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Chautauqua Lake is good for ice fishing

January 18, 2017
By Gene Pauszek - , Westfield Republican

That cold weather over the Jan. 28 weekend provided some nice ice cover on area inland lakes.

My contacts on Chautauqua Lake reported there was 5 to 6 inches of safe ice earlier in the week, but the Wednesday warm weather and rain left a lot of standing water on top of the ice and thinner ice towards the center of the lake. Long Point has been the focus of ice fishermen, as well as law enforcement. Lots of walleye were taken, but unfortunately anglers were taking "short fish" which are illegal. The size and creel limit on Chautauqua Lake is currently 18 inches minimum and a daily limit of three. Anglers may also want to be reminded that they need to have certified live bait. Make sure you ask for and retain your sales receipt. Anglers fishing closer to shore are locating crappie in 5 to 10 feet of water. The south end of the lake has thicker ice but has not been drawing much angler attention. Check ice conditions daily before heading out. Sunday is reported to have another warming trend. Area streams lately have been a No Go with the recent rainfall, working up the water clarity and moving a lot of ice down stream. Before the heavy rainfall, there were good reports coming from the mouth of Chautauqua Creek. There is no safe ice fishing in the Dunkirk Harbor, but Sunday saw a lot of temporary ice cover inside the breakwalls which has moved or disappeared as of Wednesday.


Article Photos

Photo by Gene Pauszek
Ducks and geese found a little bit of open water in Dunkirk close to shore during the weekend deep freeze.

His Way Archers located at 34 Ohio St., Jamestown started its youth archery program Saturday. The program runs the second and fourth Saturday mornings of the month. They have archery instruction for ages 6 to 18 years of age starting at 10 a.m. and ending at noon.

Equipment will be provided for those that need it. The cost is $5 per child. The range will be open to the public on these days starting at 12:30 p.m. For more information, call 484-7046 or 485-3598.

The Lakeshore Longbeards announced its annual membership/fundraiser will be held on Saturday, Jan. 21 at the Kosciuszko Club, located in Dunkirk. The next meeting of the Longbeards Committee will be Monday January 16 at 7 p.m. , at Liberty Vineyards. All are welcome to attend. For tickets, or more information, contact Gary Dudek at 366-3397, Gary Burmaster at 672-4520, Bob Turk at 934-4538 or Scott Dibble at 595-3897.

The Greater Niagara Fishing & Outdoor Expo will take place Jan. 20-22 at the Conference and Event Center Niagara Falls. Look for show information in the Sunday issue of the SJ. For more information, go to or call 278-2100.

Free Monday night fly tying classes have resumed at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club, located at the foot of Mullet Street, in Dunkirk. All materials, including tying vises, are provided free. The course is from 6-8 p.m. No sign up or registration is necessary. Students get to keep their flies, too. Bring a friend. Scout leaders are encouraged to stop by and bring their charges. This course is geared for pre-teens and those older, and is connected with Kids on the Fly. Instructors will be on hand to guide novice and veteran fly tyers. Note that often there are delicious homemade cookies too!

Alberto Rey announced the Children in the Stream Youth Fly Fishing Program will begin its 18th year of providing free fly fishing classes to children and adults on Monday evenings from 7-8:30 p.m. The program is currently underway and will continue until June 13, except for Jan. 16, March 13 and May 29. Classes will be in the Costello Community Room (P84) on the first floor of the addition to Rockefeller Arts Center at SUNY Fredonia. For more information, contact Rey at Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. All materials are provided. This is great for beginners and veteran tyers alike. There will be a Raw fur Auction on Saturday, Jan. 14 at the Hinsdale Fire Hall, Hinsdale. The auction starts at 10 a.m. until everything has been sold. Sellers have the privilege to withdraw any lot from the table at the time of sale. Note that no furs will be checked in before 7 a.m. Help is available for grading for sale. For more information, contact Matt Spittler at 359-5141.

There will be a pistol permit course at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club on Wednesday, Jan. 25 from 5:30-10:30 p.m. There is a $75 for attending this course. For information, contact Gary Dudek at 366-3397.

If your club or organization is holding a hunter safety training/trapping course or a turkey shoot or other outdoors event and would like to see it posted in the calendar, send information to the OBSERVER, 10 East Second St., Dunkirk, N.Y. 14048 or call the Sports Dept. 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 after 5 p.m. at ext. 5.

Gene Pauszek is an OBSERVER outdoors columnist. Send comments to



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