Furbearer trapping season begins Friday

Friday marks the opening day for furbearer trapping in Western New York.

It was at the Tuesday meeting of our local chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation, the Lakeshore Longbeards, that I had the pleasure of meeting with two of our long-term trapping/hunting/archery instructors Gary Dudek and Rich Lazarczyk.

After the meeting, both instructors commented with broad smiles that they were happy to read the success stories of the three youth hunters in last Sunday’s Sportsmen’s Journal and recalled all three hunters were recent students during their various hunter safety training courses.

Both Dudek and Lazarczyk also asked me to remind the area trappers/hunters that Friday is the last day to apply for a FREE bobcat harvest permit. Check page 54-55 of your NY Hunting and Trapping regulations booklet for 2013-14 for all the rules and regulations, but to get your permit, you must at least call the Allegany office at 372-0645 or log on with Bobcat harvest Expansion Area in the subject. Again, the deadline is Friday. I would also like to include a photo/story of anyone who successfully traps/hunts one of these elusive predators from our area.

Offshore fishing has been on hold far too long with strong winds and colder temperatures, leaving this angler wishing for fishing. Some of us still keep the boat on standby for if, and when, the weather breaks. My contact at the Department of Environmental Conservation Fisheries station informs us the perch will still be available and the walleye will most likely move into the shallow springtime haunts, looking for forage to gorge themselves on.

Cattaraugus Creek is running high and muddy, but many of the local hard-bottom creeks are still holding good numbers of trout and remain very fishable. Again, my DEC contact reports this has been one of the better fall trout runs in recent history, and the cooler temperatures and steady precipitation all contribute to a continued good looking trout fishing prospect. Attempting to use spoons in shallow streams will often attract a “hairy eyeball” glare from more traditional-styled anglers, than fish.

Bow hunters have reported at least sighting more deer activity lately with the onset of cooler weather. November usually prompts a lot more archer/deer activity, but October can also be very productive.

Skip Bianco from Hogan’s Hut on Chautauqua Lake reports yellow perch have gone on the feed lakewide and anglers are seeing more calico. Long Point has been producing catches for the shorebound anglers and keeper-sized muskies have also become more excited lately. Using larger-sized bait fish also has increased the catch ratio for anglers seeking trophy-sized small mouth bass.


Bow season opened Oct. 1 in Western New York. The Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club will continue its non-perishable food collection “Hunters Helping the Hungry” during the Big Game hunting season. Club members are reminded to bring their canned goods to the club for donation to be distributed during the Christmas holiday season. Thanks!

Free fly-tying and fly-fishing classes have resumed on Monday evenings at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club, from 6-8 p.m. Fly tyers at all stages are invited to attend, from beginners to expert. The Monday night tyers will provide fly tying vises and all materials for anyone who would like to learn how to tie a fly or how to start fly fishing. Ken Hollander and Willie Fedrick, along with guest tyers, will provide the know how, in a safe, enjoyable facility located at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club, on Mullet Street, in Dunkirk. Note: Participants will get to keep what they tie and will receive one-on-one attention. No registration required, so just show up!

The Lake Erie Seaway Trail Center, on Route 5, in Hamburg, will feature guest speaker Cameron Daboin, founder of the Greater Western New York Paranormal Society speaking on “Paranormal Activity” at 7 p.m., today. The event is open to the public and is free.

There will be a gun show at the Frewsburg Firemen’s Rec Hall, 25 Hazzard St., Frewsburg, on Oct. 26 and Oct. 27. Call 569-6810 for more information.

The Ellery Rod & Gun Club located on Pancake Hill Road off Dutch Hollow Road will host “Turkey Shoots” on Oct. 27, Nov. 3 and Nov. 10. These events will start at 9 a.m. Breakfast will also be served from 8 a.m. until noon. Slugs and shot will be provided for slug shoots and “lucky shot” events.

The Evans Rod & Gun Club will host their annual “Sighting-in Day” on Saturday, Nov. 2. from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. The event is open to the public and those interested can use the opportunity to sight-in their deer slugs, rifles, handguns and Muzzleloaders. The club has a covered firing line with concrete shooting benches. Targets are provided at 25, 50, 75 and 100 yards. NRA certified Range Safety Officers and experienced shooters will be in attendance to provide assistance. There is a $5 fee per gun. Refreshments will also be available.

If your club is hosting a shooting event or training course (turkey shoot, etc.) drop a line and I will be glad to place an announcement in the calendar.

Gene Pauszek is an OBSERVER outdoors columnist. Send comments to