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Found 16 results

  1. As usual, I read through the many fishing reports and see the amazing pictures of anglers proudly posing with their catch. By the time I have finished looking at the photos for the fourth time, the “fishy” part of my brain is creating a new list of excuses that may convince my wife to let me go fishing. Once I have finished explaining how the tide will be perfect for the next few hours, the weather forecast could not get any better and the tackle shop just received fresh bait, she usually gives her approval. In a rush to get out the door before she changes her mind, I find myself quickly going through my mental list of surf fishing necessities. Before I know it, I am on the sand wishing I had spent a little more time on that mental list. Depending on where you fish, having to run back to your house or the nearest tackle shop may not be a big deal, however if you fish areas like the southern end of Assateague Island, having to admit to your fishing buddy how you managed to forget the bait knife is not a good feeling. Some anglers like to step out for an hour or two and they don’t need to take much with them. On the other hand, if you are like me and can’t help but fish until it hurts, there are many items you can bring that will ease the pain. First of all, make sure you know the license requirements, regulations and creel limits for the beach you will be fishing. It is also a good idea to keep a fish species reference guide with you to help identify your catch. If you are not sure what you have caught, safely remove the hook and get it back into the water as fast as possible. A good photo will last much longer than any fish you will catch, so don’t hesitate to snap a quick picture. You will need something to help carry your gear through the soft sand. A surf fishing cart can be a great investment for fishing spots such as the North end of Assateague Island. On some beaches, such as the federal side of Assateague Island, you are allowed to drive your vehicle on the beach. This is very convenient for longer fishing trips that require more fishing gear. Of course you will need your surf fishing rod and reel, sinkers, hooks, and other basic fishing tackle. Choosing the type of tackle needed always depends on the species of fish you will be targeting. There are numerous options when it comes to choosing your tackle, however don’t let it overwhelm you. Your best bet will be checking out the fishing reports on the Internet and spending some time talking to the folks at our local tackle shops. They will be able to help you get an idea which rigs are best for your tackle box. You are going to need a cooler with ice to keep your bait fresh. It does not take long for the sun and warm air to dry out even the freshest bait. In the spring, the most commonly used baits, such as bunker or peeler crabs are going to need to be cut into pieces, so having a strong, serrated knife and cutting board are essential. The springtime sun can feel very warm at home; however the ocean breeze can feel surprisingly cold! Make sure you dress appropriately and have a good idea of the weather forecast. Even on those cloudy days, you will get sunburned so don’t forget sunscreen. Having a hat and a pair of polarized sunglasses will not only help with the sun’s glare on the water, it will also keep you from getting the painful “squint eye” headache. Wearing a comfortable pair of waterproof waders will certainly help keep your legs warm and dry when that unexpected wave sneaks up on you right in the middle of your cast. After you have heaved your bait into the surf, you are going to need a sturdy sand spike to hold your rod. When choosing your sand spike, make sure the bottom of your rod easily fits into the sand spike. In my opinion, the longer the sand spike, the better. You will need to shove it down into the sand far enough to be able to put pressure against it without it falling over. As the tide comes in and the sand becomes soft, make sure you frequently check your sand spike to ensure it does not move easily. One of the most common critters you are likely to catch is the Clearnose skate. Trust me, having a quality pair of needle nose pliers and fishing gloves will come in very handy when removing the hook from these spine covered bottom dwellers, as well as many other fish. Being able to sit down and rest while you wait for that record fish to swim by will make your trip much more enjoyable. Although your cooler can also serve as a seat, I recommend a lightweight beach chair with a cup holder. It’s always a good idea to bring something to eat and plenty of fresh water for drinking and washing your hands. Most importantly, you must remember you will be in constant contact with things that can hurt you if you fail to respect them. Think about it, you are dealing with sharp hooks and lead weights that are being hurled at incredible speeds. Be aware of the power of the ocean and the heat of the sun. There is always the possibility that you will have to unhook many different types of critters and just about all of them have some sort of natural defense. Excitement and adrenaline can take over very quickly when surf fishing and you have to remember to stay focused. Always have a first-aid kit and cell phone, especially if you are fishing alone. Although it may not be on your list of surf fishing gear, being safe is without a doubt the last thing you want to forget. Whenever possible, bring a friend with you. Not only can they help you untangle that spiny dogfish from your line, but in my opinion, sharing a good day on the beach with a buddy is a reward in itself.
  2. Hello anglers! I found this forum a few days ago and have been looking around trying to figure out how to fish! Looks like there's lots of good info to be learned from here. So when I say I'm a total newbie, I mean I've been fishing about 5 times in my entire life, and I was either too young to remember or was just following explicit directions. We've been camping at <acronym title="Assateague Island"><acronym title="Assateague Island"><acronym title="Assateague Island"><acronym title="Assateague Island"><acronym title="Assateague Island"><acronym title="Assateague Island">AI</acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym> the past few summers and each year we get a little more into the whole ocean/water thing, so this year surf fishing is the big new adventure (heading out the week of the 15th). I've been reading through the various threads on what kind of gear to take etc, but honestly a lot of it is over my head. I picked up a 10' rod/reel combo with 20# line the other day, and have a basic tackle box with some hooks/weights etc, but am planning on stopping in at Bucks Place once we're there to get the last few necessities (figure they'll know better what's working out there than the guys here "inland"). So with all that, what are the "basic basics" I should be aware of? Any specific threads for total newbies to fishing in general? We're camping in the state park side, is it likely that I can catch something from the beach there, or do I need to head farther out to the national side? I see a lot of pictures with awesome looking fish, how likely is it that I'll be able to catch something in a weeks time? What's an easy way to identify what kind of fish I catch (to know if its big enough)? Lots of questions I know, thanks in advance for any answers. Charlie
  3. If you would like company, post a picture of your vehicle or something that can identify you. This makes it easier for your new fishing buddy to find you on the beach.
  4. What a treat Monday, 3/9 was offshore! For the first time in a very long time, seas were dead-calm and the fishing was good at the same time. I fished in 46 feet out of <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" /><st1:place w:st="on"><st1:PlaceName w:st="on">New</st1:PlaceName> <st1:PlaceType w:st="on">Pass</st1:PlaceType></st1:place> with brothers Mike & Paul Conneally and their friends, Rodney & Kass Bromm. Using live shrimp, we caught five nice mangrove snapper to 20 inches, none of them less than 15 inches. We also kept five of eight sheepshead we caught, to 19 inches, and a 15 inch whitebone porgie. We released silver porgies, porkfish, grunts, Spanish mackerel, red grouper shorts and gag grouper shorts to 21 inches. We had a big shark eat one of our fish and run off before I could identify what type of shark it was. Seas were still calm Tuesday and allowed me to get out to 74 feet, about 37 miles out of <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:PlaceName w:st="on">New</st1:PlaceName> <st1:PlaceType w:st="on">Pass</st1:PlaceType></st1:place> with Ron Musick, Eddie Alfonso and Richard Arnett. We caught fourteen nice mangs to 17 ½ inches, five 17 inch whitebone porgies, a 15 inch triggerfish, a few large grunts and a 15 inch hogfish, all on shrimp. We released grouper shorts. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p> Wednesday, I fished about 20 miles out of <st1:PlaceName w:st="on">New</st1:PlaceName> <st1:PlaceType w:st="on">Pass</st1:PlaceType> in 43 feet with <st1:place w:st="on">Sandy Hook</st1:place>, Sam Sayles, Doc Washa and Hank Lischer. We caught a 16 ½ inch mangrove snapper, a couple of 15 ½ inch whitebone porgies, porkfish and grunts, and we released lots of grouper shorts. <o:p></o:p> I fished <st1:PlaceName w:st="on">Estero</st1:PlaceName> <st1:PlaceType w:st="on">Bay</st1:PlaceType>, close to <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:PlaceName w:st="on">Wiggins</st1:PlaceName> <st1:PlaceType w:st="on">Pass</st1:PlaceType></st1:place>, on Thursday with Sherman Heazlitt, Todd Miller, Bob Miller and Mike Dash. We caught two keeper pompano, ten sheepshead, five of which were keepers to 17 inches, and we released a couple of small mangrove snapper and some ladyfish. <o:p></o:p> Calm waters offshore were again a treat on Friday, when I fished in 45 feet, 22 miles west of <st1:place w:st="on"><st1:PlaceName w:st="on">New</st1:PlaceName> <st1:PlaceType w:st="on">Pass.</st1:PlaceType></st1:place> And, Friday the thirteenth wasn’t at all unlucky for Gerry Casey, Terry Vallely, Bob Bellevielle, and Steve O’Connor. Baited with shrimp, we caught seven mangrove snapper to 18 inches, sheepshead to 15 ½ inches, porgies to 15 inches, a few big grunts, and a 14 inch hogfish. We released grouper shorts, porkfish and undersized triggerfish.[/font] <o:p></o:p> I ended this week of fishing offshore in 45 feet, fishing with Reiner Neumann, his son, Steve, and friends Vince and Dino Bacetta and Leo Adamo. We caught lots of mangrove snapper, four of them keepers, along with a half dozen good-sized whitebone porgies and three sheepshead to 16 inches, all on shrimp. We released smaller snapper, porkfish, triggerfish, Spanish mackerel and lots of grouper shorts. This week was one of the calmest full weeks offshore we have seen all season. The photo shown is of six-year-old angler, Max Robson, with a 17 1/2 inch sheepshead, caught on shrimp on a recent trip that was his first on a boat.
  5. If a stroke victim receives treatment within 3 hours of the episode odds are they will not have any significant lasting effects RECOGNIZING A STROKE Thank God for the sense to remember the '3' steps, STR . Read and Learn! Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Unfortunately, the lack of awarene spells disaster. The stroke victim may suffer severe brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke Now doctors say a bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three simple questions: Ask the person to TALK and SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE (Coherently) (i.e. It is sunny out today) Ask him or her to RAISE BOTH ARMS If he or she has trouble with ANY ONE of these tasks, call 911 immediately and describe the symptoms to the dispatcher Also try: Asking the person to 'stick' out his tongue.. If the tongue is 'crooked', if it goes to one side or the other that is also an indication of a stroke.
  6. http://www.foxnews.com/wires/2007Jun25/0,4670,SharkMystery,00.html NORFOLK, <acronym title="Virginia">Va</acronym>. — Veterinarian Bob George sliced open the dead shark and saw the outline of a fish. No surprise there, since sharks digest their food slowly. Then George realized he wasn't looking at the stomach of the blacktip reef shark, but at her uterus. In it was a perfectly formed, 10-inch-long shark pup that was almost ready to be born. George was dumbfounded. He had been examining the shark, Tidbit, to figure out why she reacted badly to routine sedatives during a physical and died, hours after biting an aquarium curator on the shin. Now there was a bigger mystery: How did Tidbit get pregnant? "We must have had hanky panky" in the shark tank, he thought. But sharks only breed with sharks of the same species, and there were no male blacktip reef sharks at the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center in Virginia Beach. Could Tidbit have defied nature, resulting in the first known shark hybrid? The other possibility was that Tidbit had conceived without needing a male at all. A recent study had documented the first confirmed case of asexual reproduction, or parthenogenesis, among sharks: a pup born at a Nebraska zoo came from an egg that developed in a female shark without sperm from a male. One of the scientists who worked on that study contacted the aquarium, which sent him tissue samples from Tidbit and her pup for testing. If the pup's DNA turns out to contain no contribution from a male shark, this would be the second known case of shark parthenogenesis. George hopes to receive a preliminary report soon, but conclusive results could take months. Tidbit had lived at the aquarium for most of her 10 years, swimming with other sharks in a 300,000-gallon tank. The sharks get yearly checkups. On May 24, workers guided the 5-foot, 94-pound Tidbit from the main aquarium into a smaller corral to be examined out of public view. Blacktip reef sharks are sensitive to change, so it was standard procedure to give Tidbit a sedative. This time, Tidbit went under the sedation too deeply _ maybe because of a combination of the unknown pregnancy and the stress of being handled and of having recently been bitten by another shark, George said. George and Beth Firchau, the curator of fishes, massaged Tidbit's tail to get her blood flowing and gave her a stimulant to help her breathe. The shark swam away, bumped into a wall, headed back toward Firchau and clamped onto her left shin. Whether Tidbit meant to attack Firchau or just collided into her and snapped reflexively is hard to know. The pain didn't hit Firchau right away. "Oh, you're not supposed to do that. That was weird," she thought as she felt the shark tug on her leg. Members of the shark physicals team pulled Firchau out of the tank and began administering first aid. She credits their swift reaction with saving her life. Firchau was taken to a hospital to get stitches while George and other team members tried to revive Tidbit. The shark rallied a couple times but died about 12 hours later. George initially was depressed by the events. But something positive emerged out of the negative. Since Tidbit hadn't looked pregnant _ and there was no reason to think she was pregnant _ the pup likely would have been born and immediately eaten by another shark, without aquarium employees ever knowing it had existed. But Tidbit's death led to George stumbling upon a mystery of nature. In normal reproduction, an egg is fertilized by sperm, producing an embryo that contains a set of chromosomes with half coming from the mother and half from the father. In asexual reproduction, an egg splits in two and DNA contributed from the mother doubles, so each resulting egg has a full complement of chromosomes from the female. The eggs then fuse, producing a single embryo with no DNA from a father. Asexual reproduction is common in some insect species, rarer in reptiles and fish, and has never been documented in mammals. Until now, sharks were not considered likely candidates. But with sharks, "this is probably something that does happen in aquariums, more often than we realize," said Bob Hueter, director of the Center for Shark Research at the Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota, Fla. He said the phenomenon is coming to light with the joint Northern Ireland-U.S. research that analyzed the DNA of a hammerhead shark born in 2001 in the Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha, Neb. The study was published in the Royal Society journal Biology Letters on the day before Firchau was bitten. Asexual reproduction among sharks is more likely to happen in captivity, when there is no other option for reproduction, than in the wild, Hueter said. Crossbreeding, on the other hand, is not known to happen at all among sharks, said Heather Thomas, aquarist at the John G. Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. "It's not natural," Thomas said. "If you've got a shark that needs to swim to breathe and cross it with a shark that can lay on the bottom to breathe, what are you going to get? Are you going to get these weird mutations?" If the pup indeed turns out to be a hybrid, DNA testing should be able to identify the species of the father. The most likely candidate would be a sandbar shark, the most similar shark to a blacktip reef in the aquarium, George said. While parthenogenesis "is certainly kind of a spiffy, interesting thing," George hopes the tests confirm crossbreeding, since that would be a first among sharks.
  7. caught this the other day not sure what kind it is good fighter.
  8. Any experts out there that can help me identify these?
  9. This is an article in The Press of Atlantic City that was written by Richard Degener on Saturday, June 9, 2007 CAPE MAY —The commercial fishing industry is offering a compromise plan designed to reduce gear conflicts with recreational anglers on the state's artificial reefs, but sport-fishing groups are soundly rejecting it. The compromise proposal from the Garden State Seafood Association would include use of a sinking line to hold the commercial fish pots. A floating line is now used and it tends to balloon toward the surface and snag fishing hooks. The GSSA said the sinking line would reduce the problem by 90 percent. A floating line is cheaper and preferred by the commercial fishermen. The proposal would also include new ways to identify commercial gear at the reefs, so anglers know where it is. There would also be an education effort so anglers can look at markers on the surface and figure out where the underwater gear is on the sea floor. The compromise released this week by the association is a reaction to proposed state legislation that would ban pot fishing on the two reefs in state waters. If this law passes the federal government would then be asked to ban pot fishing on the 13 other reefs off New Jersey in U.S. territorial seas outside three miles. While the reefs cover only a miniscule percentage of the ocean, commercial fishermen say this is the best sea bottom to land some fish species such as lobster, sea bass and tautog. They argue that seafood consumers, at least those who don't fish, rely on them to supply it. They also are concerned what such a ban could lead to next. One fisherman called it “ocean zoning.” “My whole concern is it's just a foot in the door for those guys to eventually push us out of the ocean. The goal is to ban fish traps everywhere, like in Florida. They want to make it like their private park,” said Port of Cape May pot fisherman Joe Wagner. Comparing it to a park sits pretty well with Tom Fote of the sport-fishing group Jersey Coast Angler's Association, or JCAA. Fote said the reefs are like fishing parks for the public and commercial operations have the “rest of the ocean.” “I can't use public parks to hunt. There are beaches I can't take my four-wheel drive on,” Fote said. Jim Donofrio, who heads the Recreational Fishing Alliance, said the compromise is unacceptable and the group wants all pots off the reefs, even pots used by recreational fishermen. Donofrio said it has been a state policy since 2005, and the group will push to make it a law. “They need some bottom and we need some bottom. That's one little piece we want. They need to back off and go find another spot,” Donofrio said. Commercial fisherman Dan Cohen said the state policy from 2005 does not ban pots. He said the policy said they were built for rod-and-reel fishing, but it never specifically bans pots. He notes recreational fishermen also use pots. Cohen said the initial reef plan from 1987 makes it clear the sites are for commercial and recreational fishing. “More than 50 percent of reef fishing is lobster. You can't use a hook and line to catch lobster,” Cohen said. A conflict between a fish potter and a party boat off Atlantic City led to the latest skirmish over the reefs, but the two sides have been fighting for years. The conflict is billed as being over space and not the resource, but that's not entirely accurate. Both sides do have regulations governing how many fish they may catch, but the reefs are places to catch them quicker and with more success. The commercial fishermen talk about the price of gas and how they want to keep down consumer costs for fish. They say reef materials were dumped on many places they used to fish, and this has taken away ocean bottom for other fisheries that drag the sea floor. Recreational anglers want to make sure they land something during their day on the water. Fote said 20 percent of the fish anglers in New Jersey land are from the reefs. “These were not designed for 60 potters. It's .03 percent of New Jersey waters. They have 99 percent of the ocean,” Fote said. The only thing both sides agree on is that more science needs to be done. There is limited data on whether reefs create fish or merely attract them. If they attract fish to one area it would not seem fair to let one group catch them there while the other group's area has fewer fish. “They don't enhance the fishery. They enhance the capability of catching the fish. It's a big fish trap with an open door,” Wagner said. Fote argues putting a line of pots on open bottom has the same effect in attracting fish, so commercial fishermen should be happy doing that. But Fote also agrees much more money is needed for research. More science is also needed on what is snagging the hooks. Garden State Seafood acknowledges it sometimes is commercial gear but argues divers should be sent down to study this since tons of sport-fishing gear is also at the reefs. Many snags could be from monofilament line or reef materials. “They're drifting across subway cars, tanks and other reef materials. There are many ways to snag the bottom,” said Marty Buzas, a commercial fisherman in Wildwood. Another big argument is funding the reefs. Fote notes that sport groups have contributed the most to sinking materials offshore. The Garden State Seafood Association acknowledges that 12 percent of the funding comes from private donations from anglers and a federal fund sport fishermen pay into. They also argue the other 88 percent comes from state and county taxes, military funding, and corporate donations of vessels and other materials to sink. Cohen noted he has contributed five boats himself to the reefs. They also point to a utility on the Delaware Bay that contributed $500,000 to the reefs to pay for fish killed by nuclear power plants in Salem County. Those fish kills hurt both commercial and recreational fishermen. The sport groups have no problem with commercial fishers working the reefs with rod and reel. Opposition against pots is not just about space conflicts. “It's highly efficient gear. The reefs are designed for lots of people to catch little amounts of fish, not a few people catching lots of fish,” Donofrio said. Both groups seem to be sharing the catch. Commercial potters land most of the lobsters, but anglers get 90 percent of the tog. Black sea bass is split almost right down the middle. There are 74 vessels with commercial pot permits, but estimates vary on how many are active. Cohen said 30 at most, but the state says 50. This compares with 1.3 million anglers in the state, though GSSA Executive Director Greg DiDomenico said pot fisherman also serve consumers. “We catch fish for those who can't or don't. The vast majority don't fish and have to buy it,” DiDomenico said.
  10. Alligator Gar Lepisosteus spatula "gator, greater gar, garpike, garfish, and Mississippi alligator gar" Description: With a head that resembles an alligator they are easy to identify. All gars have an elongated, torpedo-shaped body. The caudal fin of the alligator gar is abbreviate-heterocerical, meaning the tail is not symmetrical. The dorsal and anal fins are located very far back on the body. Gars bodies are covered by ganoid scales, which are thick overlapping scales that create a protective covering similar to medieval chainmail. Gars have retained the spiral valve intestine a primitive feature of the digestive system commonly associated with sharks. Gars also have a highly vascularized swim bladder connected to the pharynx by a pneumatic duct. This enables them to gulp air, which aids in facultative air breathing. This allows gar to breathe when there are very low oxygen levels in the water. The alligator gar is distinguished from other gars in the United States by its relatively short, broad snout which has two rows of fang-like teeth in the upper jaw. The inner row of teeth in the upper jaw is palatine and larger than the outer row of teeth. Coloration: The alligator gar is dark olive-green dorsally, fading to yellowish white ventrally. Young alligator gars possess a light mid-dorsal stripe bordered by thin dark lines from the tip of snout to the dorsal fin, and a dark lateral band extends along the sides with irregular borders. The dorsal, anal, and caudal fins of the Alligator gar often have oval-shaped black spots. Adult specimens lack spots on the body. Alligator gars have two rows of teeth. The inner row of teeth is palatine and is longer than the outer row of teeth. The teeth of the alligator gar are long, slander, and fang like, enabling these fish to pierce and hold their prey. Similar Fish: Gar, Garfish Where Found: The alligator gar inhabits large, slow moving rivers, reservoirs, oxbow lakes, bayous and bays, in fresh and brackish water. The alligator gar is the most tolerant gar species of high salinity and occasionally strays into salt water. Young may be seen at the surface in debris such as leaves and twigs. Alligator gar prefer large rivers that have a large overflow floodplain, but these rivers have all but disappeared in North America due to the use of dredging, dams, dikes, and levees. Size: They are one of the monsters of fresh waters. Gars are slow growing fish, with female alligator gars reaching sexual maturity around age 11 and living to age 50. Male alligator gars mature around age 6 and live at least 26 years. Alligator gars commonly grow to a size of 6 1/2ft (2 m) and over 100 lbs. (45kg). But have been reported to grow up to 350 lbs. and around 10 ft (3m) in length. State Record: The largest recorded alligator gar comes from the St. Francis River, Arkansas in the 1930's, and weighed 350 lbs (159 kg). World Record: Type Here Bait used: They can be taken with minnows and artificial lures or during daylight by spearing (although not by spear gun) and snagging them with treble hooks. Tactics to catch: Because of their huge size and great strength, alligator gars are popular with anglers. They are not a fish that is caught easily because its sharp teeth will cut most lines in an instant. They are popular with bow-fishermen and anglers using frayed nylon cord as a lure snag, which entangles the gars teeth. Many fishermen will catch this magnificent fish on a rod and line. After the fight, the true sporting fisherman will return the gar unharmed back into the water (after taking pictures of course). Climate (water temperature range): Warmer Climates Spawning habits: Little is known of the life history of alligator gar. The gonadosomatic index for mature males and females, and female reproductive hormone analysis have indicated that spawning occurs in late spring, young specimens collected have indicated that spawning probably occurs in April, May, and June in the southern United States. Alligator gars are thought to spawn in the spring by congregating in large numbers with a female and one or more males on either side to fertilize the eggs. Fecundity in females has a positive correlation with total length. Females generally carry an average of 138,000 eggs. The eggs are released and fertilized by the male outside of the body they sink to the bottom after being released and stick to the substrate due to an adhesive outer covering. The eggs are bright red and poisonous if eaten. Alligator gars are thought to spawn in the floodplain of these large rivers, giving their young protection from predators. Food Value: The meat of the alligator gar has been commercially sold for over a dollar a pound locally. It is not classified as a sport fish in some states such as Texas even though there is a popular bow fishery along the Rio Grande River. It is classified as a sport fish Alabama where the limit is 2 fish per day, which makes it off limits to commercial fishing in Alabama. Consumption Concerns: The roe or red eggs of a gar is poisonous to man, birds and other fish. Feeding habits: Alligator gars appear sluggish, however they are voracious predators. Gars are ambush predators, primarily piscivores, they lay still in the water until an unsuspecting fish swims by, and then lunging forward and lashing the head from side to side in order to capture prey. Many times gars will lay still at the top of the water for long periods of time, appearing to be merely a log. The alligator gars' diet consists primarily of fish. However, brackish water populations of alligator gar are known to feed heavily on blue crabs in addition to fish such as the hardhead catfish. This gar is also known to prey on waterfowl and other birds, small mammals, turtles, and carrion. Alligator gars have been reported to attack duck decoys and eat injured waterfowl shot by hunters. Remarks: The alligator gar is disappearing from many parts of the range, and declining in population everywhere due to over-fishing and the construction of dikes, dams, and other flood control devices, resulting in loss of key breeding habitat. The alligator gar was once reported as common and even numerous in much of its northern range. Now it is rare in the Northern parts of its range with reports of valid sightings coming in only every few years. The alligator gar is rare, endangered, and has even been extirpated from many of the outer areas of its range. Studies in Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana have shown that the alligator gar is very susceptible to over fishing. It has been classified as rare in Missouri, threatened in Illinois, and endangered in Arkansas, Kentucky, and is soon to be in Tennessee. References: Champion Pro-Guide Services Florida Museum of Natural Land Big Fish Wikipedia Encyclopedia Citizen Sportsman
  11. Dad and I took a ride up a local creek tonight. There was a lot of activity in the water. Thousands of small bunker (a very good sign) are there. Can anyone identify the other fish in this picture? Beautiful sunset on the water. I caught hundreds of small bunker (released) in my throw net. I was actually huntin for mullet. Dad took another grandson, Will, perch fishing this morning. Awesome job, guys!
  12. A pair of rare northern right whales swam into Indian River Inlet today – their second visit in two days. The creatures attracted the attention of anglers, contractors working on Indian River Inlet bridge and employees at the Center for the Inland Bays. Right whales are one of the most endangered whale species in the world. Experts estimate the population of North Atlantic right whales at 350 animals, according to the North Atlantic Right Whale Consortium. Suzanne Thurman, director of the Marine Education Research and Rehabilitation Institute Inc., saw the whales today and concluded they were right whales. Thurman’s organization responds to marine mammal and sea turtle strandings along the Delaware Coast. This pair looked healthy, she said. They are probably a mother and calf, she said. “It’s just so wonderful to see them.” Jim Alderman was at work at the Center for the Inland Bays when the Delaware Seashore State Park superintendent called and said there were two whales in the inlet. “Everybody ran out the door and I went and grabbed two cameras,” he said, “It sure was exciting to stand there on the rocks and see those whales that close.” Alderman said the whales came in during the incoming tide, hung near the pilings that support the bridge and stayed put – surfacing and submerging. “The fishing’s been fantastic,” he said. “They must have heard the fishing was good.” Alderman said he talked to some anglers who were there. In nearly three decades of fishing at the inlet “they said they had never seen a whale,” he said. Right whales – which full grown range in size from 45 to 55 feet long – migrate past the Delaware coast January through March, Thurman said. Still, because the population is so small, it is rare to see them. Thurman said she believes the pair has ventured into the inlet to feed. This species is a baleen whale and does not have teeth. Instead, it eats some of the tiniest creatures in the ocean – copepods. “The inlet is full of fish,” Thurman said. The two whales swam in Monday night and again on Tuesday, both times at high tide. One is about 40-feet long, she said. The larger of the two has callosities all over its head. Researchers use these markings to identify the whales. “I’m kind of waiting to see if they come back,” she said. delawareonline ¦ The News Journal ¦ Whales visit Indian River Inlet
  13. NEW YORK -- A public school teacher was arrested today at John Kennedy International Airport as he attempted to board a flight while in possession of a ruler, a protractor, a set square, a slide rule , and a calculator. At a morning press conference, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said he believes the man is a member of the notorious Al-gebra movement. He did not identify the man, who has been charged by the FBI with carrying weapons of math instruction. "Al-gebra is a problem for us," Gonzales said. "They desire solutions by means and extremes, and sometimes go off on tangents in search of absolute values. They use secret code names like 'x' and 'y' and refer to themselves as 'unknowns', but we have determined they belong to a common denominator of the axis of medieval with coordinates in every country. As the Greek philanderer Isosceles used to say, 'There are 3 sides to every triangle'." When asked to comment on the arrest, President Bush said, "If God had wanted us to have better weapons of math instruction, He would have given us more fingers and toes." White House aides told reporters they could not recall a more intelligent or profound statement by the president.
  14. Mid-Atlantic – Watch Continues for the Chinese Mitten Crab On June 9, a mature male Chinese mitten crab was found at the mouth of the Patapsco River in Maryland by a commercial waterman. The Chinese mitten crab, native to East Asia, is a potential invasive that could have negative ecological impacts in the Chesapeake Bay area. Due to the documented ability of this species to establish itself in new areas, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (MD DNR), the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center , and the US Fish and Wildlife Service, in partnership with NOAA, have established a joint effort to investigate the status of this species. If you find a mitten crab, do not throw it back alive. Instead, please note the precise location where it was found, take a close-up photo, and preserve the crab on ice or in the freezer. Photos can be sent to lfegley@dnr. state.md. us or to ruizg@si.edu for preliminary identification. More information, including a description of how to identify a Chinese mitten crab, is available on the MD DNR website: http://www.dnr. state.md. us/dnrnews/ infocus/mitten_ crab.asp
  15. More infomation I recieved from Apex Tagging Program Study on distinguishing characteristics between these 2 sharks. Identification of Sandbar and Dusky Sharks Cooperative Shark Tagging Program U.S. Department of Commerce National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration National Marine Fisheries Center Narragansett, Rhode Island 12882 (401)782-3320 ....The smaller sizes between three and four feet are most similar and almost impossible to tell apart in the water. At 5-6 feet the Dusky is a trimmer shark than the sandbar, with sickle shaped fins and a longer, lower caudal fin. The first dorsal fin on a dusky is further back and more rounded than on one of 3-4 feet length. The overall shape of the sandbar shark is less changeable with size, although the fins become slightly broader and the girth is proportionately larger than a dusky of the same size. The two sharks are easily seperable when viewed at 10X magnification. Scales on a dusky overlap and are shingle like, while those on a sandbar are seperated and more like cobblestones. Otherwise, sandbars keep the same husky shape from juvenile to adult. the maximum sizes reached by these species can also help to identify them. Sandbars rarely reach lengths of 8 feet or 200 lbs. Duskys mature at 8 feet and reach 10-12 feet and several hundred lbs. In the past few years sandbars have been more common than dusky sharks in tournaments and longline catches between Cape Cod and Cape Hatteras.... good luck..
  16. My truck is a 2002 Nissan Frontier 4X4, which I love. However, the front bumper of a Frontier is plastic so there is no metal bumper to mount a surf rod holder to. It seems that I will have to get someone to weld the holder to the underframe. This seems a little tricky and I want to identify someone who knows what they are doing. Any recommendations would be appreciated. I live in the Lewes, Delaware area. My preference is to mount it on the front or in the bed. Dont want to interfer with the tailgate so a bumper hitch mount is out.