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DEC announces fall pheasant release plans for Western New York

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Wed, Sep 25th 2019 10:05 am

Hunters encouraged to enter permit lotteries

Pheasant hunting season in Western New York will open Saturday, Oct. 19, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation announced. DEC will release approximately 4,700 adult ring-necked pheasants on Region 9 lands open to public hunting for this fall’s pheasant hunting season. Stocked pheasants will be provided by DEC’s Reynolds Game Farm in Ithaca. 

A list of pheasant release sites statewide is available on DEC’s website.

"DEC is pleased to provide enhanced pheasant hunting opportunities in Western New York through our cooperative pheasant raising programs,” said Region 9 Director Abby Snyder. “We would especially like to thank the Erie and Allegany County sheriff’s departments for providing pheasants to be stocked at Zoar Valley multiple use area and hanging bog wildlife management area through their pheasant rearing programs.”

The day-old pheasant chick program provides additional pheasant hunting opportunities through a partnership between DEC and sportsmen and women, 4H Youth, and landowners interested in rearing and releasing pheasants. Birds from this program are released before the season opens and dispersed widely, presenting a greater challenge for experienced hunters.

Hunters are reminded to ask permission from private landowners before hunting on their lands. Many of these release sites are available for hunting thanks to the cooperation of private landowners. Good landowner/hunter relations are critical to ensure these areas remain open to hunting in future years.

To ensure the safety of hunters and DEC staff while pheasant stocking is occurring, pheasant hunting will not be allowed on Fridays at Carlton Hill multiple use area during October and November. Hunters are also encouraged to review the 2019-20 New York State Hunting and Trapping Regulations Guide before going afield, and to be sure of their targets and beyond when hunting. The guide identifies boundary restrictions and other important information, and is available online on DEC’s website. "Rooster only" and "rooster and hen" boundary descriptions are located on page 43 of the guide.

A special permit is required for hunting small game during the opening day of pheasant season on Zoar Valley multiple use area in the town of Collins (Erie County), and Harwood Lake multiple use area in the town of Farmersville (Cattaraugus County). Hunters interested in entering the DEC permit lottery for these multiple use areas should mail one standard size post card to: NYSDEC, Bureau of Wildlife, 270 Michigan Ave., Buffalo, NY 14203.

Post cards must include the hunter’s name, address, telephone number, 2019-20 license back tag number, preferred time of hunt (sunrise to noon or 1 p.m. to sunset), and the management area desired in order of preference. All entries must be received by Sept 27. There is no fee for the permit, and hunters awarded permits will be able to name one additional hunter on their permit. Ten permits will be issued per time block on each management area. Small game hunting on all other days will remain sunrise to sunset with no permit required.

Hunters should also note dogs are not allowed within the designated area on the multiple use areas for any purpose during the 48-hour period immediately preceding opening day of the fall pheasant season as posted on Zoar Valley multiple use area and Harwood Lake multiple use area. 

Hunting throughout the pheasant season is allowed at Golden Hill, Joseph Davis and Wilson-Tuscarora state parks in Niagara County. However, permits are required on Oct. 19, 26, and Nov. 2 at those state parks. 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.

Hunters interested in entering the permit lottery at Golden Hill, Joseph Davis and Wilson Tuscarora should mail a separate, standard-size file card for each date and park that they 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 address below:

Information on the file card should include the hunter’s name, address, telephone number, email address, hunting license back tag number, hunt date, a.m. hunt or p.m. hunt, and desired park location. Entries will be computerized to avoid duplications. All lottery entries must be received by noon on Friday, Sept 27.

Call the respective park managers at the numbers provided with questions regarding the permit lottery. Note: There will be no pheasant hunting at Golden Hill, Joseph Davis, and Wilson Tuscarora on release days (Oct. 25 and Nov 1). 

There is no fee for the permit and hunters awarded permits will have the option of naming one additional hunter on their permit. Hunters wishing to hunt pheasants in Allegany State Park are reminded they must pick up a free hunting permit at the administration building near Red House Lake before hunting in the park. No small game hunting is allowed in Allegany State Park during the regular big game season that runs from Nov. 16 until Dec. 8. Refer to the attached table for a summary of the number of pheasants to be stocked and release sites in each county. 

Questions should be referred to DEC’s Bureau of Wildlife at 716-851-7010 in Buffalo or 716-372-0645 in Allegany. Additional information about pheasant hunting is available on DEC’s website.

2019 Region 9 Adult Pheasant Stocking

*Contact New York State Park managers at the respective parks identified to apply for a permit.

**For information about special permits at Zoar and Harwood WMAs, contact DEC’s Buffalo office at 716-851-7010 or DEC’s Allegany office at 716-372-0645.

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