Assemblyman Will Barclay reminded sportsmen and women of New York about youth hunting opportunities for pheasants and deer this month.
For the second consecutive year, the Youth Firearms Deer Hunt will take place on Columbus Day Weekend, October 12-14. This event is made possible in part by legislation Assemblyman Barclay co-sponsored in 2008 to expand big game hunting for junior hunters.
“Hunting is a big part of our area’s heritage, and the upcoming junior hunting weekend gives our young sporting enthusiasts a great chance to learn safe, responsible hunting skills from their family members,” said Barclay. “I hope that many local families get the chance over Columbus Day weekend to pass on the proud tradition of hunting to the next generation of sportsmen and women in our community, and enjoy the exciting gaming opportunities we have right here in New York.”
Barclay also encouraged local families to introduce their children to outdoor sports through the Department of Environmental Conservation’s Day-old Pheasant Chick Program. The program distributes chicks to participating groups and individuals in May and June. Participants incur all costs associated with rearing the birds, raising them to adulthood before they are released on public lands prior to hunting season.
Roughly 30,000 adult pheasants are being released on public hunting grounds across the state. Central and Western New York’s season begins October 19. Junior hunters ages 12-15 will have the opportunity to pheasant hunt a week early during the weekend of October 12-13.
“The Day-old Pheasant Chick Program is a great way to teach young hunters to respect animals, as well as the importance of contributing to the state’s hunting community,” said Barclay. “The more deeply-involved a young hunter becomes in the full circle of outdoor gaming, the deeper appreciation they develop for the sport and the land around them.”