DEC announces essay contest for hunting, trapping

Published Feb 4, 2018 at 9:00am

Do you have a great hunting or trapping tale?

Have you ever mentored a new hunter or trapper?

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) would like to hear your story. DEC is looking for hunters and trappers to share stories about their first memorable experience afield or an experience during which they introduced a new person to hunting or trapping.

Essays can be submitted in one of three categories:

Junior Youth Hunters/Trappers – currently in grade 6 through 8

Senior Youth Hunters/Trappers – currently in grade 9 through 12

Adult Hunters/Trappers – ages 18 and older

DEC will select the best essay in each category. Winners’ essays will appear in the 2018-19 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Guide, which is read by more than 500,000 people each year. The winners will each receive a $50 gift certificate to Cabela’s.


Essays should be non-fiction, original material (not previously published), and told from a first-person perspective. 500 words or less.

The DEC asks that people submit essays and accompanying photo(s) and submission forms electronically (e.g., PDF or Word document) to, subject line: Essay Contest.

Submissions with photos and submission forms can also be submitted in writing to: Game Management, Attn: Essay Contest, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4754.

If possible, the DEC asks that people include one to two photos of the author and/or subjects of the essay (e.g., friends, family) in the appropriate context (e.g., enjoying the outdoors).

Photos should be high-resolution, at least 1 MB in size. Please include the name of the photographer to receive credit.

If under age 18, essay and accompanying photo(s) must include permission for use from a parent or legal guardian (see link below).

Additional information and a submission form is available on DEC’s website ( or by calling (518) 402-8883.

Submissions must be post-marked by March 15, 2018.