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Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report

Tuesday, January 10, 2017: May the warmerness move upon us ... can I get anyone to read on?

When you stand around in an area that doesn't get snow all that often: 

"And she has only come out at night ever since ..."

Tuesday, January 10, 2017: May the warmerness move upon us, beginning tomorrow and peaking at neat 70 at some Pinelands points by week’s end. Yes, there are snow showers forecast by Saturday but this does not mark a savage piece of arriving coldness. In fact, we won’t see night temps much below freezing for many days to come. Daytime high will bounce around in the 40 and 50s. My kinda temps.

I hope some of you take a moment to go over this newly arrived beach replen and proposed jetty stuff. It impacts all locals and visitor alike. 

 SAND MIGHT FLOW SOONER THAN LATER: Here’s a major update to my previous report on where the beach replen thing goes from here.

No sooner do I write about what should happen, if all things flow normally, post-project, than a good wrench gets thrown into the mechanism. I’ll explain.

A somewhat surprising funding OK by Congress is placing a dredgeload worth of funding in a kitty that LBI has a sure-shot at.

Here is the exact Army Corps press release lingo:

“We recently received word that supplemental Flood Control & Coastal Emergencies appropriations were provided by Congress through Public Law 114-254 (Further Continuing and Security Assistance Appropriations Act, 2017), of which the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers plans to apply to several rehabilitation projects across the U.S., including part of the Long Beach Island project (previously constructed areas of Harvey Cedars, Surf City and portion of Brant Beach). Currently, the Army Corps of Engineers Philadelphia District is working on Engineering & Design and hopes to have construction funding in the near future.”

There you have it. The dredged flow of sand will likely resume on LBI long before  the “natural” projected renourishment timeframe.

I had written: A full-blown return of Great Lakes-grade repairs will come only after established erosional triggers, based on technical dune heights and beach widths, are reached. It might be a couple years off, or, in a perfectly eroding world, as many as seven years away. Per the Army Corps, “The project also includes periodic nourishment at 7 year intervals for a period of 50 years.”

Amazingly to me – and this isn’t taking a stance one way or another -- Surf City seems to be in-line for a third sand-over of its beach (only). In fact, even Brant Beach and Harvey Cedars will be beach-only renourishments, at least by my eyeball reckoning. The dunes generally look fine.

I have to wonder if south Holgate will wiggle into the re-re-nourishment mix since it’s already showing it’s bones, via an uncontainable Wooden Jetty. It’s one of those “Since the equipment is already in place” things.

PAIN IN THE GROIN: This is the point where I forward the looming plan to place a “Big Ass Jetty” (my term, in case you hadn’t guessed) to replace Wooden Jetty.

The planning process is now in full swing, i.e. it just might be happening, despite decades of the state banning any hard structures along the Jersey coastline.

If you need a size perspective for this proposed jetty, think in terms of Holyoke …  and add a slew of feet eastward.

At this point, I need to wax technical and use the proper term for our beachline “jetties,” which we all know are, secretly, “groins” by name.

Here's a more exacting definition: Groins are the smaller shore-perpendicular structures, built to trap sand and stabilize a sandy beach. Jetties are large structures typically used to stabilize inlet channels. A groin is constructed across the beach, perpendicular to the shoreline, and is designed to trap sand moving in the longshore transport system.

Not long ago, I got a nasty-ass letter from a fellow hissing how stupid we all are for calling our beachfront rocks “jetties.” He, of course, had obviously just come to read about the “groin” nomenclature and wanted to be all erudite-seeming.

Sorry, dude, but the great majority of LBI aficionados know they’re officially called “groins.” Not as many know that the term “jetty” is technically and legally any groin/breakwater/rocks that mark a navigable channel. The Barnegat Inlet jetties truly are jetties.

I’m using groin-ish language to highlight the fact the proposed Wooden Jetty “groin” will likely be the largest “groin” ever placed on LBI. Now, folks might not cry that the Barnegat Inlet Jetty is larger! But, it won’t be the Island’s largest groin, should a mega-nonWooden Jetty arise.

It’s still a ways off before granite groin chunks arrive, three at a time, on long bed trucks. But I have to believe that paid-for planning alone is a large step toward building it.

Or newer jetty design ...

DUMB IS AS DUMB DOES: By way of editorializing, I’ll call on my geology and coastal knowledge to suggest the first effects of a Wooden Jetty mega-groin will, indeed, restrict sand from drifting north to south, as planned. It would momentarily prevent erosion to the north. Also, it will unquestionably make for five-star surfing conditions, that I guarantee.

Then, in short order, things turn ugly for the Holgate refuge sands. The proven problem of hard-structure erosion begins. The now fat sandbars south of Wooden Jetty will be starved of material. An acute eating away of the beach will take place immediately south of the mega-groin, as was easily seen with Nebraska and Holyoke avenues. The erosion will quickly threaten the houses to the west of the Holgate parking lot. Eventually – possibly far faster than eventually – an inlet-like cut-across will develop.

All this is a geological no-brainer, which makes it ripe for doing, based on short-termed thinking often winning the Trenton day.

In my last blog, I fostered the notion that complaining about a problem without offering a solution is nothing more than whining. I, therefore, offer a viable solution to north-to-south littoral drift of sand: we renourish the state-owned frontbeach of Holgate, adjacent to the refuge. This creates a linear sand flow that will slow the beachfront erosion to the north while also tapping into 50 years of upcoming dredged sand.

 Along those lines, the far south end of LBI, at the Rip, would become immense! The refuge would soon have dunes and marsh meadow so massive it should rally for a beach replen to get it started. 

In Hatteras: "Accelerated erosion of the shore at the top of the photo as a result of the wall."

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Titan 60 in custom shell.

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Chicken of the Sea Int'l Launches 10-Week Challenge to Get More Americans to Eat Seafood

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] January 10, 2017

Chicken of the Sea International (COSI) has launched a campaign that challenges Americans to eat more seafood per the USDA’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015-2020.

The  #EatMoreSeafood Go Fish! Challenge will encourage Americans to use seafood instead of proteins in at least two meals per week. The program continues through March 15, 2017.

“These latest guidelines confirm what Chicken of the Sea has known for years: Americans just aren’t getting enough seafood,” said  Maureen McDonnell, director of marketing for Chicken of the Sea. “Since our goal is to get Americans’ seafood diet to come closer to resembling that of the rest of the world, the program covers all types, varieties and brands of seafood and shellfish.”

COSI said one goal of the10-week program is to increase America’s nutritional health by eating more fresh and packaged fish,  regardless of the brand or species.

“While we’d prefer they reach for the familiar Chicken of the Sea Mermaid, participants eating and sharing any fresh or packaged seafood will be eligible to win one of 13 prizes.”

Per promotion rules, ten weekly winners will be chosen at random to receive $100 gift cards while three monthly winners will enjoy free Chicken of the Sea seafood for one year, valued at $468. Seafood fans enter by posting original seafood-related content accompanied with the #EatMoreSeafood hashtag on Twitter and Instagram, or by completing an entry form on the Chicken of the Sea web or Facebook page. Regardless of the entry method they choose, they are encouraged to offer their own seafood tips, recipes, serving suggestions, stories, nutritional facts, photos, videos or other sources of inspiration.

Chicken of the Sea will motivate the public to participate throughout the 10-week promotion (and beyond) by posting a series of “Go Fish” messages on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest themed to recipes, nutritional facts, trivia, new products and tips on healthy living, traceability and sustainability. Chicken of the Sea will select some of the best tips, recipes and other content submitted by the public for inclusion in the final, 52-message deck, which will be posted on the Go Fish microsite and available for download at the conclusion of the program.

Several Chicken of the Sea products, including Tuna and Salmon in EZ-Open cans, Flavored Salmon Pouches and Sardines, will be featured throughout the promotion to highlight the variety of ways that Americans can meet the increased seafood consumption goals.

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Air China Bans Shark Fin Cargo

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [The Washington Post] by Simon Denyer - January 10, 2017
 
BEIJING — Air China has become the first airline in mainland China to ban shark fin cargo, marking a dramatic shift in attitudes toward trade in endangered wildlife here and throwing a lifeline to shark populations threatened with imminent extinction.
 
The news, released late Friday, came just a week after China announced plans to ban its domestic ivory trade, a landmark decision of vital importance in ending an epidemic of elephant poaching in Africa.
 
It marks the country’s gradual transformation from being the biggest source of the problem — as the largest market in illegal wildlife products — to becoming a major part of the solution.
 
“Scientists estimate that fins from up to 73 million sharks a year are used for shark’s fin soup, with much of the trade in shark fin destined for China,” said Alex Hofford, a wildlife activist from the conservation group WildAid in Hong Kong, which applauded Air China for taking “an ethical stance” to help protect sharks and oceans. “It’s a bold move, and this is likely to have a huge and lasting impact on shark populations and marine ecosystems worldwide.”
 
Hofford said the decision by China’s national flag carrier “puts FedEx to shame” — the U.S. multinational courier company has resisted repeated calls to take a similar step, despite a petition signed by 300,000 people, and an appeal from a coalition of animal welfare conservation groups who expressed concerns that its service could be used to carry fins of endangered shark species. That would be a violation of the Convention on Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).
 
Courier company United Parcel Service bowed to pressure to ban shark fin shipments in August 2015, acknowledging concerns about authorities’ enforcement capabilities and the adequacy of visual inspections to determine whether shark fins being shipped belonged to endangered species. Rival DHL took a similar step in 2014.
 
FedEx said its service terms and conditions prohibit any shipments that violate applicable laws or regulations.
 
“FedEx continues to comply with these laws and regulations, and our customers are required to do the same,” said Jack Pfeiffer, a FedEx communications adviser.
 
At least 35 other airlines and 17 global container shipping lines around the world have also signed up to the campaign to ban the shipment of shark fin, including, in July, the Chinese state-owned shipping giant China Cosco Shipping.
 
Meanwhile, China has been moving to restrict the shark fin trade for several years. In 2013, as part of its campaign against government corruption and extravagance, it banned shark’s fin soup from official banquets.
 
Last year, China issued data showing shark fin imports had declined by 82 percent between 2011 and 2014. WildAid reported that wholesale prices of shark fin had declined by 50 percent to 67 percent, from $270 to $300 a kilogram in 2011 to $90 to $150 in 2014.
 
The decline is a measure of the dramatic shift underway in China, where legend has it that shark’s fin soup was created more than 1,000 years ago by an emperor in the Sung dynasty who was trying to show off to his guests.
 
Consumption of the expensive soup shot up in recent years, as it became popular at banquets and weddings as a sign of social status among the country’s rapidly expanding middle class.
 
Sharks are among the ocean’s top predators and play a vital role in the marine ecosystem, but the $1 billion annual trade in shark fin has sent their numbers plummeting worldwide. Conservationists say 74 species of sharks are threatened with extinction; 11 are critically endangered, while 15, including the great hammerhead, are classified as endangered.
 
Just a decade ago, though, most Chinese people were oblivious to the issue, with many not even knowing the soup — known in Chinese as “fish wing” soup — was made with shark fins. But attitudes began to change after Wild­Aid enlisted Chinese professional basketball player Yao Ming, who played for the Houston Rockets, to front a public awareness campaign in 2006.
 
In a statement, Air China Cargo said it had a “long-standing commitment to playing our role in a more sustainable world” and acknowledged the unsustainability of the global shark trade.
 
“We understand the community’s desire to promote responsible and sustainable marine sourcing practices, and this remains important to Air China Cargo’s overall sustainable development goals.”
 
In October, the 182 CITES nations voted at a summit in Johannesburg to add silky sharks and thresher sharks to a protected list, despite strong opposition from Japan and Iceland, the Guardian reported.
 
WildAid called on Hong Kong to do more to stamp out the shark fin trade there, which it said was “essentially unregulated.” Air China’s decision will also put more pressure on China Southern Airlines, headquartered in Guangzhou, which is emerging as a shark fin trade hub in its own right, almost as big as Hong Kong.
 
In a letter to the U.S. government and FedEx directors sent Sunday, WildAid also urged FedEx to reconsider its stance on shark fin in response to Air China’s move, calling its policy of shipping shark fin “irresponsible, unsustainable and likely illegal under CITES.”
 
“China is doing the right thing. How about the United States?” it asked.
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Rusty Patched Bumble Bee Listed as Endangered Species

First Native Bee in Continental U.S. to be Protected by Law

CHICAGO (January 10, 2017) - The rusty patched bumble bee was added to the federal Endangered Species List today, the first native bee to be protected under the law in the continental U.S.  Threatened by disease, habitat loss, and pesticides, the rusty patched bumble bee is now listed as "endangered," which will require action to prevent the bee from going extinct.​​

“Today’s Endangered Species listing is the best—and probably last—hope for the recovery of the rusty patched bumble bee. Bumble bees are dying off, vanishing from our farms, gardens, and parks, where they were once found in great numbers,” said Rebecca Riley, Senior Attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).

“We are very pleased to see one of North America’s most imperiled species receive the protection it needs,” said Sarina Jepsen, director of endangered species at the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, the petitioning organization. “Now that the Fish and Wildlife Service has listed the rusty patched bumble bee as endangered, it stands a chance of surviving the many threats it faces – from the use of neonicotinoid pesticides to diseases.”

The plump bee with a rusty patch marking on its back-section was once common in 28 states across the East and upper Midwest as well as large parts of Canada, but in the last two decades the bee has disappeared from over 90 percent of its historic range.

The endangered species decision for the rusty patched bumble bee comes after years of calls from conservationists and scientists to protect the native bee species. Bumble bees are prodigious pollinators, essential to blueberries, tomatoes, and clover, as well as native flowering plants. The economic value of bumble bee and other native pollinators is estimated at $9 billion per year in the United States, according to the White House.

One of America’s bedrock environmental laws, the Endangered Species Act (ESA), provides comprehensive protection to both the species and its habitat.  The Act has been an essential tool for protecting bald eagles, grizzly bears, and scores of other iconic species. ESA listing for the rusty patched bumble bee will ensure that the federal government takes action to prevent the bee from going extinct. 

The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation filed a petition to list the rusty patched bumble bee as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act in 2013. Xerces and NRDC filed a lawsuit challenging the FWS’s failure to act on the petition in 2014. Pursuant to a settlement in that suit, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agreed to make a listing decision by September 2016. That decision, issued on September 22nd, 2016, proposed the listing finalized today.    

Additional Materials

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants: Status for Rusty Patched Bumble Bee: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2016/09/22/2016-22799/end...

Bigger Isn’t Better: Bayer Takeover of Monsanto Is Bad for Farmers, Bees https://www.nrdc.org/experts/rebecca-riley/bigger-isnt-better-bayer...

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