Short Shots & Small Catches


Zebra mussels
These invasive species continue to be a serious problem. Boaters and anglers must help prevent the spread of these fingernail-sized culprits, as they can reproduce at an alarming rate and cover dock pilings, bottoms of boats and outdrives, clog pipes, etc. Be sure to clean and dry your boat and trailer entirely at the end of the day if you’ve been in waters known to have zebra mussels. By not doing so, you might easily transport them to a body of water that does not contain the menacing creatures. Make sure to drain any water left in the livewell and any other standing water in your boat.

When they hit our atmosphere, the induced friction carries a glowing trail of hot gases and small parts of the rock. A great place to view meteors is away from light pollution. The best time to see a meteor shower is from midnight to around dawn. For August 12-13, look for the Perseid meteor shower to peak in the Perseus constellation.

Living Lands & Waters
This excellent organization, with its thousands of volunteers, picks up tons of trash in and along many of our major rivers and streams. A young fellow named Chad Pregracke, who lived along the Mississippi River, near East Moline, Ill., started it all. He decided to do something about all the trash he saw floating down the river and along the banks. After more than a decade, and with the help of a tugboat, barges and many businesses and volunteers, Pregracke and company hauls away tons of trash to various recycling locations. He and his mighty crew do not limit clean up operations to only the Mississippi, but others, like the Missouri, Ohio, Potomac and Illinois rivers.

Sure I’m shore
“By the sea, by the sea, by the beautiful sea!” The lyrics to the 1914 song say that living near the seashore can be “beautiful,” but it does have its downsides for some of the living. The rise and fall of ocean tides can be tough on plants and animals. In some cases they can be submerged under water too cold or baked in sands made hot by the sun. There are three types of seashores: rock, mud and sand. The rocky shorelines are best suited for most types of plants and animals. Each type of shoreline constantly changes because of the erosion from storms and waves.

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After fishing
When you are done from a day’s fishing, please remember to deposit empty plastic bottles, pop cans, bait containers and other such items into a recycle container. Some places also have a container where you can deposit old fishing line. Whether boating or fishing, try to recycle any leftover items.

Fishing tip
August is a good time to check your fishing line for wear and tear. The elements can weaken lines over time, especially during the summer. While there are more expensive makes of line, for the average angler, one can purchase a quality line from well-known manufacturers at reasonable prices.

I don’t know about you, but anything with a tusk I pay close attention to. The narwhal is an interesting creature. The male porpoises have tusks, but only a few females have been known to ever have one. The tusk is actually a modified tooth. The “tooth” can be as long as 6 feet and can weigh up to 20 pounds. These saltwater mammals eat shrimp, squid and fish and can live up to 50 years.