The Fishermen

Island waters are filled with bluefish, especially now. Striped bass fishing is sketchy and the bonito are only now arriving, but for Vineyard and Nantucket commercial and recreational anglers, there is one certainty: the bluefish are here.

Capt. Tom Mleczko of Nantucket reports bluefishing is good this summer for him, as good as it was last year. He fishes in a 29-foot Hawk called Priscilla J.

Town Shellfisherman Avoids Suspension of Scallop License

Edgartown selectmen voted not to suspend the commercial scalloping license of fisherman Richard Morris Monday, going against the recommendation of the shellfish committee at a heated public hearing.

Activist Urges Island Fishermen to Regain Control of Fisheries

A former commissioner of marine resources in the state of Maine recently told a gathering of Island fishermen that there is plenty they can do to regain control of the troubled fisheries in Massachusetts.

Robin Alden spoke at the Chilmark Public Library earlier this month about how fishermen need to come together on the local level and step forward as a concerned group.

“Even in a small community like this, I think it can work,” she said, though she added: “You are not going to win overnight.”

The Fishermen

By MARK ALAN LOVEWELL

Memorial Day weekend on the waterfront comes early this year and the fish seem to know it. Bluefish, striped bass and all the right fish already are here and even more fish are arriving.

The prevailing word on the waterfront is that the best is yet to come. The seasonal migration below the surface that began well over a month ago is still underway.

The Fishermen

By MARK ALAN LOVEWELL

The Island fishing season arrives in June. There are enthusiasts who will go out in April or May and catch some nice fish, but they are only preparing for what happens in June.

Now the striped bass and bluefish are here, along with fishing tournaments.

Four Vineyard fishing tournaments are scheduled this month and two of them are this weekend. They are the Pink Squid Yacht Club tournament and the Martha’s Vineyard Rod and Gun Club’s catch and release tournament.

The Fishermen

By MARK ALAN LOVEWELL

The 27th annual John Havlicek Celebrity Fishing Tournament made a lot of money for the Genesis Fund last weekend, and not all the draw was the celebrities who attended. Much of it had to do with good fishing, and that success was tied to Vineyard and Nantucket fishermen.

With the final numbers still being worked out, the long weekend event on the Vineyard grossed at least $340,000, slightly more than last year. The gathering included a live and silent auction at the Harbor View Hotel in Edgartown.

The Fishermen

By MARK ALAN LOVEWELL

Recreational anglers are seeing the best fishing for early summer. Water temperatures remain on the cool side, so stripers and bluefish are still within reach for shoreside angling. Doug Asselin at Dick’s Bait and Tackle Shop, a store in Oak Bluffs, said bluefish were caught during the day at the beach at Right Fork in Katama. This creates a little bit of a challenge, since the swimming season has started.

Fuel Prices Hit Watermen Hard

The worldwide oil price crisis is hitting Island commercial fishermen hard. Already struggling with more restrictive regulations and declining landings, Vineyard small-boat fishermen now face fuel prices that have doubled in a year.

Capt. Wayne Iacono of Chilmark is a commercial lobsterman who fishes out of Menemsha. With the decline in lobsters in Vineyard waters, he already had taken a second job as a plumber.

The Fishermen

By MARK ALAN LOVEWELL

The ninth annual fluke derby run by the Veterans of Foreign War Post in Oak Bluffs 9261 may be Saturday, July 12 and Sunday, July 13, just over a week away, but anglers are already out there harvesting the fish. July is fluke season for most anglers.

While there has been plenty of attention in the last month on striped bass and bluefish swimming around the Island, the fluke (summer flounder) fishery is alive and well in Menemsha and in parts east and west.

The Fishermen

By MARK ALAN LOVEWELL

Black sea bass is one of the Vineyard’s best-kept secrets when it comes to good eating. The fish can’t be bought in the store, but if you know a sport boat fisherman, there is a chance you can get it if you politely ask.

Black sea bass are swimming around the Vineyard in fair abundance.

This weekend, the Oak Bluffs Veterans of Foreign War Post 9261 is hosting its ninth annual fluke tournament. The post is adding a small form of recognition to the black sea bass and to the anglers who catch big ones.

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