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Wednesday, July 24, 2024


The Fishing Line: Freshwater Success


By Carolyn Miller

March Madness? Most captains are readying their boats to get them in the water as soon as possible but todaythere’s more fishing politics than fishing to report. Still it is important to stay in touch with the ‘land’ side of our sport.
The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission’s Tautog Stock Assessment Subcommittee has identified and corrected errors in the 2011 stock assessment update. (You may have read in this column the new regulations for tog fishing). The report is causing more controversy and misunderstanding as to what the error was and how it will be ‘reassessed.
“Given the corrected assessment update results, the Tautog Management Board will meet via conference call sometime over the next few weeks to review the revised assessment results and determine the reductions needed by each state to achieve the Addendum VI. The details of the Board conference call will be released once they become available.” (Christopher Vonderweidt, Fishery Management Plan Coordinator, or 703.842.0740.)
New Jersey’s public hearing on Atlantic Menhaden has been changed from March 21 to April 5, 7-10 p.m., Ocean County Administration Building, 101 Hooper Avenue, Public Hearing Room #119, Toms River. (Peter Himchak at 609-748-2020)
With fuel costs on the rise, BoatUS is suggesting some cost-effective ideas you might consider before the boating
season begins: Lighten the load- take a good look at what you really need and clear out all of that junk. Remember that water weighs over eight pounds per gallon, carrying more than necessary is not a good idea. Get a tune-up. Check the prop. Trailering fuel-saving tips: Check tire pressure for proper inflation, ensure you have a tight fitting cover to decrease wind drag, and just a five or six mile per hour decrease in towing speed will give a noticeable decrease in fuel consumption. Here’s a commercial: BoatUS members get a gas discount at many marinas. Visit or 800-395-2628.
The second national fishermen’s rally to be held in Washington, DC on March 21. The Keep Fishermen Fishing rally has been organized in an effort from both the recreational and commercial fishing industries to unite under one shared message, to ‘reform Magnuson now.’ For more information about the rally including bus departure information, visit (RFA)
The NJ DEP has adopted revisions to the state list of threatened and endangered species, upgrading the status of several species and adding new species to the list including the Red Knot. See the NJDEP news release at .
The BoatUS Foundation’s Teens Afloat Program helps keep teens safe on the water by offering discounted vest-style life jackets, $5, to non-profit summer camps, schools, or any local non-profit organization providing on-the-water educational programming for teens. Now is the time to help your group get in on the discount. The life jackets offered are Type III vests that retail for about $30 each. Applicants may request 10 to 50 life jackets in increments of 10. For more information go to
The Atlantic Menhaden Bait Fishery is an important but often overlooked component of the menhaden industry frequently lost in the shadow of the reduction fishery. But the east coast bait fishery is critical to both commercial and recreational fishing from Maine to South Carolina and as far south as the Gulf of Mexico. In the waters of almost all of the Atlantic coastal states, the fish is harvested and used as bait in crab pots, lobster pots, and hook and line fisheries. New Jersey currently ranks at the top among states in the Mid-Atlantic for menhaden bait landings. Visit for the latest industry news which is an ongoing conversation in this county.
Captain Ray will put Tide Runner in the water in April but that hasn’t kept him from having fun freshwater fishing in the mean time. According to Ray, freshwater fly action has been really good for this time of the year. He caught fish on the fly on four trips this week. Pickerel, Large mouth bass and crappies are taking flies well. With the colder weather the prime time for catching has been mid day till around 3 pm while the sun has been the strongest. The fish are holding deep near the bottom so he’s been using a different tactic: Using a saltwater intermediate sinking line and counting it down 12 to 15 seconds before starting the retrieve. The most effective fly has been a 3 1/2 inch baby bunker fly, blue and white with silver flash. He figures giving them something they have never seen before is getting them fired up. Whatever works. Always glad to get some new ideas.
Send your reports and pictures to All pictures submitted are posted online at

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