State DEC has announced that the application period for its cooperative Day-Old Pheasant Chick Program to enhance opportunities for pheasant hunting in New York is under way. The program provides pheasant hunting opportunities through a partnership amongst DEC, sportsmen and sportswomen, 4-H youth, and landowners who are interested in rearing and releasing pheasants.
The Day-Old Pheasant Chick Program began in the early 1900s. In the early days, pheasant eggs and chicks were distributed to farmers and rural youth. Today, day-old chicks are available at no cost to participants who are able to provide a brooding facility, a covered outdoor rearing pen, and an adequate release site. Approved applicants will receive the day-old chicks in April, May, or June.
In 2012, DEC distributed 42,408 day-old pheasant chicks to qualified 4-H and sportsmen applicants. Applications must be filed with a DEC regional wildlife manager by March 15.
Those from DEC Region 9, interested in participating in the program can contact DEC, 182 East Union, Suite 3, Allegany, NY 14706-1328. Phone: 716-372-0645.