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Pheasant Raising Programs Bolster Hunting Opportunities

A special youth-only pheasant hunting weekend will be held in Western New York on Oct. 10 - 11, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced today. The hunt will occur one week prior to the regular pheasant hunting season, and will provide junior hunters (ages 12-15 years old) the opportunity to hunt pheasants with a licensed adult companion when fewer hunters are afield. The 2015-2016 regular pheasant season opens Oct. 17.

"The youth-only pheasant hunting weekend helps acclimate junior hunters to upland game bird hunting, and provides a great opportunity for experienced hunters to share safe hunting values and skills with our future sportsmen and sportswomen," said DEC Senior Wildlife Biologist Emilio Rende.

As required under existing law, junior hunters must be accompanied by a licensed adult hunter during the youth pheasant hunt. Accompanying adults will not be allowed to possess a firearm or take a pheasant during this special season. During the two-day youth hunt, junior hunters will be allowed to take two birds per day, as allowed during the regular season. Please consult the pheasant hunting boundary descriptions located on page 45 of the 2015-2016 Hunting and Trapping Regulation Guide. All other pheasant hunting regulations remain in effect.

A special permit will be required to hunt at Joseph Davis, Golden Hill, and Wilson-Tuscarora State Parks located in Niagara County. An individual permit will be required to hunt on Saturday, Oct. 10 and Sunday, Oct. 11. The youth hunt this year will allow for a second youth hunter to be named on the permit.

There will be two separate hunts each day that a permit is required: the first hunt will be from sunrise until 12:30 p.m.; the second hunt will be from 12:30 p.m. until sunset.

Junior hunters interested in entering the Permit Lottery at Golden Hill, Wilson-Tuscarora and Joseph Davis State Parks should mail a separate, standard size file card for each date and park that you would like to hunt. Only one permit will be issued to each hunter per day. Cards may be put into an envelope for each respective park and mailed together to the appropriate addresses below:

Golden Hill State Park
Attn: Gregory Brown
9691 Lower Lake Rd.
Barker, NY 14012
(716) 795-3885

Joseph Davis State Park
Attn: Josh Bodie
1 Maintenance Ave.
Youngstown, NY 14174
(716) 745-7273

Wilson Tuscarora State Park
Attn: David Giambra
Lake Rd., P.O. Box 324
Wilson, NY 14172
(716) 751-6361

Information on the file card should include the junior hunter's name, address, telephone number, e-mail address, hunting license back tag number, hunt date, and desired park location. Entries will be computerized to avoid duplications. All lottery entries must be received by noon on Friday, Oct. 3. If you have any questions regarding the permit lottery, please call the respective Park Managers at the numbers provided above. There is no fee for the permit and junior hunters awarded permits will have the option of naming one additional junior hunter on their permit.

Approximately 770 adult roosters and hens will be stocked in DEC Region 9 immediately prior to the youth hunt weekend. All of the birds will be provided from the DEC Reynold's Game Farm. Please refer to the attached table for a summary of release sites in each county.

Youth hunters wishing to hunt pheasants in Allegany State Park are reminded that they must pick up a free hunting permit at the park's administration building near Redhouse Lake before hunting in the park. For questions about pheasant hunting in Allegany State Park, please call (716) 354-9121.

Questions about the Youth Pheasant Hunt can be directed to DEC's Bureau of Wildlife at (716) 851-7010 in Buffalo or (716) 372-0645 in Allegany. See the table below for Youth Pheasant Hunt Stocking Locations. To apply for a permit, contact NYS Park managers identified above. Additional information about pheasant hunting is available on DEC's website.

Governor Cuomo has expanded recreational opportunities of residents and tourists, positioning New York State as a recreation destination, connecting communicates to state lands, and improving the quality of life. Governor Cuomo's NY Open for Fishing and Hunting Initiative is an effort to improve recreational opportunities for sportsmen and women and to boost tourism activities throughout the state. This includes streamlining fishing and hunting licenses, reducing license fees, improving access for fishing and increasing hunting opportunities in New York State. In support of this initiative, last year $10 million in NY Works funding has been dedicated to fish hatchery repairs and 50 new land and water access projects such as boat launches, hunting blinds, trails and parking areas.

Under the initiative, the 2015-16 Enacted Budget included an additional $8 million for state land access projects and an additional $4 million for the state's hatcheries in NY Works funding. The Budget also creates a new capital account which along with federal Pittman-Robertson funds will be used to manage, protect and restore fish and wildlife habitat, and to improve and develop public access for fish and wildlife-related recreation.

2015 Region 9 Youth Hunt Pheasant Stocking
CountyTownshipRelease Site
Allegany New Hudson Hanging Bog WMA along New Hudson Road.
Birdsall Keeney Swamp WMA Route 15B, off North parking area
Cattaraugus Conewango-Randolph Conewango Swamp WMA - Between Route 241 and Conewango Creek
Red House Allegany State Park, Wolf Run Road (Free permit necessary from Administration Building.)
Farmersville Harwood Lake Multiple Use Area.
No special permit required for the youth hunt on Oct. 10 and Oct. 11.
South Valley Allegheny Reservoir WMA - vicinity of Bone Run off Onoville Road.
Chautauqua Sherman Alder Bottom Wildlife Management Area - off Idora Road and Route 76.
Erie Collins Zoar Valley Multiple Use Area, south of Vail and Unger Road and Button Road.
No special permit required for the youth hunt on Oct. 10 and 11.
Niagara Lewiston Joseph Davis State Park - Special permit required for hunting pheasants on Saturday, Oct. 10, and Sunday, Oct. 11. *
Wilson Wilson-Tuscarora State Park - Special permit required for hunting pheasants on Saturday, Oct. 10, and Sunday, Oct. 11.
Somerset Golden Hill State Park - Special permit required for hunting pheasants on Saturday, Oct 10, and Sunday, Oct. 11.*
Wyoming Middlebury Carlton Hill Multiple Use Area and Sulphur Springs Hill Fish and Wildlife Management Act Cooperative Hunting Area, 5 miles north of Warsaw.

*Contact NYS Park managers at the respective parks identified in the press release above to apply for a permit.

For information about other areas, contact DEC's Buffalo office at (716) 851-7010 or
DEC's Allegany office at (716) 372-0645.