Families Participate in Fishing and Archery, and Learn about Onondaga Lake Cleanup at New York State’s Largest Celebration of National Hunting and Fishing Day
A beautiful fall weekend drew thousands of Central New Yorkers to the 2015 Honeywell Sportsmen’s Days at Carpenter’s Brook, Sept. 26-27. The event, which showcases habitat and wildlife conservation activities, is held annually by the Onondaga County Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs and is a celebration of National Hunting and Fishing Day.
Left: Eight-year-old Mia Ennist and 7-year-old Christian Ennist, of Oswego, fish for trout at Honeywell Sportsmen’s Days. Right: Volunteer William Webster teaches 8-year-old Noah Taylor, of Liverpool, archery.
Attendees at Honeywell Sportsmen’s Days learned about progress achieved on habitat restoration as part of the Onondaga Lake cleanup. Fifty acres of new or enhanced wetlands are now providing a home for more than 166 species of fish, birds, and other wildlife. There has been a remarkable increase in the number of bald eagles using the lake; 79 have been spotted over the past 10 years. Left: Tien Larrivey, of Liverpool, learns about fish species in Central New York. Right: Bald eagles sit in a tree near Onondaga Lake. Photo by John Savage.
“Honeywell has worked with the Onondaga County Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs to create sustainable habitat in the Onondaga Lake watershed,” said Honeywell Syracuse Program Director John McAuliffe, pictured above (right) with Stephen Wowelko, past president of the Onondaga County Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs. “The federation’s expertise was essential to the design of habitat and wetlands that are now home to diverse wildlife species, including mink, wild turkey, bald eagles, northern pike, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, and snapping turtle. It’s great to see sportsmen pass their knowledge of habitat conservation to the younger generation.”
Honeywell Sportsmen’s Days attendees were invited to participate in the Onondaga Lake Conservation Corps. The Corps, winner of a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency 2015 Environmental Champion Award, was founded to inspire future environmental stewards through a hands-on, experience-based program that offers citizens and organizations the opportunity to participate in activities that help restore and sustain the Onondaga Lake watershed.
Left: Corps volunteer Phillip Bonn, of Fayetteville, removes invasive water chestnut from the Seneca River at a Corps event in August 2015. Right: Corps volunteers Sammie and her sister, Ali, of Manlius, work with their dad, Mark Bremer, to build a bird box at a Corps event in May 2015.
Local wildlife artists, woodsmen, authors, sportsmen, and Boy Scouts offered a number of outdoor activities including: canoeing, skeet shooting, waterfowl and turkey calling, archery, retriever dog demonstrations, crossbow, fly fishing, fly tying, muzzle loading, and trout fishing.
Left: State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY-ESF) woodsmen team member Michelle Vasiloff, of Hamburg, New York, demonstrates competition wood cutting. Right: Allan (front) and Soren enjoy canoeing with their parents, Gianna Commito and Scott Olson, of Kent, Ohio.
“Honeywell’s continuing support of Sportsmen’s Days is just a small part of the company’s overall commitment to improving the quality of life for Central New York residents,” said Onondaga County Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs President David Simmons, pictured above, left, with Matt Nies, of Cicero. “The Onondaga County Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs is proud that our input has been part of this continuing progress of habitat reclamation and restoration. It is absolutely amazing that so many native plant and animal species have rebounded so quickly because of Honeywell’s work.”
Other weekend events included guest appearances by conservation officers, forest rangers, and Eddie Eagle.
Left: Six-year-old David Perry, of Homer, learns how to fly fish with the help of a volunteer from Iroquois Trout Unlimited. Right: Lance Robson, a volunteer from the Falcon Sportsmen Club teaches Josh O’Connor, of Syracuse, how to use a crossbow.
For more information on the Onondaga Lake cleanup, please visit www.lakecleanup.com.
For more photographs of Honeywell Sportsmen’s Days at Carpenter’s Brook, click here.