PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

Outdoors

October 9, 2013

Chester Moore column: Government shutdown raises serious outdoors issues

PORT ARTHUR —

 

 

 

    By the time this story hits, the government shutdown could be over.

    It is doubtful but it is a possibility as this dramatic play of political maneuvering takes place.

    Whether you agree with it or not, it certainly raises interesting questions for the hunting and fishing community.

     Right now, several hundred thousand acres of national forests are off limits to bowhunters and squirrel hunters.

    If duck season were open now, we would not be able to hunt Texas Point, McFaddin, Anahuac or Sabine National Wildlife Refuges locally along with many more areas in the state.

    In other areas, it is impacting fishing and boating.

    According to the Miami Herald, “Fishing guides were notified this week that the 281-square-mile Biscayne National Park would be closed until further notice. Most of that park is comprised of water.”

    “Everglades National Park also was closed, putting almost all of Florida Bay off limits. In an email, Park Superintendent Dan Kimball said the closure applies to fishing guides, kayakers and pleasure boaters.”

     The late Ed Holder who was the Outdoors Editor of the Port Arthur News for decades told me once we were blessed to have public waterfowl hunting but the more land that went to the federal government the more problems we could have down the line.

    This political play will probably be over soon but there is something about this I cannot shake.

    We are headed for financial disaster in America if we do not change our ways. Real problems could lie ahead and even if we avert them, we will have to cut spending at the federal level.

    They simply cannot keep doing what they are doing and expect to sustain things. Impossible.

    Let us say if it comes to the point where they decide to or are forced to cut budgets of wildlife refuges, national forests, etc. will access be cut out?

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Outdoors
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  • Chester Moore column: Bank fishing good approach on catfish

     Summer is one of the best times to seek catfish in Southeast Texas and thankfully, for local anglers without a boat, there are catfish in just about every canal, drainage ditch and bayou in the area.
      Fishing from the bank has its disadvantages but there is a way around it. This involves making the fish come to you.
      European catfish and carp anglers who typically fish exclusively from the bank use a system called “ground baiting,” which involves putting chum out with the bait. They attach a small cylindrical device above their swivel, which holds chum and dispenses it as the water rushes by. The problem is these rigs are not readily available in our marketplace.
      However, with a little ingenuity, taking a 35-millimeter film canister, punching a hole in the bottom and on the lid and then punching more holes along the side can make a similar device. This acts as a perfect chumming device and is very inexpensive.
      Not everyone has film canisters these days so the softer plastic aspirin bottles will also get the job done.
      Rig this above your swivel and weight, and then fill it with your favorite chum. Now you will not only be chumming the area you fish in but also bringing fish directly to your bait.
      Any kind of chum will work, but a mixture I have had some success with was menhaden oil (available through many mail order offshore supply catalogs) mixed with soured milo. The oil creates a huge chum slick and when it mixes with the milo, the smell is almost unbearable, which means catfish love it. The best part is that a little bit goes a long way.
     Something else to consider is using jack mackerel as bait.
     This oily fish is available in larger supermarkets in a can for less than $1, and I can attest it will bring in fish. While fishing in the Gulf of Mexico and tagging sharks for the Mote Marine Laboratory, my partners and I were able to chum in and catch nearly 40 sharks while using less than two cans of the stuff. It is oily and stinks to high heaven, so catfish should love it.
      For anglers interested in using film canisters to chum their bait, something else to consider is the use of a popping cork. Even if your bait is on the bottom, you can rig a popping cork above it and attach a baited film canister below. This will allow you to do some extra chumming and use the cork to “pop” the chum out whenever you want to release more.
     Another great tip for land bound anglers is to use braided line. In talking with several anglers who pursue brackish blues from the bank, I have learned that loosing striking fish can be a problem.
      I am not sure as to the reason but a definitely solution is using a braided line because they have no stretch. When making long casts with monofilament from the bank you have the potential for lots of line stretch when can make a poor hookset.
     Sixty yards of line might have five or six feet of stretch and that is plenty for a big blue to undo. When using a braid like Fireline, Gorilla Braid or Spiderwire you can forego these problems and greatly enhance your chances of putting some catfish in the frying pan.
     (To contact Chester Moore, e-mail him at cmooreoutdoors@gmail.com. You can hear him on the radio Fridays from 6-7 p.m. on “Moore Outdoors” on Newstalk AM 560 KLVI or online at www.klvi.com and watch him Saturdays on GETV.org on “God’s Outdoors with Chester Moore”.)
     

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  • Chester Moore column: Whistlers, snook and ballyhoo, oh my!

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  • Chester Moore column: Bank hot spots have great value

    April 12, 2014

  • Chester Moore column: Go deep, fish jigs to catch truly big bass

    April 5, 2014

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