The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) today announced that approximately 30,000 adult pheasants will be released on lands open to public hunting for the upcoming Fall pheasant hunting season. The pheasant hunting season begins on October 1 in northern and eastern portions of New York, October 15 in central and western portions of New York, and November 1 on Long Island.

For the fifth consecutive year, junior hunters (12-15 years old) have the opportunity to hunt pheasants the weekend prior to the opening of regular pheasant hunting season. In northern and eastern New York, the youth pheasant hunt weekend is September 24-25. In western New York, the youth pheasant hunt weekend is October 8-9. Pheasants will be released on a number of select sites across the state to provide ample youth hunting opportunities (see table below). All current pheasant hunting rules and regulations remain in effect during the youth hunt.

In addition to the upstate youth hunts, DEC is working to establish a youth pheasant hunt on Long Island (Nassau and Suffolk counties) this Fall.  Legislation authorizing a youth hunt on Long Island was signed by Governor Cuomo in August, and DEC initiated a regulatory proposal that, if adopted, would have the youth hunt held on the last full weekend in October (October 29-30, 2011).  Pheasants would be released prior to that weekend at the sites listed below.  To review the proposal and submit comments visit the “Proposed Regulations” page on the DEC website. The public comment period on this proposal is open and comments will be accepted through October 3, 2011. See: http://www.dec.ny.gov/regulations/propregulations.html .

The pheasants will be released on state-owned wildlife management areas and cooperative hunting areas prior to and during the Fall hunting season. All release sites for pheasants raised via state-funded programs are open to public hunting. A list of statewide adult pheasant release sites and sites receiving birds for the youth pheasant hunt weekends can be found on DEC’s website: http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/9349.html

The Day-old Pheasant Chick Program provides additional opportunities for pheasant hunters. This program was developed in the early 1900s to provide day-old pheasant chicks to cooperating 4-H groups and sportsmen and sportswomen. The chicks are distributed to program participants in May and June, and cooperators incur all costs associated with rearing the birds, including feed, water, utilities and facility construction. The birds are raised to adulthood and released on lands open to public hunting before the season opens. This year, nearly 46,000 pheasant chicks were distributed statewide as part of this program. Anyone interested in raising and releasing pheasants to expand next year’s hunting opportunities should contact DEC’s Reynolds Game Farm at (607) 273-2768.

Boundaries for pheasant hunting zones conform to Wildlife Management Units used for management of other wildlife. Wildlife Management Unit boundary descriptions can be found on the DEC website. In addition to knowing these unit boundary descriptions, hunters should review the 2011-2012 New York Hunting & Trapping guide for complete regulations and other important information before going afield. Hunters who plan to use private lands should ask permission from the landowner prior to accessing those lands.

Youth Pheasant Hunt Sites 2011:

County

Town

Youth Hunt Site

Special Rules / Notes

Albany

Berne

Partridge Run WMA

See maps at all informational kiosks

Albany

Knox

Margaret Burke WMA

West side of County Route 254

Allegany

Birdsall

Keaney Swamp Wildlife Management Area

Allegany

New Hudson

Hanging Bog WMA along New Hudson Rd.

Broome

Triangle

Whitney Point Multiple Use Area

Cattaraugus

Conewango, Randolph

Conewango Swamp Wildlife Management Area – between Rte. 241 and Conewango Creek

Cattaraugus

Farmersville

Harwood Lake Multiple Use Area

Cattaraugus

Red House

Allegany State Park, Wolf Run Rd. & Upper Bay State Rd.

Free permit necessary from Administration Building

Cattaraugus

South Valley

Allegheny Reservoir Wildlife Management Area

Vicinity of Bone Run off Onoville Rd.

Cayuga / Tompkins

Ledyard, Genoa, Lansing

Cayuga Tompkins Co-op Hunting Area

Chautauqua

Sherman

Alder Bottom Wildlife Management Area – off Idora Rd. and Rte 76.

Chenango

Smithville

Long Pond State Forest

Clinton

Chazy

Lake Alice Wildlife Management Area

Delaware

Colchester

Bear Spring Mtn. WMA

Trout Brook Rd.

Dutchess

Milan

Lafayetteville Multiple Use Area

Dutchess

Red Hook

Tivoli Bays Wildlife Management Area

Erie

Collins

Zoar Valley Multiple Use Area – South of Vail and Unger Rd. and Button Rd.

Essex

Westport

Near the junction of Lake Shore Rd & Clark Rd on state land

Genesee

Darien

Darien Lake State Park

Genesee / Niagara

Alabama, Royalton

Tonawanda Wildlife Management Area

Jefferson

Brownville

Perch River Wildlife Management Area

Livingston

Livonia

Hemlock-Canadice State Forest

North end of Hemlock Lake

Monroe

Greece

Braddock Bay Wildlife Management Area

Niagara

Lewiston

Joseph Davis State Park

Special permit required for hunting pheasants on Oct. 8-9; Contact J. Davis State Park, 716-754-7766

Niagara

Wilson

Wilson-Tuscarora State Park

Special permit required for hunting pheasants on Oct. 8-9; Contact Wils.-Tusc. State Park, 716-751-6361

Oneida

Whitestown

Oriskany Flats Wildlife Management Area

Onondaga

Lysander

Three Rivers Wildlife Management Area

Ontario / Yates

Naples, Italy

High Tor Wildlife Management Area

Orange

New Windsor

Stewart State Forest

Oswego

Richland

Deer Creek Marsh Wildlife Management Area

Oswego

West Monroe

Three-Mile Bay Wildlife Management Area

Putnam

Patterson

Cranberry Mountain Wildlife Management Area

Putnam

Patterson

Great Swamp Wildlife Management Area

Access off Cornwall Hill Rd., park in designated areas only (6 car capacity)

Rensselaer

Nassau

North and south of Jefferson Hill Rd. at the intersection with Middle Rd.

Must ask permission by calling 518-766-4346 after 5 PM

Saratoga

Greenfield

Daketown State Forest

St. Lawrence

Canton

Upper & Lower Lakes Wildlife Management Area

Steuben

Tuscarora

Nichols Farm on Thompson Road

Suffolk**

Brookhaven

Rocky Point State Natural Resources Management Area

A daily permit must be obtained from the Ridge Hunter Check Station.

Suffolk**

Brookhaven

Eastport State Lands

A daily permit must be obtained from the Ridge Hunter Check Station.

Suffolk**

Riverhead / Brookhaven

Otis Pike Preserve

A daily permit must be obtained from the Ridge Hunter Check Station.

Tioga

Richford

Michigan Hill State Forest

Washington

Greenwich

Carter’s Pond Wildlife Management Area

Washington

Jackson

Eldridge Swamp State Forest

Wayne

Savannah

N. Montezuma Wildlife Management Area along Savannah-Spring Lake Rd.

Wayne

Wolcott/Huron

Lake Shore Marshes Wildlife Management Area

Wyoming

Middlebury

Carlton Hill Multiple Use Area & Sulphur Springs FWMA Co-op.

Five miles north of Warsaw

**TENTATIVE. There is a regulatory proposal to establish a youth pheasant hunt on Long Island that is currently open for public comment. Comments on the proposal will be accepted through Oct. 3, 2011. If the proposal is adopted, birds would be released at the sites listed above for Oct. 29-30, 2011.

Additional information provided on the DEC website includes:

Long Island Youth Pheasant Hunt Regulatory Proposal: http://www.dec.ny.gov/regulations/propregulations.html

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