There are 17 scheduled fishing reefs to be built in the
Chesapeake Bay area. Two are to be built in the Choptank
River. Many organizations are involved in creating these
reefs, including the Oyster Recovery Program, Maryland
Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Maryland Environmental
Services, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Natural Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration and MSSA.
Waters has been working the 200 members of the
Dorchester County Chapter of the MSSA involved with the reef
project. Since a recent demonstration of reef-ball
construction, the Dorchester group has been pouring and making
concrete reef balls. The reef balls weigh between 130 and 140
pounds. It takes about three to four days for the cement to
cure before it can be moved. Mid-Shore Electronics has
provided a place for the reef balls to be constructed and
stored. Martin Hardy of Composite Yacht LLC, upon learning of
this project, wanted to get involved and is building molds to
donate to Dorchester MSSA so it can keep making reef balls
after the two present molds are returned to the Perry Hall
When the reef balls are ready to be placed in the
water, the DNR embeds the balls with oyster spat. The balls
are then lifted by a crane and put in place on a fishing reef
by scuba divers. The reef balls will provide a habitat for
oysters, crabs, fish and grasses as a natural coral reef. Two
reefs are presently being built and the MSSA has been a major
contributor. One is the Memorial Stadium reef which covers
eight acres at Gales Shoal and the other is the Taylor's
Island reef off Taylor's Island and south of C&P
Through the efforts of the MSSA, the largest
recreational fishermen's organization in Maryland, the
Chesapeake Bay and Choptank River will have new aquaculture
structures and resources to enjoy for years to come. If you
want to get involved with this project, come to the next
chapter meeting on Thursday, Aug. 21, at 7:30 p.m. at
Composite Yacht on the Talbot County side of the Fred Malkus
Bridge in a small strip mall there on the hillside.
The guest speaker is Martin Hardy of Composite Yacht.
Martin will explain how boats are built and new technology in
boat building. Martin, upon learning about the reef ball
project, has promised to make a couple of molds so the chapter
can produce reef balls all year long.
Call Clint Waters at 410-376-3563 or Pete Vigneri at
410-901-9901 for more information.
Chuck Prahl at Tommy's Sporting Goods in Cambridge says
that keeper stripers are starting to show up in the usual
places in the Choptank River. He was not too specific about
the exact locations, but he and Tommy Hooper caught eight
keepers one recent morning. They released most of the fish to
fight another day. Deep jigging and tossing Chucktail
bucktails turned the trick.
Kudos, too, to Norm Haddaway, who assembled the crew
that caught all the fish for the recent CCA MD Mid-Shore
Chapter picnic on Knapp's Narrows. Norm said he had to run
down the Bay a ways to find fish and fished much of the
The Bay Hundred Ducks Unlimited Chapter announced its
annual Sponsor Event will be held at Dr. Stan and Babs
Minken's Lostock Farm in Bozman on Saturday, Sept. 6.
Registration for the dove hunt will be from 11 a.m.
to 12:30 p.m. on the 6th. The hunter's meeting will be at
12:30 p.m., with a dove shoot from 1-5 p.m.
Registration for non-hunters is from 4:30-5:30 p.m.,
overlapping happy hour at 5 p.m. Dinner is next for those
registered, followed by silent and live auctions.
For information, call Ed Henry at: 410-745-5457.
Jim Walker and I cooperated in pulling our boats
recently. He helps me get my boat on its trailer and vice
versa. Jim sometimes operates on the verge of calamity. First,
the cable on his power winch got itself behind the cable spool
and wedged itself in. It took a lot of coaxing with various
tools to get it freed up.
Then, we picked up my boat. Luckily, no problems,
since I wasn't prepared for any with spare tires, etc. At
home, I power-washed the hull, and will give it a coat of
bottom paint when the rain stops. Ho-ho.
Jim drove his boat to the ramp, and I drove his truck
and trailer. The boat came up on the trailer nicely, and I
gunned the truck up the ramp, luckily noticing the driver's
side trailer tire was flat. I thought it came up slowly, like
something was holding us back.
"No problem," Jim said with great confidence as I
ruminated about how I'd get back home for my
electrically-powered air compressor, since no power is
available at the launch ramp. Jim dove into the back of his
pickup and brought out a small 12-volt air compressor with a
gauge and tire valve attachment. He hooked the hose fitting to
the tire valve and plugged the power cord into the boat's
cigar lighter. "Glad I installed that lighter outlet," he
When the tire again held air, he pulled the truck and
boat out of the way so another boater could launch. "Boy," the
launcher said, "you really came prepared!" Jim allowed as how
he wasn't worried - he also had a spare trailer tire.
"Yeah," I told the boat launcher, "Just don't ask him
about fish hooks!" (That's a long story about hospital
emergency room folks seeing him frequently enough to call Jim
by his first name).
Author's Note: Keith Walters' 334-page book, "Chesapeake
Stripers" details the Golden Age of rockfishing in Chesapeake
Bay. Now in its seventh printing, the 334-page 6x9 softcover
$19.95 book details tips tackle, times, tides, techniques, and
tall tales illustrated with 100s of photos and drawings of
tackle and rigs. It is available from Washington Book
Distributors web site at www.washingtonbk.com or you can call
them with a credit card order at 1-800-699-9113 during regular