This photo further proves that white birds can't jump ...
Wednesday, June 15, 2016: It’s been a while but I got a call from a gal whose older cat went missing a couple days ago – “She never stays out all night” -- and is certain it’s coyotes to blame.
She was given my name from another gal who thought the same of her dog, until I tracked her lost pet to (sadly) the shoulder of the Parkway. As you might guess, searches that end on the shoulder of the Parkway seldom end up, let’s saw, jolly. I wrote about that search but didn’t mention the odd part, that being she did not want the remains. She said she’d rather remember her pet the way it was. I’m not sure I’d think the same but I did an honorable albeit impromptu burial.
Below: Not much doubt about the culprit here. Though the photo below that is far more common ... coyotes eating creatures already tenderized by traffic.
Below: This photo made its way around social media as a fox about to grab a cat. Wrong! Firstly, I think this might be a fairly tame fox. Even if it isn't, the reason it would be following the cat is hoping it'll lead back to a food porch ... refilled daily with goodies for feral cats. And, yes, foxes are very clever that way.
Nothing overly dramatic in my track-about today. I have strong reason to believe this gal might be right in her coyote suspicion. The woods to the west of her house has both coyote tracks (looks like a mated pair) and scat. The scat was mainly rodent hair and seeds. Yep, coyotes will readily eat fruits, seeds and even veggies, especially if they’re denning. However, meat of any sort is essential this time of year. I told her I’d check again tomorrow since – need I say it? – cats sometimes go missing with no rhyme or reason.
Back on LBI, the winds swung back around from the south and chopped things up a bit, though toward dark it was lovely out there, especially along the beach – though it’s hardly being touched by surfcasters. Tomorrow morning should be sweet. I might even give it a go tonight. I want to see if anything salutes bayside … off the Ship Bottom fishing/crabbing pier (bay end of 10/11 streets).
By tomorrow, we’re going to begin feeling the effects of a stalled front to our south and a couple small lows running along it. I wish the front were further south. Those storms are going to be a tad too close. I think we might see 25 mph onshore winds by tomorrow night. Friday is very iffy right now.
It seems the winds will lay down for the weekend, though Saturday morning could hold gusty onshores. It all depends on whether or not either of the lows act up a little off the coast. I see waves building to an easy 4 to 5 feet. Being on a moon phase that can really jack up waves, it could get significantly larger.
Right now, the ocean remains very clear and clean. I sat on the beach for a while admiring it, as the day drained off. Obviously, the blow will stir things but I don’t think it’ll dirty the water. As noted before, watch how much warmer the water will get for the current low 60s. I’ve seen years where an late-spring northeast blow has ushered in mild water for the entire summer. By the by, early next week we’ll fall under a torrid bubble of air, 90s material (mainland). However, there are also a series of cold fronts lining up that could eventually spell below normal temps for a goodly stretch. Yes, it’s an odd spring to be sure.
I know I had put some of this worm blog in here earlier but I rewrote it for this week’s SandPaper column. You can check out the whole column at http://thesandpaper.villagesoup.com/p/worm-under-japanese-seafood-e....
I recently had a chat about worms and striped bass. We weren’t talking the worms used to catch them but the parasitic worms inside them. As you can imagine, it wasn’t a tasty topic … but someone had to have it. It struck home with me when it was openly suggested that worms in fish might be, well, meat.
WORMY SEAFOOD: I haven’t eaten meat since the Eisenhower admiration. You know … Dwight David, nicknamed “Ike,” former president, general, war hero. Oh, just Google him.
Eisenhower was elected back in the day when folks didn’t go gonzo and riot over an equally-crazed candidate -- or Photoshop a lady candidate’s face onto the body of a Komodo dragon lizard, even if it was an oddly compelling fit.
Hell, Eisenhower’s campaign slogan was “I like Ike.” You didn’t hate him or love him … you just liked him.
But I digress a bit, since this section is actually about parasitic worms in fishes, not muckraking worms within the mud of politics.
I quit eating meat after becoming a devoted pescetarian. That means I only eat seafood -- or assorted soy products shaped like a flounder or a live lobster. My dietary and culinary convictions compel me to chew on the question: Are fish worms actually meat – and therefore a substance non grata for a power pescetarian?
Admittedly, the mere mention of worms of any ilk has a meaty feel to it. However, I can make a strong case that anything that lives, feed and even loves inside a piece of swimming seafood, like a striper, converts them into another form of seafood, albeit having a lot more spaghetti-ish look.
Hey, if you’ve ever seen a sea cucumber, it looks like a massive maggot. Still, it fully qualifies as seafood, much to the chagrin of vegetarians, who see “chilled sea cucumber” on the menu and figure, “Oh, good, there’s something for me on this menu. I hope it’s organically grown.” Sure it is. Why not?
"Cucumber" and broccoli ...
Hold the broccoli.
Stretching the worm thing a bit, our beloved mud-sucking bloodworms are categorically marine creatures, i.e. seafoodesque. However, they have yet to show up as sashimi offerings, even in Japan. More on seafood-radical Rising Sunners in a minute.
There are, indeed, certain locally caught fish with worms coming out their ears. Those insider worms often emerge when said fish are filleted -- and the fillets are left unattended on a counter. You might check YouTube for living proof or some fish chunks taking on a post-mortem life of their own.
I’ve often defended striped bass as being very low on the worm-carrying list, even though a squirmer or two can come to light from within a fillet, now an again. That said, a goodly number of highly-popular fish in the cod family are, uh, laden.
Possibly the king of internal worms is the black drumfish, so much so I’ve long thought it might be fun to finally one-up the Japanese, who traditionally spend their entire lives seeking new ways to gross out the world through seafood items they’re willing to put into their mouths.
We could really mess with the heads of cocky Japanese seafood explorers by ritualistically putting out big chunks of black drum to patiently wait for worms to climb out. We might even wear silk robes and burn incense while waiting. An occasional worm-enticing gong might add a nice effect.
When the royal worms writhe forth, like cobras from a Calcuttan basket, we’ll gently seize each, between thumb and forefinger, and honorably place them in a ceremonial American vessel, something Tupperware-ish.
With videocams rolling, we’d then place the confused worms atop a finger of sushi rice, where they’ll eagerly burrow in. Next would be the formal serving of the live-worm sushi to a table of seeming well-healed dignitary types -- who will excitedly put the live-worm sushi up to their mouth … before the cameramen quickly cuts away and all the actors fling the wiggling rice into the air and go gagging and screaming from the table.
Just like that, we’d suddenly take over the lead in the world experimental seafood-eating realm, easily outdistancing Italy’s latest squid ink wine.
By the by, in the end, parasitic worms in ocean fish are, in fact, seafood. We pescetarian need not worry – while adroitly avoiding black drum and cod-like fish.
The boats of the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association have been catching a variety of fish giving anglers a choice of what to go after.
Captain Gary Dugan has been fishing for a variety of fish on the “Irish Jig.” One day was a striper run, but the non-stop wind during the week had the bait scattered and dirtied the water so striper fishing did not produce. He moved inside and enjoyed some bluefish action in the bay. An afternoon trip produced a couple of blues and 2 nice flounder for the box with a few throwbacks. The wind was blowing hard and even with a drift sock, they were drifting 2.5 mph.
Captain Ray Lopez fished for striped bass for three straight days on the “Miss Liane” and found some big fish. The Clark crew from Medford fished two consecutive days despite some rough ocean conditions. Their patience paid off in a pair of large bass, one 47-inches and the other just under 50-inches. The larger fish weighed in the low 40’s. On the third day Captain Ray had a pair of experienced anglers out, one of whom was Bob Stewart who caught his first striper of the year weighing 35-pounds.
There have been reports of bluefin and yellowfin tuna offshore along with decent shark action. This opens another window of opportunity for anglers.
Additional information on the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association can be found at www.BHCFA.net.
Jeff Wanamaker feeling awesome with Pat Faenza at Capt. Rons Fishermen.
Atlantic Highlands, NJ
What a great day with my ol' friend! It's been way too long! Over 30 fish caught and 6 in the box. Can't wait to do it again!
JR's 44lb 48 inch bass on Fish Trap out of Barnegat light today