Voluntary Check Stations Help DEC's Annual Harvest Data Collection
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) strongly encourages hunters to visit deer and bear check stations during the upcoming opening weekend of the regular big game season. Participation is voluntary and helps DEC gather valuable data to assess the status of the big game population in the area.
This year, a new Region 8 check station will be located at the Finger Lakes National Forest Ranger Station, 5218 State Route 414, Hector, Schuyler County. Hours of operation are Saturday, Nov. 21 and Sunday, Nov. 22 from 12:00 to 5:00 p.m.
The check station located at the DEC Headquarters, 6247 East Avon-Lima Road (State Route 20) in Avon, Livingston County, will operate Saturday, Nov. 21 and Sunday, Nov. 22 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Hunters are encouraged to bring their deer to either check station where DEC staff will determine age and collect biological and harvest information. With black bear season opening the same day as deer season, wildlife staff will also check harvested bear to collect biological information and pull a premolar tooth to determine the bear's age.
New York State Department of Health guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19 will be strictly adhered to at the check stations, including maintaining proper social distancing and wearing masks.
Take it, Tag it, Report it!
DEC reminds New York hunters of the importance of reporting their harvest. Harvest reporting is critical to wildlife management, and hunters are required to report their harvest of deer, bear, and turkey within seven days of taking the animal. The easiest way to report is via DEC's HuntFishNY mobile app. Through this app, hunters, anglers, and trappers can access an electronic version of their licenses and privileges, and report the harvest of deer, bear, and turkey quickly while afield on their mobile device. Hunters may still use the phone report system, but online and mobile systems are faster, more convenient, and easier for hunters to accurately enter information.
For more information about the start of this year's Southern Zone big game season visit DEC's website.