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Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report

Thur. Aug. 20, 09 -- Chumming fluke; Grabbing rays

Thursday, August 20, 2009: Waves: 2-foot south swell. Winds: Light and variable early. South later. Water clarity: Very clean. Water temps: Near 80.

Had an interesting report from a buddy who took up the challenge to chum for panfish (South End). He got some small blues (no surprise) but “cleaned up” on fluke. “We even had other fluke following hooked fluke up to the surface. That’s the first time I ever saw this with fluke. Best fish of the day was a huge triggerfish.” That action ended quickly with a slack tide (as is often the case with fluke.) That boat had only three keepers but that was better than they had been doing drifting of late. I don’t know what chum they used.

Blues have gotten pretty regular, a tad more so around Barnegat Inlet and up off IBSP.

I had some photos in my weekly SandPaper column of anglers Jim and Jimmy Mc landing a huge ray – to the awe of onlookers. It might have looked like the father and son team were up way too close and personal with the stinger of that fish. Well, they simply knew their stuff – and how to quickly neutralize the barb, which is located not at the end of the tail but up near the body.
I also got some info from Jim that might help confirm the rays had been deep in the bay prior to moving along the beach. Mullet, of all things, were balled up right next to the jetty (Surf City). No, that famed autumnal baitfish had NOT begun migrating yet. What undoubtedly happened is squadrons of rays drove mustering mullet, leisurely eating algae inside Barnegat Inlet, out into the ocean, way ahead of time. No, they didn’t simply begin an early migration from there. They took the swim to Little Egg, turned in and hunkered down around Holgate until the time was right – based on angle of sunlight, moon phase and length of day. By the by, I had written in my blogs that I had never eaten sting ray but got a call from a cook I knew and he reminded me that he had prepared it a few years back, during that first showing of rays hereabouts. I recalled that after he told me. I had remembered it as skate wings – and it was super tasty, egged along a bit by his Le Cordon Bleu training.

Email:

Jay

Fished off Atlantic City Sunday. Looked for fluke on the nearby wrecks but found small fish. Saw zillions of bunker schools about 3 miles off. Trolled around the pods and caught a bunch of bluefish on spoons and feathers. Saw a big thresher shark as well. Stopped in the inlet on the way home to fluke fish and didn't get a bite. Suprisingly slow after Thursdays 30 fluke effort in the same place. Tells me they are on the move.

Joe H

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Off the wires:

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Wednesday, August 19, 2009
PETA hopes to become caretaker of twin Lake Michigan lighthouses to promote fish agenda
SEAFOOD.COM NEWS [UPI via COMTEX] - August 19, 2009 - GRAND HAVEN, Mich.,People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has applied to become the caretaker of two Lake Michigan lighthouses, officials say.

The animal rights group wants to use the twin Grand Haven, Mich., lighthouses for education on fishing from the point of view of the fish. That has other lighthouse advocates worried.

PETA has applied under the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Program, which seeks to remove financial responsibility for lighthouses from the U.S. Coast Guard, The Detroit News reported. Applicants must be non-profit organizations and show they have the wherewithal to maintain the lighthouses and provide educational programs.

Dick Moehl, president of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association, opposes the PETA application. Grand Haven is a resort town in southwestern Michigan.

'It's a sham,' said Dick Moehl, president of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association. 'These PETA people are trying to get sympathy for their cause.'

Action on the PETA application is not expected for several months.


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[CBC News] Aug 19, 2009 - Prime Minister Stephen Harper had fighting words on Tuesday for critics of Canada's seal hunt, accusing European countries and others of unfairly discriminating against the industry.

Speaking in Iqaluit, Harper defended the seal hunt, which recently became the subject of a trade ban by the European Union.

Late last month, the EU banned the import of seal products from Canada and other sealing nations. The ban is expected to take effect in all 27 EU member countries in October.

EU officials have said the ban was the result of public pressure to stop the hunt.

Animal rights groups argue the hunt is inhumane, but Harper told reporters on Tuesday morning he disagrees.

'This industry, you know, has tight standards, the tightest in the world. The standards of this industry, quite frankly, are better than many other industries that deal with animal products,' Harper said.

'There is no reason the seal industry should be singled out for discriminatory treatment by Europeans or any other nation.'

Shortly after the EU ban was approved, Trade Minister Stockwell Day vowed to challenge it before the World Trade Organization, calling it an unfair trade restriction.

Canada's East Coast seal hunt is the largest of its kind in the world, with an average annual kill of about 300,000 harp seals. Canada exported about $2.5 million worth of seal products to EU countries in 2008.

Canada's Inuit also have a traditional sealing industry in Nunavut. Sealers in that territory harvest about 35,000 seals annually, up to 11,000 of which are sold on the open market.

Seals are also an essential source of food and clothing for Inuit in remote Nunavut communities.

The EU trade ban does provide a limited exemption for seal products derived from traditional Inuit hunts, but sealers say the exemption comes with a number of restrictions.

As well, they've argued that a trade ban would hurt the entire sealing industry regardless of whether exemptions exist for certain sectors.

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