World of Saltwater Fishing (and abuse) [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: World of Saltwater Fishing (and abuse)

01-15-2001, 09:17 AM
This morning from 6:30-7:00 was a show on ESPN2 called "World of Saltwater Fishing". This episode was about "Chunking for Striped Bass". I know, the title alone should give you an idea of what to expect, but please allow me to vent.

The fishing was being done around the Hudson Canyon, a prime breeding area for Striped Bass in the New York area (and New England no doubt). They were using bunker chunks on fairly heavy duty equipment (good) but you think they'd at least MENTION circle hooks, let alone use them? Several of the releases were angering to watch, esp. since they were using a Boga grip (which would imply to most of us here that they are experienced with C&R). Each time they were using it simply to see how much the fish weighed and one time you could see the lip tearing where the Boga was engaged (fished weighed 30 pounds!) presumably because he lifted the fish out of the water with just the grip. Is this appropriate? I've never used one - I usually release them while still in the water since they're never BIG ENOUGH for me to want to see ;-(. The saddest part is he was holding it high up in the air and talking about the area they were fishing and doing that stupid "Now that's a beutiful fish - Yes sirree, a beauty - look at those lines and that shimmering... sure is pretty." thing while the poor thing was flapping it's gills. Probably had it out 30 seconds more than necessary.

Also, one fish they cut the hook on (highly reccomending this as he was doing it - but I think his point went far over the heads of anyone drooling over this episode). Another, he "popped" the hook out (just yanked real quick an hard saying it was "barely in the skin".

Am I being to sensitive? Is a letter in order?

steve moore
01-15-2001, 04:20 PM
I didn't see the show, so I can't comment on it specifically. I do, however, know George Poveromo (host and creator of the show in question) personally and can tell you that he is a very good angler and is as concerned for our resources as the rest of us.

I am sure you will get a response from George if you e-mail your concerns to him directly. He can be reached at

steve moore
01-15-2001, 05:16 PM
You know, I re-read your original post and can't really see what you are complaining about? Is it that they were fishing with chunks? From the sounds of it, it appears they did a good job of hooking most of the fish in lips, making circle hooks unnecessary. Holding the fish too high? what difference does it make if the fish is held at chest height or knee height? Being upset about keeping a fish out of the water for 30 seconds too long is understandable, but it is a TV show, and how many people would watch it if the fish is never shown? Have you ever seent he freshwater guys? Some of those guys keep the fish out of the water long enough to beome permanent crew memebrs! Use of a boga grip can be a debatable subject, but my experiences with them have all been positive. If it ripped the lip of a fish, that is bad, but I'm sure it was an accident.

I think you may be suffering from a little cabin fever (who isn't?) and may be a little too sensitive. It sounds like you probably shouldn' watch any more fishing shows until the fish up here.

BTW: Hudson Canyon is about 60 miles out and closer to the Chesapeake Bay. I don't think they were fishing in the Canyons for bass.

01-16-2001, 10:15 AM
[I made an obvious mistake, I typed Hudson Canyon when I meant Hudson River. I mentioned this only as a trivia item, not to say they shouldn't be fishing that area. Thank you for pointing that out.]

Mr. Moore,

You seem (from your posting solely) to be defensive about what I wrote, but you admit not having seen the show. I found your first reply motivated me to start to put together an email to Mr. Poveromo to discuss how some things on the show might have been taken - your second reply just emphasized the defensiveness.

I can understand if you think my posting cast a negative shadow on the show, but that doesn't justify some of your response to me. I'd like to point out that not once did I say anything personally negative about the show's hosts. I'd also like to point out that I was up front about not having used a Boga and also about some of the hook removal practices shown on the show (i.e. "popping the hook out"). My impression (from watching fly fisherman use the Boga) was that it's used in conjunction with handling the fish and not purely as a weighing device. Am I mistaken here?

I'm curious how you are drawing the conclusion that they did a "pretty good job" of lip hooking when in fact I mention that I didn't see one of them hooked in the lip?

I suggest you watch the show if you want to discuss this further.

steve moore
01-16-2001, 12:15 PM
Hey, you asked if you were being too (sic) sensitive, and I merely stated my opinion that maybe you were. If you didn't want to hear it, why ask?

I did see the show as it repeated yesterday and I taped it and watched it last night. It will be on again tomorrow if anyone is interested in giving their opinions.

If it is still bothering you, send that e-mail to George.

Nathan Smith
01-16-2001, 12:17 PM
Hey before this gets too heated everyone cool it. I know both of you care a lot about the fish you catch. i think there is a greater point that we could work together on. I didn't see the specific show. However in general I have noticed that many shows are not demonstrating good fish handling. I know it is TV but They often keep fish out of the water too long and are very ruff on the fish. The dangerous part of this is many fishermen look up to these tv guys or learn from them. They are missing a opportunity to teach. I seldom here them talk about conservation, which I think they should do everytime.
So often I see people killing fish through bad handling or keeping shorts. I read articles about rude fishermen. I think the problem is education. New fishermen should be taught not just how to fish but how to love the sport and the resources they use. TV shows are a great way to do this. I believe in general people will do the right think if they know what the right thing is. here is an idea. What about an email campaine to all the major TV shows asking them to do more on conservation and to exibit better fish handling skills. Is anyone else interested in doing something like this? The other thing I though about doing is to draft a letter about the importance of good fish handling. Show them some of the numbers that I have seen, like if you keep a fish out of the water for X seconds it has X chance of survival. Put it on our web site and also see if the local guides will hand them out to there new students. Any thoughts.

steve moore
01-16-2001, 12:28 PM
Nathan: That is a great idea! I agree that there is not enough conservation talk on these shows and that they could beome a very useful tool for providing that information.

01-16-2001, 12:34 PM
I saw the show and came to the same initial conclusion as Tinman. Then decided I was indeed suffering from a bit of the nasties and had been sensitiezed to the issue from reading recent threads, here and elsewhere. While I didn't feel there was any issue with the handling of fish, the lack of comment on technique is what stood out to me. I think Nate's comments hit the nail on the head.

Fred A.

Nathan Smith
01-16-2001, 12:50 PM
I really think this would be a good thing . Juro could I ask a favor. Could we put up a section for this I will work on collecting the contact information of the shows. I will post them on the message board and everyone can add to the list if they think a show is left off. I will start a new thread for this tomorrow.

01-16-2001, 01:03 PM
Absolutely! Great cause - I'll give it high priority. I'll be looking for the post to help me think through what the page should look like. I'll do some reading tonight as well.

best regards to all,

01-16-2001, 07:31 PM
Agreed. Thanks Nathan for taking the initiative on this!

[Just wanted to mention that Steve and I aren't in a feud - everything's cool. In the future, I'll take the time make my posts have better clarity and format.]