DEC Opening Thousands of Acres of Restricted Wetlands in New York For 16 Days
Thousands of acres of land in Upstate New York that is normally closed to the public, will be open for 16 days only.
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is opening several Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) usually restricted to the public in Jefferson and St. Lawrence counties.
Restricted Wetlands Open
The Upper and Lower Lakes, Wilson Hill, and Perch Lake, including the posted refuge or wetland restricted areas, will be open from Tuesday, August 16, to Wednesday, August 31, 2022, from sunrise to sunset. Perch River in Jefferson County will also be open to visitors with one exception; Perch Lake will be open daily from noon to sunset.
Portions of these WMAs are marked as a refuge or wetland restricted area and are closed to the public most of the year to allow waterfowl and other listed species to breed and raise young without human interference.
8,000 acres in the towns of Brownville, Orleans, and Pamelia can be accessed from State Route 12, and Allen, Buckminster, Vaadi, and Perch Lake roads. The Perch Lake proper (accessed by Perch Lake Road) will be open from noon until sunset each day. Fishing will be allowed, but motorized boats will not.
Two miles west of the village of Canton along State Route 68 in St. Lawrence County is the largest WMA in the region, covering 8,770 acres of upland/wetland areas between the Grasse and Oswegatchie rivers.
Wilson Hill is approximately six miles west of the village of Massena off State Route 37, along the St. Lawrence River. The 4,000-acre area consists of several large pools of open water marsh bordered by a combination of dense cattails, brushy wetlands, forest, and upland meadows. Fishing will not be allowed in Nichols Pool.
The DEC may be conducting projects throughout the 16-day period. Visitors are asked to avoid any operating machinery and pay attention to temporary signage.