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For Release: Friday, April 21, 2017

DEC Announces New Features for NYS Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife Mobile App

License holders can now report game harvests via smartphone or other mobile device

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has added a new innovative tool to the official New York Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife App that provides sports license holders a simple, user friendly way to report game harvests with smartphones and mobile devices while afield, Commissioner Basil Seggos announced today.

"New York State is home to a vast array of fishing, hunting, and outdoor recreational opportunities, providing unmatched enjoyment of the outdoors while supporting local economies statewide," said Commissioner Seggos. "Enhancements to this user-friendly app will build on Governor Cuomo's efforts to connect New Yorkers and visitors to our world-class resources. Hunters will now have the ability to report their harvests right on their smartphones. With spring turkey season less than two weeks away and the youth turkey hunt this weekend, it's the perfect time to try out the app's impressive new features."

The Fish and Wildlife mobile app, created by ParksbyNature Network, is available free of charge and provides users with the latest fish and wildlife news, detailed hunting and fishing season information, species information, weather alerts, social media connections, GPS mapping capabilities, and more.

With the integration of the new e-License and Game Harvest features, hunters can quickly and easily create game harvest reports, even when the user is out of cellular range. Users will also be able to login to the DEC licensing system for instant mobile access to an electronic version of their current sporting licenses.

To access the new features, users need only click on the HuntFishNY icon within the app. The New York Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife app can be downloaded on the Apple app store or Google Play store (links leave DEC website,) or by going to DEC's website.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and DEC are committed to increasing and improving hunter and angler participation in the state and introducing a new generation of users to New York's vast outdoor recreational opportunities.

The new app features also allow users to share harvest reports with friends and followers on Facebook, send feedback to DEC, and access DEC resources while afield. As a reminder, it is a legal requirement to report all deer, bear and turkey harvests within seven days of harvest. Harvest information is critical to wildlife management and helps determine the overall health and population of a species and set future hunting seasons and limits.

These enhanced game harvest and electronic license app features were developed via a collaborative effort between DEC and the New York Information Technology Services' Mobile Channel & Cloud Development Services team.

"We are pleased to collaborate with DEC in support of the Governor's goal to provide New York's hunters and anglers with additional ways to access information," said Richard Valenti, Enterprise Business Solutions Cluster Chief Information Officer. "This project is just one example of our long-standing partnership with DEC to provide new and enhanced tools and resources to New York's outdoor enthusiasts. We are confident anglers and hunters will be excited with the latest features, reporting capabilities and improved access, especially when out of cellular range."

"This updated app remains a welcome addition to New York State's efforts to spread the word about all of the opportunities our state offers for hunting, fishing and overall outdoor recreation," said Senator Tom O'Mara, Chair of the Senate Environmental Conservation Committee. "It's a fantastic initiative that will benefit and strengthen tourism, recreation and all sportsmen-related industries."

"The new features of DEC's Wildlife App are not only fun additions but they will also help outdoorsmen and women be better conservationists," said Jason Kemper, Chairman of the New York State Conservation Fund Advisory Board. "New York offers some of the best outdoor sports recreations in the country, and this app is a great way to promote all the opportunities we have right here in our own backyard. We all know how youth love social media, and this weekend's youth turkey hunt is a great opportunity for them to try out this app."

Lance Robson, Chair of the New York State Fish and Wildlife Management Board said, "New tools are essential for inspiring the next generation of hunters to get involved in the sport and ensure they are helping advance our science based wildlife management programs by reporting their harvest. We look forward to promoting this new feature to hunters across the state and increase our harvest reporting rates."

Chuck Parker, President of the New York State Conservation Council said, "We applaud the DEC for creating this new tool to increase harvest reporting in the state. By providing a fast and easy way of reporting your harvest with the touch of a button, this new feature will ensure more hunters can contribute important data to wildlife management efforts and continue to grow the economically important hunting tradition in New York."

This effort builds on Governor Cuomo's strong support for the NY Open for Fishing and Hunting Initiative aimed at improving recreational opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts and boosting tourism activities throughout the state. The Governor called for this enhancement in his 2017-18 State-of-the-State proposal as a means to improve and streamline accessibility to hunting and fishing resources.

DEC Reminds Hunters to be Safe

DEC is urging hunters to remember the hunting safety basics they learned in their sportsman education courses when going afield this spring hunting season. While statistics show that hunting in New York State is safer than ever, mistakes are made every year. Every hunting-related shooting incident is preventable.

DEC's Hunting Safety Rules:

  • Assume every gun is loaded.
  • Control the muzzle. Point your gun in a safe direction.
  • Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot.
  • Be sure of your target and beyond.
  • DEC encourages hunters to wear blaze orange or pink. Wearing orange or pink prevents other hunters from mistaking a person for an animal, or shooting in your direction. Hunters who wear hunter orange are seven times less likely to be shot.
  • When hunting in tree stands use a safety harness and a climbing belt, as most tree stand accidents occur when hunters are climbing in and out of the stand. Also, never climb in or out of a tree stand with a loaded rifle.

For more information on hunter safety visit DEC's website.

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