Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report
MANN OVERBOARD: With visions of eclipses still hot in our thoughts, I must note a legit flashback I had Monday, as things got darker down below, i.e. here on Earth. I relived the time I experienced what is best described as an eek-lipse, something myself and a scant few others have seen. I can first-handedly assure that eek-lipses are a load more impactful than this week’s partial dark-out.
My eek-lipse took place while diving on a Bahaman reef. I was calmly and fixatedly looking at colorful crevice creatures when a highly unforecasted sun-blotting took place, as a less-than-celestial body eerily blocked out the light above. Looking up -- yes, without proper eye protection -- things instantly escalated to what I’ll crudely call an “oh-s***-clipse!” Over 300 pounds worth of shark was playing moon.
Fortunately, the eclipse-maker in my case wasn’t lights-out. It was a relatively kindly, albeit massive, nurse shark. It had lazily lifted up from the bottom to pass belly-touchingly close, over my head. It wasn’t until it had passed that I recognized it was a benign breed of sun-blotter. Still, I related to the song “Total Eclipse of the Heart” – as in, “Oh, my heart!”
While my eek-clipse was only partial heart-attack material, I know of those who achieved totality, having seen a great white-clipse.
Below: Big-game fishing during some mighty hot times: Che and Fidel in their own cat-and-mouse game.
Below: These dogs were rescued after the Titanic sank. They were found doggy-paddling, literally.
"Surprisingly warm with these strong SSW winds, guess it'll drop tomorrow." Yanni K.
Tuesday, August 22, 2017: Totally gorgeous tropical-like water yesterday is getting blown around a bit by hard south winds. It’s still excellent shark waters at night, providing bait is gotten out deep enough. Below, you’ll see a Beach Haven dusky shark catch. The hookup was helped along by a baited hook being kayaked well out into the water. And, yes, it sure seems to be dusky and not a brown. I’m going on looks, hues, dorsal fin size and what seems to be the telltale interdorsal ridge.
Above: Image via gardenstatetrout.com!
I was told of another massive butterfly stingray being pulled into the suds – and cut free. I’m not an over-stickler but I’d much rather a ray – or any fish – be brought in and unhooked than having the line cut. The more line left with the fish, the worse. I had a commercial guy show me a netted fish that was in pathetic shape from being wrapped in braided line. The line was wrapped so tightly around both pectoral fins that the fins had partially atrophied.
As to leaving a hook in a fish’s mouth – cutting the line off close to the hook – an increasing number of studies show that fish shed hooks handily, roughly under two days. Hooks in the upper part of the mouth are shaken off faster than the bottom, theoretically due to upper-mouth hooks interfering more in foraging, thus the fish dedicates more time to ridding the aggravation.
Per www.saltstrong.com, “First and foremost, if you can get the hook or fishing lure out of a fish’s mouth with minimal issues or harm to the fish, then by all means, ALWAYS take it out. But if you believe the fish that you are releasing might not make it if you keep them out of the water any longer, many times it is best to just cut the line.”
For an interesting hook v. pike study check out https://www.saltstrong.com/articles/fishing-lure-left-in-a-fishs-mo....
By the by, the notion of hooks dissolving out in a fish’s mouth is sorta ludicrous. Put some hooks in a glass of saltwater – and wait a couple years … still no total dissolving.
More metallurgically accurate, the metal of an embedded hook will simply weaken and even bend, allowing a fish to eventually shake it out. Dissolved out? No way.
I saw a gory study whereby the area around an imbedded hook will sometimes infect, creating what amounts to a more slippery environment for the hook to loosen and come free. It’s not unlike the way our body responds to a splinter by infecting and allowing pus to usher out the splinter. With fish, it becomes life-threatening should the infection advance, though such advanced-stage infections were not that common in the research I saw.
By the by, above we’re talking about freestanding single or even treble hooks. When it comes to entire lures hanging on with the hooks, things can go fatal far faster. So, not only do we hate losing a lure to a fish, the fish hates it far more. It comes down to how well a fish can shake free of a lure burden. Again, commercial folks have shown me some of the badly lured fish they’ve come across. Hey, it’s not like we’re purposely cutting loose lured fish.
Below: Banded rudder fish being caught two at a time in Harvey Cedars ... via Jean Deery Schaum
GLASS FULLY FULL: I want to make a quick mention of this blog comment regarding my rating the weekend weather as a 10. It was commented: “My son told me the flies are so bad folks have either left or camped in the wet low tide sand. West winds are a curse.”
When I get to lovin’ life on LBI, I rate the weather first and foremost – then add in the people picture. In my recent post, my people-look included the Harvey Cedars beachfront and atop the ocean, on the fishing front.
While there was a minor fly presence in HC yesterday, it was far from a slap-happy thing. Far more significantly – and now I include my home town of Ship Bottom, where I also hung out – the number of folks out there enjoying the small surf and low tides was remarkable. Fun level was at a10, as was the weather.
Sorry if flies got the best of a folk or two. And, yes, the west winds can surely blow in some sh-stuff. In such cases, that simply means it’s time to go with the flow -- if need be, sidle up to wet sand. Such tweaks have always been part of being here. Maybe my tolerances are just higher than most. Now, when flies fully swarm – when legs are immediately covered in black – it’s time to abandon the beach, just the way Native Americans did back in the day. It’s c'est la vie a la LBI.
Problems continue in Holgate. DO NOT leave fishing gear out. In fact, if pros are at work, which might be the case, even garages aren't a safe bet.
Amazing someone would actually walk in through a closed door and take bikes
Calling police now
NEST cameras don't fail us now!
I had Village Harbor Fishing Club member Ed Valitutto and member Alan Goracy along with their grandchildren Chaytan, Nicholas, Vincent, and Jacoby for a 4hr Bay/Inlet charter. The boys were siked about fishing and they also had their eclipse glasses. We had much more challenging conditions with strong tide and stronger South winds than my morning charter. But the group caught over 30 Fluke on the S&S BigEye bucktail and boxed 4 keepers (20, 19, 19, 18). We fished a variety of areas and the boys and grandfathers did a great job! 11yr old Nick Rossi was the high hook catching the most fish along with 2 keepers himself.
Brett Taylor added ....
I had Rob P and his father Bill of North Jersey out on a 4hr Bay/Inlet charter. We started working the inlet for Bluefish as there was a little birdplay just outside. Once the Bluefish bite died, we worked some of the same areas as I did during last Thursday's charter (Friday's charter was cancelled due to weather). The father and son team worked the S&S BigEye bucktails to produce close to 30 Fluke with 4 keepers (19.5, 19. 18, 18). One of the throwbacks was previously tagged by Monmouth University.
SEAFOODNEWS.COM [The Japan News] - August 22, 2017
An international meeting to discuss fishing regulations on Pacific bluefin tuna, a species that has seen its population levels plunge dramatically as a result of overfishing, will be held for Aug. 28 in South Korea.
Discussions at the meeting of a subcommittee of the Commission for the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (WCPFC) are expected to cover the long-term resource recovery goals set to be achieved by 2034.
Japan’s Fisheries Agency has been saying the goals can be achieved if it continues with its present regulations, which aim to reduce fishing of juvenile bluefin tuna by half. However, this year it did not adhere to these rules. The committee’s participating countries are keeping a close eye on Japan’s every move.
Protests from fishermen
A national conference was held in Tokyo on Aug. 8 to discuss resource management of bluefin tuna. When the Fisheries Agency spoke about the outlook of the WCPFC meeting, they were met with protests from over 300 people involved in the tuna trade. They requested that resource management be loosened, even if only slightly. Some said they could hold out for three years or so, but could not wait 10 — they want regulations loosened as soon as possible. Staff members of the Fisheries Agency sought their understanding, explaining that they were planning to carry on with the current regulations and reach the goals already set.
There has been a dramatic decline in stocks of bluefin tuna in the western Pacific Ocean, including in the sea near Japan where the nation’s prime fishing grounds are. This is what led the commission to put long-term goals for stock replenishment in place. Participating countries include Japan, the United States, China and South Korea.
In 1961, there were stocks of over 160,000 tons of bluefin tuna. This is in stark contrast to the 17,000 tons that remained in 2014 — only about 10 percent of the 1961 figure. As the world’s largest fisher and consumer of bluefin tuna, Japan has played a large role in the decline.
The WCPFC recognized that international cooperation would be vital in replenishing stocks of bluefin tuna, and in 2015 introduced a fishing regulation stipulating that catches of juvenile bluefin tuna weighing less than 30 kilograms should be reduced to 50 percent of the 2002-2004 annual average levels. There is agreement on a provisional target to increase the amount of adult bluefin tuna to 41,000 tons by 2024 — if juvenile tuna are overfished there will be no increase in the number of egg-laying adult fish, and prospects for population recovery will be dire.
The meeting in late August has been set up with the aim of ensuring population recovery by defining long-term goals as well as the implementation of current regulations.
The Fisheries Agency says it will be possible to achieve the long-term target of stocks of 130,000 tons by continuing its current regulations. However, some experts have cast doubt on the lofty goal of 130,000 tons — over seven times the stocks in 2014.
If an agreement on long-term goals is reached, fishing regulations will continue for the time being. Japan plans to propose a system whereby it increases surveys of bluefin tuna stocks from every other year to every year, strengthening regulation if there is a sharp decrease, but also loosening regulation if stocks increase more than expected.
Criticism from abroad
However, other countries have a harsh view of Japan.
Japan’s protests led to a delay in the first fishing regulations on Pacific bluefin tuna being put into place. This is in contrast to the 2007 ban on the fishing of juvenile Atlantic bluefin tuna and regulations on fishing adult fish, which led to a recovery in population of the Atlantic bluefin tuna, which had seen a similar decline in stocks.
Japan also exceeded the fishing quota of 4,007 tons agreed upon by the WCPFC by close to 10 percent. Having 80 percent of the entire fishing quota for all participating countries allocated to Japan attracted a great deal of international criticism.
The Fisheries Agency is seeking international favor by announcing strategies such as penalties against fishermen who break the rules. However, the United States and other countries are against any loosening of regulations before the provisional target is met in 2024.
Toshio Katsukawa, an associate professor at Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology, said: “Japan is determined to protect fishermen, and is losing international trust as a result. In the current circumstances, there’s just no way Japan can propose things like early deregulation.”