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    • eel man

      Surfcaster's 2016 Reboot!   09/21/2016

      Howdy, folks. I know this is way overdue, and the damage is probably already done, but after weeks of working with the database I've finally wiped out all of the spam posts and topics. This was no easy task, considering there were three-quarters of a million bogus posts and nearly three hundred thousand bogus topics. Once a hacker/spammer network finds a vulnerability, they send out automated programs that basically destroy a database like this. Over the past couple weeks I've migrated all of the good data into a more current, secure platform with the hopes that we can somehow rebuild. New member registration is tightened way up, and a third-party spam monitoring service is in place. I've also invested in an awesome new gallery extension,  allowing members to create, manage, and share image galleries. Please give it a try, and let me know if there are any issues. I'm still testing and working out the bugs. Surfcaster's forums were once an amazing resource for everyone to enjoy, and we're hoping it can once again build back up. The main site (non-forums) is pretty banged up, but once the forums are complete my next task is to re-invent that as well. Spread the word. Hope to see a lot of you back! Cheers, Andrew

TOP ROD

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About TOP ROD

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    Schoolie

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  • Location
    MA
  • Interests
    Surf Fishing but any kind of fishing is fine
  1. Mysterious fish raises great white worries By Stephen Tait , Staff Writer Daily News of Newburyport — NEWBURYPORT - Chris Santarelli thinks he knows why the bluefish weren't biting yesterday. Fishing about a mile outside the mouth of Merrimack River - near the large red buoy designated MR - Santarelli said he saw the biggest fish in his three decades of fishing, a marine creature he said reminded him of the movie "Jaws." "It was the biggest thing I've ever seen," he said. "It was as big as my boat. I am almost sure it was a great white. "There is ton of bluefish around, and I'm sure that is why it is around. It was right where we've been catching blue fish for days, and there were none there." Santarelli, of Rowley, said the shark was at least 15 feet long and "the diameter of a 50-gallon drum." When it swam past the boat, "I saw the fin; it was 2 feet out of the water," he said. He said the shark was dark on top and light-colored underneath. "I fish almost every other day, and I've never seen anything like this," he said. "It was like right out of 'Jaws,' it was that big. It was so big, I just wanted to get out of there. "This thing was humongous. It looked just like the one hanging at Hudson's (marine shop in Salisbury)." The local report comes after officials on Cape Cod issued shark warnings in recent days following the discovery of two seal carcasses that washed up on the beaches there, likely the result of great white shark attacks. Tony LaCasse, of the New England Aquarium, said the report of a shark near the Merrimack may be a direct result of the Cape Cod situation. He said in 2004 when Time Magazine declared it the "Summer of the Shark," all the harmless sharks in the region became man-eaters. But LaCasse said it is not fair to discount Santarelli's account. He said there are great whites in the north Atlantic, though few, and other large sharks, such as blue sharks, makos and threshers. He also said there are seals at the mouth of the river, and "the blues would definitely be a very good reason for a shark to be there." At the same time, though, the chances a great white shark was feeding in the area is unlikely, he said. "There are few great whites in the North Atlantic," he said. "It is unusual to have a great white sighting in New England and even more unusual to have it north of Cape Cod." Greg Skomal, the state's shark biologist, said it was likely a basking shark - a harmless shark that is sometimes confused with great whites. But, he said, "I'm not going to call him a liar." "It's possible it was a basking shark or a white shark," he said. "Great white sharks are on the mind right now, though." The basking shark, the second-largest shark species, has no teeth. While basking sharks can grow to be more than 20 feet long, they eat plankton, not swimmers. Salisbury Harbormaster Ray Pike said he got a call about the shark from the Salisbury police, who also called the U.S. Coast Guard and the state reservation in Salisbury. Pike said he called some of the marinas just to make sure they knew someone had reported the sighting. "They used the term great white," Pike said of the police. "The good news is, it is not a swimming area at the mouth of the river." Newburyport Harbormaster Ralph Steele, who said he did not hear of any reports yesterday, said it was likely a sun fish, another large fish that is harmless. "Most of the time it is a sun fish, and people think it is a big shark," he said. "It couldn't even eat your finger," he said. "They come in the warmer waters, have a good time and scare everybody." But Santarelli said he knows what he saw. About a quarter-mile out to sea with his father, Mario, he said they both saw something move in the water. At first they figured it was a seal or some other animal but looked to see a large shark just 20 feet or so from the boat. He said the fish came close to the boat, slowed and looked at the boat. Santarelli said it swam around in the area, letting its large, triangular fin come up out of the water occasionally and then dipping back below the surface. "It was very graceful," he said. "They have great whites down in the Cape," he said. "And we have one up here now, too." Skomal, the biologist, said it is possible that a shark off Cape Cod could swim to Newburyport, and make quick time of it. "These animals are capable of long-distance movements in short periods of time," he said. Whether or not this shark is the same one? "Hypothetically, it is possible but not likely," he said. For more than 30 years, Santarelli said he's fished the area up and down the coast and around Plum Island. He said he knows fish, he knows sharks and he knows the ocean. And, he said, he knows what he saw yesterday off the coast of Plum Island was a shark. "I know exactly what a sun fish looks like, and it was not a sun fish," he said. "This was a shark, and a big one. "Believe me. I know what I'm talking about."
  2. article in the metro west newspaper concerning river herring - ck it out
  3. Smokey, Over the years I've seen very few Massachusetts Environmental Police at the Merrimac and especially so, further down at the mouth of the river and jetty. The jetty seems to attract more people who catch and keep the schoolies. Time after time when I've been there I've seen them throw the schoolies into either their backpacks and or plastic bags that have been re cycled from the local supermarkets. So, why these guys keep the schoolies is a mystery to me. These guys can't brag about the big fish they caught. I can't figure out why the Massachusetts Environmental Police never show up - maybe they don't want to walk that far? However I’ve seen the same scenario played out on the river up near the rte 1 bridge. Not much walking to access the river here. On the other hand, down on PI I see the Feds out on patrol on the beach all the time, both day and night. Oh sure you see the Massachusetts Environmental Police at the boat ramps but come on let get serious. I guess the old expression "that they can't enforce the rules already in place" applies here to our Environmental Police. Why add a new permit fee (Salt Water License)? Would the money go to helping the striped bass? Maybe for awhile it might until some budget cuts were needed then the funds collected would be diverted. So many things noticed just to irritate those of us who choose who obey the rules and regulations. Well that my two cents for whatever it's worth.
  4. I was told this morning that "basically the feds are saying that if the states are not going to establish a license for a fee, then the Feds will take advantage of it through a Federal Recreational Fishing Permit". FYI: New Hampshire had a hearing this the other night, it's probably what generated the newpaper report.
  5. I am not in favor of it. The money they get from any new saltwater licenses will most likely never go back to the fishing industry and would probably end up in some other dept. On the positive side - if implemented it might cut down on all the googans keeping the undersized fish.
  6. I like Hab's 'Night & Gale' and Salty's Needlefish
  7. I agree about the summer time crowds, traffic and prices. I'd suggest early spring and late summer, before and after school vacations.
  8. A very Merry Christmas to all. FYI - Unbelieveable but still fishing at the canal nothing big but schoolies are still at the east end
  9. The way the weather sounds for this coming Sunday maybe a few will not be tying but instead trying for a few hold over winter stripers.