Fishermen receive good news with dredging project under way at Fortescue
There's good news for all fishermen and boaters that use the Fortescue Creek for fishing and boating. Tuesday at a meeting with the engineers of the dredging project of the Fortescue Creek, the final plans for this necessary work have apparently been completed.
According to Kathy Stuart, aide of State Senator Stephen Sweeney and Assemblymen John Burzichelli and Douglas Fisher, this meeting, held in the Downe Township Municipal Building, has the Barnegat Bay Dredging Company starting the actual dredging during the first week in February, with the trailer and sign arriving at Fortescue later this week.
Meeting with the engineers were the Fortescue Captains and Boat Owners committee; captains Howard Frank and Joe Ronketty; and marina owner Bunky Higbee, along with several other captains from that organization. Also present were Downe Township Mayor Chet Riland plus committee members Harry Wilson and Larry Jordan Sr.
"The dredging should be completed by the end of February and the work will take place six days a week and 24 hours a day," Stuart said.
This is a real boost for the fishermen who use this busy port throughout the season as the mouth of the creek has shoaled up so badly that many boats can't leave or enter the creek anywhere near the low tide.
"The meeting went very smoothly and everyone seemed pleased with the results," Higbee said.
New Jersey hunters still have some days left to head out. Small game is still in through Feb. 16, and the winter bow deer season that started Jan. 1 continues through Jan. 31. In addition, the canada goose season, restricted to two zones, goes from Jan. 26 through Feb. 14. Gunning for snow geese is now in until March 10 in the south zone and until Feb. 3 in the coastal zone.
On the fishing scene, stripers are now out of season in the Delaware Bay and all inland waterways. Those fishing the ocean outside of the inlets, however, do not have a closed season.
Most of the partyboats along the lower end of the Jersey coast have called it a season, but to the north they are running for blackfish, ling and mackerel on a fairly regular basis. Keep in mind that, regardless of where you plan to go, it is a good idea to check ahead as some boats are re-arranging their schedules.
Tom Cusack, public relations officer of U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 32 based in Westville, said that a boating safely class will be held on Saturday, Jan. 17 at the Flotilla's headquarters on 900 Edgewater Ave, Westville. This course will comply with all New Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania requirements for the operation of all watercraft, including personal watercraft. The class will be held from 8 a.m-4 p.m and reservations are available by calling 456-6006.
"Start the year right -- sharpen your boating skills for a safe season on the water," Cusack said.
A couple of interesting shows are on the docket this month.
The Greater Philadelphia Sport, Travel and Outdoor Show arrives at the Fort Washington Expo Center on Wednesday, Jan. 21 and runs through Sunday, Jan. 25. This is by far the top outdoors show in the area and features exhibitors of fishing tackle, hunting gear and many camps and fishing areas throughout the country.
Many well known hunting and fishing experts will also be on hand in a series of seminars for both salt and freshwater anglers. This is one of the shows where hunting and fishing manufacturers are on hand to show their latest innovations. Show hours are Wednesday-Friday, noon-9:30 p.m; Saturday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m; and Sunday, 10 a.m-6 p.m. Parking is free.
Fly fishermen will be able to see some of the best tyers and casters in the country at the Fly Fishing Show held at the Garden State Exhibit Center in Somerset from Jan. 23 to Jan. 25. There will be continuous instructional fly-tying seminars plus over 300 exhibition booths and how to flyfish and where to go programs. Show hours are Friday, 10:30 a.m-6:30 p.m; Saturday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.; and Sunday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Call 800-420-7582 for more details.
The Annual SaltWater Sportsman National Seminar Series will be held on Saturday, Jan. 24 at Monmouth University. It is a one-day, 6-hour seminar hosted by George Poveromo, SaltWater Sportsman editor and TV host that features several top-notch saltwater anglers. The cost is $45 and includes an info-packed 122-page course textbook plus a one-year subscription to the SaltWater Sportsman Magazine. Register by calling 1-800-448-7360.