BOATING AND FISHING





2017 SCALLOPS EARLY APPEAR TO BE PLENTIFUL

The early reports are that there is a plentiful supply of bay scallops this year. We've had a lot of stormy weather so keep an eye out for thunderstorms.

Remember the limit is 2 gallon unshucked per person per day with a maximum of 10 gallons per boat. That means if you have more than 5 people on the boat you can still only harvest 10 gallons so everyone doesn't get their limit

If you shuck them at sea then the limit is 1/2 pint per person and 1/2 gallon maximum per boat; that's less than if you bring them home unshucked.

Most people only eat the mussel that holds the scallop together, but as with a clam, oyster or mussel you can eat the entire scallop. I put them on the grill and they will open when done, a small dab of butter, or garlic butter, makes them delicious. I guess it's the eyes that bother folks; clams, oysters and mussels don't have eyes as scallops do, but then again only scallops are able to swim.

SCALLOP RESEARCH DATA may be seen at http://myfwc.com/research/saltwater/mollusc/bay-scallops/season/

Please do the environment a favor and pick up any plastics as they do not break down and kill marine life when ingested. A plastic bag looks a lot like a squid to a turtle and will kill him if he eats it.

Capt. Chuck




REGULATIONS EFFECTIVE JUNE 1, 2008

New rules pertaning to reef fish, that means anything on a rockpile, go into effect on June 1, 2008. Basically you are required to have on board a dehooker and venting tool and only use NON stainless circle hooks with natural bait.
Go to New FWC Rules to get the official information.

SAVE A FISH!

When a fish is caught from depth the air in it's swimbladder expands and can force the stomach right out the fishes mouth causing death. Sometimes the bladder is ruptured as well, but it will heal if the fish is realeased quickly. This is a fish's equivalent to the Bends that affects divers, except it is easier to reverse.

To relieve this condition there is a process called venting where the swimbladder is pierced with a hollow needle which lets the air out. Then the fish can swim away back to his habitat to live. For more information on this please to go: www.flseagrant.org/program_areas/fisheries/venting/index.htm

Venting Tools and dehookers can be purchased from Aquatic Release Conservation at http://www.dehooker4arc.com/






BOATERS TIP Winter tides are approximately 8 inches lower than summer tides due to the fact that the sun is in the southern hemisphere and the gravitiational pull of the sun pulls the water into that hemisphere. Its important for boaters to consider this as well or they may find themsleves aground.
Also remember that here wih the west coast of Florida the wind is a significant factor in tidal levels. If the wind is from the east it will blow the water out and a west wind will cause the water to stay in resulting in a higher tide than predicted.

The saying, "EAST IS LEAST and WEST IS BEST" will serve the boater well when figuring the tides.


BOATERS HINT

Please check your vessels safety gear before you go out: Marine Radio, Flares, Life Jackets, extra water, first aid kit to name but a few. Contact us at 592-0097 for a FREE Vessel Safety Check by the Coast Guard Auxiliary.

It is especially important to file a FLOAT PLAN when you go out on the water. Tell someone where you are going, when you expect to be back, who is with you, what supplies you have (food, water, marine radio, cell phone #, etc.), and what a description of your boat ( Registration #, color, make, length). Also let them know when you get back or change your plans.

Don't be fooled into thinking you don't need a float plan just because you are fishing in shallow water. Flats fishing increases the chance you can hit a rock and damage your prop and or motor. Let someone know where you are going and when you will be back.

PLEASE Keep a sharp lookout for manatees as they stay in the Weeki Wachee ecosystem the year around.

Our moderate water temperatures are much to their liking some choose to stay all year rather than go on a summer sojourn.

These warm Gulf waters seem to have kept many manatees in the rivers so use caution when boating on them. Also remember is is ILLEGAL to harass a manatee. Especailly DO NOT mess with a mother with a baby. We had an incident in the first part of August where people drove a mother away from it's newborn baby and it took two days for them to get re-united. This was extremely fortunate because most of the time she would have abandoned that baby. Yes they are cute , but they don't look so cute when they are dead.

Mannatees cannot tolerate water below 66 degrees for long so in the winter months they move into coastal rivers and areas around warm water sources such as power plant discharges. Throughout Florida you will notice MANATEE ZONE signs with speed limits from NO WAKE to 25 mph. Gulf temperatures range from a low of around 57 degrees in February to a high in the upper 80's in August.


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The Coast Guard Auxiliary

is active throughout Florida. They have boating education classes and do FREE Vessel Safety Checks. There are Flotillas in Hudson, Hernando Beach, Homosassa, Crystal River, Ocala, Yankeetown, Gainesville and at Suwannee (Hart Springs) to name but a few.

Div 15 Website link



WHICH SEAFOOD IS BEST?

That's easy, US caught, right? Well yes as a general rule, but there are many ways of catching fish and many locations where they are caught.

Go to SEAFOOD WATCH a site on the Monterey Bay Aquarium's webpage. You can put in most any seafood you can hink of and it will bring up the best to worst choices, not only for your health, but as a sustainable fishery.




CHARTERS




Party Boat THUNDER

Capt. Mike Senker operates the headboat THUNDER on offshore fishing trips to the reefs and ledges. Give him a call for an affordable fishing trip.
352-597-3900

captain@thunderpartyboat.com

or visit his website at www.ThunderPartyBoat.com




Gulf Grouper Off Shore Charters Fishing

Betty Airheart caught her first redfish on a spoon while fishing the Hernando Beach channel on the Gulf Grouper

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John Thomas holds a 32 pound Kingfish that buzzed by the back of the boat while fishing for Grouper
Sept 7, 2009

CaptMike@gulfgrouper.com

or visit his website at www.gulfgrouper.com





If you prefer to have a private guide then consider Capt. Ronnie Richards. He lives here in Weekie Wachee and knows the area well. Give him a call at 352-596-0308; or E-mail him at captrrr@bellsouth.net







FLATS SLAM FISHING CHARTERS

out of Weeki Wachee / Bayport area
call Capt Larry Roderick
at 352-835-8785




Capt. Ernie Brundage operates out of Homosassa and offers a variety of water experiences from sightseeing to fishing and scalloping. Capt. Brundage is a renown artist and any trip with him is a unique experience. Check his websites at www.captainernestbrundage.com or www.homosassariveradventures.com


Call 352-628-1327 or E-mail ernestb@tampabay.rr.com




BULLDOG FISHIN

Inshore fishing and Adventure Cruises with Capt Keith Tomlinson www.bulldogfishin.com 352-238-3581




If you are in the Florida Keys look up a former Hernando Beach Captain. Capt Rick Rodriguez operates Seahorse Charters out of Islamorada. He is a 6 pack operator and does Fishing or Diving trips. Call Rick at 305-664-5020or E-mail him at SeaHorseCaptRick@yahoo.com





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Capt. Frank Bourgois, www.alwaysfishing.com , offers both inshore and offshore fishing. Call him at 352-666-6234 or E-mail at E-mail him at info@alwaysfishing.com





Captian Steven Soults of Angling Adventures Charter Fishing Guide Service, www.angling-adventures.net , is a Full Time Licensed & Insured West Central Florida Charter Fishing Guide Service offering Guided Fishing Trips / Flats Fishing Trips / Offshore Fishing Trips & Inshore/Backwater fishing adventures on the beautiful flats & Backwaters of Hernando County, Pasco County & Citrus County.

www.angling-adventures.net

OFFICE (352) 686-0853 or (352) 238-9339




FLATS FISHING in HOMOSASSA

Flats fishing for Redfish, Trout, Cobia and T arpon call Capt. Leo Riddle a call at 352-628-7397. Visit his website www.homosassafishingcharters.com or E-mail him at captainleoriddle@aol.com

For a back country or flats fishing adventure give Capt. Gary (GT) Cox a call at 352-628-5419. Visit his website www.slapstikcharters.com or E-mail him at captjroc@tampabay.rr.com




Rental Boats

If you want to do it yourself you can rent boats from Weeki Wachee Marina to go fishing in the river system or out on the flats off Bayport. Please remember this entire river is a NO WAKE Zone and is very shallow. Be careful not to "dredge" through the shallow places with the motor.

They also have canoes and kayaks available if you wish to get a little exercise.






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