By Steve Carson, Outdoors Columnist
Thursday will see the annual arrival of the International Sportsmen’s Exposition at the Cal-Expo fairgrounds in Sacramento, running Jan. 18-21. Anyone interested in fishing, hunting, camping, or hiking should find plenty of things to pique their interest.
A primary draw for this show is the large number of seminars by professional hunters and anglers. Several local experts will be featured, including turkey hunting authority Ed Migale of Chico, whose seminar is titled “10 steps to becoming a successful turkey hunter.” Ed is among the elite few hunters who have scored a “royal slam,” by bagging all five subspecies of turkeys in North America. There will also be a special prize drawing for a junior hunter.
In the fishing hall will be popular local guide Kevin Brock, who will be discussing salmon fishing on the Sacramento and Feather rivers. His topics will include backbouncing, float fishing, trolling, and boondoggling, along with curing roe. Over in the fly fishing hall will be Chico’s Lance Gray, who will cover fly fishing for steelhead on the Feather River, and also the Hex Hatch at Lake Almanor.
Numerous other speakers will also be giving presentations in eight different theaters, covering topics like deer hunting, dog training, duck calling, fly tying, striper fishing, and more. A host of bass fishing seminars will take place atop the huge mobile aquarium filled with largemouth bass and other species from the California Delta.
More than 600 exhibitors will have booths with information about everything from luxury fishing resorts on Mexican beaches to bare-bones hunting camps on the Arctic Circle. Other popular attractions are the off-road test track, weekend Youth Fair, hunting dog demonstrations, archery 3D challenge shoot-off, and even a fly-casting pond.
See show program for exact time and location of seminars. Adult admission is $16, with kids age 15 and under free; Cal-Expo parking is $10. More info at http://www.sportsexpos.com/attend/sacramento
The Butte County Fish and Game Commission held its quarterly meeting in Oroville this week. Agenda items included a state park rangers report, with ranger Dan Marinella reporting.
Marinella noted that the early goose hunts at the Forebay were canceled due to staffing issues, but a youth hunt should be offered later this month. The warden’s report by Lt. Barry Ceccone of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife included a funding request for equipment, and the observation that waterfowl season so far had been lackluster.
The commissioners also heard grant request presentations from a variety of local organizations and events. Grant requests were heard from kids fishing events in Chico, Oroville, Gridley, and two kids events in Paradise. Additional applicants included the Barry R. Kirshner Wildlife foundation, Butte Environmental Council, Chico State Research Foundation, North Valley Community Foundation, Gaines & Associates, Paradise Bow Hunters, and Troop 2 Boy Scouts. Final grant approvals and amounts will be given out at the commission’s Feb. 6 meeting in Chico.
The agenda also included reports from fisheries biologists Anna Kastner of the Feather River Hatchery, Tracy McReynolds of the CDFW, and a written submission from wildlife biologist Henry Lomeli, all of which will be covered in the next edition of this column.
The highest daily average scores of the week at the refuges were as follows: Colusa-2.6 birds per hunter average (6 geese), top species greenwing; Delevan-3.3 (46 geese), greenwing; Gray Lodge-1.5 (14 geese), gadwall; Howard Slough-1.9 (5 geese), greenwing; Little Dry Creek-3.0 (25 geese), greenwing; Llano Seco-1.8 (2 geese), greenwing; Sacramento-2.5 (43 geese), greenwing.
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