Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report
Show N' Tell used to be very functional back in the day...though troubling for those of us who knew what a lousy shot Scooter was ...
... Then there was Show N' Tell back at the Shore shack (Weakies or small Red drum?)
TODAY -- 11/10/2021 ...
Even the most common pigeons can present as utter lookers ...
OK, this is surely staged -- but cleverly so.
When an everyday locust has the heart of a sunning lion inside ...
I still have that being-watched gene. In the woods today it came over me like a cold wave ... took a second but finally homed in on the less than enemy-crosshairs source.
Monday, November 08, 2021: A week of relative mildness is upon us. Actually, it will be more like yet another week of fall mildness. We did just have that nagging and seemingly icy north wind but in temp terms it really was more a case of our skin not being accustomed to chilling down.
There is an early season Alberta clipperish storm system bound for the Great Lakes with a cold front for us but no snow for the entire East only the upper Midwest. We will feel a decent cold-down by the weekend, though even that will pass quickly. Longer term outlooks show slightly above average temps for us and almost freaky mild for New England.
On the Island, the Boulevard has been pestered with almost daily spells of bayside right-lane flooding, salty water coming up through the grates. It’s nothing new but is oddly ongoing with no real weather wickedness to explain it, short of windy systems out at sea generating waves and daily pushes of ocean water into the bay. Tide trends might knock down these high tides a bit but, when driving, keep an eye open for the telltale right lane barrels.
A scattered few coyotes and a seeming abundance of foxes are again being spotted on LBI, though the coyotes are down drastically from last year's plethora. I'm sure I'll still be getting reports of wild canines stalking every thing from cats to toddlers.
Deer are performing their usual November nuttiness/ruttiness, meaning bucks do not look both ways when crossing roads in search of a hot doe -- or even just a hoof-and-antler fight. What's more, all deer know they now have that annual bull's eye on their bodies, based on past fall experiences with hunters and their deadly noisemakers They move into protective human areas, placing themselves in further roadside harm -- and place humans hiking the woods in a peril that demands bright orange clothing, preferably from head to foot.
Holgate remains an easy drive. There are the ongoing tights spots toward the end. Of longer term import, some of the overwash areas that had looked to break the island down there are doing a self repair. There are not nearly as acute ocean-to-bay cuts. Grasses are growing back very nicely in many areas. Fishing generally sucks down thataway.
The LBI beaches overall have spit out a couple nicer trophy stripers but trying to find that exact Classic-eligible size is a bitch. That should be changing soon. Make that it better be changing soon. This week's surfcasting outlook seems ideal. Think clams -- or even jigs or plugs for a 28 to 38 linesider.
Boat bassing rocks. Bay bassing rocks even harder ... though smaller. Large bunker in the bay, meaning no blues in the 'hood.
Super crabbing off Bridge to Nowhere.
A huge congrats to our Martin Truex Jr for coming in a close second in the final-four championship playoffs. Since his world championship in 2017, he has the highest average finish in all of NASCAR. Per Twitter, “Martin Truex Jr became only the fourth Cup driver over the past 35 yrs to finish top-two in points four times over a five year span.”
Martin "will one day be inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame. He’s put up those kinds of numbers."
There is some question about whether or not he’ll race next year for unknown reasons, hopefully nothing to do with his amazingly longtime girlfriend Sherry Pollex – and her battle with cancer. Maybe taking more time for their foundation.
Here's the upgraded trail -- right after the crushing was done ...
A quick through-window snap of the new obviously unrevealed traffic signals at the plastic-covered ready -- for Causeway Project lane changes? This is Central and 8th Street southbound. There will need to be signals facing northbound traffic when all is said and done in a two-way traffic manner.
I’ve become oddly immersed in a YouTube grass/trash roots series titled “Mike the Scavenger,” based on a dumpster diver’s almost daily routine -- which is about how often he puts up new videos.
Just go to YouTube and type Mike the Scavenger. It’s bingeworthy, I promise. Dotty is his truck, here semi-filled ...
Here's how Dotty got that way -- a great intro vid: www.youtube.com/watch?v=k08siRvjVTA&t=1637s
Here's a recent video ... check it out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NtlQ_oz2B0o&t=319s
The generally half-hour vids are weirdly mesmerizing, as myself and over 346,000 subscribers have found out, watching and rewatching as he dives into “juicy dumpsters,” along with doing roadside trash picks, something my late buddy Stan used to call “junkin’”.
You only need to watch a few vids to get the feel for not only the insane variety of things that end up in myriad dumpsters but, face it, the wanton waste of often perfectly good items, likely seen as no longer needed or outdated – but often of immense scrap or repurpose value.
Wait, back up. That “immense” thing needs a ton of perspective, especially when it comes to Mike often grabbing everyday steel scrap worth maybe $.10 pound at best. That takes a while to pan out.
Where metal things get meatier is his finding of much better metals, like highly scrapable ("Shiny" Number One) copper, easily garnering well over $3.50 a pound, with brass and bronze not far behind – based on grading. However, even clean unpainted stainless steel can now realize $.80 a pound. Think in terms of stainless sinks coming out at 45 pounds – or parts from a stainless-steel fridge going way heavier. Adds up, which is the essence of scrapping realm.
A sleeper metal is once low-end aluminum suddenly bringing in $1.00 a pound, one of the fastest appreciating metals over the past few years. You can’t think in terms of aluminum cans, instead so-called extruded aluminum, thick pieces which Mike digs out by the hundreds of pounds. Such aluminum is obviously related to demos (demolitions), new buildings and upgrading.
For hooked followers of The Scavenger, those viewers less inclined to follow spot commodity prices on metals, Mike constantly finds eyeopeners of a what-is-it or what-was-it nature. Some dumpsters behind technical business contain things that even dozens of viewers' worldly comments can’t pinpoint with any certainty. Mike often calls the weirdest ones “spaceship parts.”
With viewers around the world, I can only imagine what other nations think of our throw-away culture, which has always been kinda crazy, but apparently is reaching new heights. And Mike is far from shy when issuing, “What are they thinking” as he finds things like entire toolboxes filled with great items – and more than a few tackle boxes loaded to the gills with goodies. On an almost weekly basis he finds unopened boxes, often mailed returns, never even looked at by the businesses. He bats over .500 when it comes to pulling out working computers and monitors, ditched for newer models.
Discarded cases of unopened beverages – still within date – get grabbed for special donating, while toys galore, many unused, go to garage sales or charities.
Being a treasure hunter, I’m motivated to maybe hit the dumpster trail – since NJ has no law against it. I repeat: Dumpster diving is legal in NJ, thought of as keeping at least some things from landfills. That said, there is always the trespassing thing, which is only enforceable if you’re warned to skedaddle but return … again and again. Keep in mind that many businesses sporting out-back dumpsters beg folks to come in the front door. It’s not like the property in question is fully off limits. A lawyer wrote me, “It’s ignoring verbal or written warnings that constitutes criminal trespass in many cases.”
It’s highly odd that many/most local towns prohibit trash picking and dumpster diving. The court is out when it comes to a statute (state law) being disregarded via local ordinances. As to towns saying no trash picking or dumpster diving here, those leaders are opting to pay for added disposal costs at the expense of the taxpayers and ecology.
To be fair, many towns now recycle goods the way a scavenger would. That in itself is unfair, not allowing the public to have a shot at thrown-out stuff that is legally considered to be within “public domain” when left out at the street for pickup, meaning law enforcement can access it without a search warrant, which says a lot, legally.
If I were to get going dumpster diving, I’d go a new route, which is getting permission from businesses ahead of time. Most couldn’t care less since it often opens more space for disposal. It then comes down to not making a mess in the diving process, which isn’t all that hard to do inside a dumpster. What’s more, I’d wholly or partially share any scrap or yard sale resale bounty with nonprofits. I’m talking about post selling when cash money is donated from the sale of recyclables.
RETHINKING THE LITTLE FISH: I’m redisplaying these rather rare fish photos I took a couple years back. It is the skeletal essence of the most significant fodder fish in much of the Atlantic. Technically, it’s a menhaden, just as commonly called a bunker.
As a forage fish -- out there in almost inestimable numbers -- it is routinely relegated to one of lowest common denominators in the maritime ecology, not far above the microorganisms it filter feeds upon. But a close look at this photo has led me to think of it in a far more spiritual way, astoundingly so.
How simple it has become we think of a bunker as a mere also-swam, though of utmost eco importance. In reality, it might be one of the most complex fish going, internally. By astounding bones alone, this is anything but a simple player. It’s is a masterpiece of skeletal evolutionary complexities unseen in most of the animal kingdom. Mankind's 207 bone numbers are no match.
I doubt this will get fishing folks seeing more than a fine bait in a bunker but if evolution has taught us anything, it is something this remarkably evolved is something highly special in that aforementioned spiritual way.
BELOW: For Eagleswood friends. It's about an old A-frame that has bowed to time and a tough life facing the worst the bay can throw at back-bay houses.
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November 8, 2021
Building consensus between commercial fishermen, conservationists and marine regulators is no easy task. But a long, patient effort led by Congressman Seth Moulton's office seems to be making progress, and a substantial influx of federal cash may finally help the often-warring factions find common ground.
There can be little argument that there are dramatically fewer fish in the North Atlantic today, in large part because of overfishing in the '70s, '80s and '90s, fueled by massive outside investment and lax oversight from regulators.
But how many fish are left now? What kind? Where are they and how do they move?
Those are questions Moulton's Groundfish Trawl Task Force has been working to answer since its formation in 2015. The panel's efforts got a boost last month with a $500,000 grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. At the heart of the effort is providing wider, more timely and more accurate data to decision makers. That in turn should go a long way toward rebuilding trust between fishermen and fisheries scientists.
The problem has always been that it is much more difficult to count fish than to catch them.
Yet the work is vitally important to those looking for a better idea of how many fish there are in the waters worked by commercial fishermen. For years, NOAA has relied on data from two research trawlers. The Albatross IV was used between 1963 and 2008, and the Bigelow since then. NOAA currently combines data from both vessels when making regulatory decisions. That is despite the often-flawed data supplied by the Albatross IV over the years.
The Albatross IV was at the center of the "Trawlgate" controversy of the early 2000s, when NOAA scientists had to concede the trawler used the wrong nets, likely missing hundreds of thousands of fish. Yet regulators stood by that data to set low catch limits based on the admittedly flawed numbers.
That data should not be used in present-day decision-making, and much of the grant money will go toward separating the data collected by the Bigelow from that of the Albatross IV. Will it show a miraculous recovery of fishing stocks? That's not likely, and there are other factors at play, such as ocean warming that pushes many species farther north into cooler Canadian waters.
But it should go a long way toward building a set of facts that can be trusted by all stakeholders. It is difficult to understate the distrust commercial fishermen have for fisheries regulators. Trawlgate still casts a long shadow over working waterfronts up and down the New England coast.
Money would also be used to better determine how many fish are in parts of the ocean that are inhospitable to trawlers. Researchers will use the age-old practice of long-lining — employing long strings of hooks dropped and left on or near the bottom of the ocean at depths beyond the reach of trawling vessels.
The grants would also fund work to collect data on how much fish is caught by fishermen and to compare it to the NOAA trawl surveys.
Finally, the grants will collect data on how many fish are caught by fishermen and compare that information to the trawl surveys that NOAA conducts. The goal is to determine the degree to which the trawl surveys overlap with where key groundfish stocks are caught in the Gulf of Maine.
There is a lot riding on what is a relatively modest $500,000 investment on the part of NOAA. But conducted properly — and transparently — it could give fishermen, conservationists and regulators a common starting point for discussions on how best to protect fish stocks as well as one of the nation's oldest industries.