Thursday, July 4, 2013

New York Special Snow Goose Harvest Program

State regulations to expand the special snow goose harvest program in New York have been amended to allow hunters to take snow geese during a special harvest program from January 16 through April 15 in all of upstate New York.

This is in addition to the regular snow goose hunting season, which is expected to run October 1 through January 15 annually. DEC filed a Notice of Emergency Adoption and Proposed Rule Making with the Department of State on January 23, 2013, and the changes took effect immediately. However, the Emergency rule expired in April, so adoption of the final rule was necessary to extend the same regulation indefinitely.

The expanded special season will increase hunter opportunity to harvest snow geese throughout the winter and early spring, when they are most abundant in New York.

Snow geese are an arctic breeding goose species that recently reached record high population levels in North America - from approximately 50,000 birds in the 1960s to more than one million birds in recent years.

Wildlife agencies, ecologists and environmental organizations have expressed concern about the impacts that overabundant snow geese are having on arctic ecosystems, coastal wetlands and agricultural crops. In response to those concerns, federal hunting regulations were liberalized in 2008, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) adopted a conservation order allowing states in the Atlantic Flyway to implement special snow goose harvest programs in addition to its regular hunting seasons. Based on guidance from USFWS, DEC decided to have one continuous season beginning this year.

For more information about snow geese hunting in New York, visit the DEC website.

source: New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

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