Hunting & Trapping

Hunting on City-owned lands begins each fall on September 1 (the first day of squirrel season) and ends at the close of spring turkey season on May 31. Interested hunters should refer to our Interactive Recreation Map or Recreation Areas and Use Designations by County for properties that are available for hunting during specific seasons.

Designated hunting areas are available for bow, shotgun, rifle, handgun, and muzzleloader hunting where permitted by New York State regulations. Hunters and trappers must possess a valid New York State hunting license and they must follow all applicable New York State hunting regulations, including weapons restrictions, species restrictions, and hunting during the proper seasons for the allowed game.

A DEP Access Permit is required on those properties posted with Watershed Recreation Signs that read “Entry by Permit.”

Trapping is only allowed in Public Access Areas and trappers must possess a valid New York State trapping license and follow all applicable New York State trapping regulations, including species restrictions and seasons. For answers to commonly asked questions, visit Hunting & Trapping FAQs and DEP Access Permit FAQs.

Quality Deer Management on City-Owned Lands

DEP has instituted Quality Deer Management (QDM) principles in the Richardsville, West Branch Headwaters, Knapp Road, and Boyds Corner North Units in the towns of Kent and Putnam Valley. In the QDM hunting areas, the following enforceable conditions apply to all hunters over 17 years of age:

  • Only does may be harvested on the first two days of bow season, the first two days of regular gun season, and the first two days of muzzleloader season—no bucks may be taken on these days.
  • On all other days of the legal hunting season, bucks may be harvested if they have an antler spread of at least 15 inches in width and/or a minimum of three points on a side greater than one inch long, excluding brow tines. Throughout the hunting season in general, all hunters are encouraged to harvest more does than bucks to help with maintaining balanced herd populations and healthier forests.

Recreation Unit Closures

Please read and follow the Watershed Recreation Signs posted in these project areas.

  • Mile Shore Recreational Unit: Ashokan Reservoir, Town of Hurley, Ulster County. Approximately 76 acres located on the east end of the unit, including gates E22A and E-23 in the vicinity of Torino’s Cove, will be subject to closure. Download the Mile Shore Unit Map.
  • Shavertown Recreation Unit: Pepacton Reservoir, Town of Andes, Delaware County. Shavertown Trail is closed while engineers address damage that was caused by beavers at a pond adjacent to the trail. The condition at the site poses no threat to public safety or other infrastructure. Signs have been posted at the trailhead, located just off Route 30 near the Shavertown Bridge, and at the adjacent boat launch area. Download the Shavertown Bridge Unit Map.
  • Long Pond Recreational Unit: Town of Carmel, Putnam County. The 32 Acre Long Pond Recreational Unit will be closed due to construction work on the Willow Pond spillway. Work is expected to be completed by mid-May 2019. Download the Long Pond Unit Map.