TOWN OF RICHLAND, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) Division of Law Enforcement had a busy couple of weeks last month busting anglers after hours.

One of those fishing compliance checks happened in the Town of Richland in Oswego County where a group of 11 anglers were ticketed for fishing at night on the Salmon River.

Last month, on Sept. 22, Environmental Conservation Police Officer Grogan received a call around 2:30 a.m. of a large group of anglers at the Black Hole, which is a popular location for fishing along the Salmon River.

According to the NYSDEC, fishing is not permitted at night along the Salmon River.

Before he left, ECO Grogan called ECOs Brown and Zullo for assistance, and upon arrival he immediately noticed an individual in the parking lot who was serving as a lookout for the anglers.

To watch what was happening but avoid the lookout area, ECO Grogan remained hidden and used thermal night vision to watch as anglers attempted to blind snatch salmon from the river.

Once ECO Brown and Zullo arrived, ECOs Grogan and Brown surprised the men, ordering them to place their fishing gear on the ground as ECO Zullo gathered salmon already on stringers.

Officers Grogan, Brown and Zullo apprehended 11 anglers and issued 26 tickets for violations including the following:

  • Possession of weighted hooks
  • Snag hooks
  • Snatching
  • Fishing after hours
  • Failure to possess a fishing license

“DEC Environmental Conservation Police Officers and Investigators work hard each day to serve their communities, protect our precious natural resources, and safeguard public health, while ensuring those who break the state’s stringent Environmental Conservation Laws are held accountable,” DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said. “In partnership with local, state, and federal law enforcement, DEC looks forward to continuing to support the work our ECOs perform in every corner of New York.” 

To contact an ECO to report an environmental crime or to report an incident, call 1-844-DEC-ECOS for 24-hour dispatch or email (for non-urgent violations).