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Tue., Oct. 6
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DEC, Harrisville fire department officials rescue bear


When the state DEC office in Potsdam receives a phone call regarding a black bear, the call typically means there is some threat of an unwanted human-bear interaction. Such was not the case in late May, though, when a caller in the Harrisville area reported a black bear with its head stuck in a metal can.

I don’t have a lot details on the incident, but here’s what I do know.


After significant efforts by the DEC wildlife staff in the Potsdam office, the bear was captured during the evening of Friday, June 6. DEC law enforcement then successfully tranquilized the captured bear. Apparently the question at the time was, “What do we do with a bear whose head is firmly entrenched in 10-gallon, old-style milk can?”

I’m not sure who came up with the idea to contact the Harrisville Fire Department whose personnel appeared on the scene with their Jaws of Life cutters and who successfully removed the can from the bear’s head. Anyway, once the bear recovered from the effects of the tranquilizer, the bear was released, and according to Steve Litwhiler of the Watertown DEC office, “The bear was in excellent condition overall, although a bit thin probably due to difficulty with foraging.”


This story had a happy ending thanks to a team effort on the part of various individuals. First of all, private citizens contacted DEC regarding the bear’s plight and locations. Then DEC wildlife and law enforcement staff trapped and tranquilized the bear. Finally, Harrisville fire and rescue personnel removed the milk can.

Whether it’s the world of business, sports, or whatever, good things happen when people work as a team, and the Harrisville bear story is evidence of what can be accomplished through teamwork.



DEC has announced the tentative dates for this fall’s waterfowl seasons. The dates become official, though, only after approval by the federal government in late summer.

The traditional Early Canada Goose Season for the Northeast Goose Hunting Area will run from Sept. 1-25, and the daily bag limit is nine geese. The Regular Canada Goose Season runs from Oct. 26 to Nov. 17 and from Nov. 19 through Dec. 15, and the daily limit for the Regular Season is three birds. Regulations allow for a 50-day Canada Goose Season so by closing the season for a day on Monday, Nov. 18, hunters will have an extra weekend day to hunt geese. DEC deserves praise for creating the one-day closure as it affords the working man an additional hunting day.

The Waterfowl Season for the Northeast Zone will again consist of two sessions with the first running from Oct. 5-13 and the second extending from Oct. 26 through December 15. The two sessions total 60 days that include 10 weekends, and the daily limit is six ducks with restrictions on various species.

Begun in 1996, Youth Waterfowl Hunt Days are again scheduled for this coming fall. For the Northeast Zone, those days are Saturday-Sunday, Sept. 21-22, and youths may hunt both ducks and geese.


John Ashley-Cooper: “One thing becomes clearer as one gets older and one’s fishing experience increases, and that is the paramount importance of one’s fishing companions.”

Charles K. Fox: “The angler is never a has-been. He enjoys a lifetime of participation which continues through noon, then on into the sunset, and even into the eventide of life.”

Geoffrey Norman: “No fisherman ever fishes as much as he wants to.”

Outdoors Calendar

Monday: Trap and Skeet Shooting at Lisbon Sportsmen’s Club (Pray Road) at 5:30 p.m.

Monday: Trap Shooting at Moose River F&G Club (Davis Bridge Road) at 4:30 p.m.

Wednesday: Annual Wilson Hill Goose Drive.

Wed-Thurs-Sat: The Black Lake Fish and Game Association has begun the seasonal trap shooting every Wednesday evening at 7 p.m. Also Sporting Clays are shot every Thursday at 1 p.m. and Saturday mornings at 9 a.m.

Saturday-Sunday: Free Fishing Days on New York state waters.

July 6: Free Children’s Fishing Classes at Wellesley Island State Park (482-2479).

July 12-13: Hunter Education Course at Stillwater Club North Branch in Russell (Pre-register after 6 p.m. at 386-4617).

July 21: Trapper Education Course at Harrisville R&G Club (Pre-register at 644-4643).

July 27-28: SLCTA hosts annual Trapper’s Rendezvous at Massena R&G Club.

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