Rhode Island Marine Fisheries Council update
The Rhode Island Marine Fisheries Council (RIMFC) met Tuesday, June 26 at the URI Bay Campus. The council thanked William (Bill) Mackintosh, III, commercial and recreational fishermen, for his service to the council as this was his last meeting. Bill, a commercial fisherman, provided the council with his expertise, always weighing in on issues putting himself in the shoes of the fisherman to understand what the impact of Council regulation recommendations might be on fishermen. Thanks for your service Bill.
At the same meeting Jason Jarvis was welcomed as a new Councilman. Jarvis is a native of Westerly and has a broad range of experience working as a deckhand on commercial vessels, a mate on party and charter boats as well as having his own commercial fishing license. Governor Raimondo appointed Jarvis to the council on June 16 and his appointment was approved by the Rhode Island Senate on June 19.
Agenda highlights included a review of plans for the bay-wide quahaug stock assessment and Providence River water quality review. DEM staff related that conditional area B’s status had been changed to an open area early this year and that new Providence River shellfishing areas were being explored at this time with no immediate plans to open areas this year until additional input is obtained and proposals are developed.
A second highlight was review of a new aggregate program for commercial black sea bass and summer flounder… the council recommended to start an experimental aggregate program that is carefully monitored with triggers to help prevent season closures that could be created by the program. An increase in minimum size for recreational shortfin mako sharks to a fork length of 83 inches was approved to dovetail with federal regulations.
Visit DEM’s website here for minutes of the meeting.
“The fish was a little hard to reel in”
The third annual Rhode Island Saltwater Anglers Association (RISAA) Rocky Point fishing camp held this week was a big hit with participants. Norah Blasi (age 10) of Warwick said, “The fish was a little hard to reel in, but it was not the first fluke I’ve caught.” Norah was talking about the 22” fluke he caught Wednesday when fishing on the Seven B’s Party Boat out of Pt. Judith.
Fifty-three children attended the three day camp with 35 RISAA volunteers and DEM staff members working to make it a success. On the first day campers learned fishing gear and tackle basics, fish identification, how to use spinning and conventional reels, casting and fishing from shore, knot tying, boating safety and how to tag and release fish. The second day was a trip on the Seven B’s party boat and the third day (Thursday) was cancelled due to thunderstorms.
Steve Medeiros, RISAA president/camp director said, “A lot goes on when you fish. It appeals to our sense of adventure and teaches us patience and is one of those activities where science and art converge. Fishing allows us to build a lifetime of memories and friendships with those we fish with.”
Janet Coit, Director of the Department of Environmental Management, said, “We are excited to partner with RISAA on its Youth Fishing Camp at Rocky Point… kudos to RISAA for bringing this camp to Rocky Point and inspiring both a love of fishing and for this park in our young people. It is through efforts like this that we forge the next generation of environmental stewards. Fantastic!”
The Rhode Island Saltwater Anglers Association (RISAA) and the Department of Environmental Management (DEM) sponsor the youth fishing camp for 7 to 12 year olds with funding from U.S. Fish & Wildlife Services.
RISAA also conducted its annual Take-a-Kid Fishing Day last Saturday taking 81 children fishing in Greenwich Bay who are bused from mostly urban areas;125 volunteers and 41 boats made the day possible.
Where’s the bite
Striped bass/bluefish. Striped bass fishing in the Bay continues to be spotty with fish showing up some days and yet other days you can’t get a bite. Bass fishing on the North Rip and Southwest Ledge has been off too with anglers hooking up some days and on other days they are not catching anything.
Fishing on the Cape Cod Canal and around Provincetown was good last week. John Mcaward of Red Top Bait & Tackle, Buzzards Bay said, “Early Thursday morning fish in the twenty-five pound range were taken on top water, later in the morning fish were taken with jigs as the fish moved down in the water column. Fishing was good from the middle of the Canal and to the east. Earlier in the week there was a top water blitz at Provincetown. Sea bass fishing is still holding up on Buzzards Bay.”
Summer Flounder (fluke)/black sea bass/scup. Fishing for scup in Narragansett Bay been good around Mt. Hope Bridge, Ohio Ledge and anywhere there is structure and water movement. The summer flounder bite at the Sakonnet, off Narragansett and the beaches continues to be slow. The south side of Block Island has been on and off too. The hope is that bottom fishing will be better this week as the turbid water settles down from the storm that came through at the end of last week.
Captain Dave Monti has been fishing and shellfishing for over 40 years. He holds a captain’s master license and a charter fishing license. He is a RISAA board member, a member of the RI Party & Charter Boat Association and a member of the RI Marine Fisheries Council. Contact or forward fishing news and photos to Capt. Dave at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit his website at www.noflukefishing.com.