Although the deer-hunting season has ended in most areas of the state, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos wants hunters to be aware that opportunities still exist for hunting in central New York and on Long Island.
“Areas where we have extended seasons to address problems with deer overabundance provide a great opportunity for hunters to fill their freezers, donate venison to the less fortunate, and help bring ecosystems back into balance,” Commissioner Seggos said.
From Jan. 13 to Jan. 31, there will be an antlerless deer season open in the Deer Management Focus Area (DMFA) in Tompkins County. To participate, hunters must register with the DMFA program and download a permit, carcass tags, and a hunting activity log from the DMFA webpage (www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/82382.html). Registered hunters may take up to two antlerless deer per day using any hunting implement that is legal during any other deer season at the site where they are hunting.
The 60,000-acre DMFA was created in 2012 to help communities in the Ithaca area address problems caused by deer overabundance. The area allows harvest of up to two antlerless deer per day throughout all the general deer hunting seasons, in addition to the January DMFA season. Hunters must carry a DMFA permit and DMFA carcass tags while hunting during the January season. They must also record their DMFA deer hunting activity and harvests on their hunting activity log and submit it to DEC by Feb. 7.
Additional information, including DMFA boundary descriptions and a printable map, is available on the DMFA webpage.
Special Seasons in Suffolk County, Long Island
The regular bow-hunting deer season in Suffolk County continues through Jan. 31. The 2018 firearms deer season in Suffolk County will begin Jan. 7, and run through Jan. 31, including weekends. Town permits are required in the towns of Southampton, Islip, and Smithtown.
For those that missed the lottery to hunt for deer on DEC-managed lands during the firearms season, DEC will take reservations for unclaimed spots between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. from Dec. 26 to Dec. 31, and between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. on weekdays Jan. 1 through Jan. 31. Hunters may only make one reservation. For more information on reservation procedures and to see which DEC-managed lands are available for firearms deer hunting please visit the DEC website at DEC.NY.gov.
For regulations, places to hunt, and more information, please visit DEC’s Hunting on Long Island webpage (www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/8373.html) or contact the DEC Region 1 Wildlife Office at (631) 444-0310. To learn more about the Venison Donation program, please visit the DEC website at DEC.NY.gov.