Hunting and Trapping Newsletter

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
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Hunting and Trapping Newsletter

DEC Seeking Reports of Moose Sightings

A moose walking through a body of water

DEC asks the public to report moose sightings via an online form as part of ongoing efforts to monitor moose distribution across New York. While the Adirondacks are home to most New York moose, some live in the eastern part of the state along the Vermont and Massachusetts borders. Moose can also occasionally be found in southeastern New York and the Catskills, but these are usually individuals that have dispersed from other areas.

Moose are the largest land mammal in the state. In the summer, when most sightings occur, moose typically spend a lot of time in ponds and wetlands feeding on submerged aquatic plants. During the rest of the year in cooler weather, they browse on leaves, twigs, and buds of trees and shrubs. Favored browse species include willows, birches, maples, balsam fir, viburnums, aspen, and mountain ash. Bulls weigh up to 1,200 pounds and stand up to six feet tall at the shoulder. Cows weigh anywhere from 500 to 800 pounds and usually give birth to one or two calves in late May or early June.

Many moose sightings occur along roadways. Drive cautiously at dusk and dawn as moose can be hard to spot due to their dark color. If you see a moose, do not block traffic, and remember to respect wildlife by keeping quiet and viewing from a distance.

If you manage to capture one of these magnificent mammals on camera, share your photos by sending them to

Photo Courtesy of G. Lee

Next Step Courses

Instructor training student on rifle use

If you have taken a Hunter Education, Bowhunter Education, or Trapper Education certification course but still want some hands-on training, you are in luck!

DEC's Hunter Education Program now offers Next Step Courses

Firearms (rifle or shotgun) – learn about different types of rifles or shotguns, hands-on instruction in safe firearm handling and safe zones of fire, loading and unloading rifles or shotguns, shooting positions and stances, and target practice on the range;

Crossbow and Archery – learn about the parts of a crossbow or bow, how to hunt safely with a crossbow or bow, how to shoot a crossbow or bow, and target practice on the range; and

Trapping (water trapping or land trapping) and fur handling courses – learn safe, efficient, and humane trapping techniques for various furbearers trapped in the water (e.g., beaver, muskrat) or on land (e.g., coyote, raccoon), how to process furs and the equipment needed to do so, and how to use the furs including preparing them for market.

All Next Step courses are free, but registration is required. Supplies and equipment are provided by course instructors so students do not have to bring their own. Those interested will need their hunter or trapper education certificate number to register. The minimum age to take a Next Step course is 12. There is no certification offered with these courses.

To learn what Next Step courses are being offered, and to register, visit DEC’s website. Since these are new courses, availability may be limited. Hunters and trappers are encouraged to check back often as courses will continuously be added.

Outdoor 3D Archery & Wilderness Skills Day

bow archery 3d target shoot

Join NY Hunters of Color, The Nature Conservancy, and New York BHA for a 3D Archery Shoot and Outdoor Skills training day!

When: Sunday, June 25th, 11 am – 4 pm

Where: Eugene and Agnes Meyer Nature Preserve (The Nature Conservancy) – Parking is available

Transportation Provided – NYC Bus pick-up and drop-off at the McCaffrey Playground W 43rd St., New York, NY 10036

  • Pick-up at 11 am
  • Drop-off at 5 pm

All are welcome! Register to attend.

Check out the flyer (PDF) for more details.