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Scattershots for March 25, 2020

Support Needed to Amend ECL for Trout Streams

It’s time to contact your local state Assemblyman if you want Assembly Bill A8349 to have a chance at passing. The legislation would reclassify 3,177 “reaches” – segments of streams or entire streams that need reclassification to protect them as trout streams. According to Chuck Godfrey, president of the Western New York Chapter of Trout Unlimited, about 50% of these streams are designated as Class “C” streams. “That means they currently have no regulatory protection in the way of permit requirements and review of proposed habitat disturbances affecting water quality.”

The state’s Department of Environmental Conservation spent at least three seasons sampling streams throughout the state, identifying every one that held trout, were spawning streams or were capable of supporting trout. Godfrey noted that to upgrade the level of protection in these streams would normally call for a long and involved legal process conducted by the Division of Water to reclassify each one individually. “This bill would act to amend the Environmental Conservation Law pertaining to these specific Class “C” streams and give them the level of protection that they deserve,” said Godfrey. Write your email or letter today.

Pennsylvania 2019-20 Deer Harvest Released

Big game hunters in the Keystone State posted some high numbers for the 2019-20 whitetail deer season when they recorded a harvest of nearly 390,000 animals. It was the largest deer kill in the state in 15 years according to the Pennsylvania Game Commission. The totals were 4% higher than the previous year. In 2004-05, 409,320 whitetails were checked in.

Buck totals also went up when 163,240 antlered deer were tabulated. This was up 10% from the previous year when nearly 148,000 bucks were tagged. The largest buck total in the antler-restriction era occurred in the first year of the program, when 165,000-plus deer were harvested. One of the highlights last season was that 17% to 18% of all big game hunters harvested an antlered deer. The percentage of older bucks taken was also very high. About 66% of bucks taken by hunters were at least 2-1/2 years old.

New Great Lakes Fishing Podcasts Features WNY

A new Great Lakes Fishing Podcast to help promote fishing in the Great Lakes is now available for listening on YouTube and on the Fish Hawk Electronics website (the sponsor for the show). Chris Larson, producer of the show, attended the Greater Niagara Fishing and Outdoor Expo last January and interviewed numerous experts from Lake Ontario and Lake Erie to key in on fishing opportunities and help tell the story of these Western New York resources.

So far in the list of podcasts available are Capt. Vince Pierleoni with Thrillseeker Sportfishing and Capt. Rich Hajecki with Crazy Yankee Sportfishing, both on Lake Ontario. Joe Yaeger, president of the Lake Ontario Trout and Salmon Association, also provides insight on his LOTSA group and how it’s beneficial for a newcomer to the fishing scene on the lake. You can listen to Yaeger’s podcast at Other podcasts can be found on

Swartz Memorial Scholarship Available from Fly Fishers

The Lake Erie Chapter of Fly Fishers International has announced that it is once again offering a William “Bill” Swartz Memorial Scholarship for any college student enrolled in Environmental, Ecological, Fisheries and Biology course of study. To be eligible for the scholarship, students are required to submit an essay of at least 500 words on your field of study, what organizations you belong to, what volunteer activities you are involved in, how the scholarship will be able to help you and where you heard about the scholarship. A letter of recommendation from a professor or guidance counselor is required along with official documentation of your current Grade Point Average. Be sure to include your name, address, city, zip, phone number, your grade level and what college or university you are/will be attending. High school seniors are also eligible to apply, but money will not be issued until your first year of college is complete. Deadline for submission is April 15.

Forward your completed packet to the William Swartz Memorial Scholarship, c/o Joan B. Rosner, 77 Kathy Lane, West Seneca, NY 14224. If you have any questions call her at 675-4766. No specific scholarship amount was mentioned by the group.



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