2021-10-02-tsc-spt-tautog

Foxboro’s Greg Spier shows off the 5.10-pound tautog he caught at the mouth of the Sakonnet River in 22 feet of water.

Fall is a great time to take the family trout fishing. Although fall stockings are not as robust (compared to spring stockings), Massachusetts has and will be stocking 65,000 trout across Massachusetts. In North Attleboro, Whiting Pond and Falls Pond are secluded to be stocked.

Visit www.mass.gov/service-details/trout-stocking-report for an interactive map of stocked Massachusetts ponds. Just enter the town or body of water in the search bar, and you can find out if your local pond has been stocked, plans to be stocked, or there are no plans to stock it this fall.

Mass Wildlife will stock 28,000 rainbow trout 14-plus inches; 33,000 rainbow trout 12-plus inches; and 4,000 brown trout 9-plus inches long this fall.

Stocked Rhode Island ponds

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) will be stocking trout in freshwaters across Rhode Island through October 8.

Ponds stocked with rainbow and brook trout make for great fishery for children, families and anglers of all ages. Trout will be stocked at: Barbers Pond, South Kingstown; Barberville Dam, Wood River, Exeter; Bradford Landing, Pawcatuck River, Hopkinton; Breakheart Pond, Exeter; Browning Mill Pond, Exeter; Carbuncle Pond, Coventry; Carolina Trout Pond, Richmond; Check Station, Route 165, Wood River, Exeter; Cronan Landing, Wood River, Hopkinton; Dow Athletic Field & Dam, Wood River, Hope Valley; Eight Rod Farm Pond, Tiverton; Grantville, Route 95 underpass, Wood River, Richmond; Kings Factory Bridge, Pawcatuck River, Charlestown; Meadow Brook Pond, Richmond; Olney Pond, Lincoln State Park, Lincoln; Round Top Ponds, Burrillville; Shippee Sawmill Pond, Foster; Silver Spring Lake, North Kingstown; Spring Grove Pond, Glocester; Stafford Pond, Tiverton; Upper Pawtuxet, Coventry; Willet Pond, East Providence; and Woodville, Wood River, Richmond.

For information on freshwater licenses, the required trout stamp, and regulations, visit www.dem.ri.gov/programs/fish-wildlife/freshwater-fisheries/index.php. For daily trout stocking updates, call 401.789.0281 or 401.539.0019.

New partnership to benefit estuaries, fish and fishers

A partnership was foraged that will leverage university expertise and research for estuaries, habitat, fish and fishers while fostering environmental and blue economy careers.

Roger Williams University (RWU) has been named the new home of the Narragansett Bay Estuary Program (NBEP) by its steering committee, which I am proud to be a member of.

NBEP’s Steering Committee selected Roger Williams to serve as the host institution for the program, which is one of 28 in the country that are part of the Environmental Protection Agency’s National Estuaries Program. NBEP is dedicated to the protection and improvement of Narragansett Bay, Little Narragansett Bay and the Rhode Island Coastal Ponds, and their vast watersheds, rich in coastal wildlife habitat, economic opportunities and recreational assets in Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut.

Major Narragansett Bay tributaries are the Taunton, Blackstone and Pawtuxet rivers. Smaller watersheds that flow to Narragansett Bay from both Massachusetts and Rhode Island are the Ten Mile, Palmer, and Kickemuit rivers. The Saugatucket, Narrow and Wood-Pawcatuck River watershed are also in the NBEP river network.

RWU has long been a member of NBEP’s Science Advisory Committee and close partner. However, the estuary program will now reside at the university, effective October 1, significantly expanding collaboration and leveraging the expertise of NBEP scientists and scholarship of faculty and students to develop solutions for complex problems facing the people and coastal ecosystems of our region.

“Being home to the Narraganset Bay Estuary Program is one more way that Roger Williams University is creating a more resilient coastal environment and helping the Ocean State and southeastern Massachusetts lead the way in the blue economy,” said RWU president Ioannis Miaoulis.

“Both RWU and the estuary program are forward-looking. We are focused on creating a better future for the region’s environment and its people — from the region’s small headwater streams in Massachusetts to Rhode Island’s coast,” said Mike Gerel, director of NBEP.

Where’s the bite?

Tautog. Fished Saturday with Dave and Brian Hanuschak, and they caught tautog to 20 inches off Newport. The bite picked up 1.5 hours before high tide. Brian said, “The tautog bite was outstanding, more fish than we ever caught, with a lot of short fish in the mix.” Mark Jacobs of the Lady J said, “Arrived off Pt. Judith just before nine and anchored only once in 35 feet of water. Pretty steady action on hi-lo rigged crabs with 3:1 short-to-keeper ratio. Reached our boat limit of nine fish, with three over 20 inches.” Doug Wade of Watch Hill Outfitters in Westerly said, “The tautog bite is good, with customers having no trouble caching their three-fish limit in about 35 feet of water over structure. Angler Greg Spier said, “Fished outgoing tide Monday afternoon in 22 feet of water on structure at end of the Sakonnet River. Limited out with six tautog and one large sea bass in two hours. Largest tautog was 5.10 pounds.” Tom Giddings of the Tackle Box in Warwick said, “The tautog bite at Rocky Point has been very good, with customers fishing from shore getting some nice keepers. With cooler weather, things will improve as the bay water is still in the 70s.”

Striped bass, blue fish, false albacore. The bluefish bite was on this weekend in the west passage of Narragansett Bay, just north of Hope Island, at Pine Hill and along the western shore. Angler Fred DeFinis of Middletown said, “Was fishing last week at Elbow Ledge and massive schools of very large blues — all over two feet and many over 30 inches. Sleek, fat and strong. They would crash the surface, but you could also blind cast or troll them up with small lures.” East End Eddie Doherty said, “Stripers in the 30-, 40- and even 50-pound class are foraging on the abundant schools of peanut bunker throughout the Cape Cod Canal.” Tom Giddings of the Tackle Box said, “We have a lot of bait at outflows like Bucky Brook at the base of Conimicut Point, where school bass are being caught. Large bluefish are also being caught in the upper bay.” Doug Wade of Watch Hill Outfitters said, “Fishing for blues and striped bass from the shore was not good this week. Anglers are catching fish at Block Island with a cod bite at Shark’s Ledge.” Angler Brian Moore said, “The albies (false albacore) are back strong — Atlantic menhaden so thick you could walk on them. Most interesting was from Jamestown Bridge south to lighthouse full of pods of dolphins.”

Freshwater. Tom Giddings of the Tackle Box said, “As things cool a bit, anglers are using top water lures to catch largemouth bass. Places like Sand Pond and Gorton Pond are producing, with pickerel and pike being caught too.”

Dave Monti holds a captain’s master license and charter fishing license. He serves on a variety of boards and commissions and has a consulting business focusing on clean oceans, habitat preservation, conservation, renewable energy, and fisheries related issues and clients. Forward fishing news and photos to dmontifish@verison.net or visit www.noflukefishing.com.

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