31 August 2010

Tuesday 31 August 2010

• Eastern Long Island Sound Fishing Report

“We have some good blue fishing in The Race, bass at times on the change of tide, lots of porgies on the near-shore rocks, more blues prowling the upper Thames after bunkers and sea bass and large porgies on the West Grounds at Block Island - and the best part, the weekend forecast calls for sun and no rain.”
Tim Coleman in The Day

• Connecticut Beaches, Closed by Bacteria, Reopened

“Connecticut environmental officials have reopened three popular beaches on Long Island Sound to swimming after new testing showed acceptable bacteria levels.”
Hartford Courant

• Fishermen Ask Obama for Help

“While welcome signs dot the little island of Martha's Vineyard, encouraging President Obama and his family to enjoy their vacation, the seas are not so friendly. A flotilla of New England fishing vessels -- totaling about a dozen boats thus far -- has converged just outside the Vineyard Haven Harbor.

"The floating protest is an appeal to the president to intercede with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NOAA, on the behalf of struggling fishermen who feel strict new federal regulations will devastate coastal communities and force them to leave their boats and their livelihoods."
Fox News

30 August 2010

Monday 30 August 2010

• Bonito In Long Island Sound

“First a confession: I have never even seen, much less caught, a bonito in Long Island Sound. Last October I landed my first bonito, a beautiful 12-pound specimen, while surf fishing on Nantucket. The fish was much more powerful than the false albacore we had been catching.

"It found a spot in the rip off the end of Great Point and simply refused to budge. Only the approach of a large seal forced the fish give up its position. After that it became a race between the seal and my ability to crank line. Fortunately, I won.”
Charles Walsh in Connecticut Post

• Body in Car Off Boat Ramp in Stratford

“Stratford Police are investigating after finding the body of [name withheld for the sake of common sense], 22, of Stratford, in a submerged car on Thursday night.”
Stratford Star
Shoo-Fly: Anyone who's fished with us should recognize this ramp.

• Connecticut DEP Fishing Report [8/25]

"Striped bass fishing remains good during the usual hours: from dusk to dawn. Live lining bunker, hickory shad, scup, or eels and cut chunk bait will work on those big cow bass.

"Bluefish fishing remains excellent with choppers ranging in size from 4 to 16 lbs. The usual locations for stripers and bluefish include the reefs off Watch Hill, Ram Island Reef and East and West Clumps (Fishers Island Sound), lower Thames River, the Race (by Race Rock and Valiant Rock), outer Bartlett Reef, the Sluiceway, Plum Gut, Pigeon Rip, warm water discharge from Millstone Power Station, the “humps” south of Hatchett Reef, lower Connecticut River, Long Sand Shoal, Cornfield Point, Southwest Reef, Sixmile Reef, Falkner Island area, reefs off Guilford and Branford, New Haven Harbor, lower Housatonic River, buoys #18 and #20 off Bridgeport, Stratford Shoal/Middle Ground, Black Rock Harbor, Penfield Reef, Norwalk Islands, Cable and Anchor Reef, Smith Reef and Stamford and Greenwich Harbors.

"Snapper Blue fishing is fair to good in the tidal creeks. Snappers are about 5 to 6 inches in length.

SCUP (porgy) fishing remains excellent on the any of the major reefs and rock piles throughout LIS.

"Hickory shad fishing is good in the lower Connecticut River at the Baldwin Bridge State Boat Launch/Fishing Pier and the DEP Marine Headquarters Fishing Pier.

"Blue claw crabbing remains excellent in any of the tidal creeks along the coast.”
Connecticut DEP

28 August 2010

8/27 Lower Housatonic River Fishing Report

Mal Y. and I found fishing a bit slow on Friday. No fish were showing on top and although we did catch a bunch of bluefish, all were in the smaller sizes.

We did see this interesting attack on a cormorant by a shark. You can see that the shark missed the bird by quite a bit.

Click on any picture to enlarge.

We found a few fish over in Bridgeport Harbor, and watched one of the Bridgeport-Port Jeff ferries come in to debark passengers and vehicles.

Yes, we're kidding about the shark and the cormorant. These birds tend to "run" along the surface of the water as they build up to take off speed...leaving a trail of splashes in their wake.

Black-Crowned Night Heron.

Tug boat at rest...not tugging.

Always some interesting stuff to see at the Derecktor Shipyard in Bridgeport Harbor.

This mega-yacht looked like a floating apartment house. If you click on the photo to enlarge you may be able to see some of the details: Looks like a tanning bed hanging out in space just below the forward radar dome...and a section of the hull, just above the orange buoy, that lifts up for...what? Servicing the ship? A swim platform?

Even small bluefish fight so hard on light tackle that it brings a smile to the angler's face.

Floating drydock at Derecktor.

The terns were out if force making it appear as though there were fish feeding all over the mouth of the Housatonic River...but there were no fish there.

The terns [also called "liar birds" because they lie about where the fish are] were feeding on tiny stuff...possibly a crab hatch.

A tug...tugging.

I think these birds are Willets. Never heard of them before.

Thought at first they were Oystercatchers, but the beaks are wrong...then that they were sanderlings, but they're too big...about 15" tall when standing.

Anyone have other suggestions?

Weather was simply beautiful...although it was chilly out there. Water temp on the Sound was 71°F but the air was cooler. Mal and I kept our jackets on the whole trip.

Another great day on the water.

27 August 2010

Friday 27 August 2010

• Close Call With A Great White

“The first time we put the fly into the rip we had a vicious strike and it was fish on!”
Fly Rod & Reel

• Florida Keys: No Oil, No Algae Blooms

“With fears subsiding that the Deepwater Horizon oil spill will darken the waters of the Keys, Florida Bay advocates have the chance to focus on some welcome good news.

“Water quality in the bay, which was darkened by two distinct algae blooms between 2005 and 2008, has returned to normal. And no bloom has been detected in the shallow 850-square-mile estuary over the past two years.”

• Personal Injury Attorneys Love Boaters

“Whether they're on Long Island Sound, the Saugatuck Rivers, Candlewood Lake or even Ashland Pond in Griswold, boat owners are crowding the state of Connecticut's waterways during one of the hotter summers in recent memory.

“After a long day of sun, fishing, maybe some Jet-Skiing and, in some instances, a lot of alcohol, crashes are bound to happen. Where there's an accident, there's often a lawsuit. And according to personal injury attorneys specializing in boat crashes, there are an abundance of irresponsible boaters out there to keep them in business.”

26 August 2010

Thursday 26 August 2010

• You Can’t Get There From Here

“Tim Coleman, former managing editor of The Fisherman magazine's New England edition, argues that wealthy property owners are one of the main reasons access is so poor. The number of access points along the coast isn't the main problem, Coleman said. The problem is access to the access points.

"’Go to Greenwich or Westport and try to go surf fishing," Coleman said. "The area between high water and low water is public property, but try getting there.’”

• Lobsters in Long Island Sound Have Shell Disease

“Scientists say they're not sure why about 30 percent of lobsters in eastern Long Island Sound have a disease that's causing their shells to waste away.

“Researchers say the main question is why the lobsters can't defend themselves against the bacterial attack of shell disease, which doesn't affect their meat but usually lands them in canning factories because of their unsightly shells.”
Hartford Courant

• Recipe: Vegetable-Encrusted Striped Bass

“We're cooking Vegetable Encrusted Point Judith Striped Bass in the kitchen with Chef Anthony Ockunzzi from Newport Cooks!”
See the video on YouTube.com

25 August 2010

Wednesday 25 August 2010

• Where’s All the BP Oil? Oh, There It Is!

“Scientists funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and affiliated with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) have detected a plume of hydrocarbons at least 22 miles long and more than 3,000 feet below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico, a residue of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

“The 1.2-mile-wide, 650-foot-high plume of trapped hydrocarbons was detected during a ten day subsurface sampling effort from June 19-28, 2010 near the wellhead. The results provide a snapshot of where the oil has gone as surface slicks shrink and disappear.”

• How Many Inaccuracies Can You Find In This Article?

“By 12 pm, they were catching an abundance of fish such as Bluefish, Fluke, and Black Bass. Within such a short time, my son and the Borden family lost count after seventeen fish were pulled in, ranging from 12 inches to more than two feet long.”
Shoo-Fly: We found four.

• Fish Tale

Mother to daughter advice: Cook a man a fish and you feed him for a day.
But teach a man to fish and you get rid of him for the whole weekend.

24 August 2010

Tuesday 24 August 2010

• New England Fishing Legacy…Fading

“Today, Plymouth's fishermen are all but gone. Last year, according to federal statistics, Plymouth had zero landings of groundfish — such as cod, haddock and flounder.

“Tough new rules enacted in May have fishermen at New England's major ports, Gloucester and New Bedford, worried their history will fade away as fishermen faced with low catch limits sell out to larger interests. It's already happened in smaller ports, slowly changing the character of the New England coast”
The Boston Globe

• New Online Issue of Salt Water Sportsman

Click here:
Salt Water Sportsman

• Kayaks All the Rage

“As anglers pushed the boundaries of kayak fishing and got comfortable with their crafts, manufacturers responded by developing an array of beamy kayaks targeted at the fishing community and tricked out with rod holders, hands-free pedal drives, live-wells and fishfinders. These days, you’re likely to see kayaks getting in on the bite right alongside the center consoles and cuddy cabins.”
Boston Herald

23 August 2010

Monday 23 August 2010

• Become A Commercial Striped Bass Fisherman…in MA

“Striped bass commercial fishing in Massachusetts is alive and well, especially in this economy.

“For as little as $65, a license holder can land and sell striped bass legally….

“It stands to reason that any angler, if capable of catching fish they can sell, will. With current striped bass yielding $2.65 per pound, and a 30-fish limit on most fishing days, money can add up fast.”
ESPN Outdoors Saltwater

Shoo-Fly: Yes, you too can help put an end to the striper fishery!

• Striped Bass Not Loved in CA

“A lawsuit to end state protections for the striped bass in California is about to go to trial in Fresno before federal Judge Oliver Wanger. The suit filed by the Coalition for a Sustainable Delta and other water users is against the California Department of Fish and Game. It seeks to lift the restrictions on how many striped bass can be caught a day, which is currently two, and reduce the size limits, currently at a minimum of 18 inches.

“Why all the fuss over the striped bass?

“The coalition maintains that striped bass are the source of dwindling native fish populations in the Central Valley such as salmon and Central Valley steelhead….”

Modesto Bee

• Ways to Prepare Fish: Grill, Poach, Bake…

“Just as the seasons change, so do our palates. Right now we're craving lighter food with clean, clear flavors; unweighty fare that cuts through summer's heat and humidity with delicious purpose.

"For many people, that means fish.”

• Grilled Fish Done Easily

We just acquired one of these fish-grilling baskets. Thing works beautifully. Easy to flip the fish over without it sticking, falling apart; easy to clean.

Haven't tried it on other meats yet, but no reason why it wouldn't work as well for chicken, hot dogs, burgers, and so on. Not very expensive either.
Cuisinart Non-stick Fish BBQ Basket CNFB-432 $16.83 from Amazon.com

• Fly Fishermen Transport Invasive Species

“Blame their boots — or, more precisely, their felt soles. Growing scientific evidence suggests that felt, which helps anglers stay upright on slick rocks, is also a vehicle for noxious microorganisms that hitchhike to new places and disrupt freshwater ecosystems.”
New York Times

22 August 2010

Sunday 22 August 2010

• Northeast Fishermen: Catch Down, Revenues Up

“The early returns for Northeast fishermen working under a major rules change shows their catch down 10 percent, but revenues up 17 percent.”
Norwich Bulletin

Click on maps/photos to enlarge.

• For the Birders

“A small tribe of birdwatchers got more than it bargained for last Tuesday night when it gathered at Point Stratford in hopes of glimpsing the rare white-tailed kite first spotted there two weeks ago.

“While waiting for the kite to arrive and swoop down into the grasslands for its nightly feeding of mice or rats, a brown pelican appeared in the sky.”
Greenwich Time

• They’ve Got It Made on Long Island

“The one real surprise that anglers fishing the Long Island Sound can expect in August is the arrival of Spanish mackerel, Atlantic bonito and little tunny, otherwise know as false albacore. As members of the tuna and mackerel families these hydrodynamic speedsters not only offer great sport but Spanish mackerel and bonito are excellent table fare.”
Times Beacon Record

• Down Towards New York

“The recent invasion of blues is good news for anglers planning to compete in the Sound's Greatest Tournament on Earth next weekend. Monday is the cutoff to register by phone at (201) 366-BLUE. Otherwise, the tourney's final deadline is 7 p.m. next Friday at any of 28 participating bait and tackle shops along both New York and Connecticut shores. The fee is $25, and entry forms are at www.wicc600.com. The heaviest fish earns $25,000.
New York Post

• Eastern Long Island Sound

“We close with an upbeat report from Pat at River's End, who said this is the BEST crabbing year he has seen in at least a decade. One customer took two hours to catch two buckets of the critters from the pilings at his marina. Others are using traps or hand lines to catch a dozen or more at a time from the causeway and DEP docks. Snapper blues are also in both places, adding to the day for kids, both locations great spots for public access for those without a boat.“
Time Coleman in The Day

Don’t forget, a 2010 saltwater fishing license is required to fish the marine waters of Connecticut. Also, if you intend to fish above the Merritt Parkway bridge on the Housatonic River, you also need a Connecticut freshwater license. You can purchase these from your local bait & tackle shop, such as Newtown Bait & Tackle, or at Town/City Hall.

Check these links for more information:
Connecticut Tourism;
Long Island Sound Resource Center;
Housatonic Valley Association;
Stratford, Connecticut;
Milford, Connecticut

20 August 2010

8/20 Lower Housatonic River Fishing Report

Val S. and I fished the lower River on Friday and managed to stay in the boat despite the best attempts of various boat owners heading out on the Sound to swamp us with their wakes. Fridays are almost as bad as the Saturdays and Sundays now as boaters get a jump on the weekend by starting a day early.

Boaters need to recognize that the primary rule of boating safety is that you don't do anything that will endanger other vessels. Just because one is in the channel and out of the no-wake zone doesn't mean you can go blasting past nearby vessels and throwing 3-foot wakes at them.

There. That's off my chest.

Imagine the swans don't much care for inconsiderate boaters either.

It was mostly a bluefish day although we did catch three stripers.

Two of the bass were this size, not quite keepers, and one was a rat.

Wish I knew how to tell the difference between herons and egrets.

Just have to take a stab at it and guess that this is either a snowy or a great egret.

This is neither an egret nor a heron [or is it "an heron"?].

As usual, Val stuck stubbornly to his fly rod and had a good time landing the fish he has on in this pic.

Most of the bluefish [we got between two and three dozen of them], however, were falling for plastic on jig heads and not for fur and feathers.

Cormorant fire drill?

So Val moved to a spinning rod which greatly increased his landings. Blues seemed to be primarily susceptible to white lures that day.

I had some luck with the fly rod using a chartreuse/white toad fly.

Val wanted to take some fish home to dinner, so we put five of them into the livewell...

...and then into the cooler for the ride home.

The bluefish chewed their way through a whole bunch of lures.

Another great day on the water.

Don’t forget, a 2010 saltwater fishing license is required to fish the marine waters of Connecticut. Also, if you intend to fish above the Merritt Parkway bridge on the Housatonic River, you also need a Connecticut freshwater license. You can purchase these from your local bait & tackle shop, such as Newtown Bait & Tackle, or at Town/City Hall.

Check these links for more information:
Connecticut Tourism;
Long Island Sound Resource Center;
Housatonic Valley Association;
Stratford, Connecticut;
Milford, Connecticut