Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report
Sunday, March 14, 2010:
I hit eastern Burlington County woods today. On the way out there, I found and buried a road-kill coyote. I found it struck (fairly recently) not far from New Gretna. It was a female animal with striking hair, not that ratty scraggly look that many coyotes have. This might have been a hybrid, since the hindquarters had the shading and coloration of a husky. No, it was not a domesticated dog. It was clearly a coyote, about to shed her winter coat. I felt the belly but couldn’t tell if she was pregnant. If she was, she wasn’t very far along. I’ll eventually go back for the skull.
While hiking pretty deep in the outback, I came across some members of a local family I knew. The family has been living in the Pines for three long generations, dating back to at least the middle 1800s. They work the Mullica region, building docks and such. We began talking coyotes and the youngest boy told a weird tale of being chased by a “huge” animal. He had been running a trail and something large and fast began paralleling him, definitely stalking. It was busting through the bushes not far from the trail. It was making no effort whatsoever to flee. You have to realize these folks live and breathe that Pinelands lifestyle so if one of them says something weird was on the prowl -- and in a predatory mode -- bank on it. The older brother added that nothing even remotely like that had ever happened before – over decades on end of the family living thereabouts. And lest you think these were yokels, the family lost its power during the recent storm which was very upsetting to the family since the boys couldn’t study for advanced college course.
Pickerel fishing is as brisk as it gets. During the day, spinners will draw in any pickerel in the vicinity of the cast. Minnow fishing works well but it’s lame. Why waste a baitfish to catch a inedible species? Use artificials, then catch and release.
Truth be told, I’m a tad confused on the exact nature of those bridge fishes, mainly stripers. I say that because they’re the earliest fish on scene in spring and the very last to leave in early winter. It sure as hell seems those bass have some deep local attachments. Part of the nuclear plant population? Not likely, since that power plant biomass is glued to those unnaturally-warmed waters. I’m half wondering if there is a resident biomass attached to the very deep water around that Hochstrasser bridge. Add to that, the first migratory stripers from down south head straight for those bridges because of the super forage hanging there at all times, making it tougher yet to figure the origins of the Causeway fishes.