Staff Report

New York Outdoor News writers, contributors honored

Steve Piatt, editor at New York Outdoor News, was awarded second place in the newspaper columns category for “Out There: Looking Back on That First Longbeard,” which published March 10, 2017.Numerous New York Outdoor News writers and contributors were honored during the New York State Outdoor Writers Association’s annual awards banquet – sponsored by the National Shooting Sports Foundation – Oct. 6…

Illinois fall trout season features six new fisheries

Springfield — Six new sites have been added to the Illinois fall trout fishing season, which opens Oct. 20 at 59 ponds, lakes, and streams throughout the state. The catch-and-release, fly-fishing season will be available at nine sites beginning on Oct. 6. No trout may be kept during the fly-fishing period, but all anglers can keep trout after the opening…

It’s been a record summer of fishing for salmon, trout on Lake Ontario

Capt. Frank Campbell of Niagara Region Charters holds up a 32-pound Niagara Bar king salmon caught by Kyle Kraft of Ohio. (Photo courtesy of Bill Hilts Jr.)Altmar, N.Y. — While the attention is rapidly turning to Lake Ontario’s tributaries for the annual fall spawning run of salmon and trout, it has already been a record-breaking season of fishing on the…

Pennsylvania game agency will make all hunting guides take test

Harrisburg — It was just in July that Pennsylvania Game Commissioners gave preliminary approval to creating a new hunting guide program. And already, changes to it are coming. Up until now, all that it’s taken to become a commission-registered hunting guide in Pennsylvania was paying a $25 fee. In July, though, commissioners said that in addition to paying a fee…

Outdoor News offers annual contest for youth writers

Plymouth, Minn. — Students in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio and Illinois who fancy themselves a prodigy in outdoors writing should take note of the Outdoor News annual Youth Writing Contest that kicked off Sept. 7, 2018. Outdoor News, Inc., publisher of locally written fishing and hunting outdoor newspapers in seven Great Lake states, has promoted the writing…

2018 Outdoor News Print of the Year features artwork by Scot Storm

Plymouth, Minn. — With 22 federal, state, and conservation stamp wins to his name, Minnesota-based Scot Storm’s art clearly contains fine details that breathe life into every image and draw the viewer into the wildlife scenes he creates. Through the celebrated Outdoor News Print of the Year series, Storm’s latest artistry captures an image that fills the dreams of every…

Outdoor News calendars feature top-flight artwork, information

Plymouth, Minn. — Outdoor News Inc., publisher of locally written fishing and hunting outdoor newspapers in seven Great Lakes states, has published a series of calendars for sportsmen in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and New York. The Outdoor News Sportsman’s Calendars offer information for hunters and anglers compiled in seven state-specific versions. The calendars incorporate exclusive-to-the-state 2019 hunting…

New York grouse drumming survey offers a glimpse into bird numbers

Albany — One of DEC’s chief gauges of the statewide ruffed grouse population comes from, ironically, spring turkey hunters. That annual grouse drumming survey is more a product of sounds than sightings; turkey hunters tally the number of grouse they hear drumming during the bird’s breeding season in May. The results show a per-hour “drumming rate” and changes in that…

Pennsylvania game agency says fawn numbers are holding steady

Harrisburg — Once again, it all comes down to antlerless licenses. Hunters, for decades, have been told that shooting more or fewer antlerless deer is the one best way to control deer populations across Pennsylvania. The same is true, apparently, when it comes to fawns and predators. That was the message delivered at the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s most recent meeting….

Should ‘rabbit fever’ be a concern for Illinois?

Springfield — In a state that has seen a steady decline in rabbit hunters, the bad news sort of seems like nature “piling on.” But health officials say the confirmed human case of tularemia – better known as rabbit fever – does not mean handling wild rabbits is dangerous. Illinois Department of Public Health veterinarian Connie Austin said rabbit fever…

In New York, opposition brewing to proposed mallard harvest limit

Waverly, N.Y. — While waterfowl seasons are in place for this year, there’s already opposition brewing to a 2019-20 plan to trim the mallard limit in the Atlantic Flyway from its current four birds to two. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Atlantic Flyway Council confirmed the plan to trim the daily mallard harvest number to two birds,…

Pennsylvania fish agency’s shad program appears at crossroads

Harrisburg — Fishermen are by nature optimists, right? The next cast is always going to be the one. So maybe they’ll see cause for hope here. The number of American shad returning to Pennsylvania’s Susquehanna River were, in 2018, the worst since records started being kept 20 years ago. The Fish & Boat Commission stocks between 2 million and 5…

A Saturday deer opener in Pennsylvania? It may be in the mix

Harrisburg, Pa. — Some of today’s hunters admittedly may not like it. But some of tomorrow’s may need it. That’s the thinking of at least some Pennsylvania Game commissioners when it comes to the notion of moving the opening day of Pennsylvania’s statewide firearms deer season to the Saturday after Thanksgiving. The Monday after Thanksgiving is the “traditional” opener. It’s…

Pennsylvania Game Commission looks to force towns to use hunters in deer culling

Harrisburg — It doesn’t seem all that difficult at first blush, defining what is and isn’t public hunting. Ah, but you’d be wrong. The Pennsylvania Game Commission has learned that and is taking steps to address it. When the agency holds its next meeting on July 30-31, commissioners will be asked to update their definition of public hunting. The goal,…

Boat stewards will monitor New York waters for invasives

Albany — State officials, ahead of the busy boating season on New York waters, announced that boat stewards will be deployed at nearly 200 locations in an effort to halt the unintentional introduction and spread of aquatic invasive species. The DEC, state Department of Transportation and Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation boat steward partnership “provides a vital function…

Boat launches closed at Blue Marsh Lake 

Reading, Pa. — Due to recent rains and flood damage reduction actions at Blue Marsh Lake the boat launches there are closed to the Public. The lake level is three feet over normal summer pool and still rising. This morning it was determined that the Schuylkill river could accept additional storm run-off and at 9 a.m. actions were taken by the…

In Pennsylvania, Pymatuning Lake the place to be for spring fishing

Linesville, Pa. — Muskies? Yeah, you might say Pymatuning Lake in Crawford County has a few. Sort of like the way the night sky has a few stars. A couple of things prove that. First, early this spring, Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission biologists did their annual trap net survey of the 17,000-plus acre lake that straddles the Pennsylvania-Ohio border….

Decline of mallards will lead to reduced bag limits in Pennsylvania

Harrisburg — No one’s blaming hunters. Not just yet. But they’re going to pay the price first anyway. Pennsylvania, like all states in the Atlantic Flyway, has set waterfowl seasons and bag limits for 2018-19. They are nearly identical to last year, at least as far as ducks are concerned. Hunters will be allowed one additional pintail per day this…