Almanack Contributor NYS DEC

NYS DEC

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


Wednesday, July 20, 2022

DEC Seeks Citizen Scientists to Help Monitor Turkey Productivity

wild turkey - femaleNew York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today encouraged New Yorkers to take part in the State’s annual survey of wild turkeys, a valuable tool that helps DEC determine the productivity of turkey populations statewide.

“Citizen scientists provide important data that helps our biologists examine how factors such as weather, predation, and habitat conditions during the breeding and brood-rearing seasons impact turkey survival,” Commissioner Seggos said. “Without the assistance of our volunteers, the task of monitoring turkey populations statewide would be far more difficult, and we encourage participation this summer to help enhance our knowledge of turkeys in New York.”

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Monday, July 18, 2022

DEC: Public Encouraged to Report Potential Beech Leaf Disease Infections

On July 15, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced that Beech Leaf Disease (BLD), which affects all species of beech trees, was identified in 35 counties in New York State to date. The DEC began tracking BLD in 2018 after it was confirmed in Chautauqua County. Fourteen of the counties with BLD were confirmed in 2022, and more are likely to be identified.

“Many American beech trees are already heavily impacted by beech bark disease, but Beech Leaf Disease appears to be an even bigger threat,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. “The decline of beech in New York could have far-reaching consequences, including significant changes to the composition of our northern hardwood forests and the loss of a valuable food source for wildlife. Beech Leaf Disease affects all beech, so the impacts would also be felt in our urban forests where ornamental beech trees, including the popular copper beech cultivar, are widely used for landscaping and street trees.”

Much is still unknown about BLD, including how it spreads, but it can kill mature beech trees in six to 10 years and saplings in as little as two years. There is no known treatment for infected trees. BLD symptoms are associated with the nematode Litylenchus crenatae mccannii. It is unknown whether the nematode causes all of the damage, or if it is in association with another pathogen such as a virus, bacteria, or fungus.

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Friday, July 15, 2022

Outdoor Conditions (7/15): Prepare for hot temps, busy trails this weekend

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

New This Week:

Fire Danger Reminder: Practice the utmost safety when building campfires this summer. Dry weather throughout June and July has increased the risk of fires. The majority of the state remains at a moderate risk for fires, meaning that any outdoor fire can spread quickly, especially if the wind picks up. Follow DEC fire safety recommendations for reducing risk of wildfires.

Saratoga Sand Plains Archery Range: The archery range will be closed on August 3 and 4 from 4-9 p.m. for a DEC Becoming and Outdoors Woman event. It may be used by the public up until 4 p.m. on those days.

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Friday, July 15, 2022

DEC issues fire danger reminder

campfire courtesy DECOn July 14, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos urged New Yorkers to practice the utmost safety when building campfires this summer. Dry weather throughout June and July has increased the risk of fires.

“The sunny, summer weather is giving people ample opportunity to enjoy New York’s outdoors, but it’s also increasing the risk for fires,” Commissioner Seggos said. “When building a campfire, please make sure to always keep an eye on it and pay attention to the wind. And when finished, make sure the fire is fully out and cold to the touch.”

The majority of the state remains at a moderate risk for fires, meaning that any outdoor fire can spread quickly, especially if the wind picks up. Campfires are among the top five causes of wildfires (PDF).

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Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Camp counselors busted for underage drinking; hikers ticketed for illegal Marcy campsite

forest ranger reportTown of Minerva
Essex County
Underage Drinking:
 On July 4 at 1:10 p.m., Forest Rangers responded to a report of a large group of off-duty camp counselors at an underage drinking party off the Boreas Trail in Minerva.

Rangers issued 24 tickets for underaged possession of alcohol on State land and shuttled the subjects back to their camps. Resources were clear at 4:35 p.m.

Town of North Hudson
Essex County
Wilderness Rescue:
 On July 6 at 2 a.m., Forest Rangers were called to search for a group of campers returning from a hike to Mount Marcy. The 21- and 19-year-old group leaders were with a 15-year-old, two 13-year-olds, and a 12-year-old. Despite rain in the forecast and the group’s general lack of hiking experience, their plan was to hike Marcy and Algonquin in one day.

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Friday, July 8, 2022

Outdoor Conditions (7/8): Trail projects completed in the Cranberry Lake Wild Forest

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

New This Week:

Cranberry Lake Wild Forest (Town of Clifton): A trail project was recently completed which created a new 600 foot re-route of the Campground Trail: a portion of the Cranberry Lake 50 trail system. The NYSDEC Cranberry Lake Operations staff began the project by delivering materials for a new foot bridge to the work site via snowmobile in February 2022. The final week of June, a contract trail crew from Tahawus Trails installed the new 4 ‘ x 12’ foot bridge and re-routed the trail to better drained ground. The lumber from the old foot bridge will be removed by DEC Operations later this year.

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Thursday, July 7, 2022

Adirondack Route 73 Shuttle Season Starts July 9 in High Peaks

 

On Tuesday, July 5, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), Essex County, town of Keene, and Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism (ROOST) announced the Route 73 shuttle system launched in 2021 will return on Saturday, July 9. The shuttle system helps manage safe, sustainable visitation along the busy Route 73 corridor in the Adirondack High Peaks region. The free shuttle system will operate on weekends and holidays through Monday, Oct. 10, 2022. New this year, additional runs on select weekends in August and October will be piloted from Frontier Town Gateway in North Hudson.

“The Route 73 hiker shuttle provides a valuable resource to visitors of the High Peaks region, allowing safe access to preferred trails while helping to mitigate public safety and environmental concerns related to crowded roadside parking,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. “This shuttle system is another excellent example of visitor use management actions that benefit visitors, local communities, and our natural resources. I appreciate our partners in the town of Keene, Essex County, and ROOST who worked with us to develop and implement the service again this year.”

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Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Rangers respond to ankle injury reports at Schroon Falls, Azure Mountain

forest ranger report

Town of Schroon
Essex County
Wilderness Rescue:
On July 2 at approximately 5 p.m., Forest Ranger Quinn responded to a report of a subject with a compound ankle fracture at Schroon Falls.

The North Hudson Fire Department, Schroon Lake Fire Department, and EMS helped Ranger Quinn carry the 46-year-old from Long Island to a waiting ambulance. Schroon Lake EMS transported the subject to Frontier Town, where a helicopter transported the subject to the hospital.

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Friday, July 1, 2022

Outdoor Conditions (7/1): Campers encouraged to use bear-resistant canisters

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

Last Week:

Silver Lake Wilderness: Working with our partners at the Adirondack Mtn Club, a volunteer trail crew recently helped close and relocate two primitive tent sites from the south shore of Woods Lake to the north shore. The objective of the project was to spread out use and improve camping opportunities for NPT thru-hikers. This project was part of a larger trail work effort that ADK Mtn Club organized on June 4, National Trails Day.

 

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Thursday, June 30, 2022

DEC seeks public input to address adverse impacts of informal trails on Catskill High Peaks

On June 29, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos announced that DEC is working to help protect natural resources by identifying management solutions to address the adverse impacts of the expansion of informal trail networks on Catskill High Peaks (over 3,500 feet) previously considered to be ‘trailless.’ Informal trails created over time are having an impact and consistent with the Catskill Strategic Planning Advisory Group’s (CAG) preliminary recommendations to address increased public use in the region, DEC is seeking public input in this preliminary stage of management plan development.

“DEC is conducting a multi-year monitoring effort that is already identifying management concerns on many of these Catskill High Peaks,” said Commissioner Seggos. “DEC will be working outside of the conventional unit management planning process to develop a single document that will outline intervention strategies to help address adverse impacts in multiple areas as quickly as possible. We will be providing a variety of opportunities for public participation, including a public information session in the fall once the 2022 field monitoring season is complete.”

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Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Hiker lost for days in Dix Range; hiker dies on Cascade

forest ranger report

Town of North Hudson
Essex County
Wilderness Rescue:
 On June 22 at 9 a.m., Ray Brook Dispatch requested Forest Ranger assistance in the Dix Range with the search for a 58-year-old from Singapore last heard from on June 19 at approximately 8 p.m. The hiker was communicating with his wife in Singapore while in New York for a week, but when she did not hear from him, she called for help.

Rangers found the subject’s rental car in the Elk Lake parking lot at 9:30 a.m. The subject signed in at the trail register but did not sign out. Rangers Lewis and Martin set up a search plan with the expectation the subject was off-trail. Nine additional Rangers joined the search along with New York State Police Aviation. At 2:50 p.m., Ranger Scott located the subject in a swampy area.

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Monday, June 27, 2022

Recent DEC Hunting and Trapping News

DEC Seeking Reports of Moose Sightings:

DEC asks the public to report moose sightings via an online form as part of ongoing efforts to monitor moose distribution across New York. While the Adirondacks are home to most New York moose, some live in the eastern part of the state along the Vermont and Massachusetts borders. Moose can also occasionally be found in southeastern New York and the Catskills, but these are usually individuals that have dispersed from other areas.

Moose are the largest land mammal in the state. In the summer, when most sightings occur, moose typically spend a lot of time in ponds and wetlands feeding on submerged aquatic plants. During the rest of the year in cooler weather, they browse on leaves, twigs, and buds of trees and shrubs. Favored browse species include willows, birches, maples, balsam fir, viburnums, aspen, and mountain ash. Bulls weigh up to 1,200 pounds and stand up to six feet tall at the shoulder. Cows weigh anywhere from 500 to 800 pounds and usually give birth to one or two calves in late May or early June.

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Saturday, June 25, 2022

ADK Park: Recent Environmental Conservation Police News

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) Division of Law Enforcement enforces the 71 chapters of New York State’s Environmental Conservation Law (ECL), protecting fish and wildlife and preserving environmental quality across New York. In 1880, the first eight Game Protectors proudly began serving to protect the natural resources and people of New York State. In 2021, 282 Environmental Conservation Police Officers (ECOs) and Investigators across the state responded to 26,207 calls and worked on cases that resulted in 11,562 tickets or arrests for violations ranging from deer poaching to solid waste dumping, illegal mining, the black market pet trade, and excessive emissions violations.

Drone Training – Oneida County

From June 2 to 5, members of DEC’s Division of Law Enforcement drone team, along with New York State Police and the Town of Colonie Police Department, presented at the 2022 New York State Technical Rescue Conference at the State Preparedness Training Center in Oriskany. ECOs presented on the critical role of drones during investigations. ECOs demonstrated scenario-based and hands-on drone training, ranging from hazmat responses and emergency operations, to structural collapse situations and flooded environments. This is the first time drones were a topic of discussion at the conference.

» Continue Reading.


Friday, June 24, 2022

Outdoor Conditions (6/24):Customizing a first aid kit

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

New This Week:

High Peaks Wilderness: Expect muddy conditions above 3,000 feet in elevation. Expect poor traction and slow progress on steep sections of trail with wet rock. Due to recent rains, high elevation water sources are available to replenish water supplies – bring and use proper filtration devices. Water crossings may be high and fast-moving.

Silver Lake Wilderness: Working with our partners at the Adirondack Mtn Club, a volunteer trail crew recently helped close and relocate two primitive tent sites from the south shore of Woods Lake to the north shore. The objective of the project was to spread out use and improve camping opportunities for NPT thru-hikers. This project was part of a larger trail work effort that ADK Mtn Club organized on June 4, National Trails Day.

» Continue Reading.


Thursday, June 23, 2022

New Yorkers Encouraged to Review and Comment on Draft Scoping Plan

climate plan

Extension Builds on More Than 18,000 Comments Received Following 11 Public Hearings and Answers the Call for Additional Time to Review Scoping Plan

New York State’s Climate Action Council (CAC) Co-Chairs, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) President and CEO Doreen M. Harris and New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos, announced the extension of the public comment period deadline for the Draft Scoping Plan to July 1, 2022. The Draft Scoping Plan, released on December 30, 2021, provides several scenarios informed by proposed policies and actions to help New York meet its ambitious climate directives as part of the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (Climate Act). The extension is based on significant feedback following 11 public hearings – nine in-person and two virtual – and builds on the more than 18,000 public comments received to date. The Climate Action Council is working to meet the Climate Act goals and make recommendations to the Governor and Legislature by the end of the year as part of the Final Scoping Plan. New Yorkers are encouraged to review and comment on the Draft Scoping Plan by July 1, 2022.

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