Youth Ready for Big Game Hunt in New York

– 3-Day Columbus Weekend Special Firearm Season (Oct. 8-10, 2016)
– For Properly Licensed Youth – 14 and 15 years Old

Anticipation and excitement are among reasons why NYS holds a special, early youth firearms season. NOTE: Since this hunt occurs during the second full week of the 6-week regular archery season in NYS, all hunters are encouraged to wear some form of orange for safety/visibility while accessing the woods. Forrest Fisher Photo

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation reminds us that this weekend brings a new opportunity for junior hunters, as New York’s annual Youth Big Game Hunt on Columbus Day weekend has expanded to include Black Bear as well as Whitetail Deer.

From October 8 through October 10, properly licensed 14- and 15-year-old youth may use a firearm to hunt big game while accompanied by an experienced, NYS licensed adult hunter.

Each eligible junior hunter is allowed to take one deer (either sex) and one bear. During the youth hunt, antlerless deer taken with a firearm may be tagged with a regular season tag, Deer Management Permit, or Deer Management Assistance Program tags; antlered deer may only be tagged with the regular season tag.

Though junior hunters may have multiple deer tags, they may only take 1 deer with a firearm during the Youth Big Game Hunt.

This special hunting opportunity takes place throughout New York State, except in Suffolk County and specially designated bowhunting-only areas.

Additional rules that apply to junior hunters and their adult mentors can be found in the NYS Hunting & Trapping Guide (pages 36-37) or on the DEC website.

The Youth Big Game Hunt is a great way for experienced, adult hunters to help the young people in their life have an enjoyable and successful hunt. Get out and enjoy the nice weather and beautiful foliage this weekend while you teach young family members and friends the fine points of big game hunting.

Create memories that will be cherished for a lifetime.