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The fall turkey-hunting season will open in late October, but a hunt for bird dynamics is underway across New York State.

The Department of Environmental Conservation conducts its annual Summer Wild Turkey Survey in August to assess numbers and ages of turkey populations across the state.

Emilio Rende, Senior Wildlife Biologist at the Region 9 office in Allegany, notes a slight improvement in the number of poults per hen during the 2012 area survey. Results can be viewed at dec.ny.gov/animals/48732.html.

To assist in collecting data on bird sightings, check with Rende at 372-0645. Completed survey forms can be mailed to: Emilio Rende, Senior Wildlife Biologist, NYS DEC – Region 9, 182 East Union Street, Suite 3, Allegany, N.Y. 14706.

Ward honored

The New York State Rifle and Pistol Association has named Environmental Conservation Officer Roger Ward as the 2013 recipient of its Officer of the Year award.

Ward has served on major wildlife and policing investigations, including the capture of Ralph “Bucky” Phillips. He devotes much time to conservation education as a firearms instructor and in youth certification programs.

He resides in Perry with his wife and daughter.

LOC winners

Patrick Comerford of East Aurora, with a salmon caught north of the Niagara Bar in Lake Ontario on July 8, took home the $10,000 prize for his 36-pound, 5-ounce king, top entry in the Lake Ontario Counties Derby held June 15 to July 28.

Lake Ontario has produced some sizeable salmon this season. All 20 winning entries in the Lake Ontario Counties Derby Salmon Division weighed in above 30 pounds. For derby results, go to the “leaderboard” at loc.org.

email: odrswill@gmail.com