Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report

Monday, June 22, 2020: Not to jinx things but how about this weather … and ocean and bay and beach. Also, Vulcan space ships on the beach.

A look at Ship Bottom Party Shoal ... A bit Trumpisized. 


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And this very odd hazebow ... 

Monday, June 22, 2020: Not to jinx things but how about this weather … and ocean and bay and beach. While I’m stuck in the shop most of the early week, I’ll still have some sunlight time after work, seeing we’re experiencing some of the longest days of the year – much longer than a mere 24 hours. Come on! I’m not serious … besides, we all know the days are getting so long due to global warming.

Humpback whales have made their in-close presence well known. I was sent a slew of photos which were not the stuff of publication, often needing a magnifying glass see the prime attraction. A couple were Sasquatch grade. As is the case with mammoth marine mammals, the whales come and go as they bloody well please, meanings there is no sure way to hit the beach with any certainty of seeing one show.  Best bet is to listen for folks shouting "Look a whale!" 

Getting a goodly number of comments about how folks are loving outdoor dining. Sounds good.

Elsewhere on the reopening trail, this FB post for Monday: “Renee Hlzwth. The line to get into Tj maxx is past the movie theater.” As long as they don’t buy out my gourmet foods, which are usually the last bargains to go anyway.

Still haven’t hit the thrift stores seeking aloha shirts. Also, I was told aloha shirts are now considered racist. I kid you not. Someone sent me a Facebook message to that end … so it must be true.

My most political thought of the day: In this great country, I’m still allowed an opinion … providing I keep it strictly to myself.  

I’m still looking into a fatality on the beach in Long Beach Township. I’ve gotten reports that a male was found floating face down and brought to shore where two off-duty nurses and local police tried to resuscitate him, unsuccessfully. The cause is what’s most in question. I’ve heard both drowning and heart attack. Importantly, the incident apparently took place after lifeguard hours. I dislike how town officials refuse to issue information about such incidents. I realize they can’t include names and such, but details might help save lives in the future, even in the case of a medical emergency being the cause. Check tomorrow’s SandPaper for more details, possibly.


Below: These odd-looking Vulcan warship-ish things that wash ashore with every storm are actually the tenacious seed pods of the highly invasive European water chestnut, an aquatic plant that is high on the “must kill” list of invasive species. It gets into shallow water and chokes out all other indigenous vegetation. When washed into the ocean, they fall into the fairly appealing category of collectible “sea beans.” (Now you can act all smart when the kids find these on the beach.)


Like most, I've lost track of our black bear. That's to be expected since it as last seen rumbling into some of the deepest Pinelands around, namely Bass River State Forest. I'll be giving some ink to our bear in my weekly column, noting it could get hot real fast for our heavily coated buddy. While he presents virtually no threat to human life and limb, I worry he might happen upon blueberry fields in full fruit. I'm not sure how much damage a lone black bear can do when feasting on blueberries -- possibly for days -- but it won't take many  farmers' complaints to force the state to trap it and take it back north, where bear hunting season isn't a pretty sight. But I'm mainly worry-worting here. Odds are our bear can settle in and find life quite right -- as in baby bear's just right -- in the Pine Barrens.

Also, no further word on a different black bear that showed up over on the western edge of the Pines. That bear also was a likely lockdown-inspired southward traveler.  

While talking bruins, I always like to pull out this photo in my "Holy Crap!" file. It shows the immensity -- and implicit danger -- of brown bears, best known as grizzlies. Not to be morbid, but a brown bear is capable of decapitating a human with a single paw swipe to the head. No, this photo is not photo-shopped. They're that big. 

Here's a black bear paw:


Steve Horvath 
Big as the live well
No photo description available.

So this happened yesterday on my Shark Experience charter. That is a juvenile Great White female! She was so cool!!! Very young and very photogenic. She was tagged for NMFS and released in great condition. Such a thrill to see such an apex predator off the LBI coast. Simply awesome!

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I neither condone or condemn the following action ... simply acknowledge a good comeuppance when I see one, though I might have balked at loading up on dark chocolate.

William Murray Christopher Jr.

So I’m at the dollar store to get a hose for my pool and this little shit of a kid decided to throw a fit over these “larger” candy bars and called his mother and I quote a “b*tch.” because she wouldn’t get him this particular bar... I was waiting for her to slap the living shit out of him and instead she literally gave in and said “I’ll get you the bigger one when we get to the register.” Well.... I’ll tell you now I had no intentions of spending $24.00 bucks on candy bars, but the look on that little shits face as I walked out the door with all they had left was priceless.

Best $24.00 I ever spent....

Looks like some nice size stripers are still here - Vince Zoppina “The Fin” caught this 14.30lb, 35” yesterday in Beach Haven on salted clams!
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Only made one trip to Manasquan Inlet last week on the midday low tide.  Caught, tagged and released a bluefish doubleheader at 21” and 18” on a plain hook Ava A17 and synthetic buck tail teaser. The bigger fish was a skinny racer. I may return this week. I’m 73 year old George H.
Chad Craddock
This was one happy Green Heron yesterday morning!

This was one unhappy sunfish yesterday morning!


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Hi all,
I hope this finds you well. Several of you have asked if LBIF will be conducting any activities related to the environment since we had curtailed the Science Saturdays. The answer is YES….but.
We want to be very careful and to make everyone feel comfortable and safe in any activity. We will be wearing face coverings and ask those participating to do the same.
MARSH WALK - It is a great place to go and be socially distanced. People are visiting already BUT……we need some help to find the sections of the marsh walk that floated away over the winter. We also need to reconstruct the first section of the walk to the marsh. 
We will be working Wednesday, June 24 at 9:30 (at low tide) and looking for additional volunteersPlease reply to this email if you can attend for about 2 hours, which might be less depending on how many people show up. Wear a face mask and I suggest mud shoes or boots and work gloves. 
DISCOVERY DAYS - Discovery Days - We will be having Discovery Days on Wednesdays at 10:00am starting July 1st! Stay tuned to the LBIF Facebook page!
- Rick Bushnell, LBIF Science Committee Member
LBIF Discovery Days - Free Guided Nature Tours of the Marsh
> Back for Summer 2020 // Free and open to all!
Wednesdays, July 1 - August 26
10:00am (rain or shine)
All ages welcome! Our local experts will provide a different experience each week. 1.) Baby clams, oysters and other shellfish - where they live, what they eat and what eats them. 2.) Our wondrous native plants and the life they support - birds, bees and butterflies. 3.) The different fish that live in our bay - we’ll use nets to catch them and then identify and learn about them. 4.) Turtles, ospreys and other critters who live in, under, and around the marsh.

20-20 has always been a term for normal vision, but the year 2020 has been anything but normal. Earlier in the year, COVID-19 made its mark on the year.

It truly made its mark on our organization. Larry Picarello, our Board Chair and dedicated leader, succumbed to the illness in Mid-April. He strongly believed in the mission of Coastal Volunteers in Medicine and inspired us with his gentle nature and caring heart. He will be greatly missed but would have wanted us to move forward.

Coastal Volunteers in Medicine provides free primary and psychiatric care by volunteer clinicians to the uninsured and medically underserved in Southern Ocean County. We rely on donations and fundraisers to support the operations of the clinic. In the past, we have held fundraising events, with the gathering of friends and supporters. As you can imagine, those events have been cancelled. COVID-19 greatly affected our community. Many people lost their jobs, their income and their insurance. Financial hardship is all around us as our community feels its effects. With the community needs rising and no ability to hold our previously planned events, we are reaching out to you with this one-time direct appeal.

If you care to make a donation, please go to our website https://coastalvim.org/donate/ or mail a check to CVIM, PO Box 99, Manahawkin, NJ 08050. We truly appreciate any help you can give to our organization during this difficult time. We hope you and your families are doing well through this illness, and we pray we will come out of this healthy and stronger. 

As Larry always said, “Be Well.

Together We Heal

Volunteers in Medicine America is a national nonprofit dedicated to building a network of free primary health care clinics for the uninsured and medically underserved. It supports the 90 VIM clinics that are providing needed care throughout the county, including Coastal Volunteers in Medicine.  The following VIMA video captures the "culture of caring" that our patients find at CVIM.  We continue to give them hope because we don't just treat them as patients, we treat them as our neighbors. 


TAKING STOCK: Pandemic-induced Fears Continue to Weigh on Seafood Markets

June 22, 2020

Following a resurgence of COVID-19 cases in the Far East and U.S., shares of leading seafood companies around the globe dropped during the second week of June. 

While fears of a second wave of infection continue to linger, stock markets responded positively last week following the Federal Reserve decision to promote liquidity via corporate bond purchasespart of a $250 billion program funded by the CARES Act 

Compared to March lows, key stocks rallied with the S&P/TSX composite index, the Dow Jones industrial average, S&P 500 index and the Nasdaq composite all trending upward following the Fed's commitment.  

While international markets rallied in the past week on the back of further intervention from central banks, doubt remains.   

Mixed Fortunes

While heavyweight indexes rallied, leading seafood shares have had mixed fortunes.  

Mowi—the world's leading seafood company—fell 6.2% in the first half hour of trading on Monday, June 15, following reports out of China suggesting traces of COVID-19 were found on a cutting board belonging to a seller of imported salmon. While the share price has recovered some of its losses since last week, weak salmon prices continue to hinder share values. As of mid-morning on June 22, Mowi was trading at NOK178.05 ($18.45), a 1.82% decline from the previous trading day close. While still above the 52 week low of NOK155.75 ($16.14) experienced on March 30, share values remain well below the 12 month average of NOK207.98 ($21.55). Similarly, Grieg Seafood ASA—one of the world's leading salmon farmers—has also felt the brunt of weak salmon prices with shares down 2.78% as of mid-morning trading today.  

After a turbulent few months, Asian seafood shares are also feeling the pinch. Thai Union Group saw its shares decine after sending home around 200 workers from its Portugeuese plant after an employee tested positive for COVID-19. The Thai seafood giant hit a 52 week low on June 15. While the share price had recovered some losses over the last week it closed 1.59% down today compared to Fridays close on the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET). 

While certain stocks continue to struggle, fear of missing out on undervalued companies has somewhat spurred seafood investment in recent months. Following the acquisition of Elba Seafood earlier in the year, Iceland Seafood—a leading exporter of Icelandic seafood and subsiduary of ISG—initially saw its shares dip to a 12 month low in March though has since seen its shares rebound by 17.14%  

While some sense of normality has returned to parts of the globe, uncertainty remains across many territories.   

Despite higher crude oil prices, financial analysts have warned of little gaurantee that stock markets wont re-test lows experienced in March. From a seafood standpoint, foodservice dependent businesses remain below pre-pandemic levels while some retail dedicated production lines continue to be stretched. 

Photo Credit: Ca-ssis/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Michael Nesbitt

Connors, Rumpf & Gove | New Jersey's 9th Legislative District

Connors, Rumpf & Gove Start Online Petition to Save Senior Free...

Click Here to Sign the Online Petition

Senator Christopher Connors, Assemblyman Brian Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne Gove are demanding that the Senior Freeze and Homestead Benefit programs be protected and fully funded under the State Budget. To respond to and organize growing public opposition, the 9th District legislators have created an online petition calling on Governor Murphy NOT to cut the Senior Freeze and Homestead tax relief programs.

Connors, Rumpf & Gove have launched an online petition urging Gov. Murphy not to cut the Senior Freeze and Homestead Benefit property tax relief programs. (©iStock.com)

“Eliminating or cutting the Senior Freeze or the Homestead Benefit programs would have a devastating financial impact on taxpayers, especially seniors, who rely on those programs to stay in their homes and pay their bills. As such, vital property tax relief programs must be prioritized and fully funded in the State Budget. The question shouldn’t be if these programs are funded, but how.”

The Murphy Administration already eliminated the Homestead Benefit credit from property tax bills that were due on May 1st, forcing homeowners to pay more. Now they are threatening to remove the valuable tax credit from bills due in August, November, and 2021.

“For taxpayers who stand to take a sizable financial hit if the Senior Freeze or Homestead programs were cut or eliminated, our online petition will serve as a rallying point and broad forum to fight yet another state policy that would work against taxpayers. A very direct and forceful message needs to be sent directly to Governor Murphy and the Legislative Leadership controlling the State Budget process that taxpayers want and desperately need relief, not more policies that they will be on the losing side of, as is the case with the state’s school funding formula.

“Unquestionably, the 9th Legislative District stands to be disparately impacted based on our large local senior population. It is utterly unconscionable for the state to even consider cutting these property tax relief programs that would have the effect of unnecessarily creating more hardships for taxpayers, especially seniors, during these unprecedented and uncertain times.

“That these programs have even been targeted by the Murphy Administration is a direct consequence of the state’s reckless, budget-busting policies that include, but certainly are not limited to, spending taxpayer dollars to establish New Jersey as a sanctuary state. COVID-19 has further exposed the weaknesses inherent in New Jersey’s extreme tax and spend policies that many viewed as not only blatant socialism but obviously unsustainable. Taxpayers should have to pay the price for failed policies.”

Sign the online petition at: https://senatenj.com/petitions/propertytaxrelief/.

NOAA Deploying Armada of Drones in to Collect Fish, Weather Data

June 22, 2020

In a recent update, NOAA said that a trio of autonomous surface vessels set out off the coast of California will travel to the Bering Sea to survey the largest fish stock in the U.S and monitoring weather and ocean conditions in the Arctic Ocean.

These drones will be part of an “armada” of autonomous (unmanned) ocean vehicles NOAA will use in the Pacific, Arctic and Atlantic oceans gathering both environmental and weather data.

“We are accelerating the use of unmanned systems during COVID-19 to meet critical mission needs at a time when some of our ship and aircraft missions have been postponed for safety reasons,” said retired Rear Adm. Tim Gallaudet, assistant secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and deputy NOAA administrator. “The innovative systems will provide valuable information for communities at a time when it may be difficult to do so by other means.” 

In the Bering Sea specifically, the vessel will conduct an emergency survey on walleye pollock, the largest fishery in the country. The vessels will provide information that resource managers will use to create fishing levels in 2021.

Equipped with specially designed acoustic sensors, unmanned vehicles will measure the abundance of pollock. They will also provide information on ocean conditions that affect the pollock population, NOAA explained.

The drones will also help track weather in the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans. For the upper ocean, the sensors on the drones detect wind, solar radiation, salinity and sea surface temperature. This data will be used in weather models to predict future Arctic storms.

When it comes to working in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico, NOAA and other partners will deploy 30 underwater ocean gliders for the third year in a row. These gliders will measure ocean temperature and salinity throughout the hurricane season. This data will be used to predict where hurricanes will grow stronger or weaken.

In terms of seafloor mapping, NOAA plans to use four drones in the Arctic equipped with acoustic sensors to map some of the seafloor of the Arctic North Slope.

Ryan Doyle

Pew Submits Petition to Protect Right Whales, Calls for Closing of Fishing Off New England

June 19, 2020

In a petition submitted to U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, Pew Charitable Trusts called for regulations to protect North Atlantic right whales from entanglement in waters off of New England.

Pew said it is in favor of closing areas off of New England to vertical-line fishing gear when right whales are in the area.

“Closing some areas to fishing with the most harmful gear could immediately lower the risk to the whales while the federal government develops longer-term rules to reduce whale entanglements in fishing gear,” Pew said.

Pew is pushing for one year-round closure south of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket and a trio of seasonal offshore closures in the Gulf of Maine, “in which the use of vertical lines in the American lobster and Jonah crab fisheries is prohibited.”

“Targeted vertical line closures where whales congregate and interact with heavy, lethal fishing gear are the fastest and most effective management tool available to prevent the unlawful deaths and likely extinction of the North Atlantic right whale,” the letter read. “The proposed areas have been scientifically identified as posing the greatest risk of entanglement to the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale.”

The recommended closures from Pew are as follows:

Down Eat transit area: August-October

Offshore migration corridor: October-May

Western Gulf of Maine feeding area: May-July

Southern New England feeding area: year-round

“Because the majority of lobster fishing is in state waters—up to 3 miles from shore—and these proposed closures are almost entirely offshore in federal waters, most lobster fishermen would not be affected by what we’re proposing,” Pew’s Peter Baker & Katharine Deuel wrote in a post regarding the petition. “This action is needed to reduce the amount of heavier fishing gear used in key areas offshore, which NOAA Fisheries agrees presents a more lethal threat to right whales than the smaller-scale gear used closer to shore.”

Jon Williams, the owner of the Atlantic Red Crab Company, believes Pew’s recommendations could cause even bigger problems for the right whale species.

Williams said that if the closures are implemented, fishermen are not going to just remove their gear from the water. They will move their gear to the edge of the closed areas. Creating a wall of lines that could be even more impactful to the species.

Once that happens, Pew could then note the increased density of lines and the threat it creates to the species and lead to even more closures, Williams explained.

"(Pew) knows its virtually impossible to shut these areas down all at once, their strategy is to take a chunk at a time," Williams said. "They are not even considering what the unintended consequences are."

The Maine lobster industry has been battling fishing regulations in regard to protecting right whales and argues that their fishery is not responsible for recent deaths of right whales.

In May, the Maine Lobstermen’s Association launched a campaign aimed at saving the industry after a recent ruling determined that the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) violated the Endangered Species Act (ESA) by allowing Maine lobstermen to use gear that has the ability to entangle and kill endangered North Atlantic right whales.

“Maine lobstermen have not broken any laws,” McCarron said in a press release regarding the fight to save Maine’s lobster industry. “For nearly a quarter of a century they have followed every law and fishery management regulation, including major changes to their gear and fishing practices to save right whales. Nevertheless, the court’s decision will directly impact Maine lobstermen and the communities that depend on them.”

A recent MLA analysis showed that the Canadian snow crab fishery accounted for 31% of right whale injuries and deaths, while gillnet and netting gear was responsible for 13%. Unknown/ U.S. trap or pot gear represented 8% of deaths or injuries, while vessel strikes of both U.S. and Canada represented 48%.

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