The Garden State Outdoor Sports Show runs through Sunday at the N. J. Convention Expo Center in Edison, and offers lots of attractions and seminars that can be found by visiting gsoss. Using live shrimp at several of Greco's favorite spots we had lots of action with small mangrove snappers while also releasing four legal sheepshead up to my 14-incher.
The N. J. Marine Fisheries Council took action before the public hearing by adopting status quo for this year. As noted in last week's column, many N. J. congressmen have asked the director of that agency to permit status quo while awaiting the baseline stock assessment which many expect will indicate the summer flounder fishery is actually in much better condition than present statistics show.
Rich Johnson of The Fishing Line once again has a limited number of free tickets to be given away to the N. Y. Boat Show (Jan. 25-29) at the Convention Center. Only one ticket per person or mailing address may be available, and you must include a self-addressed, stamped business ( 10) envelope in your request to The Fishing Line, NY Boat Show Tix, 1934 Kay Lane, Surfside Beach, SC 29575.
The Sportsman's Show season opens on Thursday with the Garden State Outdoor Sports Show at the N. J. Convention Expo Center in Edison, and continues through Sunday. Therefore, the Ocean Explorer will wait for better conditions on Thursday.
Blackfish responded to light winds and calm seas today to provide good action on the Ocean Explorer from Belmar. It looks good for Tuesday, and the Ocean Explorer will be fishing -- as will the Big Mohawk.
There were no fishing reports in miserable weather, but the northwest wind is predicted to drop to 10-15 mph (though with some higher gusts) before a switch to southwest on Monday. If it makes you feel any better about the local weather, the wind chill in Ft. Myers this morning was 32 degrees.
The redfish were around the docks both N and S of the Ft. Pierce Inlet most were undersized, but we did catch a couple of slot fish as we fought our way through the sheepshead to get to them. I was able to get out the inlet and fish along the inshore reefs and had 2 days of great fishing.
As noted in yesterday's blog, several N. J. congressmen are supporting that position in the closing days of the Obama administration -- and there are high hopes that the Trump administration with its emphasis on economic growth will take a friendly approach to the status quo proposal. Prior to the hearing, the Marine Fisheries Council noted 9-1 for a proposal by Bob Rusch to adopt status quo fluke regulations for 2017.
Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06) and a bipartisan group from the New Jersey Congressional delegation sent a letter to U. S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker asking her to prevent rulemaking that would reduce the summer flounder quotas for recreational and commercial fishing from going into effect. The ASMFC set up inequitable distribution of the resource right from the beginning, forcing the public to release great numbers of edible-size fluke which can then be netted by commercial fishermen who get 60 percent of the fishery and only have a 14-inch minimum.