Fresh-caught walleye and yellow perch conjure up images of delicious fried fish dinners for most of us, but are these and other species caught from Lake Erie safe to eat? In many cases yes, but not all species are created equal.
The same can be said for the location they were caught from. The New York State Department of Health released a pamphlet and map for Western New York titled "Health Advice on Eating Fish You Catch 2011-2012." Fish often are considered a healthy choice of protein, loaded with essential nutrients, healthy fish oils and are low in saturated fat. However, some fish contain contaminates and can pose a risk to certain people and specific age groups. The at-risk groups are usually children under the age of 15 and women of child-bearing age under the age of 50. The recent study recommends that no fish should be eaten from Eighteen Mile Creek or Cayuga Creek, in Niagara County, by anyone.
Lake Ontario fish have a number of limitations on species and sizes as well as how many meals should be eaten per month. Eating Carp is not recommended if caught from the Buffalo River and harbor, or the Niagara River. With those exceptions, generally speaking men over 15-years-of-age and women over 50 can eat four meals of fish per month, but they should limit the consumption of bottom feeders and larger salmonids. In general, for eating healthier, skin any fish you intend to eat and cook. Remove any fat and use a shallow "V' cut to remove the dark tissue that runs along the length of fish referred to as the lateral line. Broiling, grilling and baking fish help remove much of the natural fats in the fish. And do not use the drippings in sauces or gravys. Keep your catch cold and your hands clean when cooking them. For more information, visit www.health.ny.gov/fish. For more fish information, call (800) 458-1158 and for the Region 9 DEC office call, (716) 851-7010. For the Allegany Sub-Office, call (716) 372-0645.
OBSERVER Photo by Gene Pauszek
Judy Bohn and Chris Sell enjoy a spectacular sunset over the Dunkirk Harbor on Saturday evening.
S.A.R.E.P. Youth Fly fishing Program will start its 14th season on Monday October 3, at 7 p.m., in the Fredonia Middle School cafeteria. Fly tying/fishing classes will occur every Monday from 7-8:30 p.m., with field trips scheduled periodically during the spring and fall. Classes will be canceled when the school is closed. Classes are free to all children in the Northern Chautauqua Region with all gear and materials provided. Just show up. Children under the age of 12 must be accompanied by an adult. This program also plays host to the Canadaway Creek Conservation Program and the Brook Trout Restoration Program for Canadaway Creek. The S.A.R.E.P. program is coordinated by Alberto Rey, Distinguished SUNY Professor of Visual Arts and New Media, 301 Rockefeller Arts Center, Fredonia.
The Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge will present its 38th annual Young Waterfowlers program Saturday, Oct. 1. This will be orientation classes to prepare for the Refuge Youth Hunt, held at the refuge headquarters, located at 1101 Casey Road, Alabama, N.Y.
From 9 a.m.-noon, there will be a NYS sanctioned Waterfowl Identification class for those who do not already have a Waterfowl ID certificate. From 12:30-3 p.m., the class will cover decoys, the use of calls, ballistics, equipment, hunter ethics and safety. This session is mandatory unless the applicant has been through the class at least twice. Space is limited to 25 participants with preference given to first-timers. Deadline for registration is Sept. 19. You can request an application by mail, phone, in person or email at firstname.lastname@example.org A PDF version form can be downloaded and printed from the web: www.fws.gov/forms/3-2355.pdf, or by following a link on the refuge Web site www.fws.gov/northeast/iroquois.
Note the hunt date is Oct. 23. Any questions, call the refuge staff at 585-948-5445.
The Friends of the NRA banquet will be held at the Samuel Derby VFW Post in Frewsburg, on Oct. 8.
Falconer Rod & Gun Club will host a trapping course Sept. 21 from 6-10 p.m., returning Sept. 23 from 6-10 p.m. Register at the first class. Bear Lake Rod & Gun Club will host a trapping course Oct. 13 from 5:30-10 p.m., returning Oct. 14. Pre-register by phone by calling Roger Witt at 595-3418
Gene Pauszek is an OBSERVER outdoors columnist. Send comments to email@example.com.
The West Portland Baptist Church will sponsor its annual Sportsman's Dinner on Friday, Oct. 7, at the Fireman's Exempt Hall, located on Bourne Street in Westfield. The event will feature a dinner of sloppy Joe's and an assortment of wild game dishes with a boost from many of the homemade dishes prepared by the folks from the West Portland Baptist Church. In addition, Charles Alsheimer, the noted field editor for Deer & Deer Hunting Magazine and the host of the Deer & Deer Hunting TV show on Versus Channel, will be the guest speaker, possibly previewing his new book titled "A Photographic Journey Through the Seasons."
This enjoyable evening is presented in a family atmosphere and is all free. However, you most order tickets in advance by calling the church at 326-3417, or e-mail your request to firstname.lastname@example.org. Remember to specify the number of tickets you will require.
If your club is hosting an event which pertains to the outdoors and you would like to pass along the information, or your favorite hunter/fisherperson has a good story to share, contact the OBSERVER at 366-3000, ext. 5 after 5 p.m.