Current Affairs
Mark Alan Lovewell

The current in the Edgartown harbor has changed again.

It has been three years since the Norton Point opening connected Katama Bay to the sea, and the water movement through the harbor has gained another measure of unpredictability: currents running through Edgartown harbor are far greater than tidal.

Plus, the three years of increased current has changed the way boaters use the harbor and the way bathers use the beaches.

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Season Opener
Mark Alan Lovewell

The recreational season is off and running and no one can appreciate it better now than Capt. Scott McDowell of Chilmark. His boat is in the water working perfectly after a mishap earlier this year.

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Commercial Striper
Mark Alan Lovewell

Vineyard restaurants and fish markets are now serving and selling fresh, locally caught striped bass. The commercial season officially opened on Tuesday in Massachusetts.

Commercial anglers have a season that will probably run well into August before the quota is taken. They are limited to fish that are a minimum of 34 inches, and there is a daily limit of five fish on Sundays, and 30 fish on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. The Massachusetts quota for commercial fishing of striped bass is 1,128,577 pounds.

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Rare Weirs
Mark Alan Lovewell

The Vineyard has no fish weirs these days. The trapping technique, catching fish by way of corralling them against walls of branches, timber and spiles strewn with nets, is no longer used here.

On Wednesday afternoon, however, Jonathan James-Perry, 33, a storyteller and historian with the Aquinnah Cultural Center, gave a talk about the use of fish weirs by the Wampanoag Indians of this region. In a time when the ocean was bubbling with a lot more fish than are there now, a fish weir was an effective way to catch fish.

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Shark Hooks
Mark Alan Lovewell

A Sag Harbor landscape artist has turned her attention to making shark tournaments on Long Island and on the Vineyard more environmentally friendly.

April Gornik is raising money to pay for and provide free circle hooks to fishing captains who participate in this month’s 24th annual 2010 Monster Shark Tournament in Oak Bluffs. The tournament is July 22 through July 24.

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Family Fishing
Mark Alan Lovewell

Island fishermen gathered for a dinner meeting at the Home Port Restaurant last week. The guest speaker was Niaz Dorry, a director with the Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance, based in Windham, Me.

She compared the plight of the small-town commercial fisherman to that of the family farm, and as with small farming, she painted a picture of hope amid innovation.

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Kids’ Fishing Jamboree

Kids’ Fishing Jamboree

Bring the kids to the Martha’s Vineyard Surfcasters’ Kids’ Jamboree on Saturday, May 15 from 9 a.m. to noon.

Meet at the Edgartown School parking lot for free mini-seminars on casting, beach fishing, knot-tying, ice-fishing, fly-fishing, where to catch fish on the Vineyard and more. Please plan to stay with your kids. Hot dogs, chips and refreshments. The rain date is Sunday, May 16.

For details, call 508-693-3360.

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Rod and Gun Club Offers Introduction to Fly-Fishing

Fly-fishing and casting instruction for all levels is being offered in a workshop on Saturday, May 15, from 8:30 a.m. to noon at the Martha’s Vineyard Rod and Gun Club in Edgartown.

Learn the basics every fly-fisher needs, from knot-tying and fish-handling, to casting, techniques and tips, presented by John Kollett and Sandra Demel. You will be able to handle equipment and start saltwater fly-fishing right away.

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Island Fishermen Attend Sector Meeting

Fishermen from Martha’s Vineyard, Bar Harbor, Jonesport and Swan’s Island gathered last month for the inaugural meeting of members of the Northeast Coastal Communities Sector.

Over a 6 a.m. breakfast in Stonington, Me., the group elected a governing board and made plans for the opening of this year’s groundfishing season. This historic event heralds the possibility of landing sizeable amounts of groundfish in eastern Maine for the first time in almost 20 years.

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Island Anglers Land Fair Share of Fishing Awards

Vineyard fishermen did well in the state’s annual saltwater fishing contest, with six Island anglers taking prizes at an event held on Valentine’s Day at the Eastern Fishing and Outdoor Exposition in Worcester.

The state keeps tallies for the largest fish taken in a wide array of categories from Jan. 1 to Nov. 30.

Helena Kirschenbaum of Oak Bluffs won in the women’s category for a 42-pound, six-ounce striped bass.

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