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Scattershot: Outdoors news and notes

Oneida Lake BASS comeback

Stanley Sypeck of Sugarloaf, Pa,. made a dramatic come-from-behind victory last weekend as the Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Northern Open was held on Oneida Lake June 29-July 1. On the final day of the contest, despite some terrible weather conditions, Sypeck weighed in a five-fish limit that tipped the scales at 20 pounds, 7 ounces to win the $9,000 prize and a brand new NitroZ20 bass boat rigged with a Mercury 225 Pro XS engine. The biggest prize is that he earned a spot in the 2018 Bassmaster Classic Tournament. His total weight for the three days was 55 pounds, 8 ounces.

Sypeck’s win wasn’t easy. He was in third place after the first day with a five-fish bag of 18 pounds, 1 ounce. Day 2 his five fish limit was 17 pounds and he dropped to seventh place. The top 12 anglers were singled out for the final day of the tournament, leading to Sypeck’s heroics. He used a 7/16 ounce jig in a Cumberland Craw color that imitated the crawfish in the lake to catch every one of his fish. The final day they were all largemouth, taken from shallow water around rock piles and weed lines. The biggest was 5 pounds, 4 ounces, the largest of the tournament. It came at a good time.

Sypeck had a little bit of an advantage. He has a camp on the lake and fishes it about 100 times a year.

LOTSA tournaments, picnic set

The Lake Ontario Trout and Salmon Association is ready to have a party – a fishing party for its members. You can join for just $10 and become eligible for the fishing festivities, set for July 21-22 out of Olcott. Some of it is pay to play.

The first event on the fishing calendar is the Curt Meddaugh Memorial Tournament on Friday, a big-fish contest that is free for club members. Big fish for the day must be weighed in by 3 p.m. at the Town of Newfane Marina in Olcott.

On Saturday, the LOTSA Club Tournament will be going on all day. This is a big-fish contest as well and entry fee is $60. Weigh in at Krull Park by 3 p.m. to be included for the cash prizes.

The final piece to the LOTSA fishing puzzle is the club’s 3-2-3 contest over the two days. Best three fish over two days of fishing, paying out the top three weights. Entry fee is $50 for this portion of the contest. The club picnic will be immediately following on Saturday and the awards will be handed out. Find out more information and register for these contests at

In addition to these fishing events, remember that the Summer Lake Ontario Counties Derby is going on. A few years ago, John Monroe of Rochester caught the winning Grand Prize fish during the LOTSA contest. Make sure you are entered!

Winners announced in Canal derby

Some nice fish came to the scale in the Hooked on Fishing Tournament run by the Boys and Girls Club of the Northtowns held June 24-25. Winner of the $500 Bass Division was Robert Grant of North Tonawanda with a 6.25-pound fish and winner of the $500 northern pike division was Daniel Phelps of Kenmore with a 4.28-pound fish.

Winners of the $250 first-place prizes for perch, carp and channel catfish were Mike Boncore of Buffalo with a .98 pound perch, Mathew Steffan with a 19.66 pound carp and Dominic DiNardo with a 3.92-pound channel catfish. A total of 72 adults and 25 kids fished in the contest run out of Gateway Harbor in North Tonawanda. Nearly $3,000 was raised for sending kids to summer camp programs.

White Deer tours return to Seneca in fall

The popular white deer at the old Seneca Army Deport in the Finger Lakes are legendary. An agreement has finally been worked out between the new owners and Seneca White Deer, Inc. (SWD) to allow for tours inside the facility to resume starting this fall. According to Dennis Money, SWD president, a full-scale program of bus tours will allow the general public to view the world’s largest population of white deer and other wildlife. The tours will also allow viewing of military and historic artifacts on the site in the Town of Varick near Seneca Falls.

“We’re thrilled to be able to offer tours beginning this fall,” says Money.  “These white deer are a real treasure and to make them accessible to the public is a dream come true. We don’t have a start date for the tours yet, but we expect to have that soon.  We are developing a new website that will allow visitors to see available dates and times so they can book tours online.”

To keep posted on the tours and any further developments, check out Seneca White Deer is a non-profit corporation dedicated to preserving unique deer, as well as other wildlife and military history for the area.



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