NORWALK, Conn. – Waterfowl hunting has not been allowed at Calf Pasture Beach since May, Norwalk officials said Friday.
It’s also not allowed at Taylor Farm Park, and Veterans Memorial Park, Mayor Harry Rilling and State Sen. Bob Duff said at a press conference called to publicize the ban. Norwalk Police Chief Thomas Kulhawik and State Rep. Lucy Dathan (D-142) agreed that the ban is necessary to avoid frightening park goers. Dathan said that in this era of mass shootings, it’s important to avoid hysteria.
Video by Harold Cobin at end of story
Waterfowl hunting will be temporarily closed through May 31, 2020, in the area of Calf Pasture Beach, Taylor Farm Park, and Veterans Memorial Park, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) states on its website. The temporary closure applies from a distance 250 into Long Island Sound perpendicular to the shoreline, beginning at the easterly boundary of Taylor Farm Park and extending to the westerly boundary of Calf Pasture Beach Park, including the Norwalk River from the Washington St. Bridge to a line extending from the westerly boundary of Calf Pasture Beach to the easterly terminus of Neptune Ave.
Duff attempted to get legislation passed this year to ban hunting at Calf Pasture Beach. DEEP Commissioner Katie Dykes understands that the need for safety at the beach and instituted the temporary ban, Duff said Friday.
A letter from Kulhawik to Dykes helped get the ban. “I … believe it to be a safety issue to allow hunting in such close proximity to beach goers and children,” he wrote.
A DEEP spokeperson did not return a call from NancyOnNorwalk.
Hunting season for Canada Geese was set to begin Sept. 14 at Calf Pasture and all other designated hunting areas sound of I-95. The hunting seasons for other migratory birds are staggered throughout the fall.
Duff said he needs to find out from the DEEP commissioner what the consequences are for violating the moratorium. Kulhawik said he assumed if a Norwalk police officer encountered a hunter violating the ban, a DEEP officer would be called. He said the department has not firmed up its policy on this because duck hunting does not begin until next week.