By Joseph Fischer

Posted on Jan 11, 2024

Do you realize that we live in an area that is the best, most diverse freshwater fishery in United States? Within 100 miles of Buffalo you can find superb Crappie fishing on Chautauqua lake.  You can then hop in your car and drive up to Lake Ontario or the lower Niagara River and fish for trophy Salmon and Trout.  You also have the option to go over to Lake Erie and fish for trophy Walleyes or Perch. Walleyes at 5-10 lbs are not uncommon in Lake Erie. If your more of a small lake fisherman an option could be Silver Lake for Northern Pike or Lime Lake for Norlunge.  Lake Alice and Oak Orchard Creek in Orleans County also offers superb multi species fishing and in many areas a boat is not required. Muskies in excess of 50”can be caught in the small boat harbor/Niagara River or in Chautauqua Lake. No place else in the USA do you have so many options so I guess we truly live in a “fishy place”…

Shore fishing in Buffalo Harbor is very good especially in the spring when the Bass are spawning but this is Catch and Release fishing .The Upper Niagara River shore fishing can also be productive for many species of fish. Other areas where shore fishing is productive are the Erie Barge Canal, Tonawanda Creek, Ellicott Creek, Cayuga Creek,18 mile creek and Cattaraugus Creek etc.  I would suggest picking up one the local Hot Spot fishing maps which are available at fishing stores and local fishing clinics run by the Erie County Federation of Sportsmen (ECFSC) or its member clubs. Check the ECFSC website for the latest information on the upcoming fishing clinics.

Fishing at Como Park can be good especially after the DEC annual spring Trout stocking!  I personally enjoyed shore Northern Pike fishing at Ransom ,Tonawanda and Ellicott Creeks. This is grass roots fishing and does not require very expensive poles, reels etc, a good old Zebco 33 is a good solid pole and reel for this kind of fishing. Usually you have a lot of action shore fishing and that’s what kids especially like! Keep an eye out for W.Hilts Jr fishing column in the Buffalo News or listen to his weekly fishing forecast on WBEN radio on Saturday morning for the latest fishing information and upcoming fishing clinics.

More fishing licenses are sold in Erie County than any other county in New York State and the reason is that fishing opportunities are abundant and excellent.!!

Joseph Fischer

  1. Joe McAdams

    Lake Chautauqua is one of my favorite fishing spots. I remember one summer standing on a sand bar in waist-deep water just offshore of Cheny’s Point with an ultralight rig and I was just slamming the bass!

    Another spring my buddy and I took our boys fishing for perch at Longpoint State Park. They were catching them so quickly that my buddy and I never got a chance to get our poles in the water. In just a few hours, the boys landed over 100 perch!! It was a cold, rainy, and windy March day – and we all had a great time!

  2. Dave Barus

    Awesome and accurate story Mr. Fischer. WNY is my favorite place to visit for walleye, crappie and giant bass in early spring.

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