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  1. The Buffalo News provides updates and information on a wide variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts. See below for details and links. “Scattershots (Feb. 13)” from The Buffalo News Bill Hilts Jr. shares details on a variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts in this edition of “Scattershots” from The Buffalo News. Topics discussed include, “Conesus Frostbite Derby this weekend,” “Free fishing weekend on tap,” “WNY Boat Show set for Feb. 20-24” and “Orvis kicks off winter speaker series.” Click here for more information! The Buffalo News Shares “The Fishing Beat (Feb. 13)” Bill Hilts Jr. provides updates on the fishing related news from throughout the region in this edition of “The Fishing Beat” from The Buffalo News. Bodies of water discussed include Lake Ontario and tributaries, the Niagara River, Lake Erie and tributaries, Chautauqua Lake and Silver Lake. Click here to see!
  2. It’s a free fishing weekend in New York! Feb. 16 and 17 are designated Free Fishing Days in the state, originally approved to help promote ice fishing in the state. It looks like there will be plenty of that going on, but thanks to some untimely warm ups, make sure you check your ice thickness, especially around the shoreline. While you don’t need a fishing license, you do need to abide by the regulations for the body of water you intend to fish. Check out the DEC website at dec.ny.gov for more info. The only hardwater action going on is Wilson Harbor in Tuscarora Bay. Steelhead, pike and panfish are the types of fish being caught. Soft water action in the lower Niagara River has been on fire. At least when you can get out there. Heavy winds last week pushed lots of ice into the river and created problems for a few days around the launch ramps. When the ice was gone, though, it was game on. And it’s blowing again right now! Capt. Matt Yablonsky has been doing well on trout and walleye using a mix of minnows, egg sacs and plugs like MagLips or Kwikfish. These are all fished off three-way rigs. All the main drifts are holding fish and they are eating everything. Incidentally, the daily limit on walleye is 1 fish in the lower river. Shore anglers in the gorge are also catching some fish on No. 4 spinners, jigs and egg sacs but caution is advised due to the icy shoreline. Click here to see the rest of this report on ILoveNYFishing.com.
  3. After a bit of an ice storm yesterday around Western New York, temperatures will be shooting up into the 40s and 50s today, bringing with it high winds with gusts to 60 mph through late Friday afternoon. With this end of Lake Erie still open, it will undoubtedly have an effect on Niagara River fishing by pushing ice into the river and also have an effect on water conditions. Wind that strong out of the Southwest has a tendency to stain things up, but with colder temperatures in the forecast for the weekend, it should help things out. The Niagara River was busy from both boat and shore the past week and trout and walleye dominated the catching scene. We heard about walleyes up to 12 pounds. Steelhead, brown trout and lake trout were all being caught by casters and boat drifters. Boaters were pulling Kwikfish and MagLips off three-way rigs to catch fish. Minnows were also working. Click here to see the rest of this report on ILoveNYFishing.com.
  4. The Buffalo News provides updates and information on a variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts. See below for details and links. “Catches of the Week (Feb. 7)” from The Buffalo News The Buffalo News provides photos and stories of some of the fish caught in the region in this edition of “Catches of the Week.” Included are steelhead, lakers and more! Click here to see! “Scattershots (Feb. 6)” from The Buffalo News Bill Hilts Jr. provides updates and information on a variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts in this edition of “Scattershots” from The Buffalo News. Topics discussed include, “NRAA steelhead contest reset for March 2,” “Conservation tree, shrub seedlings available,” “DEC fisheries meeting on Skaneateles Lake” and “Fishing, outdoors at WNED Kid Fest.” Click here for details! The Buffalo News Shares “The Fishing Beat (Feb. 6)” In this edition of “The Fishing Beat” from The Buffalo News, Bill Hilts Jr. provides updates on the latest fishing conditions and news throughout the region. Bodies of water discussed include Lake Ontario and tributaries, the Niagara River, Lake Erie and tributaries and Chautauqua Lake. Also included is a series of ice fishing updates, featuring Sodus Bay and Lake Simcoe. Click here to see!
  5. With a severe winter storm blanketing the region in snow and cold temperatures, there hasn’t been too much fishing action going on other than some diehard ice fishermen. Wind chills as low at minus 30 has kept most people home for the most part with hundreds of schools and businesses being closed throughout Western New York. The Niagara River Anglers announced that the Roger Tobey Memorial Steelhead Contest set for Saturday, Feb. 2, is postponed. If you want to find out more information, give Paul Jackson a call at 731-4780. With the combination of cold and wind, the Niagara River has quite a bit of ice flowing through its waters. The Lewiston launch ramp was filled with ice at last report and we won’t see any movement there until the weather starts to turn for the better. The end is in sight though. Saturday temperatures are vaulting into the 30’s and Sunday will see the 40’s. Monday it could hit 50 degrees with some rain. If that happens, it could open a few fishing opportunities, but it will depend on what the storm does with the waters of the Niagara River. Steelhead, brown trout and lake trout are all available in the river system below Niagara Falls. If you fish from shore, jigs, egg sacs and spinners will catch fish. Take extreme caution walking the shoreline and use some type of ice grippers on your boots. From boats (if you can get out), top baits include MagLips and Kwikfish, egg sacs, minnows and imitation egg flies or beads. Bounce your offering along the bottom using three-way rigs from boat. From shore, using a float can be productive. Click here to see the rest of this report on ILoveNYFishing.com.
  6. The Buffalo News provides updates and information on a variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts. See below for details and links! “New Great Lakes regulations proposals draw mixed reviews” from The Buffalo News In this article from The Buffalo News called “New Great Lakes regulations proposals draw mixed reviews,” Bill Hilts Jr. shares information about five proposals relating to Great Lakes fisheries that are up for discussion. The proposals could effect changes by April 1, 2020. Click here for details! "The Fishing Beat (Jan. 30)" from The Buffalo News In this edition of "The Fishing Beat" from The Buffalo News, Bill Hilts Jr. provides details about the fishing conditions and latest happenings throughout the region. Bodies of water discussed include Lake Ontario and tributaries, the Niagara River, Chautauqua Lake, and Lake Erie and tributaries. Click here to see! "Scattershots (Jan. 30)" from The Buffalo News Bill Hilts Jr. provides updates and information on several topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts in this edition of "Scattershots" from The Buffalo News. Topics discussed include "Upper River enhancements to be discussed," "Southtowns Walleye Outfitters Fair Feb. 9," "Coyote Hunt hosted by Sullivan Co." and "Alberto Rey Talk at Orvis." Click here to read more! The Buffalo News Shares “Catches of the Week (Feb. 1)” The Buffalo News shares photos and stories of some of this week’s catches throughout the region in this edition of “Catches of the Week.” Click here to see.
  7. The Buffalo News provides information on a variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts. See below for the most recent details and links. “Scattershots (Jan. 23)” from The Buffalo News Bill Hilts Jr. provides updates and information about a variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts in this edition of “Scattershots” from The Buffalo News. Topics discussed include “Community aids Coast Guard Station Niagara,” “Iroquois Arms Collectors hold gun show,” “WNY TU changes meeting location” and “Bass Pro Hank Parker featured at BBB Dinner.” Click here to read more! "The Fishing Beat (Jan. 23)" from The Buffalo News Bill Hilts Jr. provides details about the fishing conditions throughout the region in this edition of "The Fishing Beat" from The Buffalo News. Bodies of water discussed include Lake Ontario and tributaries, the Niagara River, Lake Erie and tributaries and Chautauqua Lake. Click here for details! The Buffalo News Shares "Catches of the Week (Jan. 23)" The Buffalo News provides photos and stories about some of the fish caught in the region in this edition of "Catches of the Week." Included are steelhead, brown trout and more! Click here to see!
  8. After the heavy rains yesterday, much of the Niagara River shoreline snow and ice was melted away. However, more cold weather is on the horizon and we saw about an inch of snow this morning to make the going a little slippery along the Niagara River rocks. Be careful out there. Spinners in orange and chartreuse are still working to take a mix of trout that include steelhead and lake trout. Jigs will also produce some fish according to Mike Rzucidlo of Niagara Falls who caught lake trout on orange and steelhead on white in the Niagara Gorge area. From boats, add in brown trout and walleye to the mix depending on where in the river you are fishing. Pink egg sacs, kwikfish, MagLips and minnows will all produce fish for you. If you run plugs, make sure the lures are working properly. Fishing was very good yesterday in the rain for Ely Moskal and Matt Yonkin of Albany. They caught all 3 trout species on Pautzke brined eggs and MagLips while fishing with Capt. Frank Campbell of Niagara Falls. It should continue into the weekend. The Niagara River Anglers Association will be hosting the Roger Tobey Memorial Steelhead Contest on Saturday, Feb. 2 from sunrise to 2 p.m. Sign up at the Lewiston Landing launch ramp the morning of the event or register at Creek Road Bait and Tackle or The Slippery Sinker in Olcott. You must be a NRAA member to participate. Eligible waters include the lower Niagara and Niagara County tributaries off Lake Ontario. www.niagarariveranglers.com. In the upper Niagara River, we have to mention the huge lake trout caught by Denis Kreze of Fort Erie when he reeled in a 30-plus pound fish this week. We are trying to find out more details. What a trophy! For the Lake Ontario tributaries, the heavy rains yesterday opened up some water in the creeks, but we’ve not had any reports on turbidity or fish cooperation. The precipitation event should have pulled some more fish into the streams. Egg sacs, jigs tipped with wax worms, egg imitations like Lick-em Lures should all work to catch you a trout or two. Streamers and woolly buggers can also be very effective. We’re not sure what the rain did with the ice in the harbors. With more cold weather on the way, you might want to wait until things are safe again. Use a spud to check ice thickness. Click here to see the rest of this report on ILoveNYFishing.com.
  9. The 6th Annual Greater Niagara Fishing Expo is almost here, set for Jan. 18-20 at the Conference and Event Center Niagara Falls. The website is www.niagarafishingexpo.com. There is a winter storm advisory but it appears to be more of a southern track right now with 6-7 inches expected Saturday night. Don’t let that scare you off! The show will go on!! Here are a few small tidbits worthy of consideration in making your way to the Cataract City with over 200 seminars, 96 speakers and over 170 vendor booths: Antique Fishing Tackle - Mark Schmitkons of Wilson will be showing off some of his antique fishing tackle. More importantly, he will be happy to appraise your own old/antique fishing equipment to see if it’s of any value. He will even store your old gear, so you don’t have to walk around the show with it. Capt. Lance Valentine of Walleye 101 is a Pro Staff representative for Lowrance Electronics and Sonar/GPS whiz. If you have a Lowrance unit on your boat that is Gen 2 or newer, his booth will be offering free updates and set up on Lowrance Sonar/GPS units. DEC Bureau of Fisheries Chief Steve Hurst will be mingling with anglers at the show. He will be sitting in on Capt. Bob Songin’s Lake Ontario Niagara Bar salmon seminar at 5 p.m. and answer some questions then. He will also have his own Q and A on Saturday at noon, fielding questions from the audience. Lake Erie Unit biologists Dr. Jason Robinson and James Markham will be around on Friday to give talks on walleye movement and steelhead study updates. Make sure you check the website out at www.niagarafishingexpo.com and print out the $5 parking voucher. Pay just $5 for the day. Park in the city ramp. The Expo will go on no matter what the weather or conditions. Four different Bass pros will be hanging out in the Rapid Fishing Solutions booth, at the Hawg Trough and in the seminar rooms. They are Billy McDonald, John Murray, Brad Knight and Mark Menendez. There are also many other local bass experts sharing their insights on fishing local waters. Need a fishing license? Stop in at The Boat Doctors booth at the show and pick one up. Click here to see the rest of this report on ILoveNYFishing.com.
  10. The Buffalo News provides updates and information on a variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts see below for the most recent details and links. The Buffalo News Shares “Catches of the Week (Jan. 16)” The Buffalo News shares photos and stories of some of the best fish caught recently in the region in this edition of “Catches of the Week.” Fish caught include steelhead, brown trout and more. Click here to see! “Local anglers help DEC, other fishermen with special projects” from The Buffalo News In this article from The Buffalo News called “Local anglers help DEC, other fishermen with special projects” Bill Hilts Jr. discusses the record year of fishing just experienced on Lake Ontario, and some of the factors that play into the fishing conditions from year to year. As the article states, “There are many factors that interact with one another that help to produce a good-to-great fishing season. Weather, fish stocking, wind direction and more affect the fish, fish movement and, ultimately, the fishing. However, there is a lot of hard work that goes on behind the scenes to help maximize the fish being stocked for the benefit of all.” Click here for details! The Buffalo News Shares “The Fishing Beat (Jan. 16)” In this edition of “The Fishing Beat” from The Buffalo News, Bill Hilts Jr. provides details about the fishing related happenings throughout the region. Bodies of water discussed include Lake Ontario and tributaries, the Niagara River, Lake Erie and tributaries and Chautauqua Lake, as well as an ice fishing update. Click here to see! “Scattershots (Jan. 16)” from The Buffalo News In this edition of “Scattershots” from The Buffalo News, Bill Hilts Jr. provides information about several topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts. Topics discussed include, “Niagara Fishing Expo offers more highlights,” “WGRZ environmental forum Jan. 23” and “Sportsmen’s Feast Jan. 26 in Lockport.” Click here to read more!
  11. It’s hard to believe that the 6th Annual Greater Niagara Fishing and Outdoor Expo is here already Jan. 18-20 at the Conference and Event Center Niagara Falls. And it’s also hard to believe that it keeps getting bigger and better with even more education to teach Western New York anglers. If you are someone who enjoys fishing but would like to learn more about this popular outdoor pastime, this is the show for you. If you want to get started with fishing, look no further. Want tips on bass fishing? Four professional bass fishermen will be sharing their insight. Want to learn how to walleye fish? There are more than 20 seminars on different aspects of going after old marble eye. Some of the top experts in the country will be sharing their knowledge on fly fishing, salmon and trout fishing, tributary fishing, electronics, boat rigging, kayak fishing and more. All told there will be more than 200 seminars on fishing over the three days, plus over 170 booths of top quality fishing equipment and expertise. It can all be found at www.niagarafishingexpo.com. It’s $10 a day or $20 for the weekend. See you there! Click here to see the rest of this report on ILoveNYFishing.com.
  12. The Buffalo News provides articles and information about a variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts. See below for details and links. "Greater Niagara Fishing and Outdoor Expo offers education, exhibits and fun" from The Buffalo News In this article from The Buffalo News titled "Greater Niagara Fishing and Outdoor Expo offers education, exhibits and fun," Bill Hilts Jr. provides details about the event, taking place January 18-20, 2019 at the Conference and Event Center Niagara Falls. As he states in the article, "the 6th annual Greater Niagara Fishing and Outdoor Expo will educate and entertain angling interests from novice to advanced." Click here to read the full article or visit www.niagarafishingexpo.com for more information about the Expo! The Buffalo News Shares “Scattershots (Jan. 9)” Bill Hilts Jr. provides details about several topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts in this edition of “Scattershots” from The Buffalo News. Topics discussed include “Nominations sought for NYS Outdoorsmen Hall of Fame,” “Adult ed fly fishing and fly-tying class in West Seneca,” “Lower Niagara River trout fishing class” and “Roger Tobey Memorial steelhead contest Feb. 2.” Click here to see! "The Fishing Beat (Jan. 9, 2019)" from The Buffalo News Bill Hilts Jr. provides updates about the latest fishing conditions and happenings throughout the region in this edition of "The Fishing Beat" from The Buffalo News. Bodies of water discussed include Lake Ontario and tributaries, the Niagara River, Chautauqua Lake, and Lake Erie and tributaries. Click here for details! The Buffalo News Shares "Catches and Hunts of the Week (Jan. 9)" The Buffalo News provides photos and stories of some of the fish caught throughout the region in this edition of "Catches and Hunts of the Week." Fish showcased include brown trout, steelhead and more. Click here to see!
  13. The Buffalo News provides updates and information on a variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts. See below for the most recent links. The Buffalo News Shares “Scattershots (Jan. 2)” Bill Hilts Jr. provides details on several topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts in this edition of “Scattershots” from The Buffalo News. Topics discussed include “Allied Sportsmen Trap League starts Jan. 6,” “3-D Archery League begins Jan. 6,” “Niagara bird festival weekend set for Jan. 25-26” and “Public comment sought on Cattaraugus Creek fisheries plan.” Click here for details! “The Fishing Beat: Mother Nature throws anglers a curve” from The Buffalo News Bill Hilts Jr. discusses the latest fishing related happenings throughout the region in this edition of “The Fishing Beat” from The Buffalo News. Bodies of water discussed include Lake Ontario and tributaries, the Niagara River, Lake Erie and tributaries, Chautauqua Lake, as well as an ice fishing update. Click here to see! “Remembering and appreciating the people who help make the outdoors great” from The Buffalo News In this article from The Buffalo News titled “Remembering and appreciating the people who help make the outdoors great,” Bill Hilts Jr. reflects on many of the individuals who have had an important impact on the outdoor community. The article provides a great tribute to many individuals, recognizing their contributions. Click here to read more! “Catches of the Week (Jan. 2)” from The Buffalo News The Buffalo News shares photos and stories of some of the fish caught in the region recently in this edition of the “Catches of the Week.” This edition includes steelhead, brown trout and more. Click here to see!
  14. Happy New Year’s! Now that the ball has dropped on 2019, area fishermen should be aware of some changes in regulations. Lake trout season is now open below Niagara Falls in the Niagara River and on the Niagara Bar in Lake Ontario. Also, walleye fishermen must note that the daily limit drops from 3 to 1 fish per person from Jan. 1 to March 15 in the lower river. If you fish the Canadian side of the river, in either the upper or lower stretches, the new license year also started up Jan. 1. Be aware of these changes if you take advantage of the mild winter conditions we are now experiencing. As far as Niagara River fishing conditions, it was a little spotty before the last wind and rain storm New Year’s eve. Fortunately, water conditions weren’t destroyed. Action should be good going into the weekend with mild conditions in the forecast. Lisa Drabczyk at Creek Road Bait and Tackle in Lewiston says there are steelhead, brown trout and walleye all being caught. Anglers seem to be using more pinks and oranges when using egg sacs, beads and spinners. Kwikfish and MagLips are also hot lures off three-way set-ups at times. Minnows are working to take fish, too. In the Upper Niagara River, lake trout and walleye are being caught around the Thompson’s Hole area on jigs. In the Lake Ontario tributaries, Gianni Etopio of Youngstown caught a dozen trout to start off the New Year using jigs, egg sacs and beads in 18 Mile Creek. His biggest brown was 28 inches and his biggest steelhead was 29-1/2 inches. Karen Evarts at The Boat Doctors in Olcott reports that wax worms are also producing a few trout – on a single hook or on a jig and fished under a float. The Greater Niagara Fishing and Outdoor Expo is Jan. 18-20 at the Conference center in Niagara Falls. Check out www.niagarafishingexpo.com for details. Mark your calendar for the new “Birds on the Niagara” Festival set for Jan. 25 and 26. More to come on that one before the event. Click here to see the rest of this report on ILoveNYFishing.com.
  15. The Buffalo News provides information on a variety of topics of interest to outdoor enthusiasts. See below for details and links to some of the most recent articles. “2018 was a very good year for fishing, outdoors” from The Buffalo News In this article from The Buffalo News called “2018 was a very good year for fishing, outdoors” Bill Hilts Jr. provides a recap of this year's outdoor activities. The article states that "The past 12 months, representing 2018 in New York, was an above average year overall in the great outdoors. At the top of the list was the incredible walleye fishing on Lake Erie and the phenomenal salmon fishing on Lake Ontario." Click here to read the full article! The Buffalo News Shares "The Fishing Beat for Dec. 26, 2018" Bill Hilts Jr. provides an overview of the latest fishing news and conditions throughout the region in this edition of "The Fishing Beat" from The Buffalo News. Bodies of water discussed include Lake Ontario and tributaries, the Niagara River, Lake Erie and tributaries as well as an ice fishing update. Click here for details! "Catches of the Week (Dec. 26)" from The Buffalo News The Buffalo News shares photos and stories of some of the best fish caught recently in this edition of the "Catches of the Week." Click here to see! "Scattershots for Dec. 26, 2018" from The Buffalo News In this edition of "Scattershots" from The Buffalo News, Bill Hilts Jr. provides updates on several pieces of outdoor related news in the region. Topics discussed include "Scholarships Announced from Fly Fishers International," "Capt. Bob’s Outdoors Fall Derby Results," "North Forest 5-Stand League Starts Jan. 5" and "Winter Classic Tourney Kicks Off Jan. 1." Click here to see! The Buffalo News Shares the "BN Outdoor Calendar for Dec. 26, 2018" Bill Hilts Jr. provides dates and details for several upcoming events in this edition of the "Outdoor Calendar" from The Buffalo News. Dates included range from now through January 13. Click here for more information.
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