Wildlife Management Area (WMA) was dedicated last month to the late Dave Pierce, the driving force behind creation of the site. Oriskany Flats is a 774-acre parcel of public land open to hunting, trapping and a variety of recreational uses. It also serves to maintain, protect and enhance the natural qualities of this piece of the Mohawk River floodplain in Oneida County.
Dave Pierce was an energetic outdoorsman who passed away in 1997. During his free time, he worked on behalf of the sportsmen of Oneida County and across the state. Pierce had a dream for this section of the Mohawk River floodplain--that it be acquired by DEC and developed into a prime wetland complex for waterfowl, furbearers and other wildlife. The area now bears a sign in his memory. For more information about the area, please contact wildlife biologist Steven Heerkens at 315-793-2557.