The Last Lobsterman of Cuttyhunk
Mark Alan Lovewell

Menhaden were back in Cuttyhunk harbor this summer, and that was good news to Capt. Bruce Borges. Pogies, as they are called, make great bait for catching striped bass. As a lobsterman, Captain Borges, 74, hasn’t seen much good news along the waterfront in recent years. There are fish out there but it’s a different story for lobsters, and that has made this summer especially challenging for Mr. Borges, who calls himself the last lobsterman on Cuttyhunk.

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No Rod, No Reel, No Problem
Mark Alan Lovewell

An Aquinnah resident caught two bluefish by hand at the end of the day last Saturday. Wilde Whitcomb, 31, was out walking with his sister, Gabrielle Whitcombe, in front of Zacks Cliffs at about 6 p.m., when they noticed a bluefish swimming in the surf.

Mr. Whitcomb stepped into the water and grabbed the fish by the tail. They continued to walk along the beach and found another. Mr. Whitcomb grabbed that, too.

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Fishing’s Impact on Oceans Comes Into Sharp Focus With Photographer
Mark Alan Lovewell

The world’s oceans need protection, a globe-traveling National Geographic underwater photographer told a large audience at the Tabernacle last Saturday.

After 35 years of photographing the oceans, Brian Skerry, 49, said he is troubled by growing evidence of degradation of habitat and the waste and loss of sea life. “I think the oceans are dying a death of a thousand cuts,” he said.

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If Life Gives You No Lobsters, Make Oysters the Aquaculture Way
Mark Alan Lovewell

M. Emmett Carroll Jr. has seen change on the waterfront, from the days when lobsters were bountiful to now when they seem scarce. He has kept his faith by dancing with new ideas, shifting his attention to raising oysters. He runs Menemsha Oysters, pretty much a one-man aquaculture operation which involves raising and harvesting some of the Island’s tastiest oysters.

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The Herring Are Coming! Spring Bait Fishery Rebounds
Mark Alan Lovewell

Herring are back and the numbers are stronger compared with a year ago. Also known as alewives, herring are one of the true coastal signs of spring and considered essential bait fish in the food chain.

While the reports of numbers this spring are improved over last year, they are at best cautiously optimistic. A state moratorium prohibiting the catching of herring has been in place since 2005. The ban was a response to a dramatic drop in the numbers of fish returning in the spring of 2004 and before. Recovery has been slow, if at all, until this spring.

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Where Have All the Squid Gone?
Mark Alan Lovewell

Longfin inshore squid ( loligo pealeii ) may not be on the menu, but it is an important local seafood that has grown scarce.

Recreational and commercial fishermen are perplexed, wondering how a once profitable and abundant bait seems to have disappeared. Tackle shop owners can’t find enough of it. The draggers working in Nantucket Sound have had slim pickings.

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Havlicek Celebrity Fishing Tournament Set to Turn 30

The John Havlicek Celebrity Fishing Tournament, a people-spotting fishing and golf tournament that raises money for the Genesis Fund, celebrates its 30th anniversary this week.

The contest has raised $2 million for the nonprofit organization committed to helping children with birth defects, genetic disorders and intellectual disabilities and their families.

The event was started by Boston Celtic legend John Havlicek and his wife, Beth.

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New Fishing Tournament Aims to Benefit Children
Mark Alan Lovewell

Bass and Blues for Boys and Girls is a new fishing contest to benefit Island children. Fishing starts early tomorrow morning and continues until 3 p.m. when there will be an awards ceremony and cookout. The striped bass and bluefish contest benefits the Martha’s Vineyard Boys’ and Girls’ Club.

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Last Free Weekend, Then Pay for Fishing
Mark Alan Lovewell

Freshwater and saltwater fishing is free this weekend for those who have not yet registered for a Massachusetts fishing license. It is a chance for all adult anglers to get their lines wet without having to buy a fishing license. But on Monday, most adults are required to have a state license.

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Donald Lynch Lands Rare Weakfish

A rare weakfish was caught last Saturday night by a local angler. Donald Lynch, 43, of Vineyard Haven, said he was entirely surprised by the catch. The fish was caught from the beach at the Lagoon Pond drawbridge. “On the very first cast I hooked up a fish and when I landed it, I discovered it was a 24-and-a-half-inch, three-plus pound weakfish,” Mr. Lynch said.

He said the last time he caught a weakfish was 25 years ago.

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