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For Release: Wednesday, October 2, 2013

DEC Announces 16th Annual Youth Waterfowl Program

Instructional Class and Youth Waterfowl Days Set for Nov. 2, 9 & 10

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is holding its 16th Annual Youth Waterfowl Program, open to young hunters on Long Island ages 12 to 15, on November 2 and November 9 - 10, Commissioner Joe Martens announced today. The program is a collaboration with the New York Conservation Officers Association; Suffolk County Department of Parks, Recreation and Conservation; Shikar Safari Club International; Ducks Unlimited; and South Shore Waterfowlers Association.

The Youth Waterfowl Program, an instructional course, is set for November 2. Youth Waterfowl Days, which are specially designated hunting days, are set for November 9 - 10.

The Youth Waterfowl Program is a special event to help junior hunters prepare for and participate in the Youth Waterfowl Days. The program includes instruction in:

  • Hunting ethics and regulations
  • Waterfowl identification
  • Firearms safety review
  • Retriever and decoy use
  • Cold water survival and boating safety
  • Trap shooting

Certified sportsman education instructors, as well as DEC environmental conservation officers (ECOs), will guide participants through the program and help youth hunters become part of the long tradition of waterfowl hunting on Long Island. All new applicants must attend an instructional day at Hubbard County Park in Flanders on November 2 which will qualify them for the option of hunting at Hubbard County Park in Flanders or Southaven County Park in Yaphank on November 9 and anywhere hunting is allowed on November 10.

Participants must be 12 to 15 years of age by November 9, have completed a hunter education course by November 2, possess a junior (small game) hunting license by November 9 and be registered with the Harvest Information Program (HIP).

For further information regarding the Youth Waterfowl Program or to sign up for the November 2 instructional class, please contact DEC Region 1 Sportsman Education Program at (631) 444-0255 or e-mail pjdavis@gw.dec.state.ny.us. For more information on the Youth Waterfowl hunt, visit the DEC website .

Applications for the Youth Waterfowl Program are due by Oct. 11.

About Youth Waterfowl Days:

Each year, two days are set outside the regular duck hunting season in each waterfowl zone to allow any junior hunter to hunt ducks and geese. On these Youth Waterfowl Days, junior hunters (ages 12 to 15) must be accompanied by a licensed adult hunter. Adults cannot hunt during these two days.

The 16th Annual Youth Waterfowl Program is a part of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's NY Open for Fishing and Hunting Initiative; an effort to improve recreational activities for in-state and out-of-state sportsmen and sportswomen and to boost tourism opportunities throughout the state. Under this initiative, New York is streamlining the purchase of hunting and fishing licensing and reducing license fees, improving fishing access at various sites across the state, stocking as much as 900,000 pounds of fish, expanding fishing clinics and increasing hunting opportunities in various regions. The reduced fees become effective February 1, 2014.