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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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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Few Fishermen Join Saltwater Registry
Mark Alan Lovewell

Beginning this year, under a new federal law, recreational saltwater fishermen are required either to have a saltwater license or to have registered with their state. In Massachusetts, where a law requiring a license will take effect next year, fishermen are supposed to register.

But very few have.

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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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Little Anglers Land Big Catches
Megan Dooley

The Island’s youngest fish ermen were treated to a quiet, still morning last Saturday. The anglers came early to Duarte’s Pond in West Tisbury to compete in the annual spring Martha’s Vineyard Rod and Gun Club trout tournament. The club hosted the event with a large crew of volunteers. Youngsters were treated to hot dogs on the grill.

The club had stocked the pond with plenty of large trout, but it was the native pickerel that gave fishermen the best catch. Native catfish were also plentiful.

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Fishermen Feud Over Horseshoe Crab Protection
Mike Seccombe

Among all the species taken by fishermen in this part of the world, horseshoe crabs have, until now, enjoyed a dubious distinction: they were the only ones targeted while in the act of reproducing.

The easiest way for many to catch them was to walk the beaches at the times of the full and new moons in May and June and simply pick them up as they came into the shallows to spawn.

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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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Sengekontacket Pond Opens for Shellfishing After Three Summers
Mark Alan Lovewell

Summer shellfishermen will have access to Sengekontacket Pond for the first time in several years, so long as there isn’t a big rainstorm.

The State Division of Marine Fisheries has lifted the pond from a routine seasonal closure.

Sengekontacket Pond is overseen by the Edgartown and Oak Bluffs shellfish departments under the watchful eye of the state.

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Striped Bass Bill Dead in the Water
Mark Alan Lovewell

A state legislator’s effort to make striped bass a recreational fish only is dead for now. The state’s Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture has sent the proposal back for further study.

House Bill 796, filed by Falmouth representative Matthew C. Patrick, would have closed striped bass fishing to all but recreational fishermen. The bill was filed a year ago.

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