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Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report

Friday, August 23, 2019: I’m not sure how to ready myself for a weather letdown – ... Classic registration coming soon

The last time I was about to fly ... then saw my flight being readied ... Didn't really want to go to Barbados all that much anyway ... 

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Hey, if you've seen one cloud you've ... 

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Rita's Italian Ice & Frozen Custard (Surf City, NJ)
It wouldn’t be summer on LBI if we didn’t get our annual visit from Ray Romano

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 (Please check out my weekly column: https://www.thesandpaper.net/p/when-game-wardens-make-presence-know...)

Friday, August 23, 2019: I’m not sure how to ready myself for a weather letdown – along with tons of fishing folks whose boat trips will be hampered by this weekend’s NE winds. I’m hearing gusts to 25 which will waylay the plans of small craft owners. Larger vessels might ride it out, though vomiting fares and 10-ounces to hold bottom will make it a trip.

That old Joe Walsh line “I can’t complain but sometimes I still do” is highly fitting. We just had something like 20 great weekends in succession. Life is good. But I wanted this frickin’ weekend to also be good! Is that too much to ask, as we close in on the last couple weekends of high summer … as opposed to those chosen-few still-summer weekends in September?

The cooler air will actually be relatively short-lived, ending mid next week, with near 90-degree temps returning. However, the arriving cooldown until then will likely spur bayside fluke to edge toward the inlets; not that there are many fish of keepable size in the mix. Remember: Fluke season closes on Sept. 21. Many a boat angler has had a banner year to date. Lots of winter fillets stored away. I wouldn’t mind using my freezer space with fall catching, the only time I can put some serious time into casting.

Many a mobile angler wondering about Holgate, due to open next week. Oh, the bird-based beaching ban will be lifted but as to being able to access the sands in buggies. Here’ hoping the township public works is as kind to us as they have been in the past, keeping a ramp open via plowing and localized beach fills, using existing sand. I’ll keep you posted.

CLASSIC ON THE HORIZON: Here’s the first of a slew of notices about this year's bigger/richer-than-ever Long Beach Island Surf Fishing Classic. Sign-up forms will be in shops next weekend.

Image result for long beach island surf fishing classicOCTOBER 5 – DECEMBER 8, 2019
BLUEFISH & STRIPED BASS

Please sign up early to be assured of receiving the event's perks, which include rights to fish bass and blues for nine heavily-prized weeks, A 2019 LBI Surf Fishing Classic Hat & Decal, a mighty fine T-shirt and a coupon for free slice of Panzone’s Cheese Pizza.

Here's a feel for what's out there to score for even a modest-sized fish. As I've been emphasizing for years now, the playing field is leveled with an equal opportunity for very entrant to win big. 

Striped Bass Prizes
GRAND PRIZE
$2,000 Cash Award for Largest Striped Bass
& PENN reel
SEGMENT PRIZES
Three $500 Cash Awards
(One for Each Three-Week Segment)
WEEKLY PRIZES
Nine $150 Cash Awards
DAILY PRIZES
65 Daily First Prizes ($100 Cash)
JUNIOR PRIZES
Weekly $100 Cash Awards - Largest Striped Bass
$100 Fisherman’s Headquarters Gift Cert. - Largest Overall
LADIES PRIZE
$150 Cash Award - Largest Striped Bass Overall (Women)
SENIOR CITIZENS PRIZE
$150 Cash Award - Largest Striped Bass Overall (Senior)
PLAQUE TO THE ANGLER ENTERING THE
LARGEST BASS IN THE TOURNAMENT

Bluefish Prizes
GRAND PRIZE
$1,000 Cash Award for the Largest Bluefish
& PENN reel
SEGMENT PRIZES
Three $500 Cash Awards
(One for Each Three-Week Segment)
WEEKLY PRIZES
Nine $100 Cash Awards
DAILY PRIZES
65 Daily First Prizes ($50 Cash)
JUNIOR PRIZES
Weekly $100 Cash Awards - Largest Bluefish
$100 Fisherman’s Headquarters Gift Certificate—Largest Overall
LADIES PRIZE
$150 Cash Award - Largest Bluefish Overall (Women)
SENIOR CITIZENS PRIZE
$150 Cash Award - Largest Bluefish Overall (Senior)
PLAQUE TO THE ANGLER ENTERING THE
LARGEST BLUEFISH IN THE TOURNAMENT


Bonus Prizes
LARGEST RED DRUM EACH SEGMENT
One $100 Cash Award (18” - 27” legal size)
SATURDAY & SUNDAY STRIPERS
$100 Gift Certificate for Heaviest Bass Every
Saturday (Fisherman’s Headquarters) and Sunday (Jingle’s)
SPECIAL DAILY AWARDS*
Oct. 6 - $500 Cash Award for the Largest Striped Bass
**Oct. 12 - $250 Cash Award For Largest Striped Bass
(In Honor of Robert “Jingles” O’Brien from Margaret O’Brien)
**Oct. 20- $250 Cash Award For Largest Striped Bass
(In honor of Ric O'Brien from O’Brien family)
Oct. 31 - $500 Cash Award for Largest Striped Bass
(Courtesy of Surf City Bait & Tackle)
Nov. 11 - $250 Cash Award for Largest Striped Bass
Nov. 16 - $500 Cash Award for Largest Striped Bass
(In Honor of Frank Panzone from LBISFC)
Nov. 28 - $250 Cash Award for Largest Striped Bass
(In Honor of Bruce Hoagland from LBISFC)
Dec. 7- $250 Cash Award for Largest Striped Bass

* Winners based on fish weight & time of weigh-in as per standard
contest day, not day of catch. Contest day begins 6:00 pm the day
prior and ends 6:00 pm on day of prize award. Anglers must follow all
rules pertaining to “Weighing” Rules Section 8. Fish eligible for Special Daily Awards must be caught after 5am start time and weighed
prior to 6pm. In the event no fish are scored the Special Daily Awards
will roll over into the following day(s) until awarded, except where
noted ** on Oct. 12 & 20. All bonus prizes to be awarded at the conclusion of the tournament.

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Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association

e-mail address is jamesghutch1@aol.com

The Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association held its annual fishing tournament recently for the youngsters who participated in this year’s Junior Mates Program. Five captains and boats of the Association volunteered their time to reward the junior mates with a day of competitive fishing.

Boats fishing this year’s event included the “Pension Plan,” “Reel Determined,” “Starfish,” “Hot Tuna,” “M & J,” and the “Insatiable.” There were many fish caught altogether with 16 fish kept for the weigh-in. These fish consisted of black sea bass and summer flounder. In third place on “Reel Determined” was first year mate Matt with a 2.68-pound fluke.

Second place was taken with a 2.78-pound fluke caught by Sam M. aboard the “Starfish. Taking first place was a 3.44-pound fluke caught by second year junior mate Owen aboard “Pension Plan.” The pool winner for the day was a 6.24-pound fluke caught by guest Vikki Graham aboard the “Insatiable.” The fish measured over 25-inches.

On regular fishing trips Captain Ray Lopez has been catching both fluke and black sea bass well on the “Miss Liane.” Recent successful trips featuring nonstop action on these bottom fish have included the Gibbons and McNally families. Another trip Captain Ray had the Holdenfied family out for a 12-hour trolling trip with mates Kieran and Max. The group enjoyed great weather and fishing conditions with constant action throughout the entire day catching giant false albacore, bonito and mahi-mahi.

The next few weeks look like good ones for fishing in the Beach Haven area. A month remains in the summer flounder season with the best fluke fishing of the season traditionally in September. In addition, the inshore trolling action for mackerel, bonito, and bluefish continues to amaze all.

Additional information on the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association can be found at www.BHCFA.org.

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Fisherman Spears World Record Size Tautog

Brendan Dryer tracked the fish for over an hour before getting his shot. 

Pending World Record Tautog Shot in New London, Connecticut

On August 18, spearfisherman Brendan Dryer shot a pending world-record tautog (blackfish) in New London, Connecticut. It weighed in at 25.1 pounds and was 31.75 inches long. Dryer tracked the fish for over an hour before finally getting his shot.

This fish has been submitted to the IUSA committee for voting, which could replace the current record of 23.9 pounds.


Brendan shared the story of his catch via email:

“This fish was taken during a shore dive in New London Connecticut. I was approximately 250 yards from shore on a reef that I have been diving for 20 years. I had been diving for about 2 hours and had seen a ton of fish – big schools of striped bass and probably upwards of 150 blackfish. I was looking for a larger fish, as we had just come off the full moon cycle, and generally I have always gotten my biggest fish during the August full moon.

The visibility was poor but there were random spots/thermoclines that opened up a bit on the bottom. I was lying on the bottom at approx. 20 feet when I saw a massive silhouette on the outer edge of my visibility. It was a very large dark mass, particularly from top to bottom. I thought it might be a large bass, until it quartered away and I saw the profile. For the next hour I tracked this fish, seeing it on maybe a third of my dives, always well out of range. I never got a good look but could see the shadow in the distance.

Finally, when I was getting to the point of exhaustion, I took one last dive. I laid up at a choke point in the reef and remained as still as possible, pinning my fins to the sea floor and trying to focus on relaxing. There were several small tautog darting around over the top of me and a few out in front. Toward the end of my breath hold, the silhouette materialized again. This time, he gave me a better look and I was stunned. I diverted my eyes and tried to stay as still as possible. He came in to check me out tentatively, then quartered away, about 3 to 4 gun lengths from my position on the reef. He was at the edge of my shooting range and visibility, but I knew the shot was makeable.

I extended my gun as slowly as I could and took the shot. It impacted in the head behind the eye. I was approximately 1 inch too high and 1 inch too far forward, but I knew it would hold. The fish immediately sprinted for the rocks and I took off for surface. I kept tension on my reel, but he was able to wedge himself under an overhanging ledge in the reef.


I tried to get my heart rate down on the surface but was struggling due to the adrenaline. After maybe 45 seconds, I took a good breath, went down into the reef and dislodged him from the ledge, placing my hand on the shaft in front of fish. Getting him dislodged was no easy task. As soon as he was free he took off for the surface and then screamed toward the bottom again. This time I was able to stop him with my drag. I worked him to the surface, then bear hugged him. I was concerned at how high the shot was in the head, and thought the whole forehead could tear out. I rolled onto my back with the fish on my torso, and my arms crossed over the fish and began kicking for shore.

When I finally hit the rocks, I immediately knew it was a world record. We got in the truck, wetsuit still on, and got to a scale certified scale ASAP. It was a day I will never forget, and I am honored to have been able to harvest this fish.”

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Yesterday, environmental police officers from DEM’s Division of Law Enforcement cited two Rhode Island residents who are Massachusetts commercial fisherman for being in possession of 38 striped bass believed to caught in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) - a portion of federal waters reserved for conserving and managing fishery stocks. 
Officers working on information obtained through Operation Level Playing Field, a prolong law enforcement presence in the EEZ off the coast of Block Island to protect striped bass stocks began to investigate two fishermen believed to be fishing in the EEZ and selling their catch in Massachusetts. The practice of taking striped bass from Rhode Island state waters or the EEZ and selling them in Massachusetts is prohibited. 
During the investigation, officers approached the two fishermen who were at a residence in West Greenwich and found them to be in possession of 38 striped bass with a total weight of 1,054 pounds. All of the fish were larger than the 34” minimum size and none of them had the right pectoral fin removed as required by regulation. Both fishermen were in violation of the possession limit of one fish per person as well as failing to clip the right pectoral fin of a striped bass 34 inches or larger in total length. The fish were seized as evidence.
The two fisherman, Robert Majors, age 41 of Bristol, Rhode Island and Peter Parente, age 53 of West Greenwich, Rhode Island were both summoned to the 3rd Division District Court for 37 counts of exceeding the daily possession limit of striped bass and 38 counts of possession of a striped bass, 34 inches or larger without having the right pectoral fin clipped. The fishermen potentially face $3,700 in fines - $100 for each fish illegally taken. 
Adhering to the rules is not only good for the health of our fisheries; it’s the law. Rhode Island environmental police will continue their efforts to combat illegal fishing activity in both state and federal waters.

More: https://www.ri.gov/press/view/36569
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Real fun watch. 

Eel time is any time but right now I prime time.

The Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association held its annual fishing tournament recently for the youngsters who participated in this year’s Junior Mates Program. Five captains and boats of the Association volunteered their time to reward the junior mates with a day of competitive fishing.

Boats fishing this year’s event included the “Pension Plan,” “Reel Determined,” “Starfish,” “Hot Tuna,” “M & J,” and the “Insatiable.” There were many fish caught altogether with 16 fish kept...

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A New York woman got quite a mouthful with this catch.

Debbie Geddes, of Plattsburgh, was out fishing on Lake Champlain on Friday afternoon when she felt her catch dragging in the water more than usual. She thought it was just going to be a large fish.

Instead, what she reeled in was a normal-sized lake trout but with a distinctly abnormal feature: two large mouths.

"They were in disbelief," Adam Facteau, spokesman for the Knotty Boys Fishing team, of which Geddes is a member, told ABC News Wednesday. "It’s just unreal."

PHOTO: A two headed Lake Trout was caught by Debbie Geddes on Lake Champlain.Knotty Boys Fishing/Facebook


A two headed Lake Trout was caught by Debbie Geddes on Lake Champlain.

Facteau said he’s never seen a fish like it, and since posting the image he has been bombarded with messages of possible theories on its unusual look.

"I had people from all over the world commenting on what could be the possible cause of this having two mouths," he said. "People have theories that it was injured when it was younger, some biologists think it could have been a genetic birth defect."

Even with the many hypothesis, Facteau said he hasn’t figured out the exact reasoning behind the trout’s multiple mouths.

"That’s the interesting part. Everyone has an opinion, but regardless it’s wild. It’s just a crazy looking fish," he said.

After debating whether or not to keep it, Geddes threw the fish, which was about six or seven pounds, back into the water.

"She said it was too bizarrely beautiful to kill," Facteau said. "It was healthy and it was beautiful, so we let it go."

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8-21-19 Liam with a 2 1/12 pound Bonito. Jim Heeny landed several Spanish Mackerel today off the surf on epoxy/resin jigs.

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Jake's personal best weakfish.

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John Vanderslice

Caught my share today. Mahi tacos for the next week.

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Fires in the Amazon could be part of a doomsday scenario that sees the rainforest spewing carbon into the atmosphere and speeding up climate change even more



Imagery from European Union satellites shows smoke from fires in the Amazon rainforest stretching across Brazil and into other countries.
 European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts
  • The Amazon rainforest provides 20% of the world's oxygen, but its destruction could cause it to not only stop helping the planet, but start releasing carbon and worsening climate change.
  • In a "dieback" scenario, rising temperatures could dry trees, meaning they absorb less carbon and become more flammable, eventually turning the rainforest into a savannah and releasing billions of tons of stored carbon.
  • Researchers have debated the likelihood of the scenario, but fears have heightened under Brazil's new president, who has advocated expansion of industry in the region, which involves burning and cutting down trees.
  • A record number of fires have hit the Amazon this year — more than 70,000 — and experts say they are due to human activity.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The record number of fires raging across the Amazon rainforest in 2019 could be part of a doomsday "dieback" scenario in which the rainforest spews carbon into the atmosphere and speeds up climate change even more.

More than 70,000 fires have been recorded this year in the rainforest, which produces more than 20% of the world's oxygen — threatening its future, the billions of plants and animals that call it home, and possibly the entire planet's health.

If more of the Amazon is destroyed, not only would it stop producing this oxygen and supporting wildlife, but it could create a feedback loop that worsens climate change.

Read more: Here's what you can do to help the burning, ravaged Amazon rainforest

A dieback process, in which climate change speeds up the loss of trees and changes the landscape, could start with just some of the Amazon's destruction, Business Insider's Aylin Woodward reported.

Losing 20% of Brazil's rainforest could result in such a feedback loop, which would dry trees, leaving them unable to absorb as much carbon and much more flammable and likely to spread fires,researchers from three British universities wrote in a post for The....

This tipping point could lead the Amazon to devolve into a barren, savannah-like landscape that not only fails to produce oxygen but could cause the release of the 140 billion tons of carbon stored in the rainforest into the atmosphere, the Rainforest Trust said in a 2017 post.

Rising global temperatures also threaten the future of remaining trees in aiding the planet. A 2000 study found that rising temperatures could stop trees in the Amazon from absorbing oxygen by as early as 2050 and that they could start to emit carbon instead.


Some studies have described this scenario as "improbable," but fears for the rainforest's future have been heightened as human destruction of the Amazon speeds up.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has advocated industrial development in the Amazon and has tried, without evidence, to blame nongovernmental organizations for....

Read more: The Amazon is burning at a rate not seen since we started keeping t...

According to The Guardian, July saw significantly increased deforestation in the Amazon as farmers and logging companies heightened their presence in the region.

Satellite data from July showed that a soccer-pitch-sized area of the rainforest was being cleared every minute, the BBC said.


Wildfires have always occurred in the Amazon, but they are sped up by hot, dry conditions. And some of the fires are started by those farming.

Earlier this week, the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo, 2,000 miles from the rainforest, was plunged into darkness as smoke from the fires obscured the sun.

Read more: Brazil's president baselessly claimed that NGOs set the Amazon on f...

Ricardo Mello, the head of the World Wide Fund for Nature's Amazon Program, said that the fires were "a consequence of the increase in deforestation seen in recent figures," the BBC reported.

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NOAA Settles Case Against Carlos "The Codfather" Rafael: $3 Million Fine, Cease Commercial Fishing

August 19, 2019

NOAA announced Monday that they have settled their pending civil administrative claims against Carlos "The Codfather" Rafael and his fishing captains. As part of the settlement, Rafael will be required to:

-Pay a $3,010,633 civil monetary penalty

-Relinquish the seafood dealer permit issued to Carlos Seafood by September 1, 2019

-Permanently cease all commercial fishing, except for scalloping by December 31, 2019

-Permanently cease scalloping by March 31, 2020

-Sell all limited access federal fishing permits and fishing vessels owned or controlled by Rafael by December 31, 2020. Transactions must be reviewed and approved by NOAA.

"U.S. fisheries are among the most sustainable in the world," Chris Oliver, NOAA Fisheries Assistant Administrator said in a press release regarding the settlement. "That achievement is based on dynamic management and by honest fishermen following the rules. Today’s settlement of the government’s civil case against Carlos Rafael accomplishes NOAA’s chief objective of permanently removing Mr. Rafael from participation in federal fisheries. The settlement also clears the way for Mr. Rafael’s fishing assets that have been tied up in this litigation to be returned to productive use. Mr. Rafael’s forced divestiture and permanent ban from commercial fishing is a fitting end to this case, on top of the criminal sentence he is already serving. This settlement also holds accountable the vessel captains who now face suspensions, probationary periods, additional monitoring and reporting requirements, and the threat of a lifetime ban from the industry if they intentionally violate federal fisheries regulations again. It also serves as a reminder that no one is exempt from the rules."

In addition to Rafael's settlement terms, 17 of his former fishing vessel captains are required to: 

-Serve suspensions of their operator permits during which they cannot be aboard a federally permitted vessel while it is at sea or offloading. The periods of suspension range between 20 and 200 days and are based on the number and severity of each captain’s violations.

-Serve probationary periods ranging between 1 and 3 years (likewise, based on the number and severity of their violations). During their probationary periods, the captains also agree to be subject to additional monitoring and reporting requirements.

-Permanently relinquish their operator permit and be banned from commercial fishing if they are found liable for an intentional or reckless violation during their period of probation.

As SeafoodNews previously reported, Rafael was sentenced to 46 months in prison in September 2017 after pleading guilty to falsifying fishing quotas, bulk cash smuggling and tax evasion. In addition to his four year sentence, Rafael was also ordered to serve three years of probation and pay approximately $300,000 in fines and restitution. Rafael was also forced to forfeit two of his fishing vessels that were in connection with his criminal case.

Amanda Buckle

DELAWARE BECOMES THE FIRST NO-KILL STATE FOR SHELTER ANIMALS

Delaware is the first state to reach no-kill status for its shelter pets. It's hoped that no healthy animals will be euthanized in the whole of the U.S. by 2025.

Delaware is officially a no-kill state for shelter animals
Senior Editor, UK | Contactable via charlotte@livekindly.com

Delaware is living up to its First State title; it recently became the first no-kill shelter state in the U.S.

The news was announced by the nonprofit Best Friends Animal Society at a recent conference in Dallas, Texas.

The achievement was largely helped by Brandywine Valley SPCA, which has three shelters across Delaware and cares for around 14,000 animals every year. Ninety-five percent of its animals find homes or are rescued and the remaining five percent are unavoidably euthanized, for reasons such as ill-health.

 Delaware Becomes the First No-Kill Statefor Shelter Animals     

To achieve no-kill status, Brandywine Valley SPCA implemented several programs. In terms of stray cats, it began the practice of TNR — humanely trapping the animals, neutering or spaying them, and then setting them free again. It also began open adoptions, where intense home inspections aren’t required, and hosted reduced-fee adoption events.

Linda Torelli — Brandywine Valley’s marketing director — told TODAY“they are weekend-long events, where we adopt out over a thousand animals in two days. It’s an amazing experience. It’s really something to see.”

It also offers free vaccine clinics, an emergency vet fund, and a pet pantry, to help owners keep their animals out of the shelters in the first place. It also visits schools to teach children all about pet care.

“There’s a long list of reasons why great pets end up in shelters,” said Torelli. “I’d encourage people to have an open mind of the kind of animals you’re going to find in a shelter. In most cases, you’re going to find what you’re looking for.”

Reaching A No-Kill U.S. By 2025

Best Friends Animal Society hopes the whole country will be no-kill by 2025.

Best Friends Animal Society hopes to help make the U.S. an entirely no-kill country for shelter animals by 2025.

Although it seems like an enormous target, the number of euthanized shelter animals has fallen steadily over the years. In 1984, 17 million animals were dying in shelters. Now, that number has fallen to 733,000.

Texas, California, North Carolina, Georgia, and Florida need the most support, as the five states account for half of the shelter animals killed across the U.S. But Holly Sizemore — Best Friends Animal Society’s chief mission officer — is confident that change can happen.

She said, “We absolutely have been able to track the catalyst of change and the speeding up of life-saving that’s happening in shelters all across the U.S. I believe the public wants to be a positive part of the solution.” 

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