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14 Journal Tribune - VACATIONER

SALTWATER FISHING I n Let's go fishi g!

n late May, the striped bass begin to migrate into Maine waters, beginning with the younger fish, called “schoolies” with an average weight between 1 and 8 pounds. As the summer progresses, larger bass enter the coastal rivers and estuaries and live bait and surf fishermen regularly land fish in the 25- to 40-pound range. Maine residents and nonresidents who have a valid freshwater fishing license in the state need only to check off the box on their license application to indicate that they intend to fish saltwater. Saltwater fishermen who do not have a freshwater fishing license are required to participate in a national registry. Some fishermen are exempt, including youth and those fishing from chartered boats. Online saltwater registra-

tion costs $1 for Maine citizens and nonresidents. There are exceptions – and updated information and detailed regulations are available at dmr/recreational. Daily bag and length limits apply, varying by species. Fishing regulations allow a daily limit of only one striped bass per day, 28 inches or greater. All other stripers must be released immediately. Use of a gaff to land a striped bass is illegal, as is use of more than two treble hooks or bait on treble hooks. When using bait, only a non-offset circle hook can be used, with some exceptions. Finding productive shoreline fishing spots is not difficult in southern Maine. The Saco River is by far the most productive and dozens of shoreline fishing spots are readily accessible to the public. The Saco River also has two any-water boat launching ramps, one near Cataract Dam in Saco, near the Saco Yacht Club, that accommodates about a dozen trailers, and another off Route 9 in Biddeford, the Marblehead Boat Launching Area, which accommo-

Summer 2016 dates large vessels and has parking Ellis. Small diamond jigs and for more than 70 trailers. multiple-hooked Christmas Tree Another ramp is located on rigs should help you harvest the Saco side in the parking lot at mackerel when the tides are right. Camp Ellis, but is dry at low tide. Fishermen can expect the greatest The same tackle used for chances of success during an east inland trout and bass is suitable for wind and especially after a storm striped bass fishing. Surface lures blowing from seaward. There is no such as Rebels and Rapalas work daily bag limit on mackerel. best, in silver and blue patterns. BLUEFISH Due to the fragile nature of the Some years, the bluefish drive striped bass population, fishermen the bait right up onto the beaches are urged to change hooks on all and chase swimmers out of the lures from triple hooks to singles, or simply pinch down the barbs. A water, while other years, the species scarcely show itself. Much of taut line will allow easy landing of it depends upon the temperature fish and easy release. of the water and how much bait is The most productive time for driven inshore. striped bass fishing in southern Heavier tackle is advised when Maine is two hours either side of chasing bluefish and we suggest either high or low tide, using lures. using a wire leader, (18-inch, 45By far the largest fish are taken pound) and heavy gloves for landusing live or natural baits on dark ing the fish to be released. murky days or at night. Stop by a Bluefish are very dangerous to local tackle shop for some pointers. the unsuspecting tourist/angler who might not realize this fish has MACKEREL hundreds of razor-sharp teeth and Light tackle and fly rods vise-like jaws. Imagine a piranha make the sport more enjoyable. that weighs up to 18 pounds and Shoreline fishermen might find you’ll visualize a bluefish. plenty of competition, especially • See Saltwater Fishing, Page 22 along the breakwater at Camp




ars! za for 50 Ye iz P g in k a M

12 Common St. Saco, Maine

(around the corner from Pepperell Square)


140 Elm St., Rte. 1, Biddeford • 284-4632 •

Open Daily 11:00-10:00 Outside Seating Available

TABLE SERVICE RESTAURANT Fresh Seafood • Fish Market • Raw Bar

Full Bar and Local Craft Beer 660 Main Street (Rt. 1) Saco, Maine (207) 494-1178 •

(207)282-2711 Tues-Sun: 11am to 9pm Closed Mondays Same location since 1966. Family Owned • Original Recipes

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