The Department of Environmental Conservation will host an Open House agenda today at Mayville Park, located on West Lake Road, (Route 394) in Mayville from 4:30-7 p.m. The DEC is looking for public input on the draft management plan for 14 Chautauqua County state forests located in the towns of Chautauqua Sherman, Clymer, Harmony, North Harmony, Busti, Stockton, Charlotte, Cherry Creek, Gerry and Ellington.
The Draft Unit Management Plan or (UMP) is now available for public review and the public is invited to submit input on the draft plan that will include a guide for future management of these unique forest lands in Chautauqua County, and will provide for healthy, sustainable and biologically diverse ecosystems. New horse and bike plans are also among the new recreational opportunities proposed in the UMP. The UMP will soon be be available for download on the DEC's website at www.dec.ny.gov/lands/22556.html. Compact discs may be requested by calling 363-2052.
Walleye fishing locally seems to be returning to early summer patterns with anglers locating pods of hungry fish limiting out, while others having to settle for a few. An occasional trout or lake trout will liven up the day if you are fishing in more than 100-foot depths. Anglers are marking fish from 40 feet down to hugging the bottom in 85 feet or deeper. Popping the down riggers and releasing a stick bait or spoon can trigger a bite from fish following your baits. Rick Miller reports the perch are back in depths of 63 to 74 feet of water out of the "Cat" and some similar reports from Sturgeon Point. A few anglers have limited out and other are content with a couple dozen, but the ringbacks are turning on again. Hooray.
OBSERVER Photo by Gene Pauszek
From left, Amanda Strong and Alena Thomas try their luck on the City of Dunkirk Pier on Monday. The fish were not biting but the sunsets lately have been spectacular.
The new hunting, fishing and trapping licenses went on sale Aug. 13, for the period of Oct. 1, through Sept. 30, 2013. These licenses can be purchased online, by phone, or in person at several DEC offices, and most sporting goods stores and town clerk's offices. For outings before Oct. 1, you will need to purchase a valid 2011-2012 license. Those hunters who would like to participate in the early goose season will need to have a valid small game license or sportsman's license from the 2011-12 time period. They will also need to get the new HIP number by calling 1-888-427-5447. You will also need to purchase a new duck stamp or migratory bird stamp. My contact informs me that Wal-Mart currently is the only place locally that has them.
There is an archery course at Busti Trap Club located at Southwestern Drive, Busti on Aug. 25 from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. Register at the class. Limit of 25 students.
His Way Archers, located at 31 Water St., Jamestown, will host a two-day archery course beginning Sept. 5 from 6-10 p.m. and returning on Sept. 6 from 6-10 p.m. Two-day attendance is mandatory for certification. Register at the first class.
The Jamestown Rifle Club located at Busti-Still-Water Road, Busti, will host a course on Sept. 9 from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. You must pre-register at the club on Aug. 31 from 6-7 p.m.
The Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club will host an archery course Sept. 11 from 9:30 a.m. until 6 p.m. Students must pre-register on Sept. 5 from 6-8 p.m. Class is limited to 40 students.
The Ripley Rod & Gun Club, located off Route 76, in Ripley, will host a two-day archery course, beginning on Sept. 13, from 6-10 p.m., returning on Sept. 15 from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. Register at the first class.
Ellington Rod & Gun Club, located at Hagendon Hill Road, Ellington, will host a two-day archery course on Sept. 14 from 6-10 p.m., returning on Sept. 15 from 7 a.m. until noon. Must pre-register by calling Neal Frazier at 287- 2120.
Clymer Conservation, located on Route 474, in Clymer, will host an archery course on Sept. 22 from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. Students must pre-register at the club on Sept. 15 from 8-10 a.m.
Hunter Education Courses (gun) will be held:
On Aug. 24 from 6 p.m. returning on Aug. 25 from 7 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the Ellington Rod & Gun Club located at Hagendon Hill Road Ellington. Students must pre-register by calling Neal Frazier at (716) 287-2120
On Sept. 7 from 5-10 p.m. and returning Sept. 8 from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Ellery Rod & Gun Club located on Pancake Hill Road in Ellery. Students must pre-register on Sept. 1 from 10 a.m. until noon at the club.
On Sept. 7 from 6-10 p.m., returning on Sept. 8 from 8 a.m. until done at the Mayville Conservation Club located on Bloomer Road, Mayville. Students must pre-register by email at email@example.com.
On Sept. 18, from 6-9:30 p.m., returning on Sept. 20 from 6-9:30 p.m. and ending on Sept. 22 from 9 a.m. until noon at the Ripley Rod & Gun Club located off Route 76, Ripley. Register at the first class.
On Sept. 19 from 5:45 p.m. until 10 p.m., returning on Sept. 22 from 7:45 a.m. until 4 p.m. at the Carroll Rod & Gun Club, located on Frew Run Road, Frewsburg. Students must pre-register at the club on Sept. 15 from from 10 a.m. until noon.
On Sept. 19-20 from 5-10 p.m. both days at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club located on Mullet St. Dunkirk. Students must pre-register at the club on Sept. 5 from 6-8 p.m. NOTE: This course like many of the other sites is limited to 40 students only and fills up fast, so check the other locations and dates as a back up.
On Sept. 21 from 6-10 p.m., returning on Sept. 22 from 8 a.m. until done at the Harmony Conservation Club located on Route 474, Panama. Students must pre-register by e mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
On Sept. 21 from 6-10 p.m., returning Sept. 22 from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Falconer Rod & Gun Club located on Buffalo Street Extension, Falconer. Students must pre-register on Sept. 7 from 6-7 p.m. at the club.
The Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club will host a trapping course Sept. 25 from 9:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. Students should bring a lunch.
The Bear Lake Rod & Gun Club will host 3-D archery shoots on Aug. 26 and Sept. 2, from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. Ray Marks will be offering a six-week fly-fishing course starting Wednesday, Sept. 19, from 6:30-9 p.m. The course will cover the basics of fly fishing, casting, flies to use, where to fish, etc. Contact Marks at 549-1977, or enroll by calling Lake Shore Community Education at 926-2210.
Gene Pauszek is an OBSERVER outdoors columnist. Send comments to email@example.com.