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CNB Hunting/Fishing Pennsylvania: Game Commission on Osprey Plan, Elk, and Waterfowl

Release #047-15

Draft plan is available for public review and comments will be accepted through Aug. 29. 6a00d8341bf7d953ef0120a6d2b7ab970b-800wi

The Pennsylvania Game Commission is seeking public input on its draft osprey recovery and management plan, which can be reviewed at the agency's website,

Public comments on the plan will be accepted through Aug. 29, and can be sent by email to; or by mail to Osprey Recovery and Management Plan, Pennsylvania Game Commission, 2001 Elmerton Avenue, Harrisburg, PA 17110-9797.

The plan can be accessed at both the Birding and Bird Conservation page and the Threatened and Endangered Species page at the Game Commission’s website. Both pages can be found under the Wildlife tab on the website’s homepage. From the pages, click on the link titled “Osprey Recovery and Management Plan,” which is found near the top of each page.


Developed by biologists within the agency’s Wildlife Diversity Division, the osprey recovery and management plan establishes management goals through 2025. The mission of this plan is to establish and maintain a stable population of breeding ospreys in Pennsylvania for current and future generations to enjoy. For recovery of its population, the plan sets a goal of at least 50 nesting pairs with at least four watershed-based population clusters of 10 pairs or more.  This goal was determined by comparing the amount of shallow water in Pennsylvania with states where the osprey recovery goals have been set, and in comparison with the bald eagle which was considered recovered with 150 active nesting pairs. The osprey is a fish-eating raptor strongly associated with the availability of shallow, still water.  

Based on the plan, if the goal is met for two consecutive surveys, a recommendation would be made to remove the osprey from the state’s threatened species list, and reclassify its status as “recovered.”


Release #048-15

Those looking to take part in Pennsylvania's 2015 hunt must submit applications by July 31.


Those whose names have been drawn will tell you – there’s nothing like the opportunity to pursue Pennsylvania’s elk.

But those who don’t act fast will miss out on their chance to participate in Pennsylvania’s 2015 elk hunt.The deadline to enter the annual drawing for elk licenses is July 31.

Game Commission Executive Director R. Matthew Hough urged hunters to be mindful of the deadline.“We have world-class elk here, and being selected for a license to hunt them represents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Hough said. “But you have to submit an application for a chance to take part and, remember, the clock is ticking.”

The drawing will be held Aug. 15 in Benezette, Pa. as part of the Pennsylvania Great Outdoors Elk Expo.Applications can be submitted anywhere hunting licenses are sold, or online at the Game Commission’s website, Perhaps the easiest way to submit an online application is by clicking on the “Elk Hunting” icon on the website’s homepage. Applicants must pay a $10.70 non-refundable application fee to be included in the drawing.

This year’s drawing provides a greater opportunity for hunters to obtain an elk license. The number of licenses to be allocated has been increased to 116, up from the 108 licenses issued in the 2014-15 season. On the date of the drawing, hunters will be selected for 21 licenses for antlered elk, or bulls, and 95 licenses for antlerless elk, or cows.

Individuals are not required to purchase a resident or nonresident general hunting license to apply for the drawing. However, hunters who are drawn for a license must hold a valid general hunting license and a valid elk license in order to hunt elk.


Release #049-15

This year's symposium to be held at Game Commission's Northwest Region office. 

Representatives of waterfowl organizations, interested hunters and the public are invited to attend a briefing on Friday, Aug. 7, co-sponsored by the Pennsylvania Game Commission and the Northwest Pennsylvania Duck Hunters Association, on the status of Atlantic Flyway waterfowl populations and proposed federal frameworks for the 2015-16 waterfowl hunting seasons.

The briefing will begin at 1 p.m., at the Game Commission’s Northwest Region office, 1509 Pittsburgh Road, Franklin.

In addition to reviewing frameworks established by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) for upcoming waterfowl and migratory bird seasons, Game Commission staff will provide updates on current and planned research and management programs, as well as past hunting results.

Public comments will be accepted at the meeting; or by sending a letter to: Pennsylvania Game Commission, Bureau of Wildlife Management, 2001 Elmerton Avenue, Harrisburg, PA 17110-9797; or via e-mail through

Based on public comments, Game Commission staff will prepare and present recommended waterfowl and migratory bird seasons, bag limits and related criteria to the USFWS for final approval.  

All migratory bird hunting seasons and bag limits must conform to frameworks set by the USFWS.  States select their hunting seasons within these established frameworks.

Meanwhile, early migratory bird hunting seasons – including September Canada goose, mourning dove, American woodcock and webless species – will be announced soon.

By mid-August, when the final selections are made, the Game Commission will issue a news release on the remaining hunting seasons for migratory birds.  The agency also will post the annual brochure outlining the seasons and bag limits for waterfowl and migratory bird seasons on the agency’s website (