Department of Environmental Conservation

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For Release: Monday, June 15, 2015

DEC Cancels Wilson Hill Goose Drive

Due to low water levels that make access to wetlands at the Wilson Hill Wildlife Management Area (WMA) difficult, the annual Wilson Hill Goose Drive has been cancelled this year, the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced today.

In past years, DEC wildlife staff and volunteers herded geese along the length of the Wilson Hill Wildlife Management Area WMA into holding pens, where biologists determine the age and sex of the geese, then band and release them back into the marsh. However, construction of several new water control structures and a pump house now allows DEC staff to replicate natural conditions by managing water levels at the WMA. The extra dry weather in northern New York this spring allowed DEC staff to mimic a natural, dry spring, and the newly exposed shallow areas should soon be developing a gradual carpet of lush, green vegetation.

Later this summer, before the fall migration, DEC staff will increase the water levels in the pools to provide habitat for migrating waterfowl. The vegetation is also expected to provide breeding habitat in the following years.

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