Yesterday: A common side-ass wind look and feel, Brant Beach, new replen zone.
And it's a tad edgy out there ...
Today, Surf City: Better in front of me ... than behind.
Monday, May 21, 2018: Nothing says spring more than … spring. And it may have finally arrived with the arriving weeks’ worth of mildness and brightness. I fear suggesting sunniness since a single well-placed cloud can take sunniness to the cleaner. By the by, just last weekend, with ocean-chilled east winds in charge, some folks needed to burn a log or two in the fireplace at night. Even if things heat up for the final month of spring, it’ll go done as one of the worst.
As to what could also make this springy week’s step a lot springier, a very clean, low-60s ocean is likely holding plenty of stripers and – if tradition serves us well – some black drum, bluefish and weakfish.
With the holiday weekend moving in fast, it should be easy to get a read on what’s hookin’ – bay, inlets and ocean-top. Keep me in mind if you have a successful day of it – or even if the skunk shows up. Drop me a line.
For off-Islanders, the traffic signals are no longer a blind eye to motorists; they're back on a rigid green/yellow/red cycle. I saw an SUV being towed with some serious rear panel damage. I can all but guarantee that was a missed traffic signal. It's vital if driving on a east/west road to make sure north/south Boulevard traffic recognizes a red light before you go through even a bright green light in your favor. I think you get what I'm saying.
In case you need a visual reminder. Here's a look at how the LBI Boulevard lights now look. Green ... go. Red ... el stopo.
There’s a new book being put out by the Rutgers University Press, which has published some amazingly fine works, almost all sciency in nature.
Its latest offering is titled “The Jersey Shore … The Past, Present & Future of a National Treasure,” written by Domonick Mazzagetti, copyright 2018.
Per a Rutgers University Press release, the book “provides a modern retelling of the history, culture and landscapes of this famous region, from 1600s to present.”
Yowza. That’s some kind of “retelling” undertaking. But, Mazzaghetti gives it go – soon to be available at a bookish store near you.
I’m one of the first readers to eye the book; being forwarded a media preview copy. I’ll need some time to piecemeal my way through it – piecemeal reading being the only way my schedule permits. However, I did flick through the chapter “Fish, Fish and Boats.” It quickly proved I had something to learn about surfcasting.
“Jersey fishermen can also be found on the beaches ‘surf fishing’ or ‘surf casting’ and at the bays and piers with rods, reels, and crab cages. The origin of surf fishing has been traced to an intrepid couple who waded into the surf at Beach Haven on Long Beach Island early one morning in 1907 with fishing gear. The woman caught a twenty-pound striped bass, word spread, and the activity became a sensation once New Jersey’s anglers realized that striped bass could be taken right from the beach if an angler could get his line out beyond the breakers. …”
Fascinating surfcasting lore, if true … and fascinating anyway. Still working on that “crab cages” thing.
A big-game mention is also given in the fishing chapter. “The large boats go as far as the Continental Shelf with heavy gear for several varieties of tuna. The tuna ran heavy off the New Jersey coast in the 1930s, so much so that the Annual US Tuna Fishing Tournament was held from New Jersey docks until the catch fell off in the 1950s. The season ran from June to September and the catch had been so strong that six commercial boats calling in to Beach Haven on the same day in 1933 brought home 187 tuna.” I’m thinking those call-ins might have been from competitive recreational boats. It’s kinda unclear as written.
My imagination was grabbed by a mention of past Island pound fishermen using some showy horses to pull in the nets. “The horses were Clydesdales, chosen for their strength.” That evokes a quite-cool image of beachline commercial fishing that once took place on the sands of Ship Bottom/Beach Arlington, though I’m betting that isn’t the blue-collar Clydesdale look Budweiser could use. Still, being there to see those mega-horses pulling in nets; just imagine.
In another snatch-up, I read this historic morsel from the chapter called “The Rise of Resorts, Ocean County: “More than 300 years ago Surf City and Harvey Cedars shared a forest of cedar and oak and a freshwater lake and was home to a whaling operation. It was known as the Great Swamp until storms and erosion in the early 1800s eliminated both the forest and the lake …” I’m guessing folks also hated/blamed global warming back then.
For more on the book, go to WWW.RUTGERSUNIVERSITYPRESS.ORG. ; It can be "pre-ordered" at amazon.com.
The 6th Annual RFA Bass River Summer Flounder Tournament will be held out of Viking Yachting Center on the Bass River in New Gretna on Saturday, June 2nd, 2018.
The “Bass River Classic,” cash prizes totaling over $2,000 are awarded to the top three boats in the contest ($1,000, $750 and $250) based on combined weight of the heaviest two summer flounder! We are also excited to announce that RFA and Yamaha Marine Group will be giving away $1,000 to the boat that lands the heaviest summer flounder during the one-day tournament. To qualify for this prize, the captain or individual registered in the tournament must be an active RFA member prior to the start of fishing.
Download the rules and registration form by clicking HERE! Completed forms along with payment can be mailed to the RFA at PO Box 3080, New Gretna, NJ 08224 or dropped off at the participating locations listed below. Register before May 21 and receive a $15 early registration discount.
Download 2018 Tournament Rules and Registration
Boat entry includes one t-shirt, wrist bands for the crew and of course the tourney entry. Tournament payout is based on boat’s heaviest two fish, with various calcuttas increasing the opportunities to win.
All anglers under 12 weighing in a summer flounder were also presented with a certificate of excellence. All tournament proceeds from the event help support the Recreational Fishing Alliance. Boundary lines for the 2018 Bass River Classic extend from Great Egg Inlet (south) to Barnegat Inlet (north).
Thanks to tournament sponsors including Scott’s Bait & Tackle in Mystic Island, Viking Yachting Center in New Gretna, Absecon Bay Sportsman Center in Absecon, Allen’s Dock in New Gretna and Chestnut Neck Boat Yard in Port Republic, along with Lamiglas, The Fisherman Magazine, Sea-Tow, Gulp, S&S Bucktails, Doyle’s Pour House, Tuckerton Car Wash, Barnegat Light Fiberglass, Amon Construction, John & Sonia’s Luncheonette, Munro’s Marina, Bimini Bay Outfitters, Tsunami, Allen’s Clam Bar and the Boat Shop of Manahawkin. A special thanks goes to Yamaha Marine Group for offering the RFA/Yamaha incentive prize.
Big thanks to our location sponsors and event coordinators at Breezes Bar & Grillon the Bass River and Viking Yachting Center for hosting this great event.
For additional details, call the RFA at 888-564-6732. You can also find us on Facebook or visit Breezes on the Bass River, Chestnut Neck Boat Yard in Port Republic, Scott’s Bait and Tackle in Mystic Island, Allen’s Dock in New Gretna, the Boat Shop in Manahawkin, Absecon Bay Sportsman Center, Munro’s Marina in Mystic Island or Viking Yachting Center on Route 9 in New Gretna.
Download 2018 Tournament Rules
With 3 Weeks to Go in Season, Maine’s Elver Harvest Tops $20M
SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Bangor Daily News] by Bill Trotter - May 21, 2018
The value of landings so far in Maine’s 2018 baby eel fishing season have topped $20 million, the fishery’s highest annual value since the state adopted a statewide catch limit in 2014.
Record prices this season of around $2,500 per pound for baby eels, also known as elvers, already have made the 2018 season the third-most valuable ever in Maine. Over the past four years, the highest annual landings total for the state’s baby eel fishery, which lasts from late March through early June, is $13.4 million in 2016.
According to Maine Department of Marine Resources, as of Wednesday evening fishermen had caught 8,416 pounds, or 87 percent of Maine’s annual catch limit of 9,688 pounds. The department estimated that, with fishermen getting paid an average of $2,443 per pound for their catch so far this season, the value of the statewide haul on Wednesday was $20,560,000.
If the per-pound price offered to fishermen by buyers remains around $2,400 per pound, there could be another $3 million worth of elvers to catch this spring. The season ends either when the statewide catch limit is reached or on June 7, whichever comes first.
Maine’s highest catch totals for elvers occurred in 2012 and 2013 — when there was no catch limit in the state — with harvests worth $40 million one year and then $33 million the next. Like it was in those two years, the elver fishery is expected this year to rank as the 2nd-most valuable in Maine, behind only Maine’s dominant $433 million lobster fishery.
The highest season-long, per-pound average price for elvers in Maine was $2,171 in 2015, when a fairly cold spring resulted in fishermen catching only 5,260 pounds for the season. Elver landings in Maine that year had a total value of $11.4 million.
Global demand for elvers caught in Maine have been high since 2011, when an earthquake and tsunami in Japan destroyed much of that country’s cultivated eel stocks. The disaster struck months after the export of European eels was banned due to concerns about declining eel populations there.
The only states where elver fishing is permitted are Maine and South Carolina, which has a fishery much smaller than Maine’s. The vast majority of elvers caught in Maine are shipped live to Asia, where they are raised in aquaculture ponds to adult stage and then harvested as seafood.
Concerns about the health of the American eel population led the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission to impose a statewide catch limit in 2014. Maine’s catch limit that year was 11,749 pounds, but it was reduced to 9,688 pounds the following year.
Despite the commission’s concerns, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service decided in 2015 against listing the species under the Endangered Species Act.
The interstate fisheries commission is again considering whether it should raise Maine’s annual elver quota to its 2014 level of 11,749 pounds — which, at this year’s prices, would increase the value of Maine’s annual elver harvest by roughly another $5 million.
Public hearings on the proposal are scheduled for 3 p.m. Wednesday, June 6 at Jeff’s Catering in Brewer and the following day at the same time at DMR’s offices at 32 Blossom Lane in Augusta.
$250,000 FEDERAL GRANT TO HELP PROTECT GLOBALLY RARE SWAMP PINK
(18/P40) TRENTON - The Department of Environmental Protection has received a $250,000 federal grant to help acquire land to preserve and protect an endangered member of the lily family found primarily in New Jersey.
The grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Cooperative Species Conservation Fund is targeted for acquisition of land along Cumberland County's Cohansey River confirmed as critical habitat for swamp pink, listed as federally threatened and state endangered.
The presence of swamp pink is a sign of a healthy ecosystem. Its primary threats are pollution, wetlands draining, erosion and sedimentation.
As a result of the grant, the DEP's Green Acres Program will initiate negotiations with various property owners and will provide additional funds for the purchases. The owners and the locations of the properties will not be disclosed until the acquisitions are finalized.
"We are very grateful to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for providing this grant to protect habitat that supports this rare plant species and are hopeful that the negotiations with the property owners will result in preserving this important habitat," said Ray Bukowski, DEP's Assistant Commissioner for Natural and Historic Resources. "This unique and beautiful wetlands wildflower is very sensitive to environmental degradation, so preservation of any land that supports swamp pink also preserves some of our most pristine land."
The grant enables the DEP to proceed with plans to help sustain swamp pink in the areas where it flourishes in Cumberland County and will connect to existing preserved land, expanding opportunities for the public to enjoy the unique natural resources of this region. The existing preserved land is managed by the New Jersey Natural Lands Trust, which is part of the Division of Parks and Forestry.
While swamp pink (Helonias bullata) is found in headwater streams and mountain bogs ranging from New Jersey to Georgia, southern New Jersey is its primary stronghold, supporting about half of the nation's populations of swamp pink.
Swamp pink occurs in forested wetlands, often bordering small streams. Preservation of areas such as these helps mitigate climate change by preserving vegetative areas that absorb carbon dioxide.
Acquiring properties where swamp pink is present will allow the DEP to contribute to a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Recovery Plan begun in 1991 to provide long-term protection of the plant.
Swamp pink is a shade-tolerant plant with smooth, oblong, dark green leaves that are visible year-round, and which form an evergreen rosette. Its bushy, pink flowers bloom between March and May.
Protection of this species through acquisition is considered particularly important since most of New Jersey's populations are on private lands. Numerous ecologically sensitive species such as bog turtle and bog asphodel, a yellow-flowering plant now believed to exist only in New Jersey's Pinelands, typically share habitat favored by swamp pink.
This project is supported by Endangered Species Grants administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program: Partnering to fund conservation and connect people with nature.
The grant may be used to purchase other ecologically sensitive land should the state not acquire the targeted land in Cumberland County.
To learn more about swamp pink, visit: www.fws.gov/northeast/njfieldoffice/endangered/swamppink.html and www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/Rare_Plants/profiles/TEP/helonias_bullata...
For more information about the DEP's Natural Lands Trust Program, visit: www.njnlt.org/
For a list of threatened plants in New Jersey, visit: www.nj.gov/dep/parksandforests/natural/endplants.htm
Been 9 years since I buried a truck on the beach but I did a damn good job this morning 400$ morning. Thank god my daughter was there to help out daddy.
The Essex Street neighborhood has been anxiously awaiting these two little signets.
The first hatched on Mother's Day and the second on the 16th. Mom & Dad are quite protective.
Decent functionality ...