Youth hunting day lends effective preface to sport


November 13, 1997|By Peter Baker | Peter Baker,SUN STAFF

Saturday is youth deer hunting day in Maryland and wildlife biologists say if weather conditions are favorable participating hunters could take as many as 2,000 deer statewide.

In order to participate, hunters under 16 must have a state junior hunter license or a non-resident license and be accompanied by a licensed or exempt hunter 21 or older. Adults cannot hunt or carry a firearm, bow or other hunting device.

"This special youth deer hunting season provides an opportunity for young people to receive the undivided attention of an adult willing to pass on hunting techniques, safe gun-handling skills and the enjoyment of hunting," said DNR Secretary John R. Griffin.

"This special day promotes safe, effective and ethical hunting for Maryland's next generation of deer hunters."

Maryland started the hunting program in 1995, when 1,028 deer were taken by juniors. Last year, juniors took 1,400.

Junior hunters will be allowed to take an antlerless deer statewide this year in all counties.

Waterfowl Festival

Waterfowling enthusiasts will flock to Easton this weekend for the 27th Waterfowl Festival, a city-wide celebration of art,

auctions, seminars, demonstrations and contests.

Highlights of the festival include:

Retriever demonstrations Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. at a local pond.

Fly-fishing demonstrations Friday, Saturday and Sunday at noon and 2 p.m. at a local pond.

Antique decoy auction Saturday at 2 p.m. (preview begins at noon).

Seminars Friday, Saturday or Sunday on photography, decoy collecting and restoring and building model duck-shooting boats.

Sporting clays tournament, Saturday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

World goose-calling championship and Mason Dixon Regional Duck Calling contests, Saturday, 7 p.m.

Shooting exhibition Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m.

Shuttle bus service is available to and from 14 of the 16 activity centers in Easton.

Tickets are $15 per person for any or all days of the festival and are available at entrances to festival areas.

Fishing updates

DNR fisheries biologists say sea trout finally have schooled in several areas of the Chesapeake Bay, with the middle bay the best choice over recent days.

Capt. Claude Sakers, who runs the charter boat Cindy S out of Chesapeake Beach, reports his party jigged up a limit of 60 keeper sea trout in 30 minutes at the Summer Gooses. The minimum for sea trout is 14 inches.

Martin L. Gary of DNR Fisheries Service said sea trout are bunched under schools of breaking rockfish in depths 20 feet or greater and moving often. Good locations have been scattered from the Summer Gooses to Hacketts and from the Flag Pole to Stone Rock.

Feather jigs or silver jigs are the best lures.

In the lower bay, breaking schools of stripers with trout underneath can be found from the Middle Grounds to Cedar Point Rip.

For bay rockfish, chumming action has slacked off in the upper bay and deep trollers are doing well for larger fish along the edges at Brewerton, Craighill and Tolchester. For casters, rockfish have been breaking from Poole's Island to the Bay Bridge.

In the Middle Bay, chumming has been producing rockfish at the Diamonds, the Hill, Stone Rock and the Gooses, but trollers have been catching larger and fewer stripers. Western Shore edges from Deale to Parker's Creek are best bets, with the 70-foot depths off the Gas Docks turning up an occasional 40-incher.

In the lower bay, where water temperatures are slightly warmer, chumming continues to be the best method for rockfish, with the edge below Buoy 72 turning up "rapid" limits of 18- to 23-inchers. Trollers at the mouth of the Potomac and working along the edges of the main bay channel continue to catch occasional rockfish ranging beyond 40 pounds.

At Ocean City, bucktails and large twister tails and live-lined eel continue to produce large stripers at the Route 50 bridge, and the jetties. Tautog also at the jetties and small bluefish and sea trout and stripers from 22 to 36 inches in the surf.

Offshore, wreck fishing is very good for tautog and sea bass.

In fresh water, Liberty Reservoir continues to turn up nice stripers despite the recent rainy weather, along with large walleye and smallmouth bass.

NTC The upper Potomac River has been on and off because of rainy weather and high flows at times, but when accessible should continue to provide good smallmouth catches.

For trout anglers, the Gunpowder is at normal levels and clear and the spawn has begun in the lower trout reaches.

Pub Date: 11/13/97

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