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Friday, November 30, 2012

12-8 Important Medicare Information


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Raffle For 2013 Harley


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

12-1 Movie Day Myrtle Church


Monday, November 26, 2012

Theatre


Friday, November 23, 2012

12-2 Christmas Choral Concert


Saturday, November 17, 2012

11-23/24 American Eagles Toy Drive


11-22 Thanksgiving Office Hours For Cole Memorial


Friday, November 16, 2012

GAME COMMISSION RELEASES BOBCAT BACK INTO THE WILD

GAME COMMISSION RELEASES BOBCAT BACK INTO THE WILD

DALLAS, Luzerne County – A cat may not have nine lives, but a young bobcat in the Poconos received a second one recently, according to Pennsylvania Game Commission officials.

A female bobcat kitten was discovered in a wooded area of Luzerne County this past spring by a couple hiking in the woods. The seven-week old cat was found weak and unable to walk, and without any adult female seen in the vicinity. The situation remained unchanged the following day, and arrangements were made to deliver the bobcat the Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation Center near Saylorsburg, Monroe County for medical care and rehabilitation. The Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation Center is licensed for wildlife care through permitting by the Game Commission, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Game Commission Northeast Region Biologist Kevin Wenner speculates that the female parent may have met an untimely demise.

“Bobcats are sometimes hit on the roadway, or die from disease or a variety of other causes,” Wenner explained. “It would be rare to have a female cat abandon her young.”

When the bobcat arrived at the rehabilitation center it weighed about 1.5 pounds and was in poor physical condition, according to Kathy Uhler, Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation Center director.

“It was provided an initial diet of specialized formula, and then weaned to a diet of small mammals and birds including rabbits, pigeons, rats and mice,” Uhler said. “Animals were fed to the cat alive when possible. While this may sound distasteful to some, it is necessary in order to stimulate natural hunting behavior.

“The cat was housed in a secure enclosure with double doors to prevent escape and human contact was kept to an absolute minimum in an effort to discourage imprinting.”

When it was time for the release, Wenner approached the enclosure quietly and cautiously, as a group of students from East Stroudsburg University and reporters from the local media looked on.

“The cat seemed to sense something was amiss and it let out a low, guttural growl,” Wenner said. “The cat was positioned high on a rafter as Eric Uhler, who is largely responsible for the daily care of the animal, and I entered the innermost door. We were greeted with menacing bared teeth and hissing, as the young cat swiped at the air from above.

“The tranquilizer dart, containing a mixture of animal immobilization drug, found its mark in the cat’s shoulder, and soon made handling the animal possible. The bobcat was taken outside and a scale showed its weight at a healthy 14 pounds.”

East Stroudsburg University students obtained hair samples to determine its genetic profile, as part of an ongoing study, and then the bobcat was transported in a pet carrier to a remote section of State Game Land 186 in Monroe County.

“The habitat there makes it an ideal release site,” said Wenner. “It provides plenty of food and cover to meet the animal’s needs. The hunting and other survival behaviors of bobcats are largely instinctive, and this cat has a good chance to make it.”

The pet carrier door was opened carefully and the young cat got a first glimpse of her new surroundings. It was an environment free of human sounds and manmade materials. The cat, still groggy from the day’s ordeal, slowly regained the use of her legs and made some initial tentative steps. A few moments later, the cat had some distance between her and a few observers, and then slowly dissolved into the woods.

“Not all wildlife found in similar situations are candidates for rehabilitation and young animals left vulnerable to predation, the elements, and starvation don’t often make it, which is a hard fact of nature,” Wenner said. “Returning this apex predator to the wild was a unique and successful operation made possible by efforts of the Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, the Game Commission, and a host of wildlife volunteers.”

The handling of sick or injured wildlife is unlawful and poses serious health and safety concerns. If someone encounters sick or injured wildlife, he or she should contact the appropriate Game Commission Region Office.

Bobcats are Pennsylvania’s only feline predator and inhabit wooded areas where they feed on a variety of small animals including mice, chipmunks, squirrels, birds, and rabbits. They are highly secretive in nature and mostly nocturnal.

“Bobcats are fascinating animals and they are an important component of Pennsylvania’s diverse wildlife community,” Wenner said. “They keep prey species populations in balance and also provide sportsmen with valuable hunting and trapping opportunities.”

Bobcats in Pennsylvania have gray-brown fur with dark spots and bars, which are especially noticeable on the legs. A ruff of fur extends out and downward from the ears.

Bobcats are efficient predators, and equipped with sharp senses of sight, smell and hearing. They have four large canine teeth to pierce deeply into prey; behind the canines are sharp cutting teeth. Five retractable, hooked claws on each front foot and four on the rear, add to the cat’s arsenal.

Although a bobcat is a fierce fighter, it isn’t a large animal. A mature bobcat averages 36 inches in length, which includes a stubby tail. This “bobbed” tail gives the cat its name. Adult bobcats weigh between 15 and 20 pounds; with large individuals weighing as much as 35 pounds. Some may live up to 15 years of age in the wild, and much longer in captivity. Because of their secretive nature, bobcats rarely interact with domestic pets or livestock.

Bobcat kittens are born in early spring, with litter sizes ranging from one to four. Adult female bobcats guard their young carefully as an adult male bobcat may try to kill and eat the young. This behavior makes the discovery of the kitten from Luzerne County highly unusual.

In 2000, the Game Commission created a limited bobcat season. The 2012-13 bobcat trapping season runs from Dec. 15-Jan. 6, and is open in Wildlife Management Units 2A, 2C, 2E, 2F, 2G, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, 4A, 4C, 4D and 4E. The bobcat hunting season, which is open in the same WMUs, runs from Jan. 15 to Feb. 5. Hunters and trappers must possess a furtaker license and a bobcat permit, and the season limit is one bobcat.

For more information about bobcats, visit the Game Commission’s website (www.pgc.state.pa.us), put your cursor on “HUNT/TRAP,” then click on “Trapping & Furbearers” in the drop-down menu listing and then click on “Bobcat.”

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Fundraiser For Haiti Construction


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

11-17 Ham And Turkey Raffle Eldred


12-6 Coudersport Ladies Golf Christmas Party


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

11-18 Roast Beef Dinner Crosby, PA


Monday, November 12, 2012

Theatre


11-24 Ham And Turkey Raffle Roulette


12-1 Candy Cane Lane Festival


Saturday, November 10, 2012

11-15 One Stop Shop Port Allegany


Friday, November 9, 2012

11-17 Holiday Festivities Genesee


Thursday, November 8, 2012

11-12 Creation Health Biblical Principles


11-22 Potter County Transfer Station Closed


11-28 Chicken & Biscuit Dinner Benefits Perry Family


GAME COMMISSION TO HOLD PUBLIC MEETING IN ADAMS COUNTY TO DISCUSS CWD

GAME COMMISSION TO HOLD PUBLIC MEETING IN ADAMS COUNTY TO DISCUSS CWD

Game Commission check station will be open on Sundays during two-week firearms deer season

HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania Game Commission Executive Director Carl G. Roe today announced the agency will hold a third public meeting, on Nov. 12, to answer questions regarding the 600-square-mile Disease Management Area (DMA) in Adams and York counties and the Executive Order as part of the agency’s ongoing efforts to monitor the wild deer population for chronic wasting disease (CWD).

The meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 12, at the Hampton Fire Company, 5371 Carlisle Pike in New Oxford, Adams County. Representatives of the Department of Agriculture will be on hand to answer questions related to the efforts to trace out and trace back other captive deer that may have come into contact with the infected deer.

The first public meeting was held on Oct. 17 in Adams County, and the second meeting was held on Nov. 8 in York County. Additionally, on Nov. 7, a meeting with deer processors and taxidermists was held to answer questions from these two industries on the impacts the DMA might have on their operations, and to solicit their willingness to serve as deer check stations during the two-week firearms deer season within the DMA.

The Game Commission mailed letters to nearly 47,000 license buyers who reside in Adams and York counties, as well as portions of northern Maryland, to alert them to the deer hunting changes within the DMA and to provide them a copy of the DMA map. As part of the letter, Roe reminded hunters who harvest a deer within the DMA during the two-week firearms deer season (Nov. 26-Dec. 8) that they are required to bring their deer to a mandatory check station so that samples can be collected for CWD testing.

“For the convenience of hunters, all cooperating deer processors within the DMA boundaries will be considered check stations, as the Game Commission will be gathering samples from hunter-killed deer at those processors,” Roe said. “Given the volume of deer that may be harvested within the DMA, it would be unreasonable to expect all hunters to come to one site, and the traffic congestion that could be created by the convergence of hunters on this one rural road would be more than inconvenient for residents, as well as hunters.

“Allowing hunters to drop off their deer at any deer processor within the DMA meets the requirement that high-risk parts stay within the DMA, and is more convenient for the hunters. It also ensures that the Game Commission will have access to the parts from which we need to collect samples, as we already visit deer processors as part of our annual deer aging team visits and CWD sample collection efforts.”

Once the list of cooperating deer processors and taxidermists from within the DMA is finalized a news release will be issued and the list will be posted on the Game Commission’s website (www.pgc.state.pa.us) in the “CWD Info” section.

Roe noted that hunters harvesting a deer within the DMA who process their own deer or who would like to take their deer to a processor or taxidermist outside of the DMA can visit the Game Commission operated check station at the agency’s maintenance building on State Game Land 249, 1070 Lake Meade Road, East Berlin, Adams County. GPS coordinates for the building are -77.07280 and 39.97018. Game Commission check station hours during the two-week rifle deer season are from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday-Saturday, but will remain open beyond 8 p.m., as needed. Also, the check station will be opened on Sundays, Dec. 2 and 9, from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. (It previously was announced that the check station would be closed on Sundays.)

“To expedite the process, hunters should bring deer into the check station with the deer head accessible and, if it is in a pickup truck, with the head pointed to the tailgate,” said Brad Myers, Game Commission Southcentral Region director. “Also, hunters should not wait until evening to bring deer in, but bring them throughout the day. This is especially important if the weather is warm.

“This station will not be checking or processing bears. Bear hunters should take their bears to established check stations, which are outlined on pages 37 and 38 of the 2012-13 Digest. Also, deer harvested outside of the DMA will not be eligible for testing at the check station.”

CWD testing of healthy appearing hunter-killed deer outside the DMA is available. Hunters who wish to have their deer tested may do so for a fee by making arrangements with the Pennsylvania Animal Diagnostics Laboratory System. For information visit www.padls.org, or call the Pennsylvania Veterinary Laboratory (717-787-8808) in Harrisburg, The Animal Diagnostics Laboratory (814-863-0837) in State College, or the New Bolton Center (610-444-5800) in Kennett Square.

On Oct. 11, the state Department of Agriculture announced that a captive deer died of CWD on a deer farm in Adams County. Prior to its death, this deer had potentially spent time on three sites in Adams and York counties, which are now part of the Game Commission’s designated DMA. As soon as the CWD-infected captive deer was found, the Commonwealth’s CWD Interagency Task Force was initiated to address the threat of the disease to captive and wild deer and elk populations in the state. On Nov. 7, the state Department of Agriculture announced that a second captive deer tested positive for CWD from the same deer farm in Adams County.

Task force members include representatives from the departments of Agriculture, Environmental Protection and Health, the Pennsylvania Game Commission, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Geological Survey/Pennsylvania Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit and Penn State University/Cooperative Extension Offices. The task force will carry out the response plan, which includes education and outreach with public meetings and minimizing risk factors through continued surveillance, testing and management.

A 40-minute video with Dr. Walter Cottrell, Game Commission wildlife veterinarian, explaining CWD has been posted on the Game Commission’s website (www.pgc.state.pa.us), and can be viewed by clicking on the “CWD Info” icon button in the center of the homepage and then scrolling down to the imbedded viewer.


11-24 Benefit for Janet Evingham


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

11-17 Galeton's Christmas Craft Bazaar


11-10 Benefit Baby Shower For Archer Family


11-9 Dare To Be Square


11-18 Pancake Breakfast Austin Class Of 2014


Monday, November 5, 2012

12-1 5th Annual Christmas Bazaar


11-16 Galeton Teen and Youth Program


Friday, November 2, 2012

FOUR-DAY STATEWIDE BEAR SEASON CENTERPIECE OF LINE UP

The following news release contains five articles related to the upcoming bear season:

1) FOUR-DAY STATEWIDE BEAR SEASON CENTERPIECE OF LINE UP
2) TAKE A VETERAN BEAR HUNTING
3) BEAR CHECK STATION HOURS OF OPERATION
4) GAME COMMISSION OFFERS BEAR HUNTING TIPS
5) BEAR HUNTING BULLETS

FOUR-DAY STATEWIDE BEAR SEASON CENTERPIECE OF LINE UP

HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania Game Commission officials said bear hunters soon will be able to enjoy a four-day statewide bear season, in addition to a full-week archery bear season and a series of extended bear seasons in certain Wildlife Management Units (WMUs) during the upcoming fall months.

The statewide archery bear season, which will be held Nov. 12-16, will lead up to the four-day statewide bear season, which will open on Saturday, Nov. 17, and then run from Monday through Wednesday, Nov. 19-21. The extended bear seasons will be held in certain WMUs and portions of WMUs the following week during deer season.

In WMUs 2B, 5B, 5C and 5D, an extended bear season will run concurrently with the entire two-week deer season, Nov. 26-Dec. 8. This extended season is in addition to overlapping bear and deer hunting opportunities held in these four WMUs during the archery deer and early muzzleloader and firearms deer seasons. These seasons were approved by the Board of Game Commissioners as a means of achieving the agency’s goal of reducing bear-human conflicts in these urbanized areas of southwestern and southeastern corners of the state.

In WMUs 3D, 4C, 4D, 4E, an extended bear season is open Nov. 28-Dec. 1. An extended bear season also will be held Nov. 26-Dec. 1 in the following:

- All of WMUs 3A and 3C;

- Portions of WMU 3B, that are East of Rt. 14 from Troy to Canton, East of Rt. 154 from Canton to Rt. 220 at Laporte and East of Rt. 42 from Laporte to Rt. 118, and that portion of WMU 4E, East of Rt. 42; and

- Portions of WMU 2G in Lycoming and Clinton counties and WMU 3B in Lycoming County that lie North of the West Branch of the Susquehanna River from the Rt. 405 Bridge, West to Rt. 15 at Williamsport, Rt. 15 to Rt. 220, and North of Rt. 220 to the Mill Hall exit, North of SR 2015 to Rt. 150; East of Rt. 150 to Lusk Run Rd. and South of Lusk Run Rd. to Rt. 120, Rt. 120 to Veterans Street Bridge to SR 1001; East of SR 1001 to Croak Hollow Rd., South of Croak Hollow Rd. to Rt. 664 (at Swissdale), South of Rt. 664 to Little Plum Rd. (the intersection of SR 1003), South of SR 1003 to SR 1006, South of SR 1006 to Sulphur Run Rd., South of Sulphur Run Rd. to Rt. 44, East of Rt. 44 to Rt. 973, South of Rt. 973 to Rt. 87, West of Rt. 87 to Rt. 864, South of Rt. 864 to Rt. 220 and West of Rt. 220 to Rt. 405 and West of Rt. 405 to the West Branch of the Susquehanna River.

“Pennsylvania’s bear population covers more than three-quarters of the state, and includes a number of world-class trophy bears,” said Carl G. Roe, Game Commission executive director. “This has earned Pennsylvania recognition as one of the top states for bear hunters. Every year, we have a number of bears exceeding 500 pounds included in the harvest.”

Since 1992, six bears with an estimated live weight of 800 pounds or more have been legally taken in Pennsylvania. The possibility of another 800-pounder being taken by a hunter is always in play when Pennsylvania’s bear season opens.

In 2011, hunters harvested 4,350 bears, which was the highest harvest in Pennsylvania history. In 2005, hunters took 4,164 bears, which was the second highest number. Over the past 10 years, hunters have taken more black bears than in any other decade since the Game Commission began keeping bear harvest records in 1915.

“Conditions this year are favorable for another record harvest,” said Mark Ternent, Game Commission bear biologist. “Bear populations are up in many parts of the state relative to past years, hunter participation is expected to be good, based on the number of bear licenses being purchased, and acorn crops are above average, which keeps bears out of hibernation longer and available to hunters. The only real unknown is if we will have favorable weather for hunting on opening day.”

Bears were taken in 54 counties last year, which was the same as 2008, 2009 and 2010, but an increase from 2007, when bears were taken in 49 counties.

The 2011 bear harvest by WMU for both the archery and four-day bear seasons, including 2010’s harvest results in parentheses, were: WMU 1A, 13 (11); WMU 1B, 64 (42); WMU 2A, 0 (1); WMU 2B, 1 (0); WMU 2C, 226 (307); WMU 2D, 150 (146); WMU 2E, 79 (94); WMU 2F, 345 (202); WMU 2G, 1,086 (894); WMU 3A, 564 (199); WMU 3B, 479 (234); WMU 3C, 299 (118); WMU 3D, 318 (284); WMU 4A, 72 (135); WMU 4B, 70 (55); WMU 4C, 148 (90); WMU 4D, 355 (245); WMU 4E, 79 (31); WMU 5A, 1 (0); and WMU 5C, 1 (2).

To participate in any bear season, hunters must have a general hunting license and a bear license, which they can purchase through Nov. 16, or Nov. 22-25. During the four-day bear season, which runs from Nov. 17-21, bear license sales will temporarily be closed. Bear licenses are not part of the junior or senior combination licenses, and must be purchased separately.

All hunters who harvest a bear must immediately tag it with their field harvest tag that is part of the bear license, and, if during the statewide four-day season or the extended seasons, transport the carcass – minus entrails – to one of the Game Commission bear check stations within 24 hours, and present it for checking along with their general hunting license and bear license. During the archery season, hunters must tag the bear in the field and then contact a Game Commission region office within 24 hours to have their bear checked.

TAKE A VETERAN BEAR HUNTING

Pennsylvania Game Commission officials, in partnership with the state chapters of the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), are encouraging hunters to help veterans discover or rediscover the thrills and joys of hunting in Pennsylvania, including the archery bear season that will be open when Veterans Day is observed on Monday, Nov. 12.

To recognize licensed hunters who step up to serve as volunteer guides for a veteran, the Game Commission will conduct a drawing to present six framed fine-art wildlife prints. To be eligible for one of the prints, a participating hunter must submit a brief e-mail that outlines the name and address of the veteran taken afield, type of hunting taken part in, and county where the shared hunt took place. American Legion or VFW members who take another veteran hunting also should include their member number.

All participating hunters, including those not affiliated with the American Legion or VFW must send an e-mail to either dsandman@vfwpahq.org or hq@pa-legion.com. A drawing will be held to select the six winners from all e-mails received by Dec. 31, 2012.

BEAR CHECK STATION HOURS OF OPERATION

Hunters who harvest a bear during the statewide four-day general bear season must take it to one of the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s check stations within 24 hours. Check stations will be open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 17; from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 18; from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Monday and Tuesday, Nov. 19 and 20; and from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 21. Check station details are listed on pages 37 and 38 of the 2012-13 Hunting and Trapping Digest, which is issued with each license.

During the five-day archery bear season (Nov. 12-16) or after 6 p.m. on Nov. 21, hunters with bears to be checked should contact the Game Commission region office that serves the county in which the harvest took place for assistance. Office telephone numbers are listed on page 5 of the 2012-13 Digest.

Those hunters harvesting a bear during the extended seasons should consult the list of available check stations detailed on page 38 of the 2012-13 Digest. Hunters should note that the days, hours, locations and number of check stations open during the extended seasons may differ from those open during the general season.

This year, the Game Commission again has listed in the 2012-13 Digest global positioning coordinates for hunters to plug into a GPS or mobile device to help them find the nearest check station.

GAME COMMISSION OFFERS BEAR HUNTING TIPS

Pennsylvania Game Commission officials point out that one of the biggest mistakes bear hunters make is failing to locate areas with good fall food supplies - acorns, hickory nuts, beechnuts, apples, corn - before the hunting season and overlooking areas of dense cover where bears like to hide.

“Signs to look for while scouting include droppings; bedding areas, which are scratched out depressions, usually at the base of a tree or log; and active trails with tracks,” said Mark Ternent, Game Commission black bear biologist. “In beech stands, look for fresh claw marks on tree trunks indicating that bears are feeding in the area, and in oak or hickory stands look for fresh droppings that are almost completely composed of nut bits.

“Either of these signs suggests bears are feeding nearby and, if food conditions are right, they will likely still be there come hunting season. A good time to scout is early November, so you can assess local nut crops.”

Other bear hunting tips include:

- Look for bears in the thickest cover you can find, such as: swamps and bogs, mountain laurel/rhododendron thickets, north-facing slopes, regenerating timber-harvest areas, wind-blown areas with lots of downed trees, and remote sections of river bottoms. Bigger bears are notorious for holding in thick cover, even when hunters pass nearby.

- Organized drives are effective. Hunters working together often increase their odds of taking bears, especially those bears holding out in thick cover. Develop plans to safely drive likely bear hideouts and follow them to the letter. A minor slip-up by a driver, flanker or stander is all a bear needs to elude even the best-planned drive. Regulations limit the size of organized drives to 25 people or less.



- Hunting on-stand early and late in the day gives hunters a great chance to catch bears traveling to and from feeding and bedding areas. Hunt areas that provide cover to traveling bears and ensure there is either a good supply of mast, cornfields or cover near where you plan to hunt.

- Use the wind to your advantage. If a bear gets a whiff of you, you're busted as a hunter. Bears have an outstanding sense of smell. They often let their noses guide the way as they travel. Always place yourself downwind of expected travel lanes when hunting on-stand or driving. Bears are cagey enough without giving them more advantages.

- Stay focused and assume nothing. Black bears blend in well in forest settings at dawn and as dusk approaches. Spend too much time looking one way and you can miss a bear. Even though bears are quite heavy, they often are surprisingly quiet moving through the forest. You may see a bear before you hear it coming. Staying alert and remaining vigilant are critical.

BEAR HUNTING BULLETS

- A bear license is required to participate in any bear season.

- Only one bear may be harvested per license year from all seasons combined.

- A hunter who harvests a bear must complete all information on his or her bear harvest tag and attach it to the ear of the animal immediately after harvest and before the carcass is moved. In addition, within 24 hours, hunters who kill a bear must take it, along with their general hunting and bear license, to a Game Commission check station for examination. Bear check stations are maintained at the agency’s six regional offices and at other locations listed on pages 37-38 in the 2012-13 Hunting and Trapping Digest.

- Once a hunter has used his or her bear harvest tag, it is unlawful to possess it in the field. Also, hunters are reminded to remove old licenses from their holder before placing a new one in it. If you keep an old license in the holder, you may accidentally use it to tag big game and unintentionally violate the law. Also, while displaying a hunting license on an outer garment is no longer required, hunters must have their licenses and photo identification with them while hunting.

- It is unlawful to kill a bear in a den; use a radio to locate a bear that has a radio-transmitter attached to it; hunt in areas where artificial or natural bait, hay, grain, fruit, nuts, salt, chemicals, minerals, including residue or other foods are used, or have been used, as an enticement to lure wildlife within the past 30 days; use scents or lures; pursue bears with dogs; or to hunt bears in a party of more than 25 persons.

- During the firearms bear seasons, hunters are required to wear at all times 250 square inches of fluorescent orange on their head, chest and back combined, visible 360 degrees. In WMUs where the archery bear season and fall wild turkey season run concurrently, bowhunters, when moving, are required to wear a hat containing 100 square inches of solid fluorescent orange. The hat may be removed when the hunter is stationary or on stand.

- Bears may be hunted with: manually-operated center-fire rifles, handguns and shotguns with an all-lead bullet or ball, or a bullet designed to expand on impact - buckshot is illegal; muzzle-loading long guns 44-caliber or larger; long, recurve, compound or crossbows with broadheads of cutting-edge design. Crossbows must have a minimum draw weight of 125 pounds. Also, crossbows are legal for the archery bear season.

- It is unlawful to intentionally lay or place food, fruit, hay, grain, chemicals, salt or other minerals that may cause bears to congregate or habituate in an area.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Coudy theatre 11-2


The following news release contains four articles related to the fall turkey season:

The following news release contains four articles related to the fall turkey season:

1) PENNSYLVANIA’S FALL TURKEY SEASON INCLUDES MENTORED YOUTH
2) TAKE A VETERAN FALL TURKEY HUNTING
3) TURKEY HUNTERS URGED TO BE ATTENTIVE, SAFE
4) HARVEST REPORTING AVAILABLE VIA POSTCARD, ONLINE OR TELEPHONE

PENNSYLVANIA’S FALL TURKEY SEASON INCLUDES MENTORED YOUTH

HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania Game Commission Executive Director Carl G. Roe urged adult and senior hunters to serve as mentors for the growing Mentored Youth Hunting Program, which now includes fall turkey as part of the line-up of eligible species.

Under the program, an adult mentor transfers his or her fall turkey tag to a mentored youth if the youth harvests a fall turkey. A mentored youth may have only one fall turkey license transferred to him or her per license year. The list of other legal species for the MYHP is: antlered deer; antlerless deer, with the transfer of an antlerless deer license from the adult mentor; coyotes; groundhogs; squirrels and spring gobbler.

“Since 2006, Pennsylvania’s hunters have been taking advantage of a remarkable opportunity to introduce those under the age of 12 to hunting through the Mentored Youth Hunting Program, and we have seen a steady increase in the number of MYHP permits issued,” Roe said. “Hunting is deeply woven into the cultural fabric that defines Pennsylvania, and it is important that we recruit new hunters to carry on this tradition.”

Roe noted that the logic behind the Mentored Youth Hunting Program is simple and clear: create expanded youth hunting opportunities without compromising safety afield. In 2009, the first year a permit was required to participate in the MYHP, the agency issued 28,542 permits. In 2010, the agency issued 30,790; and, in 2011, the number of permits issued increased to 33,514.

“This program paves the way for youngsters to nurture their interest in hunting early and allows them to take a more active role in actual hunting while afield with mentoring adults,” Roe said. “The program accommodates hands-on use of sporting arms and can promote a better understanding and interest in hunting and wildlife conservation that will help assure hunting’s future, as well as reinforce the principles of hunting safely through the close supervision provided by dedicated mentors.”

Under the program, a mentor is defined as a properly licensed individual at least 21 years of age, who will serve as a guide to a youth while engaged in hunting or related activities, such as scouting, learning firearms or hunter safety and wildlife identification. A mentored youth is identified as an unlicensed individual less than 12 years of age who is accompanied by a mentor while engaged in hunting or related activities.

Pennsylvania fall turkey hunters will need to carefully review the fall turkey season dates, which are outlined on page 35 of the 2012-13 Digest, as date structures have changed from previous years.

Season lengths vary in the state’s Wildlife Management Units for fall turkey hunting: WMUs 2B (Shotgun and bow and arrow only) – Oct. 27-Nov. 16, and Nov. 22-24; WMUs 1A, 1B, 2A, 2C, 2D, 2E, 4A, 4B and 4D – Oct. 27-Nov. 10, and Nov. 22-24; and WMUs 2F, 2G, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, 4C and 4E – Oct. 27-Nov. 16, and Nov. 22-24. Hunters in these WMUs also have the opportunity to participate in a three-day season during the Thanksgiving holiday, which should improve hunter opportunities. This Thanksgiving holiday season, which will be held Nov. 22-24 in most WMUs, is designed to provide additional hunting opportunities for youth and families when schools and many businesses are closed and, hopefully, to reverse the declining trend in fall turkey hunters.

Fall turkey hunting in WMU 5A was held Oct. 30-Nov. 1; and the fall turkey season is closed in WMUs 5B, 5C and 5D.

Hunters in WMU 5A, for the third consecutive year, had a three-day season after eight years of a closed fall season that was implemented to allow the population to increase. The success in managing the WMU 5A turkey population is shown in reopening the traditional fall turkey hunt. The conservative three-day season is structured to provide recreation without reversing the now expanding population.

The fall season remains closed in WMUs 5B, 5C and 5D because population indices show the overall populations in these units are not stable enough to withstand a fall harvest given the fragmented turkey habitat.

With an abundant mast crop in much of the state spreading out flocks, locating turkeys may take some footwork. However, locating a flock is only part of the hunt, said Mary Jo Casalena, Game Commission wild turkey biologist. Properly setting up and bringing a turkey within range is another challenge, and is what makes turkey hunting simultaneously tricky and enjoyable.

“Please remember to report any leg-banded and/or radio-transmittered turkeys harvested or found,” Casalena said. “Leg bands and transmitters are stamped with a toll-free number to call, and provide important information for the research project being conducted in partnership with the Pennsylvania Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at Penn State University, with funding from the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Wild Turkey Federation and the Pennsylvania Chapter of NWTF. These turkeys are legal to harvest and the information provided will help determine turkey survival and harvest rates. Rewards for reporting marked turkeys are made possible by donations from the National Wild Turkey Federation and a portion of the state’s share of the federal Pittman-Robertson program.”

In both spring and fall turkey seasons, it is unlawful to use drives to hunt turkeys. Hunters may take only one turkey in the fall season.

Shot size is limited to no larger than No. 4 lead, bismuth-tin, tungsten-iron or No. 2 steel or No. 4 of any other U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service-approved nontoxic shot. Turkey hunters also are required to tag their bird before moving it and to report their harvest within 10 days of taking a turkey.

Legal hunting hours are one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset. For more information, please see page 14 of the 2012-13 Digest for the legal hunting hours table. Also, it is lawful to use a dog to pursue, chase, scatter and track wild turkeys during the fall wild turkey season. Hunters are prohibited from using dogs to hunt any other big game animal, including spring gobbler. For minimum orange requirements, please see pages 68-69 of the 2012-13 Digest, as the requirements differ depending on the Wildlife Management Unit.

TAKE A VETERAN FALL TURKEY HUNTING

Pennsylvania Game Commission officials, in partnership with the state chapters of the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), are encouraging hunters to help veterans discover or rediscover the thrills and joys of hunting in Pennsylvania, including fall turkey seasons that will be open, especially on Veterans Day, which will be observed on Monday, Nov. 12.

To recognize those who step up to serve as a volunteer guide for a veteran, the Game Commission will conduct a drawing to present six framed fine-art wildlife prints. To be eligible for one of the prints, a participating hunter must submit a brief e-mail that outlines the name and address of the veteran taken afield, type of hunting taken part in, and county where the shared hunt took place. American Legion or VFW members who take another veteran hunting also should include their member number.

All participating hunters, including those not affiliated with the American Legion or VFW must send an e-mail to either dsandman@vfwpahq.org or hq@pa-legion.com. A drawing will be held to select the six winners from all e-mails received by Dec. 31, 2012.

TURKEY HUNTERS URGED TO BE ATTENTIVE, SAFE

Every fall, hunters head into Pennsylvania's forests and woodlots in pursuit of wild turkeys. According to the Pennsylvania Game Commission, it’s one of autumn’s greatest competitions as hunters try to call in their quarries. It's also a time when hunters really need to be in tune with their surroundings.

“Staying alert and making sound shooting decisions will go a long way toward ensuring your safety and the safety of others in turkey season this fall,” said Keith Snyder, Game Commission Hunter-Trapper Education Division chief. “So, too, will always handling your sporting arm in a safe and responsible way.

“The Game Commission has worked with the National Wild Turkey Federation and the agency’s cadre of volunteer hunter-trapper education instructors over the past decade to reverse what was a growing number of turkey hunting-related shooting incidents. Today, Pennsylvania's woods are safer for turkey hunters. But hunters must remain vigilant. Paying attention and hunting safely ensure that your trip afield remains an enjoyable one.”

Snyder said that the Game Commission and NWTF offer the following safety tips:

Positively identify your target! Be certain the bird is fully and plainly visible before pulling the trigger. Don’t shoot at sounds or movement!

Never stalk a turkey! Movement or sounds you think are a turkey may be another hunter. Be patient, and let the bird come to you.

Protect your back! Select a large tree, rock or other natural barrier while calling. Hunt in open woods.

Shout “STOP” to alert approaching hunters! Never move, wave or make turkey sounds to alert others of your position.

Dress to be safe! Never wear red, white, blue or black clothing. These are the colors found on mature gobblers.

Cover up! Don’t carry harvested birds in the open. Cover them with fluorescent orange or completely conceal from view in a game bag.

Be seen! Wear or display the required amount of fluorescent orange, particularly when moving.

In addition, while wearing orange is required for all fall turkey hunters while moving, hunters should consider wearing or posting orange at all times. For orange requirements, please see pages 68-69 of the 2011-12 Digest.

HARVEST REPORTING AVAILABLE VIA POSTCARD, ONLINE OR TELEPHONE

Those participating in the fall turkey season can file their mandatory harvest reports through the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s online system, the toll-free Interactive Voice Response (IVR) reporting system telephone number, which is 1-855-PAHUNT1 (1-855-724-8681), or via postage-paid postcard.

To report a turkey harvest online, go to the Game Commission’s website (www.pgc.state.pa.us), click on “Report Your Harvest” above the “Quick Clicks” box in the right-hand column, check “Harvest Reporting,” scroll down and click on the “Start Here” button at the bottom of the page, choose the method of validating license information. A series of options will appear for a hunter to report a harvest. After filling in the harvest information, click on the “Continue” button to review the report and then hit the “Submit” button to complete the report. Failing to hit the “Submit” button will result in a harvest report not being completed.

“Hunters who use the toll-free number to submit a harvest report will receive a confirmation number, which they should write down and keep as proof of reporting,” said Carl G. Roe, Game Commission executive director. “Those who report online should print or save a copy of their harvest report submission as proof of reporting.”

Roe noted that hunters should have their Customer Identification Number (hunting license number) and field harvest tag information with them when they call. He also stressed callers should speak clearly and distinctly when reporting harvests, especially when providing the Wildlife Management Unit number and letter. Responses to all harvest questions are required.

Roe noted that hunters still have the option to file harvest report postcards, which are included as tear-out sheets in the current digest.

“We certainly are encouraging hunters to use the online reporting system, which will ensure that their harvest is recorded,” Roe said. “Either way, the more important point is that all hunters who harvest a turkey report it to the agency.”

GAME COMMISSION TO HOLD PUBLIC MEETING TO DISCUSS CWD

GAME COMMISSION TO HOLD PUBLIC MEETING TO DISCUSS CWD

Letter being mailed to 47,000 license buyers in Adams/York counties and northern Maryland;
Details on check station operations for two-week firearms season announced

HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania Game Commission Executive Director Carl G. Roe today announced that the agency will hold a public meeting to answer questions regarding the 600-square-mile Disease Management Area (DMA) in Adams and York counties and the Executive Order as part of the agency’s ongoing efforts to monitor the wild deer population for chronic wasting disease (CWD).

The meeting will begin at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 8, at the York County Fairgrounds, Horticultural Hall, 334 Carlisle Avenue, York. Representatives of the Department of Agriculture will be on hand to answer questions related to the efforts to trace out and trace back other captive deer that may have come into contact with the infected deer.

As part of the ongoing outreach effort, Roe is mailing a letter to nearly 47,000 license buyers who reside in Adams and York counties, as well as portions of northern Maryland, to alert them to the deer hunting changes within the DMA and to provide them a copy of the DMA map. As part of the letter, Roe reminded hunters who harvest a deer within the DMA during the two-week firearms deer season (Nov. 26-Dec. 8) that they are required to bring their deer to a mandatory check station so that samples can be collected for CWD testing.

“For the convenience of hunters, all cooperating deer processors within the DMA boundaries will be considered check stations, as the Game Commission will be gathering samples from hunter-killed deer at those processors,” Roe said. “Given the volume of deer that may be harvested within the DMA, it would be unreasonable to expect all hunters to come to one site, and the traffic congestion that could be created by the convergence of hunters on this one rural road would be more than inconvenient for residents, as well as hunters.

“Allowing hunters to drop off their deer at any deer processor within the DMA meets the requirement that high-risk parts stay within the DMA, and is more convenient for the hunters. It also ensures that the Game Commission will have access to the parts from which we need to collect samples, as we already visit deer processors as part of our annual deer aging team visits and CWD sample collection efforts.”

A list of cooperating deer processors and taxidermists from within the DMA will be announced and posted on the Game Commission’s website as soon as it is finalized.

Roe noted that hunters harvesting a deer within the DMA who process their own deer or who would like to take their deer to a processor or taxidermist outside of the DMA can visit the Game Commission operated check station at the agency’s maintenance building on State Game Land 249, 1070 Lake Meade Road, East Berlin, Adams County. GPS coordinates for the building are -77.07280 and 39.97018. Game Commission check station hours during the two-week rifle deer season are from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday-Saturday, but will remain open beyond 8 p.m., as needed. The check station will be closed on Sunday, Dec. 2.

For those participating in the remainder of the early archery deer season within the DMA, bringing harvested deer to the Game Commission’s check station is voluntary, but requested and encouraged. Game Commission check station hours of operation for the early archery deer season will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 3 and Nov. 10. On other days of the archery season, hunters may stop by the check station to deposit deer heads in the marked containers provided, and deer spines and rib cages may be deposited in the dumpster on the site. As required by law, deer must have a field harvest tag attached to the ear.

“To expedite the process, hunters should bring deer into the check station with the deer head accessible and, if it is in a pickup truck, with the head pointed to the tailgate,” said Brad Myers, Game Commission Southcentral Region director. “Also, hunters should not wait until evening to bring deer in, but bring them throughout the day. This is especially important if the weather is warm.

“This station will not be checking or processing bears. Bear hunters should take their bears to established check stations, which are outlined on pages 37 and 38 of the 2012-13 Digest. Also, deer harvested outside of the DMA will not be eligible for testing at the check station.”

CWD testing of healthy appearing hunter-killed deer outside the DMA is available. Hunters who wish to have their deer tested may do so for a fee by making arrangements with the Pennsylvania Animal Diagnostics Laboratory System. For information visit www.padls.org, or call the Pennsylvania Veterinary Laboratory (717-787-8808) in Harrisburg, The Animal Diagnostics Laboratory (814-863-0837) in State College, or the New Bolton Center (610-444-5800) in Kennett Square.

On Oct. 11, the state Department of Agriculture announced that a captive deer died of CWD on a deer farm in Adams County. Prior to its death, this deer had potentially spent time on three sites in Adams and York counties, which are now part of the Game Commission’s designated DMA. As soon as the CWD-infected captive deer was found, the Commonwealth’s CWD Interagency Task Force was initiated to address the threat of the disease to captive and wild deer and elk populations in the state.

Task force members include representatives from the departments of Agriculture, Environmental Protection and Health, the Pennsylvania Game Commission, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Geological Survey/Pennsylvania Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit and Penn State University/Cooperative Extension Offices. The task force will carry out the response plan, which includes education and outreach with public meetings and minimizing risk factors through continued surveillance, testing and management.

A 40-minute video with Dr. Walter Cottrell, Game Commission wildlife veterinarian, explaining CWD has been posted on the Game Commission’s website (www.pgc.state.pa.us), and can be viewed by clicking on the “CWD Info” icon button in the center of the homepage and then scrolling down to the imbedded viewer.

For more information from the departments of Agriculture and Health and the Pennsylvania Game Commission, visit the following agency website’s:

* www.agriculture.state.pa.us (click on the “Chronic Wasting Disease Information” button on the homepage),

* www.pgc.state.pa.us (click on “CWD Info”), and

* www.health.state.pa.us (click on “Diseases and Conditions”).