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FRIDAY, DECEMBER 14, 2018

CONSERVATION
Over 80 volunteers came out to help make Manteo and its waterways shine including Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Manteo Rotarians, Mount Olivet Youth Group, Roanoke Island Garden Club and some of the Master Gardeners from Elizabethan Gardens.
To ensure the study’s success, LDWF needs a wider range of participation from commercial shrimpers throughout each major basin and greater variation in the types of gear being used.
ENFORCEMENT
A Greene County man’s court sentencings in December in Barton and Lawrence Counties are the most recent events in what is one of Missouri’s largest conservation cases involving the illegal taking of game and fish.

ENVIRONMENT
A Unified Command consisting of the Coast Guard, Louisiana Oil Spill Coordinator’s Office and Hilcorp Energy continues to respond to a well that discharged a mixture of crude oil, gas, and water near Port Sulphur, Louisiana, Wednesday.
EVENTS
Meet pro angler Bro Brosdahl, get the latest ice fishing tips and check out Frabill's new gear at Fleet Farm Dec. 17 from 4 to 7 p.m. in Germantown.
Meet Bro and get the latest on Frabill gear at Bass Pro Shops in Gumee from 4 to 7 p.m. on Dec. 16.

FISHERIES
The successful rebuilding of several West Coast groundfish stocks that declined precipitously nearly three decades ago is now opening the way for increasing recreational and commercial fishing opportunities for many of the West Coast’s most delicious and nutritious fish species.
The recreational harvest was estimated at 397 million fish weighing 447 million pounds. Of note in 2017--the average American ate 16.0 pounds of fish and shellfish, up a significant 1.1 pounds from the year before.
Commercial and recreational saltwater fishing in the United States generated more than $212 billion in sales and contributed $100 billion to the country’s gross domestic product, according to Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross.

HONORS & AWARDS
Doug Darr, Aquatic Education Coordinator for the Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF), was recently awarded the Steve Campbell Outstanding Aquatic Educator of the Year Award during the Aquatic Resources Education Association’s (AREA) biennial conference in Lake Tahoe, Calif.
INDUSTRY
They were already the best lodges to be found on either of Mexico’s premier destinations. Now Anglers Inn has raised the bar with improvements and expansions at the outfitter’s lodges at Lakes El Salto and Picachos.
With a lightweight, smooth action and minimal snagging design, this new pocket knife is comfortable to carry all-day.
JL Marine Systems Inc., inventor of the Power-Pole shallow water anchoring system, is pleased to announce that the company has partnered with Land ‘N’ Sea Distributing as its exclusive Canadian distributor.
John Van Vleet was named associate editor of Fly Fusion Magazine and producer with the International Fly Fishing Film Festival (IF4), announced Chris Bird, Executive Producer of Bird Marketing Group.
INVASIVE SPECIES
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) voted to continue moving forward with proposed rules that would help protect the state from a variety of invasive species including birds, reptiles and mammals.
LEGISLATION
After weeks of discussion between U.S. House and Senate conferees, the 2018 Farm Bill Conference Report has officially passed Congress, and includes a robust Conservation Title that aligns with the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation (CSF) priorities.
RADIO
Host Rob Keck will broadcast the entire show live from the home of TEXTRON OFF ROAD in Augusta, Georgia, manufacturer of side-by-sides, UTVs and ATVs and more.
SHOWS
The2019 Progressive® Insurance Atlanta Boat Show returns Jan. 10-13, 2019, bringing more than 20,000 boating enthusiasts to downtown Atlanta to see the biggest and best in boating for four, nautical-themed days.
STATES
At its December meeting in St. Augustine, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) elected Robert A. Spottswood, of Key West, to serve as chairman and Michael W. Sole, of Tequesta, to serve as vice chairman.
In winter we watch nearly 20,000 gray whales from mid-December through mid-January as they travel south to the warm lagoons of Baja Mexico.
North Shore anglers and others interested in learning about the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources strategies for managing Finland area lakes are invited to review and comment on management plans scheduled for review this winter.
The DNR is now accepting pre-application questionnaires for grant funding that helps locally-led groups develop water quality improvement efforts in Iowa communities.
TELEVISION
This weekend on Discovery Channel, you’re not going to want to miss new programming from Discovering Water, The Given Right, Anger’s Journal TV and more
TOP STORY
While NMMA is encouraged by some recent updates in the trade war, many of the challenges that plagued marine manufacturers for the better part of this year will carry over into 2019.
WORKSHOPS
The workshop, offered through the DNR’s Becoming an Outdoors-Woman program, is scheduled for the weekend of Jan. 25-27.

Always wear a life jacket when afloat.

By Bruce Ingram
Photos by Bruce Ingram

The most dangerous incident of my paddling career occurred on the James River when a friend and I overturned in his canoe. Earlier, my water temperature gauge had registered 54 degrees and the air temperature 65 degrees. When I fell in, I felt as if a sledge hammer had struck my chest, and my buddy and I struggled to swim to shore – losing most of our gear.

That day, the air and water temperature combined measured 119 degrees – within the danger zone says Stacey Brown, boating safety program manager for the DGIF. She adds that although many variables exist concerning when the risk of hypothermia becomes more acute, generally if the air and water temperatures together are 120 degrees or below, wet suits are recommended for paddlers. Another major factor, continues Brown, has to do with the amount of time someone is subject to the cold water and air temperatures.

Especially in cold water conditions, like these two anglers on the New River, please consider going floating and/or fishing with a buddy.

Obviously, one of the most basic acts any paddler can accomplish is to always wear a life jacket. But in my many decades of floating and wade fishing Virginia’s rivers and streams, I would wager that most paddlers I have observed – whatever the season from the dog days of summer to the frigid waters of winter – were not wearing life jackets. Many, in fact, did not even have them in their craft or were just using them as seat cushions.

“Wearing a life jacket is the best way to ensure your trip doesn’t end in tragedy,” emphasizes Brown. “It would be nice that people think of their life jackets as gear, just like with other sports, rather than required equipment.”

Brown offers the following additional recommendations.

  • Carry your whistle or other sound producing device in case you do need to summon help.
  • Be proficient in re-boarding your canoe, kayak, raft or other craft – especially if you are in a lake or larger river where getting to the shore to re-board would be difficult.  If you end up in the cold water – you start to loss dexterity of movement fairly quickly.
  • Paddle with a buddy – not only for more fun – but just in case of emergency.
  • Evenly pack your boat to have an even keel (so to speak) – and help mitigate the chances of overturning.
  • Let someone on dry land know where you are going and when you plan to return – in other words, share your float plan.
  • Check the weather before and during the trip. During the excursion, be aware of changing or increasing winds and/or cloud build up.
  • Be honest about your skills – know your limitations. For example, planning a long trip of many miles or hours during unfavorable water temperatures or forecasts could be risky for many floaters.

In the angling realm, there’s nothing I would rather do than float and fish the Old Dominion’s many outstanding rivers, but I know that my continuing to enjoy this pastime involves making wise decisions. Please consider making these safety tips part of your game plan.

FISHING CALENDAR
December 15
Suncoast Fly Fishers Casting Clinic at Picnic Island Park

(Tampa) must be a member but new members are welcome. Lunch provided; www.suncoastflyfishers.com.

December 21
Final Wire for 2018

We resume our normal schedule after the New Year’s holiday

January 4-6
Fly Fishing Show

Denver Mart, 451 E. 58 th Ave., Denver, Colo.; www.flyfishingshow.com

February 2-10
Great American Outdoor Show

The annual Great American Outdoor Show will be held at the PA Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg, PA.

 
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