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Outdoors notebook: Lockport gun club targets Sporting Clays in league

Sporting Clay shooting offers shooters the closest version of actual field-hunt shots taken with a shotgun aimed at clay targets.

North Forest Rod & Gun Club in Lockport begins a Sporting Clays League on Saturday, July 23, shooting 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays and 9 a.m. to noon on Wednesdays.

The league encourages youths and ladies to participate. Youth participants must be ages 12 to 17; full-time higher-education students can shoot at youth rates. Youths must be a Niagara County resident or have sponsorship with a club affiliated with a county federation. Youths must be accompanied with an adult.

A Friends of the NRA grant supplies free ammo for youth and lady shooters. For more details and registration information, check with John Butcher at 628-2211 or Colleen Gaskill at 628-9023.

Deer search scholarship

Deer Search of WNY will award a $1,000 scholarship to a deserving college student involved in the outdoors.

To apply, applicants must be a high school student attending college in 2017-2018, have a valid NYS hunting license, be a member of or in a family with membership in a county federated club, provide a letter of recommendation from a non-family member, include a 100-word essay describing a field of study and interests, and show proof of college acceptance.

An application deadline is set for January 1, 2017. To apply, write to: Deer Search of WNY, P.O. Box 251, Lancaster, NY 14086.

Licensing exams

DEC license/certification exams for falconry, wildlife rehabilitator and leashed-tracking dog exams are slated for August 12. A registration deadline is set for Friday, July 22 for all three exams.

Exams will be held from 10 a.m. to noon at DEC Regional offices across the state. Study guides are provided for each exam. For costs of each application and license, applicants’ qualifications and other details, visit dec.ny/gov/permits/359, call (518) 402-8985 or email: SpecialLicenses@dec.ny.gov.

Duck stamp sales

The new 2016-2017 federal duck stamp went on sale June 24, which ended the preceding year’s term with the illustration of a ruddy duck pair done by Jennifer Miller of Olean.

This year’s stamp illustration is a painting of trumpeter swans in flight done by Joseph Hautman of Plymouth, Minnesota; this is Hautman’s fifth duck stamp illustration win.

Funds collected from stamp sales since 1934 are used to obtain and improve habitat for waterfowl nationwide. Wildlife watches as well as hunters are encouraged to obtain this stamp each year. The new stamp costs $25, is valid through June 30, 2017 and can be purchased at U.S. Post Offices or on line at fws.gov/duckstamps.

Fishing guides

• A post last week listed Web sites for getting a free copy of the new “WNY Hot Spot Fishing Map”, but none of the sites provided a means for obtaining the map. Here are the phone numbers for contacting county agencies that can supply this map: Erie County, (800) 283-3156; Chautauqua County, (866) 908-4569; and Niagara County, (877) 325-5787.

• The DEC’s I FISH NY Education Program provides a free “I FISH NY Beginners’ Guide to Freshwater Fishing.” For a copy, visit dec.ny.gov/outdoor/98506.

email: odrswill@gmail.com

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