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Thaw should open up area streams

Sportsman’s Journal

Monday night free fly-tying classes have returned at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club and Tuesday evening at SUNY Fredonia. OBSERVER Photo by Gene Pauszek.

Ice has returned for the eighth time this year to Chautauqua Lake, according to Skip Bianco at Hogan’s Hut/Stow. As of Wednesday afternoon, anglers were having success on the north side of Bemus Point and Bemus Bay, targeting crappie and bluegills. Prendergast and north of the bridge to Celeron had reports of thin ice cover, but Wednesday evening might generate thicker ice. A word of warning, however, a warm spell is in the long range forecast for next week.

Jim Markham at the Department of Environmental Conservation Fisheries station located in Dunkirk did offer some good news. That thaw should open up the area streams and creeks generating a fresh run of trout. This time period has historically been a good time for trout fishermen, so get ready. Rick Miller in Irving reports that the smaller hard bottom streams have seen some trout action, and one angler has been reporting trout success utilizing live shiners near the mouth at Canadaway, weather permitting. Dunkirk Harbor has been slow lately with high/stained water conditions and little bait activity.

Calendar: Trappers note that there will be a raw fur auction at the Hindsdale Firehall located at 3832 Main Street, Hindsdale NY on Saturday, Feb. 15. The check-in is after 7 a.m. with the auction to start at 10 a.m. Note that the early report is that coyote furs have been fetching the highest price. Even damaged coyote fur is wanted.

The Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club is looking for people interested in learning how to tie their own fishing flies. Several advanced fly-tiers will be on hand to give individual attention to persons who would like to learn this hobby. All materials and equipment are provided free. The learning area is secure and a controlled environment from 6 until 8 p.m. You get to keep what you make. Refreshments are usually provided and always free. No experience necessary, no sign up required. Just show up and have fun. This would be a great opportunity for scout leaders to bring the young ones in for a great learning experience. Call 366-1772 days if you need more information or a contact number.

The Con Club annual Sportsman’s Party will be this Saturday, Feb. 1, starting at 5 p.m. Anyone who was entered in the fishing or hunting contest is invited free. Bring a dish to pass. Prizes will be awarded that same evening. You can also attend by paying $10 per person. Call 366-1772 for information.

The Con Club will also be having a “Fisherman’s Flea Market” offering used fishing items at great prices on Sunday, Feb. 9. Open to the public. Sale items will include lures, rod and reels, ice fishing gear, decoys, rod holders, just to name a few.

There will be a Pistol Permit Course at the Con Club on Saturday, Feb. 22 from 2:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. There is an $80 fee for this course. Contact Gary Dudek at 366-3397 for information.

Upcoming Gun Shows: March 7-8 at the Hickory Post VFW, located at 5550 East State Street (US Route 62, East of PA 18, West of Mercer on 62) Hermitage, PA, 16148. Times are Saturday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., and Sunday 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

March 21-22, 2020 at the Harborcreek Fire Dept. Social Hall, located 7275 Buffalo Road, Harborcreek, PA, 16421 (Located US Route 20 between North East, PA and Harborcreek, PA). Times are Saturday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., and Sunday 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

April 18-19 at the Ashtabula County Fairgrounds. The show is located at the Ashtabula County Expo Center Building at 127 North Elm Street, Jefferson, OH, 44047. Times are Saturday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., and Sunday 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. For more information on any upcoming show listed call Larry Spicer at 792-9972.

The 2020 Friends of the NRA banquet will be held on Saturday February 29 at the American Legion Samuel Derby Post 556 located at 9 Meadow Lane Frewsburg. Door open at 4:30 p.m. Live auction. dinner, huge raffle. Call Jennifer Schmitt at 487-2487 or go to chautauquacountyfriendsofnra@yahoo.com.

The Northern Chautauqua Ducks Unlimited Annual Banquet and Live Auction will be held on Saturday, March 7 at the Blessed Mary Angela Parish Social Center located at 324 Townsend St. Dunkirk. Doors opens at 5 p.m. and dinner at 6 p.m. There will be a raffle and live auction. For tickets and information call Ronald Romance at 969-5166 or visit www.ducks.org/new.york/events.

There will be an Outdoor Show at the Salamanca Casino on Feb. 29 and March 1. For your convenience, a pistol clerk will be on hand during the event if you decide to purchase any firearms.

Children in the Stream will present weekly free fly-tying classes every Tuesday from 7 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. in the Costello Room in the Rockefeller Art Center at the State University of New York Fredonia, The group has resumed activities on January 27 after a short recess over the Christmas Holidays. Children ages 12 and up, including adults are welcome and encouraged to attend. All tools and material will be provided for free. Contact Alberto Rey for more information at 410-7003 or go to Alberto@albertorey.com

Southtowns Walleye Outfitters Fair will be on Feb. 8 at the club. To sell items, it costs $25 per table. Call 796-5372 or 864-2938. No guns or ammunition.

If your club or organization is holding a hunter safety training/trapping course or a turkey shoot or any other outdoors event, and would like to see it posted in the calendar, send information to the OBSERVER, 10 East Second Street, Dunkirk, NY 14048, or call the sports department at 366-3000 ext. 5 after 6 p.m.

Note: If you have a big game fishing or trapping success story you would like to share, call 366-1772, or 467-2079 and leave a name, phone number and a time you can be reached. You can also call 366-3000, ext. 5, after 6 p.m. or email sports@observertoday.com.

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