Tourney blends angling, conservation
Salmon and steelhead anglers traveling to New York State next weekend can take an active role in cleaning up the banks of the Salmon River in the second annual "Catch and Clean" tournament sponsored by the Lake Ontario Tributary Anglers Council, Saturday, Nov. 5. Headquartered at Fox Hollow Lodge, 2740 NYS Route 13, Altmar, registration is Friday, Nov. 4, from 6-8 p.m., and November 5 at 4 a.m.
"The tournament format is catch and release, but to qualify your fish for the prizes, you must pick up and submit at least one bag of garbage collected on the tributary the entrant or team has fished," LOTAC president Jim Kirtland said. "The majority of entrants will fish the Salmon River, but they are allowed to fish other nearby tributaries."
Anglers must have a photo taken of their fish with the tournament flyer to verify that the fish was caught the day of the tournament. Prizes include a 50/50 cash payback to winners, with prizes awarded for the largest trout, most trout over legal limit and LOTAC Pride award to the entrant that collects the most trash, which will be collected at the fishing access parking lot on county Route 2A near the Oswego County solid waste transfer station.
"Pictures taken by the entrants will determine the awards for the fish," Kirtland said. "The LOTAC pride award will be determined by the amount of garbage delivered to the drop-off site, which will be manned by a director who will check off the participants."
Fishing ends Saturday at 4 p.m., with awards, raffles and dinner to follow at Fox Hollow Lodge. More than $3,000 worth of merchandise and services will be raffled, including center-pin, spey, fly and spinning tackle and other gear, guided drift boat trips, and overnight lodging.
LOTAC was formed four years ago by a group of anglers intent on encouraging conservation and ethical fishing on the Lake Ontario tributaries. Members have been involved in conservation and environmental projects since the group's founding.
Over the past year LOTAC obtained their non-profit status from the IRS, held a river cleanup last spring and planted more than 6,000 trees along the Salmon River to help prevent erosion. In September the group held a fly-tying and casting clinic at the Salmon River Fish Hatchery open house and helped to stock 77,000 Atlantic salmon fingerlings.
For more information visit www.lotac.org, e-mail email@example.com, or call Kirtland at 607-239-7861.Current Oswego County fishing conditions and visitor information can be found at www.visitoswegocounty.com or by calling 800-248-4FUN.
Legalizing hunting on Sundays in Pennsylvania could generate up to $804 million in economic activity annually, according to a report prepared for the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee and it reveals that Sunday hunting in the state could create 7,439 full- and part-time jobs and generate $56.8 million in state and local taxes.
"We were expecting the report to show something on the order of $700 million in possible economic activity, so for it to come in that much closer to a billion dollars, that's amazing," Crawford County Republican Rep. John Evans said.
An update of a similar study done in 2005, it was commissioned because PA is again considering whether to drop its prohibition on expanded Sunday hunting. It is one of just 11 states with such a ban still in place.
Evans, chairman of Pennsylvania's House of Representatives game and fisheries committee, has introduced House Bill 1760, which would not mandate hunting on Sundays. Rather, it would give the Pennsylvania Game Commission the authority to decide if and when to incorporate Sundays into hunting seasons.
The economic impact study was meant to show the benefits of allowing Sunday hunting, and Evans believes it did in a big way. Some lawmakers and others have in the past questioned the validity of assumptions that adding Sundays to the hunting calendar would prompt sportsmen to travel more and/or buy more gear.
This week's edition of "Experience The Outdoors," hosted by award-winning Pennsylvania Outdoor Writers Association member Doyle Dietz, Sunday, at 7 a.m. on 1410 WLSH and 9:30 a.m. on Magic 105.5, will feature archery shop owner and black bear authority Ron Koch of Schuylkill Haven.
A trap shoot will be held, Thursday, Nov. 3, beginning at 6 p.m., at Orwigsburg Gun Club, Gun Club Road, off Route 443 East, Orwigsburg. For information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Schuylkill Spurs Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation will meet, Thursday, Nov. 3, beginning at 7:30 p.m., at West Penn Archery, South Tamaqua. For information, call Kevin Titus at 570-668-5903.
A muzzleloader shoot will be held, Sunday, Nov. 13, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., by First Frontier Militia at Bowmanstown Rod and Gun Club, Road and Gun Club Road, Bowmanstown. For information, call Roger Fisher at 610-377-2812.
Two limited archery/muzzleloader hunts for antlerless deer have been scheduled for the controlled access areas of the Pennsylvania Game Commission's Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area, Kleinfeltersville, Wednesday, Dec. 21, and Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2012. To participate, hunters must be properly licensed and be eligible to take an antlerless deer in Wildlife Management Unit 5B on the day they would be hunting.
Hunting will be by special permit only, and 100 permits will be issued by random drawing for each hunting day.
Hunters wishing to participate in the drawing should apply on a standard postcard that contains their name, mailing address, general license back tag number; muzzleloader and/or archery stamp number and antlerless deer license number for Wildlife Management Unit 5B (if applicable). Just one application per hunter may be submitted and will be accepted, by mail only, until Monday, Nov. 7, and must be mailed to Pennsylvania Game Commission MCWMA, Box 110, Kleinfeltersville 17039.
A public drawing will be held at the MCWMA visitor center, Wednesday, Nov. 9, at 10 a.m. There will be only one drawing to fill both hunting days, and the first 100 applications drawn will be assigned to the hunt on December 21, the second 100 to the hunt on January 18.
Successful applicants will be notified by mail. There will be no provisions or drawings held to fill vacancies created by permit holders who do not participate on the day of the hunt.
In addition to the antlerless deer hunts, which are being conducted for the purposes of herd reduction at Middle Creek, there will be 10 permits issued for each hunt enabling selected hunters to take an antlered deer as well. To be eligible for this antlered deer permit drawing, which will be held the morning of each hunt, hunters must still possess an antlered deer tag in addition to having been drawn for the hunt and be able to take part in the antlerless deer hunt.