New York Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – June 3, 2022

Get Greedy and Get Caught
(Ulster County)

On April 20, DEC Fisheries spent the day stocking trout in Rondout Creek and ECOs Walraven and Johnson patrolled the area to ensure anglers were taking fish in accordance with DEC regulations. The Officers decided to conduct a check of a fisherman taking trout and keeping them on a stringer. The fisherman was in possession of six trout, with three more than 12 inches in length. The regulations for this area of Rondout Creek are five total trout with no more than two fish over 12 inches. The unlawfully taken fish were seized and the fisherman ticketed for taking trout in excess of the limit and taking trout out of slot size. The tickets are returnable to the Town of Wawarsing Court.    

Haulin’ Bass
(Nassau County) 

In the early morning hours of April 21, ECO Pabes responded to a report of multiple anglers keeping excess and undersized striped bass in the village of Great Neck. The caller claimed they observed the fishermen placing bags of fish into the back of a vehicle. When confronted by other anglers about these illegal fish, the fishermen left the scene and went to a nearby gas station on foot. ECO Pabes met the caller and the suspects at the gas station where they denied any wrong-doing and had no fish in their possession. ECO Pabes noticed that one of the suspects had car keys on the table next to him, but claimed to be getting a taxi home. Suspicious, the Officer waited next to the vehicle reported by the caller. Within minutes, another vehicle dropped the two suspects off at the SUV, where they quickly jumped into the vehicle and sped away. ECO Pabes hopped into his patrol vehicle and followed, catching up to the SUV at a red light. The suspects began to drive erratically, speeding down a side street and blowing through a stop sign. ECO Pabes eventually stopped the SUV and the driver immediately confessed to having striped bass in the vehicle and driving without a license. The Officer issued four tickets for undersized and excess striped bass, failure to stop at a stop sign, and unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, returnable to Nassau First District Court. The five undersized striped bass were seized and donated to a wildlife rehabilitator.

Youth Turkey Hunt
(Suffolk County )

On April 23 and 24, ECOs Della Rocco, Kochanowski, Boyes, and Currey participated in the First Annual Suffolk County Youth Hunt, sponsored by the New York Conservation Officers Association, National Wild Turkey Federation, and local businesses. Each Officer took a youth hunter and their parent or guardian afield to hunt for wild turkey. Two young hunters successfully harvested a tom during the event. After the hunt, participants met at DEC’s Ridge Conservation Area for a picnic and prizes were awarded to the young hunters.

Youth Conservation Program
(Suffolk County)

Also in Suffolk County on April 24 and 25, DEC employees from the Division of Fish and Wildlife and volunteers from the Peconic River Sportsman’s Club held the annual Youth Conservation Program at the club in Calverton. The two-day event began with ECO Kaufherr educating participants on hunter safety. The next day, youth participated in field activities including orientation, wildlife identification, blood tracking, and firearm safety through target practice with a shotgun and a rifle. ECOs DeRose, Pabes, Paschke, and Perkins assisted with instruction during the in-field activities. In addition, ECO DeRose and K9 Cramer performed a K9 demonstration. A total of 30 young people participated in the event.

Trappers Snare Garbage
(Erie County)

On April 16, ECOs Koepf and Damrath joined the Erie County Trappers Association for an early jump on Earth Day in Springville. Led by Patti Wattengel, the volunteers braved a late-season snowstorm to clean up a two-mile stretch of NY-39 and succeeded in filling about 35 garbage bags. The Adopt-a-Highway event demonstrates the environmental stewardship of New York’s hunting, fishing, and trapping community.

Open Season Shenanigans
(Suffolk County)

 On May 1, the first day of the season for summer flounder (fluke), ECO Perkins received a complaint from a fisherman at the Robert Moses State Park boat basin about a man and woman inside a vehicle who took an undersized fluke. ECO Perkins searched the car and located the undersized fluke in a clear plastic bag underneath a pile of groceries in the trunk. ECO Perkins placed the fluke on the gravel lot and continued to search the vehicle for additional fish. As he searched, the suspect grabbed the fish and proceeded to sprint for approximately 60 yards toward the water. ECO Perkins repeatedly ordered the subject to stop and not dump the fish as the subject completely disregarded the ECO’s orders and threw the fish back into the water. The fisherman’s poor judgement and actions resulted in three tickets for possession of undersized fluke, failure to release without undue harm, and dumping upon signal to stop from a police officer. All tickets are returnable to 1st District Court in Suffolk County.

Cops4ACause Fishing Day
(Oswego County) 

On April 23, Lt. Burnell and ECOs Grogan, Dorrett, and Bonilla attended the Cops4ACause event at Mexico State Park on Lake Ontario. Cops4ACause is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to caring for law enforcement families who lost loved ones in the line of duty. At this event, local fishing charters treated children to a day-long fishing trip. The event began with a ceremony to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice and then the eager children boarded the boats for a beautiful day of fishing. The ECOs piloted the 31-foot SAFE boat from Oswego to Mexico Point as a show of support. Other participating agencies included New York State Police, United States Border Patrol, Oswego County Sheriff’s Office, Fulton Police Department, and City of Oswego Police Department.

Litter Cleanup Initiative
(Niagara County)

On April 13, ECO Scheer assisted the Tuscarora Nation with a litter cleanup initiative along the Niagara Escarpment within the Tuscarora Reservation. The escarpment needed attention due to illegal dumping. The escapement provides beautiful views of northern Niagara County and Lake Ontario, but some have used the area for illegal dumping activities. ECO Scheer, along with numerous volunteers from the Western New York Land Conservatory, worked with Nation members to collect trash and debris along the escarpment. In total, the group collected 130 bags of trash and removed tires for proper disposal. DEC’s Division of Law Enforcement maintains a close relationship with the Tuscarora Nation’s Environmental Task Force, responding to calls of illegal dumping and other environmental violations by non-Nation members on the territory.

Striped Bass Violations
(Nassau County)

On April 27, ECO Simmons surveilled Hempstead Harbor where night-time fishing activity at high tide was active. Fishermen were targeting striped bass, which is in season, but it didn’t take long for the Officers to discover violations. ECOs Pabes and Cacciola arrived at around 7:15 p.m., and immediately spotted two anglers trying to leave the area with undersized striped bass. The Officers continued their patrol and until 1 a.m., netting more violators. They seized 26 fish and issued several tickets for both over-the-limit and undersized fish.

Categories: Cuffs & Collars

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