Fisheries & Fish Industry

Pickerel fishing is in full swing

Pickerel fishing is in full swing

There’s nothing quite like a Canada goose landing on water. The transition from floating in the air to floating on a Chesapeake river is a touch down that’s at once both graceful and mesmerizing. Since there are literally hundreds of thousands of these Canadian visitors on both sides of the Chesapeake Bay, you don’t have to be a hunter to enjoy and appreciate this scene. But there’s no doubt bird hunters are taking advantage of it, with many regularly scoring limits both afield and water blinds.

The caveat to that consistency is, at least from my observations in the past two weeks, that the geese are definitely showing some signs of the pressure. And while they’re not quite in full-blown paranoia mode, they are definitely getting smarter. All the more reason to not sky-bust. In my last three outings I went two-for-three on ducks and geese. True, I’ve seen more puddle ducks around, as well as divers and sea ducks, but like the geese, migrant ducks are getting a little tougher to decoy. So I’ve countered that with calling less, and calling at the right time, as well as remaining stock still and well-hidden.

Edgewater residents Max Rudow and his dad Lenny, along with Mike Davidson and Greg Short, limited out on goose the day before Christmas, hunting a farm in Carroll County. One of the honkers had a band that Lenny says proves it was a resident — banded in Carroll County in 2015.

Fishing-wise, it’s been quiet, though the mild weather has encouraged some anglers to fish the local creeks and ponds for pickerel and panfish. I haven’t heard too much about catch-and-release rockfishing, just a random report here and there. Over on the coast, friendly seas welcomed in the 2017 tautog season. Capt. Monty Hawkins, who runs the O.C.-based party boat Morning Star, checked in to let us know that Pasadena resident Ralph Driscoll decked not one but two tog better than 10 pounds. That’s a real good day. Ralph’s companions, Pat Scida of Annapolis and Mike Maney of Lewes, Delaware, also fared well, each landing quality blackfish.

Jan. 26-29: Progressive® Insurance “Baltimore Boat Show,” Baltimore Convention Center. Details at BaltimoreBoatShow.com.

Jan. 28-29: MSSA’s Kent Island Fishermen 7th annual Fishing Flea Market, Kent Island American Legion Post # 278, 800 Romancoke Road, Stevensville. Show runs from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. on Saturday; 8 a.m.-3 p.m. on Sunday. Contact Dave Stith (410) 643-3970 or [email protected].

Jan. 31: Angler’s Night Out, hosted by Boatyard Bar & Grill, CCA MD & Chesapeake Bay Magazine. Feature film is “Running the Coast.” Happy hour from 5-7 p.m., film starts at 7 p.m. Boatyard Bar & Grill, 4th Street & Severn Ave., Eastport.

Feb. 1: Free State Fly Fishers’ meeting. Capt. Chris Dollar talks fly fishing and light tackle from SUPS and kayaks. 7:30 p.m. at Davidsonville Family Recreation Center, 3789 Queen Anne Bridge Road, Davidsonville. Details at facebook.com/FSFFMD.

Feb. 4: Salt Water Sportsman’s Seminar Series. Old Mill High School Auditorium, 600 Patriot Lane, Millersville. Regional and national fishing experts, including local captains Lonnie Johnson of G-EYE Jigs and Pete Dalhberg. Details and registration at nationalseminarseries.com.

Feb. 25: MSSA Annapolis Chapter “Saltwater Fishing Expo” 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Annapolis Elks Club, Solomons Island Road, Annapolis. Seminars from area experts as well as tackle vendors, charter captains, and crabbing supplies. Details at mssaannapolis.com.

Feb. 28: Angler’s Night Out, hosted by Boatyard Bar & Grill, CCA MD & Chesapeake Bay Magazine. Feature film is “Best of the 2016 Drake Video Awards.” Happy hour & appetizer specials from 5 p.m.-7 p.m., film starts at 7 p.m. Boatyard Bar & Grill, 4th Street & Severn Ave., Eastport.

March 28: Angler’s Night Out, hosted by Boatyard Bar & Grill, in cooperation with CCA MD & Chesapeake Bay Magazine. Feature film is “Providence.” Happy hour & appetizer specials from 5 p.m.-7 p.m., film starts at 7 p.m. Boatyard Bar & Grill, 4th Street & Severn Ave., Eastport.

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