Archive for January, 2010

Cold weather calamity

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

dead-snook
The photo above, sent to me by an anonymous source, was recently taken at the boat ramp in Flamingo, Florida. In a single frame it confirms what many Florida-based anglers have feared: many snook did not survive the unseasonably bitter series of fronts. There are now scores of reports from around the state confirming what may be the worst fish kill of this generation and possibly the one that came before, with snook the hardest-hit species of them all. I’m planning a trip deep into the Glades next week, and my heart is heavy.

Cold fronts kill thousands of snook in Florida

Wednesday, January 13th, 2010

frozen-snook
Reports from around Florida confirm that snook are dying by the thousands due to a series of record-breaking cold fronts. Snook are notoriously intolerant of chilly weather, and prolonged exposure to water temperatures below 60 degrees usually proves lethal. Though snook are the most vulnerable species, water has claimed many other types of fish, including mullet, catfish, tarpon, mojarra, snapper and gag grouper, as well as countless smaller species that are an important forage food for Florida’s game fish, including ladyfish and pinfish. To those of us who catch and release snook and carefully monitor their status, this is a big blow. Alas. There’s a wistful irony in Mother Nature ultimately being the biggest threat to snook populations since commercial fishing for them was banned in the late 1980s. For more info, visit this site.

To report a fish kill, visit FWC here or the Snook Foundation here. Please record pertinent fact such as date, time, GPS coordinates (if possible), number and size of dead or near-dead fish, and conditions observed. If you see someone illegally harvesting dead or dying snook, dial #DEP on a cell phone, or call (877) 2-SAVE-FL (1.877.272.8335).

Essential Fishing Tune

Tuesday, January 12th, 2010
YouTube Preview Image

“Well her hair was jet black and her name was Bodine,
thought she was the cream of the Basin Street queens.
She got tired of that smoky white dream,
began to feel lonesome, orn’ry and mean…”

Fishing Tip: unkink twisted fishing line

Monday, January 11th, 2010

reel-tangleLures that tend to tumble or spin when cast or retrieved (jigs, softbaits, etc) can put a lot of unwanted twist in your line, which in turn leads to tangles, birds-nests, and lots of colorful language. Using a swivel (the smallest version possible for a stealthy profile) when attaching your leader line will minimize the problem. But if your line does end up all kinked and springy, here’s the cure: simply snip off the lure and feed line from your reel while your boat is underway. Feed out about 75 yards of line, let is unwind for a minute or so, then reel it back in. If you’re land-bound, try tying your line to a fixed object, feed line from the reel as you walk away, untie the line and “snap” the rod as you refill the spool to work out the kinks. Voila: straightened, smoother-casting line.

Fishing Cartoon

Monday, January 4th, 2010

EarlWater3