Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report

Saturday, December 29, 2012: Junk weather and junk computer times for me. I’m huddling inside the LBI library trying to tap into their Wi-Fi. My office and home internet capacities are in the crapper. If it ain’t one thing it’s a dozen or so.

I had some distant notions of doing a bit of stripering today, regardless of the skies. However, I just can’t shake this chill. It might very well be the fact my high-chill, under-repair house doesn’t really allow me to catch up on any daily loss of body warmth. Tomorrow’s high sunniness should allow for beach time since both my NFL teams – Steelers and eagle -- are dead in the water. What a waste for both teams, since they have the personnel to be SB contenders. Oh, well, more time to go outdoors. Actually there are a few insanely important matchups tomorrow that could be better games than the playoffs.

Below: This kid is a billfisherman to boot. 


Check out this video. Fully freaky. Someone here is not right, eh?



(Above) Young striped bass ready for release. 

NOAA info on water temps and stripers, Chesapeake angle.

Fall Water Temps Help Rockfish Choose Habitat

It’s October, and the striped bass—or rockfish—are starting their long trip home! While some rockfish (Morone saxatilis) can be found year-round in the Chesapeake Bay, most leave after spawning in springtime in the Bay’s tributaries for cooler waters up north along the Atlantic coast and join the rest of the “coastal stock” of striped bass. Water temperature plays a large role in helping these fish select their habitat as they move through the year.

As fall arrives, these trophy-sized migratory striped bass are quite large, sometimes over 50 pounds. They head back into the Bay for one last feeding stop before they move to their winter grounds off the coast of Virginia and North Carolina. In many cases, coastal water temperatures trigger this southward migration of mature striped bass, forcing them to leave their “summer in the Hamptons” off New England as waters cool. Coastal communities along the Atlantic coast enjoy productive fishing for striped bass as they head south toward the Chesapeake Bay with the onset of fall temperatures. Once in the Chesapeake, rockfish primarily feed on menhaden with a few other prey items mixed in. Because the mainstem of the Bay is nearly 200 miles long, distributions of both the forage fish and the striped bass are closely linked to the changing conditions in each region. Water temperatures and location of forage fish help rockfish select more precisely where they prefer to be in the Bay.

Striped bass are not the only ones keenly aware of the changes that drive their choice of habitat: Recreational and commercial fishermen on the Bay look forward to the return of migratory rockfish as well. Monitoring parameters tracked by the NOAA Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy System, including water temperature and salinity, can help fishermen track how far up the Bay the migratory rockfish are likely to be found, and where the hot spots may be. As this graph from 2011 at the NOAA CBIBS Gooses Reef buoy shows, water temperatures generally drop significantly in October, encouraging rockfish to move up the Bay.

In many cases, a warm fall can make for challenging fishing, with rockfish concentrated in the lower portions of the Chesapeake Bay. A cooler fall can mean a banner year for striped bass fishing in the Maryland portion of the middle and sometimes upper Bay. Thousands of fishermen from around the country will be out on the Bay participating in the annual fall run of these trophy-sized striped bass and competing in several rockfish tournaments in October and November. The success for fishermen this fall will largely be determined by how well they match up where they fish with where the migratory fish are. What will 2012 bring? Only time will tell, but real-time conditions as observed by CBIBS can provide tools for a potential sneak preview.

Water temperatures can also affect rockfish in another way: spawning success. In general, warm winters and dry springs—as the Chesapeake experienced in early 2012—don’t encourage a successful spawning season for striped bass returning to the freshwater reaches of Chesapeake Bay tributaries. Recently, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources announced that the 2012 striped bass juvenile index—basically a survey of how many rockfish were spawned this spring—was the lowest on record.

Striped bass reproduction is highly variable; successful years can be followed by below-average years, and vice versa. While scientists will continue to monitor future years’ juvenile index closely, there is no immediate cause for concern.



[Design News] By Ann R. Thryft - December 28, 2012 - 

We've written before about taking inspiration and actual materials from nature to engineer newer, targeted versions for a variety of uses. Creative engineers have made a material from shrimp shells and silk, grown packaging from mushroom roots, and devised a possible body armour design inspired by the structure of a shrimp's arms.

Now researchers at the University of Guelph in Ontario have discovered that the defensive slime exuded by hagfish may be a source of high-performance protein fibers that could replace petrochemical-based polymers. Those polymers are the current source of many different materials, such as nylon and plastic fibers, and fabrics woven from them.

Researchers have discovered that the defensive slime exuded by hagfish may be a source of high-performance protein fibers that could replace petrochemical-based polymers, such as nylon and plastic fibers, and fabrics woven from them. 
(Source: Wikimedia Commons/Peter Southwood)

The university's Comparative Biomaterials Laboratory investigates a range of different animal-made materials, such as slimes secreted to ward off predators and large tissue-based materials like the keratinous plates of baleen whales. The lab's work with hagfish slime began as a search for renewable, protein-based, high-performance fibers that were not based on spider silk or similar materials, since, as the website states, "spinning artificial spider silk has proven far more difficult and expensive than anyone could have originally imagined. For this reason, we are employing a biomimetics approach to explore other natural fibres that could serve as more viable models for spinning high-performance renewable fibres."

One alternative is the slime threads that constitute protein fibers in hagfish slime, which share some similarities with spider silk. But these threads are constructed very differently from the process that spins liquid crystalline spider silk proteins into an insoluble fiber. Instead, hagfish slime threads self-assemble hierarchically within a cell from intermediate filament proteins. These proteins are also much smaller than those of spider silk, which would make them easier to produce quickly via bacteria, using engineered genes that make the slime.

The research is led by postdoctoral fellow Atsuko Negishi and MSc student Nicole Pinto, under the lab's director, Douglas Fudge. In a recent journal article in Biomacromolecules, the team describes its success at harvesting the fibers from the hagfish slime proteins. They accomplished this by casting thin films on the surface of electrolyte buffers using hagfish slime thread proteins solubilized in formic acid. These films were then drawn out into fibers, and the researchers measured their tensile properties. (Watch a video of a team member pulling fibers from hagfish proteins below.)

Results showed that the mechanical properties of the fibers depended on the conditions of casting, such as buffer composition and protein concentrates, as well as the processing done after spinning and before drying. Larger-diameter fibers tended to have lower stiffness and failure stress. The fibers' properties improved, and approached those of regenerated silk fibers, with a second drawing out, although they did not approach the strength of naturally drawn hagfish slime threads. An alternative wet spinning method produced only weak fibers.

Although this material has a long way to go before it can be scaled up for industrial-scale culturing by bacteria, the results so far look promising. The researchers say that the next logical step for improving fiber mechanics would be to first make suspensions of intermediate filament proteins that have already self-assembled into networks of 10nm filaments, and then make fibers and films from that material.


Views: 459


You need to be a member of jaymanntoday to add comments!

Join jaymanntoday



© 2021   Created by jaymann.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service