Thursday, May 9, 2024

NY DEC Brook Trout Lake Plan - new 2024 proposed

 

from the Adirondack Explorer - summarize new Proposed Brook Trout lake plan (March 2024)
State fisheries officials are developing a new plan to guide management and regulation of Adirondack brook trout that live out their lives primarily in lakes and ponds.
The state Department of Environmental Conservation is hosting a pair of public information sessions on its draft plan this Saturday in Old Forge and on March 16 in Warrensburg, soliciting input from anglers and other members of the public and sharing details of the proposed approach. - click here to read more
and the Outdoor News - reported on it as well - click here to read

DEC Proposed Bass Fishing Tournament Regulations

The NYS DEC "is seeking public comment regarding proposed black bass (largemouth bass and smallmouth bass) fishing tournament permitting regulations. These regulations would go into effect September 1, 2024 for tournaments conducted on or after January 1, 2025.  Click here for details 

Below is the CNY IWLA Chapter Comments that will be submitted: 

Comments regarding the Proposed Bass Fishing Tournament Permit 
These comments are provided by the Central New York Chapter of the Izaak Walton League (IWL). They summarize a discussion on this topic made during a meeting of the Chapter on April 25, 2024. Overall, the IWL strongly supports instituting a permit system for bass fishing tournaments in New York State.  Several members of the Chapter are avid anglers, but none compete in bass tournaments. Here are concerns related to the Express Terms:

1. A fishing tournament is defined as one day or a set of contiguous days – 

a. Some clubs have weekly events on specific waters – e.g. on Onondaga Lake every Wednesday evening during the summer.  Will a separate permit be needed for each weekly contest? We note that some other states allow for one permit to cover all the weeks for such a situation.  If such a permit is allowed…how would the biological data be reported? By week or for the entire season?  The IWL recommends reporting for each weekly contest to improve analysis of catch data. 

b. Minimum of 10 competitors – The IWL recommends changing the wording to “a minimum of 10 competitors or 5 boats”.  We know of several smaller launches that would be overwhelmed by 10 or more boats – if there was one angler per boat. 

2. Online permit form – An online form should require contact information for the tournament director (which may need to be verified to avoid “spoofing”).  Also, the permit should indicate the type of tournament, i.e. catch and release, or weigh-in, or harvest. Expected number of anglers and number of boats. Launch sites to be used and dates.  It will likely be useful for DEC to create, provide or link to a list of standardized boat launch names with their geographical coordinates.  Bass clubs and local anglers may well have different names for the same launch. 

3. No sooner than 365 days and no later than 45 days prior.  Other states have deadlines that vary with the size of the tournament.  Large tournaments (BASS, Elite etc.) plan their tournaments more than a year in advance.  We feel 45 days is insufficient time for even smaller tournaments if the goal is to prevent double booking launch sites and alerting the public to loss of use of a launch. IWL recommends NYDEC increase the deadline for large tournaments (>100 boats) to two years.  The deadline for smaller tournaments should be increased to 60 days. 

4. Decision within 30 calendar days after receipt – Clubs won’t like that – it may mean only 15 days warning that a permit was denied or that special conditions are required.   Also, 15 days is insufficient for alerting the public that a boat launch site may be “reserved” for a bass tournament. If the “no later” date was changed to 60 days as suggested above, the 30 day decision is more palatable.

5. Accurate report within 45 days of conclusion – This is very vague – what data will be collected?  We believe bass clubs will wish to have this codified in the regulation rather than having to respond to varied requests from different biologists and regions.  Non-uniform data reporting will hamper analysis and could lead to bass clubs “shopping around” for waters with less strenuous reporting requirements.

6. No person shall organize or operate without a permit – There is no indication of a penalty for non-compliance other than, presumably, not getting a future permit.  The term “No Person” should include the bass fishing club/organization rather than a tournament director. Otherwise, a club can have different people apply for a permit and game the system. Also, will DEC Law Enforcement be doing compliance checks if the public reports a tournament occurring without a permit?  If there is no penalty other than not getting a future permit, there would be nothing for Law Enforcement to enforce. 

General Comments

We reviewed permit systems in other states and note some have a fee structure for permits based on the size of the tournament. Fees ranged from $25 to $100 per event.  This fee would cover administrative costs. Further, a fee helps prevent false or indecisive permit filing.  That is, free permits encourage clubs to apply early and often so they would have first dibs on a launch site. Also, there would be no cost to the club to cancel an event at the last minute which would surely annoy other launch users who change plans based on false information. 

Several states have websites where the public can see where and when tournaments are scheduled.  That helps with enforcement and for avoiding or attending such events. The DEC website mentions this possibility, but the express terms do not. 

We believe DEC Fisheries will be surprised by the number of events. If regional biologists become responsible for issuing permits with conditions – it will become a significant part of their workload – which is already heavy.   The state should hire one or two staff dedicated solely to this permit system thereby allowing standardization of conditions between waters and regions.  A fee structure would help pay for added staff. 

Lastly, several IWL members expressed concerns with the impact that increasing tournament pressure is having on bass populations and on the enjoyment of specific fisheries by recreational users. If a website is created where tournaments are listed, then that website should include a means for the public to comment upon the impacts of that event.  A tournament director cannot be relied upon to report mortality of released bass (which can occur days after the contest). Nor will they report bad behavior on the water by club members.  For DEC to truly understand the impacts of bass fishing tournaments, such public feedback must be gathered along with standard catch/effort data. 



Wednesday, March 27, 2024

Brook Trout , Adirondacks and Climate Change

 FUTURE OF BROOK TROUT POND MANAGEMENT IN THE ADIRONDACKS

Thursday, March 28, 2024 6:30 PM - 9:00 PM.  (UTC-04:00) Eastern Time (US & Canada)
Host : Craig Pettinger
If you want to attend, register now. When your registration is approved, you'll receive an invitation to join the webinar.
Register for webinar:

Tuesday, January 23, 2024

Upcoming Young Naturalist Events as of Feb 25th

  Upcoming Young Naturalist Events

2/26 @Cazenovia (Ice Age Animals)
2/28 @Fayetteville (Ice Age Animals)
3/2 @Petit (Non-Native Nuisances)
3/18 @Dewitt-Jamesville (Non-Native Nuisances)
3/25 @Cazenovia (Non-Native Nuisances)
3/26 @Fayetteville (Non-Native Nuisances)
4/1 @Dewitt-Jamesville (Animal Track Detectives)
4/13 @Petit (Animal Track Detectives)
5/2 @Dewitt-Jamesville 
7/20 @Skaneateles (Creek Critter Survey)
8/10 @Skaneateles (something about lakes? Water quality in Skaneateles lake vs drinking water vs Onondaga?)


Previously 

Petit Library - Saturday, January 20, 2024.

Fayetteville Library , Wednesday January 24th.