Labrador trip came close to a washout

Last week I wrote about the Alberta, Canada flyfishing trip that Allen Gray, Paul Knauth and I took a few weeks ago. If you recall from my September 24, 2017 column, good flyfishing buddy Attorney Michael Shepard of Dalton returned to flyfish in Labrador with 8 other anglers most of whom he had fished with in Quebec and Labrador before. Last year, you may recall, they fished the Minipi River system. This time the anglers fished out of Igloo Lake Lodge on Igloo Lake, a different river system. Like last year, Mike Miller of Athol, MA arranged the trip.
While we arrived in our cottage in Blairmore, Alberta the same day we left home, Mike’s trip was a bit more entailed. They first had to drive to the airport in Montreal, Canada on Wednesday, August 16 and spend the night there. They flew out the next morning with a stop in Halifax, Nova Scotia before landing in Goose Bay, Labrador. They spent that night in Goose Bay and then flew out (by float plane) to Igloo Lake arriving on Friday. When they returned, they did the same, with one exception which I will get into later.
Mike’s fishing partner on this trip was William Waite (Bill) from Westminster, MA (You may recall him from my article last year. He was the least experienced flyfisherman who caught the largest brook trout (8 lbs). Remember? His guide had forgotten the net and had to net it with a 5-gallon pail.)
Igloo Lake is located about 70 miles southeast of Goose Bay. Jim Burton is the owner of two lodges on that lake. According to Mike S., the facilities were beautiful, the boats were topnotch, his guide was the best he ever fished with and the food was restaurant quality. The lodges are located in one beautiful part of Labrador. Burton also owns a float plane which allows him to fly anglers out to other water bodies. There is a one mile stretch of river near the camp which flows into the lake, but the waters were low because of a drought there this past summer. The first day, Mike and Bill fished that stretch catching smaller trout.
The following day, Mike Miller and 3 others flew out to Char Lake, some 200 miles north of Igloo Lake to fish for Arctic Char. They congregate there during their spawning run. Because the float plane could only take 4 anglers at a time, Mike Shepard was scheduled to fly in on the second day. The anglers had phenomenal luck, catching some 80 char and sea run brook trout, many of them caught on char flies that Mike Shepard had tied for them. Well don’t you know, when it was Mike S.’s time to fly out the next day, there were 50 mph winds and the trip was postponed. Then came the rains and fog and a low ceiling. The nasty weather lasted for 3 days and Mike S. and Bill were never able to fly into Char Lake.) It was a big disappointment because Mike really wanted to catch an Arctic char on this trip.
While the other guys were fishing Char Lake, Mike S. and Bill fished the pond at the bottom of the nearby river and caught 6 or 7 pike averaging around 30 inches. Mike caught a 7 ½ lbs. brook trout.
The next day, they fished Burton Pond. To get there, they had a 30-minute boat ride across Igloo Lake and then trek 1 ½ miles across a peat bog. Burton Pond is a big lake, not connected to Igloo Lake, which runs into the Eagle River and ultimately to the North Atlantic. Mike S. and Bill trolled Zoo Cougers and green leech flies. They got into some 5-6 lbs. brook trout which were podding up and boated a dozen or so of those bruisers. Bill and Mike caught 17-18 northern pike in the 30-inch range in Igloo Lake using big green and purple bunny leeches.
On the last day at Burton Pond, Bill and Mike S. caught 22 brook trout all over 5 lbs. Bill caught 14 trolling and Mike caught 8. In the last hour of fishing, Mike proceeded to catch three 5-pound brookies, as well as a 6 and 7 pounder all on size 8 and 6 green drake dry flies.
Incidentally, all fish were released unharmed. They all had a very successful trip, wouldn’t you say?
On the August 25 return trip, they hit a snag. Their luggage was left behind in the Goose Bay airport. They had planned on spending the night in Montreal and enjoying a good meal; however, without their luggage, they didn’t even have a change of clothes. So, they drove home that evening. (Incidentally, Mike Shepard never got his luggage until September 25.)
There’s always potential drawbacks when you book a fishing trip to these hard to reach Canadian destinations. In order to reserve a spot, you have to book early, sometimes a year in advance, and you never know what conditions you will encounter when you get there. In Mike’s case, it was 3 solid days of wind and rain. If you recall, in our trip to Alberta, it was the fires that closed down our rivers. As they say, “You pays your money and you takes your chances”. (An old idiom with intentional grammatical errors).
At the time of this writing, there is another local angler on his way home from a Canadian fishing trip. Rex Channel of Pittsfield, who is a local fishing guide and owner of Allure-Outfitters. He actually fished Igloo Lake a couple of weeks before Mike and then headed west fishing all across Canada and parts of western US. Hopefully, I can write about his trip when he returns home.
Berkshire Natural History Conference
On Saturday, October 14, the 3rd Annual Berkshire Natural History Conference will feature presentations by local and regional naturalists, as well as acclaimed authors at the Berkshire Community College from 9 a.m.to 4 p.m. MassWildlife will have a table set up at the event, and retired MassWildlife Biologist Jim Cardoza will make a presentation on wild turkey conservation.
Watch out for moose
MassWildlife urges drivers to use caution because it’s mating season for moose. During September and October, moose become more active and cross roads more frequently. Also in May and June during yearling dispersals, when yearling moose are driven away by their mothers. Moose eyes rarely shine because their eyes are above headlight level and their dark color makes them very difficult to spot at night.
I’m sure readers are tired of reading this advisory year after year. However; as you know, each year we have an influx of new young, inexperienced drivers on our roads who may not have gotten the word. It’s a good time to talk about this with your new drivers.
Questions/comments: Berkwoodsandwaters@roadrunner.com. Phone: (413)637-1818

Attached is a picture of Attorney Michael Shepard with one of his large brook trout

Bear/human contact reported in South County

At the August 22, 2017 Mass Fish & Wildlife Board Meeting at The Stationery Factory in Dalton, MA, Environmental Police Officer Captain Tony Abdal-Khabir and DFW Western District Supervisor Andrew Madden reported on a bear/human contact. It occurred on August 21 in New Marlborough. A large bear was tearing apart a peach tree and the owner (who we shall call the reporting party) tried to chase it away. The bear closed the distance of about 38 feet and clawed his forearm.
He called 911 and soon local police and EMS were the on the scene. Shortly thereafter Lt. Carlow of the Environmental Police arrived, then Madden and after him additional environmental Police. According to Madden, the abrasions were superficial with light injuries. The reporting party received treatment at the scene. Because the wounds were so light and superficial, Madden felt that it wasn’t a true attack or an intent to harm him necessarily but rather an intent to bluff him.
Madden and EPO Carlow spent time walking around the property looking for the bear but didn’t find it or any sign of it. Based upon the description it was likely a male and it could have been miles away by then. The reporting party was satisfied with that and in Madden’s opinion was ok with that situation. They advised him of his Section 37 rights (right to protect himself and his property from wildlife) and moved on from there. The reporting party has had encounters with bears before. He is a bear hunter and had taken one during last year’s bear hunting season. He was well versed with bear identification and said it was a large bear. Madden had no doubt that where he lives, who he is and his experience, it was a large bear.
According to EPO Captain Abdal-Khabir, the takeaway is that they had a successful deployment using bear protocol which they have been working on. They had rapid response by both agencies and were able to operate within the parameters set forth. The end result is that they did not have to euthanize the bear.
The reporting party, even though he had a minor contact, was so lucky, said Adam-Khabir. Even a small yearling can do considerable damage at that proximity. “We must take them seriously and give them the respect they deserve”, said Madden.
At the same Board Meeting, Madden reported that they have initiated a bear collaring program here in the Western District. Their intended goal was to trap 2 or possibly 3 sows and put radio collars on them. In actuality, they captured 18 bears which included 6 sows. Of the 6 captured, they lost contact with one due to a collar mechanical failure and another one that was killed by a resident after it killed some chickens. They are down to 4 sows now but still beyond their expectations.
He commented on the number of large bears that were caught. They trapped 2 bears that were well over 400lbs and another over 300lbs and that was in the spring when they were coming off of hibernation and hadn’t had a chance to fatten up yet. They also had a couple on film that exceeded those 400lbs bears, so there are 500lbs bears out there.
He commented that the towns where they have the most bear complaints are in towns like Stockbridge, Monterey and Otis where there is a huge influx of people in the summertime, with summer camps, second homeowners, etc. and bears are active at that time searching for food.
Madden gave an update on some bears that were considerably under nourished and underweight which were found in the spring. (Some weighed less than 20 lbs and one only weighed 9 lbs.) It was a phenomenon that was also reported in VT and NH. He said that 2 were left in place as there was no public safety concern. They had to move two of them, one was hanging over Rte 9 in Cummington, MA that was creating a public situation and the other one was inside a garage. They removed it and brought it to Tufts University Wildlife Clinic for 2 weeks and then relocated it. They had no answer as to what caused their underweight conditions, perhaps a bad drought the year before.
Incidentally, the First Season of black bear hunting opens on September 5 and runs to September 23. A permit is required. If you take a bear with an ear tag or radio collar, contact DFW’s Field Headquarters (508)389-6300 immediately. You will be asked for information that will help biologists determine the source and status of these animals and you will be asked to return the equipment to MassWildlife
Duck Hunting Opening Day Change
If any Berkshire hunters are planning their usual opening day duck hunt on Columbus Day, please take note. This year the Fish & Wildlife Board changed the opening day to one day later, October 10. This change was the result of sportsmen answering questionnaires which were sent out by MassWildlife. Not to worry, they say, hunters will still have the same number of duck hunting days. They added another day at the end of the season ….. December 25! I thought you would like to know so that you have time to try to get October 10 off from work or school.
Community Celebration Day
The Berkshire Natural Resources Council (The Landkeepers) wants you to help them celebrate its 50th anniversary by attending its Community Celebration Day on September 9 at Holiday Farm, 100 Holiday Cottage Rd., Dalton, MA from 10am to 4pm.
There will be hay rides, guided hikes, archery, fishing, birds of prey and music. While registration is not required, they ask that you please consider letting them know if you’ll attend by reserving a free ticket by contacting Mackenzie Greer at the BNRC website.

Think you know all of the freshwater fishes in Massachusetts?

 

Don’t answer that until you read the new MassWildlife brochure entitled Freshwater Fishes of Massachusetts. I don’t know about you, but I thought the only sunfish in Massachusetts were Bluegills (Lepomis Macrochirus) and Pumpkinseeds (Lepomis gibbosus). True, some classify the Crappie, Perch and Rock Bass as sunfish, but I don’t. Some others, including MassWildlife, categorize Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass as sunfish, but not me. I call them gamefish.

Well, according to the new MassWildlife brochure, there are also Banded Sunfish (Enneacanthus obesus), Redbreast Sunfish (Lepomis auritus) and Green Sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus) residing in the Commonwealth. In fact some have been caught here in the Western District. It also lists another kind of pickerel in Massachusetts called the Redfin Pickerel (Esox americanus) which only grows to a size of 6 to 10 inches and resides in the eastern part of the Commonwealth. Interestingly, in the Minnows family is listed the Common Carp (Ciprinus carpio). I don’t know about you, but I have a problem calling a 40 lbs carp a minnow!

This excellent new brochure, which is free at any DFW Regional Office, has excellent color pictures of them and other Massachusetts freshwater fish as well as other interesting information. Local DFW Aquatic Biologist Leanda Fontaine Gagnon had a hand in producing it.

New Natural Heritage Atlas
On August 1, 2017, the Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program (NHESP) released the 14th Edition of the Natural Heritage Atlas. The Atlas is used by project proponents, municipalities, and others for determining whether or not a proposed project or activity must be reviewed by the NHESP for compliance with the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act and the Massachusetts Endangered Species Act Regulations.
Updated Priority and Estimated Habitats will be posted on the Division’s website and made available electronically as a downloadable geographic information system (GIS) data layer. Additionally, the Division will provide the town-based Priority and Estimated Habitat maps to planning boards, building inspectors, and conservation commissions in municipalities where these areas have been delineated. See www.mass.gov/nhesp for more information, including the final maps and a summary response to the Priority Habitat public comments.
NHESP, part of the Massachusetts DFW, is one of the programs forming the Natural Heritage network. NHESP is responsible for the conservation and protection of hundreds of species that are not hunted, fished, trapped, or commercially harvested in the state, as well as the protection of the natural communities that make up their habitats. The Program’s highest priority is protecting the vertebrate and invertebrate animals and native plants that are officially listed as Endangered, Threatened or of Special Concern in Massachusetts.
The overall goal of the Program is the protection of the state’s wide range of native biological diversity.
Riverside Trails Seminar, Saturday, September 9
According to the Great Barrington Land Conservancy, Trail Building is a process that is , complex and rewarding especially in a riverfront area.
The GB Land Conservancy invites you to learn about the planning and implementation of riverside trails from expert trail builder, Peter Jensen. The seminar will run from 10:00am until noon.
Peter has been building trails for over 30 years, and the Great Barrington River Walk was one of his early projects. Attendees can learn how this National Recreation Trail grew from a garbage filled bank to a rehabilitated riverfront area and peaceful in-town walkway celebrating the beauty and history of Great Barrington and the Housatonic River.
Peter will share his expertise and trail building experiences in a power point presentation followed by a guided walk along River Walk. The seminar is free and open to the public. Participants will have an opportunity to talk to Peter about their own trail projects or riverside trail goals. Register as soon as possible as space is limited at info@gbtrails.org
This program is provided by Great Barrington Land Conservancy as part of the 2017 River Walk Community Programs.

Community Celebration Day, also September 9
From 10:00am until 4:00pm, the Berkshire Natural Resources Council will be having a Community Celebration Day at the Holiday Farms, 100 Holiday Cottage Road in Dalton, MA. There will be hay rides, guided walks, archery, fishing, birds of prey with Tom Ricardi and music all day. While registration is not required, they ask you to consider letting them know by registering and getting a free ticket.

Massachusetts Outdoor Exposition, Sunday, September 17
The Massachusetts Outdoor Expo, also known as The Big MOE is a free, family-friendly event designed to introduce young and old to wildlife and the outdoors. Attracting several thousand attendees annually, the Big MOE features a variety of skills stations, craft tables, and other exhibits relating to wildlife and the outdoors. This is your opportunity to try new outdoor skills and activities such as fishing, archery, kayaking, shooting, building a bird box, geocaching, mountain biking, nature arts and crafts. Visit a New England Pioneer Encampment, take a peek at live birds of prey and native reptiles, be part of a tree stand safety demonstration and get up close and personal at the 4-H petting zoo. Local sportsmen’s clubs, outdoor businesses, conservation organizations and state agencies sponsor most of the activity stations.
You may recall last year that the event was cancelled, presumably due to liability issues. Well, this year adults and youths will be required to sign a Liability Release Form. This form can be found at the Big Moe Fawns Expo website and you are asked to print it off beforehand and bring one per person with you.
The Big MOE location is the Hamilton Rod & Gun Club in Sturbridge, MA. Admission, parking and all activities are free. Convenient parking provided at the Sturbridge Business Park, 660 Main St., with free shuttle bus transportation. No pets or alcohol allowed, but food and drink are available for purchase.

Local turkey hunter is an inspiration to us all


On the last Friday of this year’s Spring Turkey Hunting Season, Zach Porio, of Adams, went hunting for toms. Normally, he hunts with friends Richard Frew or Nick Chenail but they couldn’t go with him that day. So, he went with his usual partner, his trusty black lab Roxanne. He likes to take her for she is quiet and in case he falls out of his wheelchair or stand, he can send her for help. (In case you didn’t notice from the photograph, Zach is a quadriplegic. That was the result of a motorcycle accident he had in 2012.)
It had rained the night before but this day was turning out to be a nice one. The only thing he had to worry about was the tires of his wheelchair getting stuck in the mud.
Dave Willette, author of Coyote Wars and columnist for the Northwest Sporting Journal wrote about that day in his August 2017, Mass Wanderings column, entitled, “Determination and Desire Personified”, and much of the following is derived from it.
“Zach couldn’t get into his normal spots that morning so he tried a new place where he had permission to hunt. It’s a real challenge for Zach to find suitable places to hunt as he has to take into consideration what his limitations are, especially if there is a slope of any kind and if it’s wet. He has to know that there are birds around there because he can’t do any scouting. He usually hunts out of his wheelchair, but if he has to use his truck, he has to be sure not to trample the farmers’ hay.
On this day, Zach drove his custom truck to the edge of the farmer’s field and backed out 30 yards to drop the turkey decoys out of the truck window. He then drove back to the edge and watched for birds by looking through his rear- view mirrors.
An hour after daylight ten or so turkeys popped out of the hedgerow 400 yards away so Zach started calling with his box call. By 10:00am, the birds had gotten within 200 yards and soon two jakes broke off and came within 50 yards. When Zach started to turn a little, they saw him and ran off. He then got into a better position.
He can’t sweat like he used to due to his injuries and he got very hot sitting in the truck. Around 11:00am, he was getting ready to quit, but before doing so, he decided to try his new turkey call. He got a response! Zach slowly turned to see two toms about 20 yards from the decoys but the bigger one detected him and decided to bail. He shot the second one with his .20 gauge shotgun and “it dropped like a stone”.
Because Zach only has partial use of his upper extremities, he had to pull the trigger with both hands while supporting the gun on his knees. He then had to drive his truck closer, grab a rope, get into his wheelchair and push it 20 yards over a meadow to retrieve his turkey. (He doesn’t have a motorized wheelchair). He had to bend over, tie the turkey by its feet, push himself back upright, put the rope into his mouth and drag it to the truck while pushing his wheelchair. (That bird weighed over 12 lbs!). “I was exhausted by the time I got back into the truck”, he said.
Zach, who is married (to Samantha) and has two children, is quite a guy. He hunts other birds and animals, too, including bears.
He felt funny about relaying this story. He prefers to keep stuff like that to himself. It wasn’t until I stressed upon him that he is such an inspiration to all of us, especially to others who are battling physical disabilities, that he relented.
Many thanks to Dave Willette for providing much of the above information. Incidentally, you may want to check out the Northwoods Sporting Journal. It is an excellent outdoor sporting magazine which focusses mainly on northern New England.
Lobsterfest
The Friends of the Berkshire Hatchery Fund Raiser Lobsterfest will be held next Sunday afternoon, August 20 from 2 to 5pm, at the Hatchery at 240 Hatchery Road, Hartsville, MA. This event supports the programs and scholarships that the Foundation provides. The full lobster dinner, which will be catered by Other Brother Daryl’s, costs $65 pp. Tickets can be obtained by calling (413)528-9761.
Basic Hunter Education Courses
All first-time hunters who wish to purchase a Massachusetts hunting or sporting license must complete a Basic Hunter Education course. One will be taught at the Lee Sportsmen’s Club, 565 Fairview Street, Lee, on August 21 and September 9. The times are 6:00 to 9:30pm on August 21 and 8:00 am to 2:30 pm on August 19. Participants must attend all class dates and times to successfully complete the course. To enroll, call (508)389-7830.

Young Adult Pheasant Hunt
Hunter Education graduates aged 12–17 can participate in the Young Adult Pheasant Hunt. The program involves shooting instruction and practice, a pre-hunt workshop, and a mentored hunt prior to the regular pheasant season. All young adults between the ages 15 and 17 will need a hunting license and FID card to participate in this program.
This hunt takes place on Saturdays in September and October; specific dates vary and are determined by participating sportsman’s clubs. For more information and to view participating clubs, visit the MassWildlife website or contact Astrid Huseby by email at astrid.huseby@state.ma.us.
F&W Board
The August meeting of the Massachusetts Fisheries and Wildlife Board will be held on Tuesday, August 22, at 1:00 pm, at the Stationery Factory, 63 Flansburg Avenue, Dalton, MA.

 

Meet your new Fish and Game Commissioner

Ron Amidon of Templeton has recently been appointed by Governor Charlie Baker as the new Commissioner of the Department of Fish & Game (DFG). He replaced former Commissioner George N. Peterson, Jr. who decided to step down and spend more time with his family. The DFG oversees the Commonwealth’s marine and freshwater fisheries, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, plants, all endangered species, and the habitats that support them.
Amidon, whose career has been in large scale construction management, has spent over 30 years actively involved in the Commonwealth’s sporting community. He has served as the President of the Otter River Sportsmen’s Club, Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Worcester County League of Sportsmen’s Clubs, President of the Gun Owners Action League, and Moderator of the Massachusetts Conservation Alliance. He is also heavily involved with Ducks Unlimited and Trout Unlimited and has a strong interest in identifying cold water habitats for trout, protecting wildlife habitat and supporting restoration of upland bird habitat. He is known and respected across the state as a staunch defender and protector of our outdoor sports heritage.
I have the good fortune to be able to call Ron a friend. I first met Ron and his wife Rena a few years back while camped along the banks of the East Branch of the Westfield River in Chesterfield. My wife Jan and I met and took an immediate liking to them. Through conversations, it didn’t take long to learn that Ron is a staunch defender of our hunting and fishing heritage and protector of the environment. He doesn’t just talk about these issues but takes action as witnessed by his commitments listed above.
He’s not a bad fisherman either as the attached picture shows. That wild brook trout, which he caught on a fly rod and quickly released, weighed more than 7 3/4 lbs. The picture was taken while Ron and a group of anglers fished the Minipi River system in Labrador last year. Local Attorney Michael Shepard of Dalton and I were in that group.
You get to know a guy that you share a lodge with in the middle of God’s Country. In the early twilight hours, sipping a steaming cup of coffee, while waiting for the guides to wake up, Ron and several of us would discuss hunting and fishing issues of the day. Having gotten to know Ron better, I can’t think of a more qualified person to head up the DFG.
In stepping down, Peterson, who had served as Commissioner since February of 2015 said, “I am very grateful to Governor Baker for giving me the opportunity to serve as Commissioner of the Department of Fish and Game. I will cherish the time I spent working directly with the professional staff on the issues I deeply care about—habitat conservation, fisheries management, ecological restoration, and enhancement of public access to the Bay State’s wildlife, lands and waters, and outdoor activities such as fishing and hunting.”
Prior to his appointment as Commissioner, Peterson had served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives for 20 years, representing the 9th Worcester District, and was the Assistant Minority Leader when he left the House of Representatives. He is an avid recreational fisherman and hunter. He is also a U.S. Army veteran.
Outdoor sportsmen could always count on Representative Peterson to support and promote their causes on Beacon Hill and were very appreciative of his accomplishments as the Commissioner. While Commissioner, he came out here to the Berkshires on numerous occasions to attend various functions and was on a first name basis with many of us. I’m sure you will join me in thanking him for his service in our military, in our House of Representatives and as F&W Commissioner and wish him the best in the future.
HVA Paddle Trip
On Tuesday, July 18, the Housatonic Valley Association will have a Beginners’ Paddle Trip from 4:30 to 7:00pm. There will be a free introduction to canoeing on a flatwater stretch of the Housatonic River in Glendale. Instruction will be provided by a certified instructor and canoes and equipment will be provided. Learn how to safely enter and exit a canoe, the basic strokes and how to steer. Program support is provided by Housatonic Heritage. Preregistration required. More information provided upon registering. Call HVA at 413-298-7024 or email adixon@hvatoday.

Report Fish Kills This Summer
With the warming up of our lakes and ponds, fish kills may occur. The sight of dead and dying fish along the shores of a favorite pond or river can be distressing and can prompt concerns about pollution. However, according to MassWildlife, the vast majority of summer fish kills reported are natural events.
Natural fish kills are generally the result of low oxygen levels, fish diseases, or spawning stress. Depletion of dissolved oxygen is one of the most common causes of natural fish kills. Water holds less dissolved oxygen at higher temperatures; in shallow, weedy ponds oxygen can be especially low as plants consume oxygen at night. Spawning of fish such as Sunfish and Largemouth Bass in late spring and early summer occurs in shallow waters along the shores. These densely crowded spawning areas become susceptible to disease outbreaks, especially as water temperatures increase. The result is an unavoidable natural fish kill, usually consisting of only one or two species of fish.
To be sure there isn’t a pollution problem, it’s always best to report fish kills (Environmental Police 1(800) 632-8075). A MassWildlife fisheries biologist will determine if the kill is a natural event or the result of pollution. When pollution is the suspected culprit, MassWildlife notifies the Department of Environmental Protection, who then conducts a formal investigation of the water and affected fish to determine the source of pollution.

Thanks to those who run the sportsmen’s clubs

 

Sportsmen’s clubs serve many purposes. Among other things, they introduce people to the outdoor sports by conducting mentoring programs which teach youths how to hunt turkeys, pheasants, duck and deer. They have spring fishing derbies, ice fishing derbies, bow hunting leagues, archery in the school programs, trout in the classroom programs, teach trap and skeet shooting, and more. Working with the Berkshire Environmental Action Team (BEAT) and the Housatonic Valley Association (HVA), they are involved with river clean-ups, invasive plant eradication, and more. Working with MassWildlife, they are involved with the BOW (Becoming an Outdoorswoman) Program, paraplegic hunts, school trout stocking programs, etc. Some groups work through OLLI (Osher Life Long Institute) to teach as fly fishing.

The days when dad or uncle taught the kids how to do all of these things are almost gone. Now, they have expert club mentors who take the place of parents who perhaps no longer participate in these sports, or a single parent who does not have the time or ability to teach them.

In many cases club delegates serve on the Berkshire County League of Sportsmen, which is the umbrella organization for the individual clubs. The League, in turn, is a member of the Massachusetts Sportsmen’s Council, the umbrella organization for the individual County Leagues across Massachusetts. The League is also affiliated with the Gun Owner’s Action League (GOAL) and the NRA which are often on Beacon Hill in Boston, fighting to preserve sportsmen’s rights to own guns. These organizations require membership fees.

The sportsmen’s clubs have to pay for the club house maintenance, real estate taxes, loan interest, teaching materials, hatchery fish, etc. Some clubs have to maintain many acres of land and fencing. Some raise bunnies or pheasants. Others maintain trap or skeet shooting ranges, target ranges, etc. Someone has to mow, snowplow, maintain the property and cook for functions.

The annual club dues are not sufficient to pay for all of this. It is necessary to obtain added funds through special raffles, game dinners, turkey shoots (they don’t really shoot turkeys), banquets, facility rentals, etc. Someone has to plan, organize, direct and control these activities and funding and those duties usually fall upon the club officers and directors. Running a sportsman’s club requires a significant investment of time, and those who do so ask for nothing in return.

The annual Silvio O. Conte Awards Banquet tries to recognizes them with the Sportsmen of the Year Award, Lifetime Achievement Award, etc. In this column, I would also like to give a shout out to those dedicated individuals. Please know that for every officer listed here, there are many more directors and committee chairpersons behind the scenes who are assisting or advising them. The following listing of clubs are those active in the Berkshire County League of Sportsmen:
Pittsfield Sportsmen’s Club: Its President is Travis Delratez, 1st VP is Stanley Bushey, 2nd VP is Clem Caryofilles, Treasure is Mike Furey and Clerk & Secretary is David Pemble.
Taconic Chapter, Trout Unlimited: President is John Burns, VP is Henry Sweren, Treasurer is Bill Travis, and Secretary position is unfilled.
Berkshire Beagle Club: President is Rodney Hicks, VP is Al Costa, Treasurer is Tim Cahoon and Secretary is Pat Barry.
Lenox Sportsmen’s Club: President is Tom Ferguson, VP is Mark Jester, Treasurer is Bernie Abramson and Secretary is Derek Dubin.
Stockbridge Sportsmen’s Club: President is Rob McDermott, 1st VP is Wayne Myers, 2nd VP is John Mange, Treasurer is Bonnie Buffoni and Secretary is David St Peter

Lee Sportsmen’s Association: President is Cliff White, VP is George Brooks, the Treasurer position is unfilled, and Secretary is John Polastri.

Cheshire Rod & Gun Club: President is Bill Bolotin, VP is Glenn Reynolds, Treasurer is Rick Gurneyand and Secretary is Chris Smith.

Adams Outdoor for Youth: President is Jody Goff, VP is Mike LeFebvre, Treasurer is Tom Tinney and Secretary is Kaitlyn Kline.

East Mountain Sportsmen’s Club: President is Steve Haskins, VP is Wayne Mclain, Treasurer is Travis McCarthy and Secretary is Kris Kirby.

Sheffield Sportsmen’s Club: President is Robby Brownson, VP is Jim Olmstead, Treasurer is Lee Donsbough and Secretary is Ryan Shimmon

Onota Fishing Club: President is Edward Blake, Treasurer is Chuck Lennon and Sergeant-at- Arms is Dick Barns.

Alford Brook Club: President is Earl Albert, VP is Ray Murray, treasurer is Dr. Bruce Person r and Secretary is Attorney Ed McCormic.

Berkshire County League of Sportsmen: President is Michael Kruszyna, VP is Wayne Mclain, Treasurer is Dan Kruszyna and Secretary is me. Those who serve as delegates to the Mass Sportsmen’s Council, GOAL and the NRA and who must travel considerable distances to attend monthly meetings are Clem Caryofilles, Mark Jester, Pete McBride and Gary Wilk.

Many thanks to all the dedicated members. My apologies for any errors or omissions.

Summer Sizzler winners

The winners of the Cheshire Rod & Gun Club Summer Sizzler drawing are: Grand Prize – Terry Miller, 2nd Prize – Lou Puleri, 3rd Prize – Joanne Farrell, 4th Prize – Pete Skowronski and 5th Prize – Clem Caryofilles.
Deer Antlerless Permits
The deadline to apply for an Antlerless Deer Permit is July 16. There is no fee to apply but a $5 fee is charged if you are awarded a permit during the Instant Award Period starting August 1.
Thank you Massachusetts waterfowl hunters!
According to MassWldlife, since 1975, you’ve contributed over $1.7million in Massachusetts Waterfowl Stamp funds to Ducks Unlimited. An additional $15million has been leveraged by DU, other states, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to secure and restore over 18,307 acres of waterfowl habitat across New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador. The Estabrooks Marsh in New Brunswick at the head of the Bay of Fundy was recently dedicated to Massachusetts by Ducks Unlimited Canada in “recognition of this important partnership.”

Help bats by reporting colonies
If you see a colony of bats, MassWildlife asks that you let them know. They are studying bat colonies to see how many have survived after the onset of White-nose Syndrome, a deadly disease affecting hibernating bats. They believe that monitoring leads to advances in conservation and management for endangered bat species, ensuring protection and security of the colonies. E-mail Jennifer Longsdorf (jennifer.longsdorf@state.ma.us) to report a bat colony and include the address, location, type of structure where the colony was found (tree or building), and approximately how many bats are in the colony. Ten or more bats make up a colony. Your help is greatly appreciated.
Since the onset of White-nose Syndrome in Massachusetts, the state’s population of bats has dwindled to less than 1% of what it was. They cite one abandoned mine where almost every bat hibernating over the 2008/2009 winter died from White-nose Syndrome. Some 10,000 bats dropped to just 14 in the span of a single season. White-nose Syndrome is caused by a fungus that grows on cave-hibernating bats during the winter. The growing fungus rouses the bats from hibernation, causing them to use up precious fat stores before fully waking in the spring, leading to starvation. As a result of the drastic mortality from White-nose Syndrome, all species of cave-hibernating bats are listed as Endangered in Massachusetts.
MassWildlife named two species of bats, the Little Brown Bat and the Big Brown Bat which have summer colonies in Massachusetts. These colonies may be found in trees, buildings, or houses. The Little Brown Bat also hibernates in caves during the winter, where it can contract White-nose Syndrome. Before White-nose Syndrome occurred in Massachusetts, the Little Brown Bat was the most common bat species in the state. MassWildlife is especially interested in learning how surviving colonies of Little Brown Bats have persisted despite White-nose Syndrome, including the size and location of their colonies.
This summer, they will be banding Little Brown Bats, and tagging all females with radio transmitters to help them locate maternity colonies. They will also be doing surveys, site visits to bat colonies, and monitoring any newly discovered maternity colonies to determine colony size, site ownership, and security. Monitoring long-term population changes will greatly help them understand the survival of Little Brown Bats. This work will also be used in future recovery efforts.
Don’t worry about your hunting and fishing license fees going toward this bat study. According to Marion E. Larson Chief, Information & Education for the MA Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, they received a grant to study them and contractors to do the work. They simply need locations for the contractors to visit.
I hope they are successful in their recovery efforts. I miss these little critters especially when fishing near water bodies at twilight hours. Who can forget their kamikaze style dives toward us, and our wondering if they will pull up before smacking our heads. Oh sure, some women don’t miss them at all because of the rumor of them flying into and getting tangled in their hair. I wonder, is there any truth to that rumor?
Two comical events come to mind when I think about them. One occurred many years ago when my fishing buddy Jerry Zink and I were teenagers. We were bass fishing at night from a boat on Laurel Lake. In those days, we rented an old clunker wooden boat from Bing Miller and would row and fish all night. It was fun. We would cast our plugs into the darkness, hear them plop into the water and then work the plugs toward us. There was concern when we cast out the plugs and did not hear the plop. That usually meant that we were too close to shore and the plug landed in a tree. Barring that event, every now and then we would hear a loud splash and we would set the hook. We couldn’t see whose plug was hit so both of us reacted. One of us usually landed a good sized largemouth bass.
One night, while reeling in my plug, I sensed something was wrong. The plug didn’t gurgle, sputter, pop or wobble like it should. After reeling in and holding the rod up in the dim moon light, I could see a leaf hanging from the plug, which happens occasionally. I was deeply engrossed in our conservation (probably about girls), when I reached up to pull the leaf off. I missed it, time and again. Frustrated, I asked Jerry to shine the flashlight on it. You guessed it. A bat was hanging from the plug and every time I reached to remove it, the bat would fly up in the air with the plug. To this day, Jerry and I still chuckle about that.
The other time was about 15 years ago. One evening, a buddy Doug Yates from Dalton and I were flyfishing the East Branch of the Westfield River in Chesterfield, MA. Doug was fishing downstream from me, and over the sound of the river, I could hear him shouting. He appeared to be fighting a fish and because he was shouting to catch my attention, I assumed he had a good one on. But something was wrong. Instead of his rod bending down toward the water, it was bent up and the line going in a circle over his head.
Well, you guessed it again. While his fly was mid-air from a cast, a bat came along and snatched it. Now that’s what I call a good fly imitation! Every now and then, Doug and I chuckle over that, too.
Gosh, I hope my fishing stories involving bats haven’t ended.

Record turnout for Jimmy Fund Derby

On Saturday, June 3,  the 25th Annual Harry A. Bateman Memorial Fishing Derby on Onota Lake took place.  Eagle Reporter Derek Gentile did an excellent job of reporting the event with a picture and a listing of the winners.  (June 10, 2017 Berkshire Eagle, “Fishing derby lures hundreds”.  There is no need to repeat that information here, but I would like to mention or re-emphasis a few interesting tidbits.

 

According to Derby Organizer Stephen Bateman, “Despite the weather and the fact that the lake was treated for weeds, we had a record turn-out of 286 fisherman and about another 30+ people who attended.”  It was a very positive and upbeat event, with lots of fish weighed in, lots of prizes doled out and lots of good food.

 

Brendan Monahan, Development Officer for Event Fundraising at Dana Farber Cancer Institution in Boston, attended the event and presented awards to Steve and many of the derby staff.  In his speech, Monahan noted that over the 25 years of the derbies, $42,000 had been raised for the Jimmy Fund.  Well, as a result of this successful derby,  another $6,000 was added.

 

I must admit; however, that at times my thoughts were somewhere else.  I couldn’t help but think about the herbicides, with their harmful ingredients, that were applied just two days prior to this popular derby to raise funds for cancer research.  Really?

 

Another derby that took place on June 3 was the annual Youth Outreach Fishing Derby on Reynolds Pond in Cheshire.  This year, Deacon Robert Sams brought 13 kids from the First Baptist Church in Pittsfield and Alex Doherty brought 10 kids from the Northern Berkshire Community Coalition.  Most of the kids, ages 6 to 14 years old had never fished before.  The look of glee on the face of the featured young lad is an indication of the wonderful, memorable day that was had.  Every kid caught some nice sized brook trout.

 

It was all made possible by the Berkshire County League of Sportsmen.  It provided the mentors, equipment, bait, lots of brook trout and tasty food.  It also provided fish cleaning service and afterwards, sent the kids home with new fishing outfits and bags of fish for tasty meals.

 

This year’s volunteers comprised of members from the Lenox Sportsmen’s Club, Pittsfield Sportsmen’s Club, Taconic Chapter of Trout Unlimited, Cheshire Rod & Gun Club, Adams Outdoor for Youth, East Mountain Sportsmen’s Club, Greylock Bass Club, Ashfield Rod & Gun Club and the Berkshire Beagle Club.  A couple of guys from the Berkshire Lodge of Masons did the cooking.  I’ll bet these volunteers had just as much fun as the kids.

 

So why so late in reporting these derbies?  I was away flyfishing the AuSable River near Lake Placid, NY for a few days with Paul Knauth of Hinsdale and Allen Gray of Pittsfield.  It rained  most of the time and the river was running high.  Never-the-less, it was an enjoyable trip with all of us catching trout.  I have been fishing that river annually for over 30 years but never saw a brown trout caught the size that Paul landed this year.  It was a 22-inch fish which was lightly hooked in the lip.  It zoomed away in a flash when Paul released it.

 

Basic Hunter Education Course

All first-time hunters who wish to purchase a Massachusetts hunting or sporting license must complete a Basic Hunter Education course.    One will be taught at the Worthington Rod & Gun Club, 458 Dingle Road Rte. 112 – Worthington, MA., on the following dates:  July 24, 25, 27 and 28 from 5:30 to 9:00 PM.  Participants must attend all class dates and times to successfully complete the course.  To enroll, call (508)389-7830.

 

License to Carry Courses

The Lenox Sportsmen’s Club will be holding LTC and “Utah” Firearm Permit courses on  Saturday, June 25 from 10:00AM to 2:00PM. The LTC course costs $70.00, the Utah course costs $120, or $150 for both.  Pre-registration required.   Contact Tom Nadolny at 413-822-6451 or tnadolny1@gmail.com.rice/25 price is $70 for LTC. $125 for UTAH & $150 for both is $70 for LTC. $125 for UTAH & $150 for both

 

Wild Turkey Surveys

MassWildlife conducts the Annual Turkey Brood Survey from June 1 through August 31 each year to estimate the number of turkeys. The survey helps its biologists determine productivity and compare long-term reproductive success while providing an estimate of fall harvest potential. Turkey nesting success can vary annually in response to weather conditions, predator populations, and habitat characteristics. Citizen involvement in this survey is a cost-effective means of gathering useful data.  It’s not too late to participate.

 

MassWildlife advises us to be sure to look carefully when counting turkey broods, the very small poults may be difficult to see in tall grass or brush.

 

New this year, observations can now be reported online.  Simply fill in all the information and click submit and your turkey observations will be logged by MassWildlife. You can still download and print a Turkey Brood Survey form to complete over the course of the summer. Completed forms should to be mailed after August 31st to: Brood Survey, MassWildlife Field Headquarters, 1 Rabbit Hill Road, Westborough, MA 01581.   If you’ve submitted your observations online, do not mail in duplicate observations.

 

Bald Eagles

Staying with big birds, MassWildlife Western District Supervisor Andrew Madden recently reported to the Berkshire County League of Sportsmen that it looks like another difficult year for Western District birds.  It appears that nests in Pittsfield, Great Barrington, Richmond, Russell and Lenox all failed to produce young. A combination of adult bird mortality, severe weather and other unknown variables are likely to blame. Western District Staff will be checking nests to see if they can find clues as to what happened.

New book published on fishing the Cape Cod Canal

How many times have you fishermen traveled over the Saginaw or Bourne Bridge on your way to surf cast for striped bass near Wellfleet on Cape Cod Bay or Race Point near Provincetown?  Traveling up Rte 6, have you ever peered at the Cape Cod Canal and wondered what the fishing was like there?  Were you ever tempted to stop and fish it but just didn’t know enough about it?  Maybe it is good that you didn’t stop because the fishing gear that you took along probably wasn’t adequate to land those big stripers in the Canal’s strong current.  That’s according to D.J. Muller who recently authored a new book entitled “Fishing the Cape Cod Canal, A Surfcaster’s guide to Stripers.”

 

The Canal, which is 7 miles long and 480 feet wide, connects Buzzard’s Bay to the south and west to Cape Cod Bay to the north and east and purportedly offers the striped bass fisherman unparalleled opportunities—a fishery unlike any to be found on any coast.  Before fishing the Canal or “the Ditch” one should know and understand the tides and migration patterns and how they affect the fishery.  One should also know what type of fishing tackle and lures to use.  According to Muller, your normal salt water rod, reel, line and lures probably won’t hold these 30, 40 or 50 lb fish which know how to use the strong currents and tides to their advantage.  He also explains the various methods of fishing the Canal.

 

I know one thing for sure, after reading this book, I would never use my regular surf casting gear in that canal.  A much heavier rod, reel and line are needed.  I could probably get away with using my lures, but would have to change out the hooks to heavier ones, as the author suggests.

 

And even if you had the necessary equipment, do you know where to fish?  Well, Muller covers that, too.  He doesn’t give away his secret spots but does recommend some storied locations on its banks.  He is a recognized authority on Northeast surfcasting who has been fishing the Ditch for over 15 years.  He is the author of The Surfcaster’s Guide to the Striper Coast, Striper Strategies and Striper Tales.

 

It is a clear, concise, no-nonsense, well written book.  I suspect that after reading this book, you wont head for the Cape to do some striper fishing without taking it along.

 

The book was published by Burford Books.   It is a 120 page paperback book which won’t break the bank at $14.95.  What a great gift for Father’s Day, and you know he won’t have it yet as it was just published this past May 27.  It should be available at bookstores, online book retailers, tackle and specialty shops or from the publisher, Burford Books (www.burfordbooks.com).

 

Fishing Derbies

The Berkshire Hatchery Foundation in Hartsville-New Marlborough is having a free children’s fishing derby next Saturday, June 10 from 9 to 10:30AM at its lower pond.  Children aged 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult.

 

Trout Stockings

Depending on the hatchery, staff, weather, water conditions, etc., the following waters may have been stocked last week: Otis Reservoir, Onota Lake, Westfield River in Becket, Middlefield, Chester and Huntington and the Green River in Alford, Egremont and Great Barrington.

 

Forest Tour

A  Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) Bureau of Forestry Pre-Harvest Forest Tour will take place at the Pittsfield State Forest in Lanesborough tomorrow from 4:00 PM – 5:30 PM. DCR Forester Kevin Podkowka, will be leading a tour of the Potter Mountain – Lanesborough Timber Sale where he will discuss forest management techniques in a predominantly northern hardwood forest, provide a view of the trees designated for harvest, and explain how harvest operations will take place. A detailed silviculture prescription for the harvesting operation will be provided to attendees.

 

The meeting place is the parking area for Potter Mountain Road, Pittsfield State Forest in Lanesborough.  The tour will be conducted rain or shine. Attendees are encouraged to dress for the weather and to wear sturdy shoes. For additional information about the tours and DCR forest management on state forests, parks, and reservations,contact William Hill, Management Forestry Program Supervisor, at (413) 545-3891.

 

The Housatonic Valley Association

(HVA) recently announced the opening of a new floating dock which is located at the end of Park Street, just beyond Stockbridge Town Park. A new sign featuring a map of the local water trail, points of interest, and safety tips marks the entry to the dock The new dock is designed to provide easy access for paddlers of all abilities, giving a safer approach to the water over a treaded walkway and featuring a roller-entry system that makes it easier for paddlers to get their crafts into and out of the water. The launch location is convenient for destinations such as Goodrich Memorial Footbridge, the Mary Flynn Trail, Laura’s Tower, Willow Mill Dam, or (downriver) the Glendale Dam. “The absolute best way to connect with the river is to spend some time paddling it,” says HVA Berkshires Director Dennis Regan. “HVA’s mission of protecting the river and its surroundings begins with providing more opportunities for people to experience it up close. We hope this new dock will be the starting point for many lifelong adventures.” Onyx Specialty Papers, Berkshire Bank, TD Charitable Foundation, Fields Pond Foundation, Canyon Ranch and the Red Lion Inn were sponsors of the project.  Also, the citizens of Stockbridge, through the Community Preservation Committee, provided the major contribution for this project. Fundraising and project management were provided by the HVA.

 

Incidentally, the HVA recently moved to a new office which is located at the Merwin House, 14 Main Street, Stockbridge.  Stop in check it out some time.

 

Its fishing derby time

The 25th Annual Harry A. Bateman Memorial Jimmy Fund Fishing Derby will take place on Saturday, June 3, at the Frank Controy Pavilion at Onota Lake in Pittsfield from 6:00 AM to 12:00 PM. No fishing license is required because it is Free Fishing Weekend for the state of Massachusetts.

 

The derby’s purpose is to raise money for the Jimmy Fund – Dana Farber Cancer Institute For Children.  All of the proceeds will be donated to the Jimmy Fund in memory of Harry A. Bateman a former member of Central Berkshire Bowmen and I.U.E. Local 255 who was well known throughout Berkshire County and who became a victim of cancer in 1992.

 

Many trophies and prizes will be given out to the adult and youth winners of the fishing derby.   There is even a special category for those fishing with a bow & arrow. All fish must be weighed in at 12:00 PM and can be caught at Onota Lake from boat or shore. Fishing tackle is given with the trophy prizes and 2 prizes for heaviest trout.  A sportsman award, which includes a tackle box with over $100 of tackle, is given out to a child

 

Fee is $10 for adults and $5 for children 14 years old and younger and it includes food and beverages. No alcohol is served at this event.   All children receive a free gift and they get a chance at winning a mountain bike. The carp shoot is part of the fishing derby because that was something that Harry enjoyed.   Advanced tickets may be purchased at Avid Sports, Dave’s Sporting Goods, Maces Marine and Onota Boat Livery.

 

Stockbridge Sportsmen’s Club Fishing Derbies

Seventy seven anglers participated in the Stockbridge Sportsmen’s Club (SSC) Spring Derby which was held last Sunday at Stockbridge Bowl.  According to Club spokesman Tim Minkler, it was cold in the morning but warmed up in the afternoon.   The derby results were:  $100 Winners: Largest Trout:  John Herrington, Richmond, (4 lb, 6 oz., 20 ½ “ Brown Trout.  Wow!)  Largest Bass: John Nemec, Westfield, (3 lbs., 5 oz., 18”), Largest Pickerel: John Jones, Lee, (3 lbs., 12 oz., 24”), Largest Bullhead: Seth Slemp, Lee, (1 lb., 5 oz., 13”).

Age 12 and under Winners:  Largest Pickerel:   1st Blake Cella, Lenox, (1 lb., 11 oz., 20 1/2”)  2nd Mitchell Keenan, Lee, (1 lb., 15 ½”)  Age 8, Largest Trout:   1st Thomas Koldys, Housatonic (1 lb., 14 oz., 15 ½”) Age 11,  2nd Blake Cella, Lenox, (1 lb. 5 oz., 16”) Age 12.

The SSC also recently held its Kids Fishing Derby (for SSC Club members and their family age 12 and younger) at Minkler Pond.  There, 2 year old Dominic Curtin of Tyringham took 1st prize by catching a 19 inch, 2 lb 10 oz rainbow trout.  Son of Josh and Eden Curtin, he is on a roll.  Last year he also came in 1st for his age group and now is the reigning champ two years in a row.   Bass FishingOn Sunday, May 14, bass fishing was pretty good at the Greylock Bass Club Tournament on Congamond Lakes in Southwick, MA.  Only 1.5 oz decided 1st and 2nd places and 5 oz between 4 th and 5th.  Joe Chague took 1st place with a total weight of 14 lbs 6.5 oz.  The 2nd place winner was Mike Naventi with 14 lbs 5 oz,   3rd was Dave Behnam (DJ) with 13 lbs 6 oz, 4th was Dan Miraglia with 10 lbs 3.5 oz and 5th was Carlos Torra with 10 lb 3 oz.  The Lunker Largemouth Bass, which weighed 3 lb 10 oz was taken by Joe Chague.  After official weigh-in, all bass were returned safely to the waters.

Family Fun Day

Next Saturday, from 10 AM to 4 PM, Mass Audubon at Pleasant Valley welcomes all to its Family Fun Day, its annual day of fun and learning for people of all ages.

 

There will be kids’ crafts and educational exhibits by Berkshire Environmental Action Team, Housatonic Valley Association, Flying Deer, and Northern Berkshire Beekeepers Association.  At 10:00 am there will be Fiddle Tunes with Eric Buddington, at 10:30 am an “Owl’s for Tots” presentation, at 11:30 am and 1:30 pm an Eyes on Owls presentation show.  From 11:30 am to1:30 pm lunch from Lucia’s Empanadas, available for purchase, and at 3:00 pm, Tom Tyning’s “Fantastic Frogspresentation..   Snacks will be available for purchase

 

Trout stockings

The following waters were scheduled to be stocked during the week of May 15 – 19:  Deerfield River in Buckland, Charlemont and Florida; Chickley River in Charlemont and Hawley; Cold River in Charlemont and Florida; Westfield River in Chesterfield, Cummington, Huntington and Russell; Walker Brook in Becket and Chester; Sackett Brook in Dalton and Pittsfield; Littleville Reservoir in Chesterfield and Huntington; North Pond in Florida, Upper Highland Lake in Goshen, Bennett Brook and Plunkett Reservoir in Hinsdale, Norwich Pond in Huntington, Lake Buel, Onota Lake, Ashfield Pond  in Ashfield and Windsor Pond in Windsor.

 

The following waters were scheduled to be stocked last week:  All branches of the Westfield River in Huntington, Chesterfield, Cummington, Becket, Middlefield, Russell, Worthington, Savoy and Windsor; Littleville Reservoir in Chester and Huntington, Deerfield River in Buckland, Charlemont and Florida; Laurel Lake, Onota Lake, Otis Reservoir, North Pond, Lake Buel, Goose Pond, Housatonic River C&R in Lee, Windsor Pond, Pontoosuc Lake, Plunkett Reservoir, Stockbridge Bowl and Richmond Pond.