Almanack Contributor NYS DEC

Information attributed to NYSDEC is taken from press releases and news announcements from New York State's Department of Environmental Conservation.

Monday, July 10, 2023

DEC: Do Wildfires Affect Birds?


Recently, New York State experienced the harsh effects of raging wildfires in the Canadian Province of Ontario. For several days, air quality indexes spiked to concerning and unhealthy levels, as noticeable smoke covered most of the state in a haze. Here in New York, multiple smaller wildland fires have burned in locations across the state due to dry spring conditions. In addition to causing potential human health and safety concerns, wildfires also may affect local bird and wildlife populations.

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Friday, July 7, 2023

Outdoor Conditions (7/7): Knowing signs of heat stroke, exhaustion

outdoor conditions logoThe following are only the most recent notices pertaining to public lands in the Adirondacks. Please check the Adirondack Backcountry webpages for a full list of notices, including seasonal road statuses, rock climbing closures, specific trail conditions, and other pertinent information.


  • Sable Highlands Conservation Easement and Cobble Hill Public Use Area – The bridge across Ouleout Creek is CLOSED TO ALL, including pedestrians.

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Thursday, July 6, 2023

Falconry, Wildlife Rehabilitator, and Leashed Tracking Dog Handler Exams Set for Aug.


Examinations for individuals seeking a license to practice the sport of falconry, become a volunteer wildlife rehabilitator, or use leashed tracking dogs to find wounded or injured big game animals are scheduled for Friday, August 11, 2023. The registration deadline for these free online exams is August 9, 2023.

Free study guides, the link to the registration website, and directions on how to register is provided on each of the individual license webpages. An email acknowledgment of registration will be sent to applicants, and later, an additional one-time link to access the website on the day of the exam.

For questions or assistance, please email us.


Photo at top courtesy of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS.)

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

12 year old separated from party in High Peaks Wilderness

DEC ranger rescue

Recent NYC DEC Forest Ranger actions:

Town of Santa Clara
Franklin County
Wilderness Rescue:
 On June 27 at 8:10 a.m., Forest Ranger Lieutenant Lapierre called Ranger Adams about a camper at Clamshell Pond reporting severe leg cramps while camping and canoeing. Assistant Forest Ranger (AFR) Colucci and Ranger Adams responded with an ATV, six-wheeler, and a canoe while Rangers Bronson and Corey followed in another six-wheeler. Ranger Adams reached the 45-year-old from Connecticut at 10:46 a.m. Rangers provided the subject with water and electrolytes and evacuated them on an ATV to another area of the campground where EMS was waiting. The subject’s son, who has a medical condition that prevents him from walking on his own, was safely transported to his father. The subject refused further medical care from EMS. Resources were clear at 11:53 a.m.

Pictured above: Rescue at Clamshell Pond

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Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Volunteer for NY’s first Campgrounds Day on July 8

campground day graphic

Give back to your favorite state-owned campground this summer for the inaugural Campgrounds Day! Hosted by Parks & Trails New York, State Parks, and the Department of Environmental Conservation, this event provides New Yorkers the opportunity to clean up, beautify, and enhance campgrounds across the state. Click here to find events and to register.

Campgrounds Day was created to build off the success of #ILoveMyParkDay and the #LoveOurNewYorkLands campaign, to carry the spirit of stewardship and volunteerism throughout the year. It will be the first of a handful of themed statewide stewardship days in 2023 that PTNY, DEC, and State Parks will be hosting throughout the summer and fall.

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

DEC: Annual Aquatic Invasive Species Landing Blitz to run through July 9

DEC boat steward

On June 27, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), in partnership with seven Great Lakes states, six Northeast states, and six Canadian provinces, announced the annual Aquatic Invasive Species Landing Blitz will run from June 30 through July 9. This international campaign bolsters existing efforts to inform boaters and others about the risks of introducing and spreading aquatic invasive species (AIS). During this coordinated outreach effort, partners will boost social media AIS messaging and increase in-person AIS education at thousands of water access sites throughout the Great Lakes and Northeast region.

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Tuesday, July 4, 2023

Sharing Cliffs with Peregrine Falcons

peregrine falconThe stunning cliffs of the Adirondacks are home to many things—billion-year-old rocks, a wide variety of outdoor enthusiasts, and a fragile but growing population of the endangered peregrine falcon. For Adirondack rock climbers, this means sharing cliffs with the birds that build their nests high on a wall.

By 1960, the use of pesticides had reduced the breeding population of peregrines in the Adirondacks to zero. Since then, New York State has taken great efforts to provide protection for the endangered species, while they establish themselves in the Adirondacks once again.

Nesting between 20 and 200 feet above the ground and waterways below, peregrines use their keen eyesight to locate and dive on their prey. As they approach the ground, these nimble birds can reach speeds close to 200 mph, snatch their prey, and pull back up towards the sky. Peregrines have been recorded living up to 12 years, though the average life expectancy is around six. This lifespan allows the birds to return to their same nest site (known as an eyrie) year after year, making it even more important to take extra care to tread lightly in their breeding ground.

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Monday, July 3, 2023

Attend an Environmental Bond Act Listening Session

bond act boat launch

Overwhelmingly approved by voters last fall, the $4.2 billion Clean Water, Clean Air, and Green Jobs Environmental Bond Act prioritizes investments in environmental justice, climate change mitigation, shoreline restoration, flood resilience, water quality, open space conservation, recreational resources, and green jobs. This spring and summer, the public and potential funding applicants will be able to learn more about the Bond Act at a series of educational listening sessions. Sessions have been announced across the state – use the links below to register:

Sessions will feature a presentation on the Bond Act and an opportunity for one-on-one discussion with State experts. Meetings will be open to the public.

State agencies, local governments, and partners will be able to access Environmental Bond Act funding over a multi-year process. Recognizing that vulnerable populations are disproportionately affected by negative environmental and climate change impacts, at least 35%, with a goal of 40%, of Bond Act benefits will be directed toward disadvantaged communities.

Photo: The boat launch at Moffitt Beach Campground on July 21, 2022 in Lake Pleasant. The campground received funding for this boat launch in the Clean Air/Clean Water 1996 Environmental Bond Act. Photo by Gwendolyn Craig

Sunday, July 2, 2023

BearWise campaign aims to help New Yorkers live responsibly with black bears

black bear

The NYS DEC recently announced that they are joining the BearWise campaign as a cooperative member state. BearWise was developed by biologists from state conservation agencies across the U.S. to ensure people, regardless of location, learn to live responsibly with bears. Using the “BearWise basics,” residents are encouraged to take simple steps at home (or when recreating outdoors) in order to avoid negative interactions with black bears.

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Saturday, July 1, 2023

Season extended at Moffitt Beach and Lewey Lake Campgrounds, unsupervised swimming at ADK/Catskill campgrounds

Lewey Lake Campgrounds and Day Use Area.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced new updates at the agency’s Adirondack and Catskill campgrounds ahead of the Independence Day holiday, which kicks off the busy season at State campgrounds. Changes include updating swimming policies for the 2023 camping season to specify unsupervised swimming at DEC campground beaches and extending the seasons at the popular Moffitt and Lewey Lake campgrounds. Lifeguards will continue to supervise swimming at DEC’s Lake George “Million Dollar Beach” and Hinckley Reservoir Day Use Areas.

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Friday, June 30, 2023

Outdoor Conditions (6/30): Skiff Pond Trail impassable due to washout

outdoor conditions logoThe following are only the most recent notices pertaining to public lands in the Adirondacks. Please check the Adirondack Backcountry webpages for a full list of notices, including seasonal road statuses, rock climbing closures, specific trail conditions, and other pertinent information.


Debar Mountain Wild Forest

  • The Skiff Pond Trail is impassable due to washout. The washout is 0.25 miles south of the parking area at Debar Meadows. Skiff Pond can be accessed by taking the Debar Meadows to Meacham Lake Trail for about 1.8 miles to the intersection with the Skiff Pond Trail and turning east towards Skiff Pond.

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Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Pitchoff Mt. hiker suffers ankle injury, rangers & pilots participate in Lake Clear bucket training

forest ranger reportHamlet of Lake Clear
Hamilton County
 On June 21, four pilots from New York State Police (NYSP) Aviation and six Forest Rangers participated in bucket training. Rangers work in tandem with NYSP pilots to fill the 240-gallon bucket before determining the proper altitude to dump the water on mock wildfires during the training.

Video from the bucket training is available on the DEC website:

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Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Love Our New York Lands volunteer stewardship events slated for July 8

Campgrounds Day Flyer, part of the Love Our New York Lands stewardship events.

On June 26, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos announced that registration is now open for a new stewardship day at State-owned campgrounds on Saturday, July 8, 2023. The event, a partnership between Parks & Trails New York, the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, and DEC, encourages New Yorkers and visitors to give back to the campgrounds they love by volunteering.

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Saturday, June 24, 2023

ADK Park: Environmental Conservation Police News

Motorcycle Crash – Hamilton County

On May 29, ECO Newell and Trooper Nauroth responded to reports of a motorcycle accident south of Speculator. The Officers found the victim had incurred severe trauma to one of her legs, including lacerations and compound fractures. Officers Newell and Nauroth administered first aid while coordinating with Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office Dispatch for EMS response and LifeNet Helicopter services.


Wells EMS and ambulance service, GAVAC, arrived on scene and transported the subject to Speculator. DEC Forest Ranger Snye, along with the Speculator Fire Department and Hamilton County Deputies, created a landing zone for the LifeNet helicopter while also assisting with a brush fire that began across the street from the landing zone. The coordination between agencies led to expedient medical care and transportation of the subject from Speculator to Albany Medical Center.

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Friday, June 23, 2023

Outdoor Conditions (6/23): Being aware of oncoming thunderstorms, safety tips

outdoor conditions logoThe following are only the most recent notices pertaining to public lands in the Adirondacks. Please check the Adirondack Backcountry webpages for a full list of notices, including seasonal road statuses, rock climbing closures, specific trail conditions, and other pertinent information.


Nothing new this week

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