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Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report

Tuesday, November 26, 2019: I got my weekly column done early, so I have this rare opportunity to wax peptic, make that poetic.

Michael A Cucinotta
The things you find on the beach at first light. Somebody made a mistake (Harvey Cedars). 
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Tuesday, November 26, 2019: I got my weekly column done early, so I have this rare opportunity to wax peptic, make that poetic, herein. Further below, I’ll go off on the crappy surfcasting. 

I can vicariously rub in the beachside bass-lack by passing on a slew of boat bassing reports showing schoolie stripers being caught out the kazoo … out a ways. Fully jaded, those boat people are already minorly bitching about the lack of big-ass bass. Ah, poor guys. 

I’ve taken part in boat bassing fall schoolies and recall having a big-time blast. As odd as it sounds, I’m truthfully not into bass bigness all that much, likely out of necessity.

Can’t forget when myself and a slew of surfers would cram onto Skip Miller’s Boston Whaler to do a bass-about just outside Barnegat Inlet. We couldn't care less about big-ass bass, as long as we nabbed something scrappy. Schoolies are absolutely that. We often scored – until we’d notice the swells were picking up in size. Talk about leaving them biting – but the song of the surf called louder.    

Those schoolie fishing days were also very learning times. I recall one time, aboard the Fisherman’s Headquarters vessel, that it was tough tracking down stripers until I tied a rare golden stubby Hopkin’s I had found with a metal detector. Suddenly, I was heavily hooking,  albeit exclusively on that gold metal. It was living proof that matching the hatch – whatever the golden forage was that day – even applies in the marine environment. Obviously, I never forgot that. I also recall the late Mo DeGennaro was fit to be tied as I steadily hooked up, so I let him tie on the golden beauty -- just as the sun was going down. He got one fish and was yelling we have to stay -- as we putted off into the sunset.

WORTH A RE-LOOK: I'll once again publish the Derby/Classic numbers, just to masochistically display how awful a fall it has been for surfcasting.

In modern times, there have been some equally bad years, compliments of moratoriums and Sandy impacts. But even the moratorium years had a fair to remarkable showing of bluefish (2066 in 1986) to pull us through. We even had weakfish on the tourney plate. This year, there have been no painkillers of a blue colored or sparkling nature. It’s just bad, all around.

Zeroes on the bluefish ledger is almost too much to mentally manage. I've long been a bluefish aficionado, mainly because even I could catch them. Not this year -- for me or anybody. I’ll further note that parts of coastal Europe are having a slammer bluefish fall of monumental proportions. I’ll bet anything those blues are ours ... give 'em back, right now! 

I'll further rub in the bass badness by noting many of the low bass years on the chart -- prior to recent let-down years – also had things like higher minimum size limits holding the numbers down, i.e. our numbers are the worst of the worst, all things considered. 

REG TRAIN A’COMIN’: As we await the final verdict on what mandatory cutback program NJ will implement for striped bass, I'm fully open for suggestions regarding how the LBI Surfcasting Classic can persevere should a slot move which prohibits the keeping of a bass fish over, say, 38 inches. Of course, most of the bass entered into the Classic this year would fall within even the strictest slot.

If we’re saddled with a low maximum striper size, grand prizes might shift from heaviest to the bass closest to the exact maximum length. In the case of a length tie, judges could go to tiebreakers, including weight, length, girth and earliest caught. If it somehow comes out as an outright tie, the combined grand prize and segment prize money could be combined and split evenly between the two catchers of identical fish. 

That offered, overall weight has always been the master measure of winning fish. May the fattest fish win, regardless of length.

COME BACK, STRIPERS: What in bloody hell can be done to bring the bass back to LBI's shoreline? One can only get outrageous. I’ll do so by suggesting a stocking of seed surf clams within 200 yards of the beach. They'll take hold, I guarantee. 

While we’re in the stocking theme – and into never-going-to-happens – why not release tons and tons of feisty lady crabs. In a few reproductive years, we could return to crab times when these bottom cleaner-uppers were so thick near in that I could watch (while snorkeling) as bass bodily whipped up the bottom sand and gobbled up uncovered lady crabs by the stomachful. Crabs remain the number one diet item for bass of virtually any age.

Image result for striped bass eating lady crabs

Then, there’s the surest piss-‘em-off suggestion of all: Let bunker boats hit the nearshore menhaden stocks. Oh, don’t get your panties in a bunch, boat bassers. That not only won’t happen but there could be even stricter regulation regarding bunker fishing in the EEZ. By my reckoning, more EEZ bunker could sound the death knell for surfcasting stripers from our beaches -- that’s how sure I am that too many bunker balls – easy eats -- are the biggest wrecking ball for surfside bassing.

Alarmingly, my nonsensical notion of a Spiney Dogfish Derby might be in order. Come to think of it, I’d be back in the grand prize running again. And I could take any unwanted weigh-ins for my sharkskin wallet line.

Image result for world record spiny dogfish

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11/24/19 UPDATED 4:49 AM Been an interesting 2 days to say the least. I think we can call this, for whatever it may be nowadays, the Fall Run. Our Fall runs right now consist of many short bass with the occassional 30+ incher thrown in. They are fun, fat, and hard hitting.

Can we make it 3 really good days in a row??? More than likely, yes, with perfect wind, weather, and bass that are on sand eels and creeping slowly south, not hauling ass.

Steve George
“Teasers” ~iGotWorms~ In the Hous
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Nick Perello

Ran to the southern Canyons from Barnegat Light yesterday to do some daytiming. Very slow day. 2 bites and caught one small but legal swordfish. We were pretty sure we were the only boat to run offshore from NJ. Had a great time with Ian Anthony , Jarrett Hillman, and Will Jobes

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Jerry Postorino
Fish Monger II Sat 11/23 Capt Bill's Blackfish tournament- Despite having a great bote only our last trip we Headed out for looking for jumbos in anothe area. The crew we has knows very well how this goes. We managed the right amount of bites I expected at each spot just couldnt come up with the size we needed . Kurtis Berry had the big fish at 8.5lbs n rest were just couple dozen normal keepers up to 6.5 giving us a weight of over 30lbs - none the less this format and event was a fun time n something different. Big congrats to Dante Soriente and his crew for being tops and the big day they had and to Capt Bills and all the sponsors of this great event. Crew is already looking forward to doing it again next year! Thanks guys!
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What a fun day with the boys!! It’s great when a plan comes together and works. David Moores and myself have put 2 months of research and fishing all for today’s tourney. Over 32 pieces we have hit this year logging each one and leaving them alone if we found what we wanted. Well today game plan was to hit first piece one and 30 minutes into fishing George Cox broke the ice with a 13 lber and for spirts high quick. 15 min later I put back to back 13&12 lber on the 2 oz glow white leg jig. 30 min later Georgie came threw again with a fish around 10. Off to piece 2 which was secret spot well didn’t pan out today and was dead for some reason. Back to another piece and right away Mike Michael Kim puts his PB slob 16 lber on deck. After a few cheers back we fish. Dave Rooney added a fish around 10

Right before we left for scales. We knew we had a good batch but also knew the talent that was involved. 6 fish total of 61 lbs for first place. And largest Tog of the tourney. Team Nomoores Team Magictails would like to thank our sponsors Cortland Line, Van Staal reels , Ferguson supplies. Also thanks to Jigging world. Thanks Bill Cleary Frank Zappella for the event. Frank Wagenhoffer thanks for keeping us up and fishing nobody better!! Svetlana Soriente enjoy the 1500$ congrats to Nick England Rob Z Fish Shane Burke for 2nd place and Buddy’s over at BNR Jeff Crilly and Scott on there 3rd place!!! Time
To relax and hang with my kids for a day before I get back out!!!

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Greg Kopenhaver is with Lori Fillar Kopenhaver.
As many bass as you wanted to catch today!! Smaller fish but the boys had a blast on light tackle....and we got our Christmas card pictures done!
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Humpback Whale Population Bounces Back From Near-Extinction – From Just 450, to Over 25,000

Conservationists are rejoicing after new research showed that whales in the South Atlantic have rebounded from the brink of extinction.

Intense pressure from the whaling industry in the early 1900s saw the western South Atlantic population of humpbacks diminish to only 450 whales, after approximately 25,000 of the mammals were hunted within 12 years.

Protections were put in place in the 1960s after scientists noticed worldwide that populations were declining. In the mid-1980s, the International Whaling Commission issued a moratorium on all commercial whaling, offering further safeguards for the struggling population.

A new study co-authored by Grant Adams, John Best and André Punt from the University of Washington’s School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences revealed that the species’ population (Megaptera novaeangliae) has rebounded to 25,000. Researchers believe this new estimate is now close to pre-whaling numbers.

“We were pleasantly surprised by the comeback; previous studies hadn’t suggested that humpback whales in this region were doing this well,” Best told Good News Network in an email.

The study, published last month in the journal Royal Society Open Science, refutes a previous assessment conducted by the International Whaling Commission between 2006 and 2015 which indicated the population had only recovered to about 30% of its pre-exploitation numbers. Since that assessment was completed, new data has come to light, providing more accurate information on catches, genetics, and life-history.

“Accounting for pre-modern whaling and struck-and-lost rates where whales were shot or harpooned but escaped and later died, made us realize the population was more productive than we previously believed,” said Adams, a UW doctoral student who helped construct the new model.

The study incorporated detailed records from the whaling industry at the outset of commercial exploitation, while current population estimates are made from a combination of air- and ship-based surveys, along with advanced modeling techniques.

The authors anticipate that the model built for this study can be used to determine population recovery in other species in more detail as well.

“We believe that transparency in science is important,” said Adams. “The software we wrote for this project is available to the public and anyone can reproduce our findings.”

Lead author Alex Zerbini of the UW’s Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean stressed the importance of providing population assessments without biases, but says these findings come as good news— an example of how an endangered species can come back from near extinction.

“Wildlife populations can recover from exploitation if proper management is applied,” said Zerbini, who completed this work at the NOAA Alaska Fisheries Science Center’s Marine Mammal Laboratory.

The study also looks at how the revival of South Atlantic humpbacks may have ecosystem-wide impacts. Whales compete with other predators, like penguins and seals, for krill as their primary food source. Krill populations may further be impacted by warming waters due to climate changes, compressing their range closer to the poles.

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Wild teaberry is excellent this time of year. The plant is loaded with essence. 

Deadly coral disease has spread through Great Florida Reef

Stony coral tissue loss disease has spread throughout the Great Florida Reef. Source: Florida Department of Environmental Regulation

A disease killing stony coral in the Great Florida Reef now infects half the corals from Martin County to the Lower Keys, marine scientists reported this fall.


White spots on this coral reveal that its tissue is dying. Photo by Emma Doyle/Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute.

The Great Florida Reef is the only living coral barrier reef in the continental United States and one of the world’s largest.

Stony coral tissue loss disease, whose cause is not yet known, has spread to 96,000 acres of the reef tract and the myriad species of stony corals there, according to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Once infected, corals lose living tissue and turn white (not to be confused with coral bleaching caused by higher water temperatures). Colonies usually die in weeks or months, state and federal researchers say. The disease also is killing stony corals throughout the Caribbean.

An animation published by Florida DEP shows how stony coral tissue loss has spread exponentially from 2014 to this year, growing from a large patch (in red) offshore from Miami into a sweeping swath stretching from Martin County to areas beyond Key West.

Researchers and volunteers trying to fight the disease are taking tissue samples, monitoring water quality, weather and pollution, and studying how various species of coral respond to the disease.

Pointing to the potential that whole reefs could die off before treatments or cures are discovered, coral-rescue teams are removing specimens from the wild and isolating them in land-based nurseries to keep them disease-free.

If they survive in captivity, these corals could be reintroduced to the wild in hopes of establishing new reefs in the future.

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N.J. forms panel to advise state government on offshore wind generation program


(Heribert Proepper/AP Photo) A newly established panel will provide guidance to New Jersey officials as they undertake a goal to power more than three million homes by offshore wind energy generation in 2035, state officials announced.

Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Catherine R. McCabe established the New Jersey Environmental Resources Offshore Wind Working Group which will include representatives from commercial and recreational fishing industries, conservation organizations, maritime industry, and fisheries councils.

“The Working Group will ensure that interested parties have a seat at the table with government officials to help shape the Murphy administration’s offshore wind strategy and implementation,” McCabe said in a prepared state.

State officials say they recognize the importance of community engagement in fulfilling the administration’s clean energy, economic development, and natural resource preservation goals.

“By working together with the fishing industry and conservation community in reaching this goal, we can effectively combat the harmful effects of sea-level rise and climate change while preserving critical aspects of our economy and natural resources,” McCabe said.

In June, state regulators approved the first application for a wind farm off the Jersey Shore, which is expected to start generating power in five years.

Murphy said increasing offshore wind capacity would also create opportunities to shift the state’s transportation sector — which produces nearly half of New Jersey’s greenhouse gas emissions — toward electrification.

According to officials, the offshore wind industry will create thousands of jobs across the state.

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Well, duh! Of course New Jersey is the smartest state in the U.S., study shows



TCNJ 2019 Commencement

Michael Mancuso | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

Thursday, May 23 2019 - The College of New Jersey 2019 Commencement


Maybe we should change the Garden State to the Genius State.

It would seem appropriate after New Jersey was the named the smartest state in the United States, according to a recent analysis conducted by Safe Home, a professional review site.

The study tabulated New Jersey as the smartest state with a score of 337.8, well ahead of second-place Utah, which checked in with 324 points.

A state’s score is calculated by number of college degrees, high school graduation rates, professional or advanced degrees and test scores, according to the company.

The study said 24.2 percent of New Jersey residents over 25 have completed a bachelor’s degree and 15.6 percent over 25 have a graduate or professional degree. The study also indicated 91 percent of New Jersey public high school students graduated in four years.

In addition, the median New Jersey SAT score for the 2018-29 school year was 1,090, while 64 percent of ACT takers in the state met subject benchmarks, the study found.

Utah was the second smartest state followed by Massachusetts (307.8 score). Last place was Idaho, with 79.5 points.

The formula for calculating states’ rankings wasn’t equally weighted, in order to “help adjust for differences in things like bias in standardized testing or availability of test prep,” the study said.

Rankings for bachelor and graduate degrees had double their value, high school graduation rates had 1.5 times value, SAT scores were weighted at half their value and ACT scores were one-quarter of their value.

Using data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the Department of Education, the College Board and ACT, the study contained a disclaimer that acknowledged that data points are only part of someone’s intelligence.

“While we believe things like having high test scores and earning academic degrees represent one way of understanding and quantifying how smart someone is, we acknowledge that we’re not taking into account things like emotional intelligence or common sense,” the study read.

The analysis did not include reference to the authors or how the study was funded.

Click here to read the full study.

Tesla says its Cybertruck electric pickup truck is going to be ‘versatile’ and it is planing some different accessories, including a camper configuration. 

Ever since the launch of the Model S back in 2012, some Tesla owners were willing to go camping with the luxury sedan as they figured out that a small mattress would fit in the back when the seats are down.

It was a fun experience, but you couldn’t let the climate control run for a long time when parked.

Some found workarounds, but it often results in lights staying on and other annoyances such as leaving your car unlocked.

In 2017, Tesla released a software update with the ability to keep Climate C... while the vehicle is parked.

Last year, Elon Musk said that Tesla is working on an official ‘party and camper mode’.

With the new Tesla Cybertruck, it sounds like this mode is going to be particularly useful with a camper configuration that Tesla unveiled on its website.

Musk didn’t talk about it during his presentation, but Tesla did release this picture and wrote on its website:

“From rugged to refined, Cybertruck is completely adaptable for your needs. Prepare for every experience with a versatile utilitarian design — including on-board power and compressed air.”

In a tweet today, the CEO confirmed that Tesla is going to sell the accessory.

It not only consists of a tent that can be attached to the back of the truck, but it also appears to have a bed platform for a mattress:

Underneath the bed platform, Tesla seems to have designed an accessory consisting of an extension with kitchen equipment that can slide out of the bed:

Rivian unveiled a similar camper configuration for its R1T electric pickup truck earlier this year.

As Tesla announced last night, the Tesla Cybertruck is going to be available in late 2021 and it start....

Electrek’s Take

I thought it was cool when Rivian did it and I still think it’s cool now.

Accessories for pickup trucks are very popular and I can see Tesla making a bunch of different modular systems to fit inside the bed or “cyber vault”.

I can even see Tesla making its own trailer for the Cybertruck.

The longest-range version of the Cybertruck, which is rated at 500 miles, has a significant towing capacity and should still have a decent range when towing a decent-size trailer.

That’s something I’m going to keep my eye on. I bet we hear Elon talking about it within the next year.

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Comment by Zippy on November 27, 2019 at 8:45am

COME BACK, STRIPERS: What in bloody hell can be done to bring the bass back to LBI's shoreline? Rebuild the Jetties and maintain them, restore the inshore eco-system that they've killed and stop this ridiculous sand pumping and the corrupt spending of our tax dollars...we all know what's happening, it's NJ.

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