Basic Ice Fishing Questions. Please help. Going out for my first time….?

I am an avid fisherman. However, I have never been ice fishing. I totally got hooked up for Christmas and I couldn’t be more excited. I have all the essentials including a great selection of jigs. I know I can just “google” some ice fishing tips, but some personalized answers from experienced anglers would be much appreciated. So I will post a few basic (and ignorant) questions below that I would love to have answered.

1) Safety. When do I know the ice is safe enough to go out?
2) Location of holes. I am getting a four man shanty. Do you drill the holes parallel with each other or can you do a “four corners” type thing? For example… if you can do the “four corners”, would it be safe to step in the “t” shape (middle) left in the ice?
3) Bait and jigs. What are good baits and jigs to use? Do minnows or night crawlers work well? How about tipped on a jig? (there are walleye, crappie, large mouth and smallies in the lake I will be fishing)
4) Other essential equipment. I know I am going to get out there for the first time and be like “Sh!t, I forgot the…” What crap am I gonna forget that I need to bring?

So, yeah. Any advice would be much appreciated. I have the epuipment, a case of beer and some fresh herbs just waiting to hot box the sh!t out of my shanty. I can’t wiat!
Let me be a little more clear on the location of holes. Basically, what is a safe distance between holes without weakening the ice? Or is such a mass quantity of ice not going to weaken? I just don’t want to step between some close holes and fall through. You smell what I steppin’ in?

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My Hummingbird 535 fish finder is malfunctioning, help me please?

It is saying the depth is around 800 feet even when the water is like 3 feet deep.

The transducer is pointed in the right direction, so It’s not a matter of adjusting it.

I think the problem might be that the transducer isn’t getting power so the depth is displaying the maximum (which is around 800)

Help?

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I need a private Fishing Guide in Port Aransas! please help?

im suprising someone who loves to fish and when we come down to port aransas in June i want to take him on a fishing trip BUT i dont want to go on the BARF CAT or the DOLPHINE DOCKS! i dont want a million people to be right next to him. so if you have any info and you know some one who doesnt charge to much PLEASE tell ME!!!!!!
Thanks

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Fishing trip in Austria help please.?

Hi. I want to surprise my husband with a fishing trip to Austria in April. I have been looking at the packages and guides online. However, it is all for fly fishing. I don’t think my husband fly fishes. His equipment is for normal fishing. What is just normal fishing called, so I know how to search on the web for it. He likes to sit in a boat or fish from the bank. Is this called kite fishing? I am confused.
He uses fishing tackle. He has 2 big boxes full of it.

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