Wednesday, February 22, 2006

(No) Fish Report 2/22/06

(No) Fish Report 2/22/06
Err - The Paint and Epoxy Report?
Hi All,
Of all the tacky little signs that I've ever seen in the boating catalogs; "The only thing that always works on an old boat is it's owner" is far and away the most accurate!
I thought I'd go ahead and pretty-up the wheelhouse while fixing a precious few spots where the glass had worn through... Yeah. Then I discovered that the wheelhouse door frame - right where rain would come through in a hard gale - was pretty much held together by a thin piece of fiberglass. Oh Fun! Water and plywood don't mix - especially where the water can't evaporate!
It's just about done now - you might notice a few changes up there. Should be toggin' again by very early March but I can't nail any dates down yet.
Drumroll please - the biggest tagged tautog of 2005 -- 27 15/16 inches by a fellow from Marietta, Ohio. The prize, a nice rig, will be sent soon ~ unless he's going to come pick it up! 
The fish was caught on a gorgeous calm day in - say what? - August! Funny thing about big fish - they never seem to turn up when you expect them to! It was the fellow's second tog he'd ever caught. His first one was on the drop before; maybe a 12 lb fish... With all the persistent, dedicated effort I've seen by the dyed in the wool toggin' gang you'd think one of those guys would be the recipient - that's just not the way Lady Luck would have it!
If you happen to recapture ALS tag 666593 I expect you'll be calling for a net...
I'm hoping that the data we are generating by tagging all these tog will be used to make a better fishery management plan. We tagged quite a few flounder this year too, plus numerous others like codfish, triggerfish, spadefish and the occasional jumbo sea bass. There is a lot more that can be done to rebuild our region's fisheries - this is just one angle. By understanding how a fish migrates - or doesn't - and growth rates particular to our region, we can better manage any species.  
Should you have an interest in tagging fish, the American Littoral Society has a long standing program that anyone can participate in. Their data - all from recreational taggers - was instrumental in the first striped bass management plan.
You can get started with tagging for less than it costs to buy bait for a day's fishing*. They're on the web; just Google 'em. {*OkOk ~ I'm assuming you are not plucking earthworms from the garden!)
I've had numerous emails about reservations. Seems there was a mix up with the service... If you called and were told that no reservations are being taken yet - you were misinformed! It got pretty smelly when one fellow wanted to book a spot next to his buddy and "wasn't allowed"... Great Scott!
The 'book' is open from May first to the end of November. I take reservations way out because the weather is usually doable in that time frame and I'm pretty certain that sea bass will be the primary target. In March and April I can't be so sure of the weather, will very likely be toggin', and will stick to the trip announcements via email for those months. Every once in a great while sea bass show up about a month early so it's best to stay flexible.
At any rate, if you want to book a stern corner in May there are still some left.
Crab traps are going back in the water - the epoxy paint primer is next to the heater - won't be long...
Capt. Monty Hawkins
Party Boat "Morning Star"
Reservations 410 520 2076

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