Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report

July 6, 2012 -- Craziness and killer heat approaches


Kids aboard Sparetime Fishing Charters

Friday, July 06, 2012: There is already a massive influx of more people. Notice I said “more” people. We’re already loaded to the max. Big-brother highway cameras on the state’s most heavily-driven “corridors” show a veritable charge of vehicles already heading for the shore, midday. It could get crowded.


Per David Voris: eastbound 72


Fluking remains hot, in all ways. There are flatties everywhere, which is why I fully suggest you go everywhere and anywhere other folks ain’t. There’s truthfully no need to pack in with the pack -- and sit around getting pissed every time other boats guns past to restart a drift. Go find a quiet, or at least semi-quiet spot. If arriving folks then use you as the focal point, scoot off to the closest available quietude.  


At first light, the beach is doable, angling –wise. There are bass, fluke and blues. The beach is not nearly as workable at dusk -- too many after-hours bathers futzing around. However, the sharking is still happening after dark. Use stinky baits to pull sharks in from far and wide. If you drag in something special please try to get a picture of it – using a flash, of course.


Hydrate everywhichaway: 


HIT BARNEGAT LIGHT: The New South Jetty (BL) is a prefect place to park-and-plug, providing you have decent casting and retrieving skills. Not a good zone for kids, though.

The South Jetty is real decent fluke fishing, providing you’re well-skilled at working a honking current – casting a couple-ounces bank or cushion sinker up-current and letting a bait (simple squid strips work well) rapidly drift with the flow. A fluke pickup is often marked by a sudden stop in the bait’s rapid drift.

Hint: Always have a “landing rock” in mind – and sight. It’s usually a flatter, low-algae rock near the water and flat enough for you to walk onto when lifting in a fish. Don’t wait until you have a fish on to then try to figure how you’re going to lift it in.

I advise leaving the far end of the jetty – at the horn -- to the regulars. There are hundreds of yards of unused jetty to work.


DON’T GET RIPPED: Although the rip current warning level is low, there are huge tidal water exchanges taking place with the moon phase now in play. Low tide rising can change a perfectly relaxed bathing session into a potentially deadly swim against the tide, so to speak.


If you’re an afterhours swimmer, have a buddy with you. Along the Jersey Shore, we lost more swimmers last month than we lost all last summer. All the fatalities seem to be rip current related.


I work closely with the Weather Service in rating and predicting daily rip current risks. I take it very personal when we lose someone.

Though it is never added to our rip current reports, I always note in my blogs that alcohol and rip currents do not mix. And you know perfectly well where I’m going with that. In fact, swimming and alcohol doesn’t mix anywhere. The number of swimmer rescues in our baywaters is through the ceiling this summer. And don’t think watering holes are immune. Quarries and unguarded swimming holes are killers, very often the result of unrestricted imbibing going on thereabouts. Hey, just tellin’ it like it is.


HEAT BEAT: I'm not overly hot to call every heat wave a smoking gun, full-blown proof of global warming. What I prefer saying at this point in planetary evolution is summer can be quite the bitch in heat. Tomorrow, the bitch will really have her way -- and could wound a few folks in the stroke-worthy process. Just as troubling, many a mal-treated pet will wish it was never born.  
With a forecasted high of 102 -- ambient, not heat index -- nature will be performing a cruel culling. In the outback, any old, weak or sick creatures will surely perish. Heat actually kills more quickly and thoroughly than a killer cold, due in large part to the way animals actually gird for the cold. There’s absolutely no readying for killer heat. Even some of the strongest wildlife, predators like coyote, shall be brought to their knees, unable to hydrate quickly enough.
Fawns and young deer are in the direst straights when ground temps exceed 125 degrees, as they’ll do tomorrow. If you follow this column closely, you might recall last summer when I took a top-quality infra-red thermometer into the Pines on a not overly sizzling day and got sand temps of 122. That is very close to unsurvivable for vulnerable creatures. 
A single day critical heat event, like tomorrow, can/will kill hundreds of fawns and yearlings -- which have a very high hydration needs but often lack the skills/marts to find watering holes. It's a cruel irony that there will be no daylight threat for deer from coyote, which absolutely cannot exert energy and vital bodily fluids. After dark, is a whole other matter. Fawns and yearlings, weakened by the heat, will be dead ducks. In fact, there will be so many weakened that the coyote won’t be able to nab but a few of them. 
Oddly, hunters need not over worry about the horrific hit being taken by the whitetails. While it might slightly impact the upcoming hunting season, through a miracle only known to nature, the next spawning season female deer will have twins at an exceptionally high rate. This truly bizarre innate ability of deer to become more fecund when their population has taken a vicious hit is why this large mammal is one of the few forms of wildlife perpetuating, even under the black boot of an environment-crushing mankind.

Closer to the shore, this heat would horrifically rake the backbay waters except for the fact we're still in a tidally active moon phase. Significant influxes of ocean water during incoming tides might very well be a cool salvation for marine life simmering to death in the shallows. In fact, many a forage fish and low-mobility crustacean will be on its last leg, as relief floods in during low tide rising.

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