Friday, June 24, 2011

Day 42: Chasing Bait

My Bomber Long A Saltwater Grade sitting still in Great Kills Harbor.
When: Thursday, June 23rd, from 12pm to 12:30pm
Where: Great Kills Harbor, Staten Island
What: Fishing
Weather: Rainy and cool.
Moon: Waning. One day after the third quarter.
Water Conditions/Tide: Tide looked pretty high, water was clear and still.

In many instances, fishing boils down to being able to find bait, especially saltwater fishing. As I write this, there are probably hundreds of boats off the coast of New Jersey right now, chasing around schools of Atlantic Menhaden, aka mossbunker, in the hopes of catching the striped bass that may be feeding on them. Predatory fish will follow food, so if you find their food and then present them food, you have darn good shot at catching one.

So, when I stepped onto the rocks in the back of Great Kills Harbor and saw spearing in the water, my hopes were high that there might be bigger fish feeding on them.

Not the case.

It's also important to note, that once bait and feeding fish are located, that one should target them with either the same prey the fish are eating or use an artificial bait that makes a good representation. To be completely honest, my 4-inch blue and silver Bomber wasn't really the best imitation for a spearing, but it was as close as I could get with what I had on me.

In any event, I'm fairly certain that there were no feeding predators attacking these baitfish or there would have been much more of a commotion on the surface.

So, I didn't catch anything, but my mind was really elsewhere.

It makes me sad to think that we lost a great one this week, John Avery Sr. Mr. Avery was truly one of the kindest people I have ever met, a skilled angler and pilot and a wonderful father to my dear friend Mike and his brother John. It's really hard to think that someone who always seemed to be filled with so much joy is really gone, but it's true. I have nothing but the fondest memories of Mr. Avery and will never forget his laugh and his smile. He'll be missed by many.