Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation

Press Release

November 20, 2013

Robert Kuhn
(518) 584-2000

Hunting Season Opens in Saratoga/Capital District Region State Parks

Hunting Safety Emphasized for All Park Patrons

With the opening of hunting season, the Saratoga/Capital District Region welcomes hunters back to our state parks and encourages all hunters and other park patrons to be aware of the rules and precautions in place to ensure the safe enjoyment of our parks by all.

Hunting is permitted in limited areas at the following parks and sites: Cherry Plain State Park, Grafton Lakes State Park, Mine Kill State Park (bow hunting only), Moreau Lake State Park, Schodack Island State Park, J.B. Thacher State Park, and Bennington Battlefield State Historic Site. Park maps showing defined hunting areas in these parks are available on the State Parks webpage,, or by contacting the appropriate park office. Hunting is strictly prohibited from all other state parks and state historic sites in the Saratoga/Capital District Region.

Hunters should be aware that they must possess a current valid applicable DEC hunting license and obtain a New York State Parks Hunting Permit from the appropriate Park Office. Hunting is not permitted within 500 feet of any building, road, playground, or parking lot. All trails are considered safety zones where hunting is not allowed. Deer can only be hunted with muzzleloader, shotgun, or bow. Possession of rifles or handguns is strictly prohibited at some parks; please check with the respective park office. Loaded guns should not be carried in developed areas or on trails. Hunters should only load their guns at their hunting site.

Other patrons recreating at the parks should be aware that hunting is permitted in limited areas of certain parks. The rules that are in place for hunting ensure patron safety in the developed areas and on the trail systems in the parks. Trail users may wish to wear brightly colored clothing during hunting season as an added precaution. Venturing off the established trail systems is prohibited at any time of year, and is particularly unsafe during hunting season. Patrons are encouraged to contact the appropriate park office or the New York State Park Police if they observe unsafe activities or conditions in the parks. It is the goal of New York State Parks to accommodate all appropriate recreational activities in the parks while adequately ensuring public safety.

Other requirements that hunters and park patrons should be aware of include:

Hunters shall:

1. Comply with all applicable sections of the Environmental Conservation Law; ParksRecreation and Historic Preservation Law and their implementing regulations and shall hunt in the manner prescribed by the Department of Environmental Conservation, except as modified by the dates, times and hunting styles specified in New York State Parks hunting permits.

2. Possess a current valid applicable DEC hunting license and a Park Hunting Permit.

3. Obtain a Hunting Permit from the Park Office. Sign in and out of the Park at the office daily when hunting within the boundaries of the Park.

4. Obtain a Park Map which indicates where hunting is permitted. Hunting permits are valid only in the areas indicated on the map.

5. Display the "tear off" section of the permit registration form on their vehicle's dashboard to be visible to Park Police and Regional personnel.

6. Park all vehicles in designated parking areas ONLY.

7. Carry the State Parks hunting permit on their person at all times while hunting.

8. Not hunt at night. 9. Not erect permanent tree stands or blinds in or on any tree or shrub.

10. Promptly report any and all unusual incidents directly to the Park Police or Park manager.Unusual incidents include, but are not limited to, damage to park property, accidents, personal injuries, and emergencies involving medical personnel.

11. Report to Park Police or other Regional personnel any sighting of a wounded animal entering safety zones and restricted areas. These areas are posted to ensure the safety of other park patrons and regional personnel.

12. Not transfer hunting permits.

13. Report the game taken or wounded.

14. Load guns at your hunting site. Loaded guns should not be carried in developed areas or on trails.

15. Not hunt within 500 feet of any building, road, playground or parking lot.

16. Hunt deer with muzzleloader, shotgun, or bow only. Possession of rifles or handguns is strictly prohibited at some parks; please check with the respective park office.

17. Not set traps of any kind.

18. Contact the appropriate Park office for further information and restrictions.