CALIFORNIA'S ONLY SPORTSMAN'S NEWS SINCE 1953


Jonathan Roldan's Blog

Memo to self: No bad days allowed
The day had not started well. I woke up grumpy. I was doing my utmost to put on my best “happy face” for the fishing clients this morning, but it was taking an effort. Just one of those days we all have when one would be best-served to just stay in bed!

I already knew it was going to be a long day. We had problems at our restaurant with the plumbing, and several of our employees were out sick. A vehicle was broken down and required a part they just don’t make in Mexico and there was a chance of rain in the forecast too. Sheeesh. And it was only 5 a.m. in the morning!


Worse of all, the fishing had been bad. And I had grumpy fishermen. More than grumpy actually. Rude and pissed off. The bad fishing had snowballed into complaints now about the service, the captains, the hotel, the food.


Funny how that happens. Catch fish and none of that matters. Don’t catch fish and the world is a terrible place. I could feel that target growing on my back. Anyone who has been a guide or outfitter knows what that feels like. As if we could control the wind, waves, weather and fish! But, we care about how our clients feel so you feel the crosshairs growing.


But, I guess you pay that money and it entitles you to be grumpy and growl and no amount of cheerfulness or cheerleading on our end was gonna change things.


My own mood reflected it as well as a feeling of helpless frustration. If I could make fish jump in the boat, I would. If I could wave a fishing rod in the air, I’d make the clouds go away. Doesn’t work that way.


So, we packed them into our van to the beach in the dark and could feel the tension. Yuk. Mine and theirs.


And then some of our other fishermen came down and climbed into the shuttle. All smiles. Handshakes. Backslaps. Excited to be going fishing. Looking forward to being on the water.


Introductions and greetings. Among themselves. “Hey, didn’t I see you on the plane?” “Where’d you go to dinner last night?” “Really nice to meet you!” “You’re lucky to have your wife. Don’t let her catch all the fish!” (Laughs) The grumpy guys could care less. Golly, is it THAT bad?


The happy folks were all long-time customers. They all came from different parts of the country. I had known them for a long long time and knew their stories. But, all of them were coming together this morning and meeting for the first time. Just happy to be out; happy for maybe more reasons than just going fishing.


Yes, I know their stories.


For several of them, this could be their last trip.


One has a serious kidney surgery as soon as he gets back.


The wife, they were talking about? The gal schlepping the rods and laughing with the boys? She just found out she’s got a malignant tumor in her breast. She’s got a lot on her mind, I know.


One of the other guys? He’s had several strokes. I see the changes in him. He still at it, but he can’t fish every day like he used to. I worry about him pulling on a big fish. He’s fragile, but gutty as hell and won’t let anything stop him.


Another guy in the van, he’s had 24 surgeries. TWENTY FOUR!


He had his first heart attack at 35 years-old. His first stroke at 36. He had a heart transplant several years ago. His face is scarred from skin cancer. Right around his mouth, lips and chin. As soon as he gets home from La Paz, he’s got a date with the dermatologist.


He once showed me what his chest, arms and legs look like from all the surgeries. He laughing called himself “Frankenstein.” He takes several dozen pills a day to keep going. He has to wake himself up at night to make sure he takes some of the pills on time.


He just came back from a salmon trip in Alaska. And now here he is in La Paz fishing with us.


He once told me, “I know people who are more fortunate than me and let little setbacks get to them. They are miserable.


I choose to be happy. I chose to LIVE and enjoy the time I have. I got the message early! Fishing just happens to be the vehicle that gets me off the couch and enjoying life!”


Amen.


None of the folks in the shuttle van know the background of the other folks.


But there were those who were really looking forward to the day. And others who started the day already under a toxic cloud. I guess I could be included in that group.


I want to tell the grumpy guys…”LOOK AT THESE HAPPY PEOPLE!” I want to introduce them and tell the grumpy guys the stories about the happy people. I know it’s not my place.


But, I want to say, a bad day fishing is just that. A bad day fishing. You’re here. You’re enjoying times with friends. You’re doing something that a zillion other people will never ever get to do in their lives. See a sunrise. See the dolphin. Feel the salt spray. Crack beers on the beach. Fishing isn’t life. Life is fishing.


I think there was a reason I saw these folks today. Wake up call. Life ain’t so bad a’tall. I’m blessed. Memo to self…no bad days allowed!


WON Announcements

WON Digital Editions
Now Available With Your Western Outdoor News Subscription!

If you are a subscriber to Western Outdoor News (WON) then you now have full access to WON Digital Editions. The free viewing program here on the Forum in the WON Digital Editions Sampler has ended, though we will keep an assortment of these issues here as samples.


As a subscriber to WON you have all the information you need to access the WON Digital Editions through the gateway located at: https://epub.pubservice.com/Login.aspx?PC=WN


On the login screen you are asked for a Username and a Password. You will use your WON Account Number as your Username and your 5-digit Zip Code as your Password. Both of these bits of information appear on the mailing label on the cover of the copy of Western Outdoor News you receive in the mail each week:


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Your WON Account Number starts with “WN” and has six digits after that (ignore the 7th digit – it’s a check digit). Your 5-digit zip code is also on the label as indicated.


So, to access the WON Digital Editions you just click on the link shown above (then bookmark it for future reference). Type your WON Account Number shown on the your mailing label into the Username field, e.g., WN123456 and press the TAB key. Type in your 5-digit zip code from your mailing label, e.g., 92673 and then press the Login button to gain access.


Once in, you’ll see the 8 most recent issues – both Southern and Northern editions and any recent Special Sections. You can filter the issues shown by Year and/or by Month. You can also browse through the available issues using the Previous and Next control buttons on the bottom of the screen.


To view an issue simply double click on the cover graphic icon. That will load it in the 3Dissue viewing program, which is a flip-book type viewer which also has a host of other settings and functions such as search.


If you don’t have a subscription you can subscribe now with our Summer Special and save $5 by clicking here.


Benefits of WON Digital Editions


Benefit #1: Timeliness of Delivery


One aspect of our print edition of WON is that we are totally dependent on the United States Postal Service (USPS) for delivering WON to your mailbox. And in case you haven’t noticed, things have not been going so well with the USPS of late. They have been on a cost cutting binge over the past few years that has resulted in the closing of a number of large processing facilities as well as local post offices. There has also been a sizeable reduction in their workforce. Though they managed to offset much of the impact of such closures and reductions through consolidation and automation, there has been a negative impact on the timeliness of delivery of WON in the further reaches of the state and outside of California.


The WON Digital Editions will not be dependent on the USPS for delivery. Each week’s digital editons should be available online as early as Tuesday of each week (the day the print edition is entered into the mailstream). So, if you want to be the first to know what’s in the next issue of WON, digital editions are the way to go.


Benefit #2: Keyword Search


At last! Everything came together on that last fishing trip and you came away with a catch of a lifetime. What’s more, your buddy just happens to be an excellent photographer and took the perfect picture of you and your catch. You wrote up a brief description and emailed it and the photo to the editor at WON. Surely it will be printed and you’ll have bragging rights among your friends for months to come. So you eagerly await the arrival of each issue of WON and then go through it page by page looking for that glorious photo and caption. Not that that’s a bad thing … but you want to know if you made it in NOW!


The WON Digital Editions have a search feature. There’s an icon on the menu bar that looks like a magnifying glass. Click on it and it will open a search box where you can type in text to search for – in this case, your name. Click the magnifying glass icon to the right of the search box and a list of all the pages where that term or phrase appears is listed, along with a clip of the text where the search text was found. Oh happy day – there on page 5 is your name and the picture of you and your catch! Of course, the search can be used to find any number of things you’re interested in like other people, places, boat names, etc.


Benefit #3: More Color


One of the unfortunate truths of print is that it costs more to print in color than in black and white. So there has always been a trade-off with certain pages getting color treatment and others not. That means the colors of the rainbow in that rainbow trout you caught don’t come through so well in a black and white.


There is no such cost limitation in the digital edition. Most photos we receive are color and so we can present them in all of their colorful glory in the digital edition. So don’t be surprised if your Bluefin tuna is black in the print edition but blue in the digital edition. More color to ya!


Benefit #4: Multiple Devices


A very nice feature of the 3Dissue digital edition viewer is that it is device independent. It will determine what kind of device you are using – desktop, notebook, tablet or smartphone and configure the display accordingly. This is known as responsive web design and it makes for a much nicer viewing experience. It’s all done automatically – all you have to do is sit back and enjoy.


Benefit #5: World Wide Distribution


Even if delivery time were not an issue, it is cost prohibitive to mail subscriptions outside the United States. Thanks to the global nature of the World Wide Web (at least theoretically) that is not a problem with digital editions. So even if you don’t plan on participating in this year’s dove opener because you are in a country on the other side of the globe, you can still read about it in the digital edition of WON.


Benefit #6: Get ’Em Both


You’re all probably aware that Western Outdoor News comes in two editions: one for Southern California and one for Northern California. This great state is so diverse in the recreational opportunities afforded to outdoorsmen within each of these two regions that it just makes sense to have separate coverage. The dividing line is around the geographical middle of the state, with zip codes greater than 93648 getting the Northern edition by default and all others the Southern edition. Of course, there are exceptions and subscribers can change to the edition they want.


But with the digital editions – since they are weightless and move at the speed of light – there is no reason not to offer both editions as part of a single subscription to Western Outdoor News. And that’s what we’ve done, giving access to information covering the entire state.


Benefit #7: Easy to Archive


If you’re like me you have a hard time of disposing of the publications you subscribe to because you never know when you’re going to need to reference that information again. With WON being a big thick weekly that stack of back issues grows pretty rapidly and it wouldn’t take too long before your living room starts to look like something out of one of those “hoarder” shows.


Not so with the digital editions – they don’t occupy any physical space at all. Not only that, we provide the electronic storage space and give you instant access to it. Combine the ease of archiving with the ability to search for keywords and you can easily find the contact information for that long range charter you’ve been meaning to go on all these years.


Benefit #8: Easy to Read


We may not like to admit it – and do our best to hide it – but the sad fact is that as we age our eyesight begins to fail. For many people this manifests as an inability to read the printed page without some type of magnification. Thus the plethora of non-prescription reading glasses available at the drug store and that pair you pull out when the need to read arises.


The digital edition has a built in magnifier – a “zoom in-out” feature – that allows you to enlarge the page so you can read it without the need of reading glasses. You can zoom in and out to whatever level is comfortable for you. No longer is your reading experience dependent on a pair of glasses – and that’s a good thing.


Benefit #9: Remote Viewing


One of the limitations of the print edition of Western Outdoor News is that it can only be delivered to one mailing address at a time. Now, if you’re going to be on vacation for an extended period of time it’s possible to change the mailing address to where you’ll be during that time. Or you can simply halt delivery while you’re away with a vacation hold. WON Digital editions, on the other hand, are available from any location where you have internet access – which is just about anywhere these days – anytime you want.


Benefit #10: Advertising Hyperlinks


In the print edition of Western Outdoor News we include advertisements for products and services that are of benefit to our readers. Many of the advertisements will reference the advertiser’s website for additional information and if you want to check it out you need to get on your computer, notebook, tablet or smartphone and type in the location of the website into your web browser.


Those same ads appear in the WON Digital Editions, but in many cases those advertiser websites can be accessed directly simply by clicking on the web address which will highlight when you place your cursor on it. That will open the website in a separate tab in your browser so you don’t lose your place in the WON Digital Edition you’re viewing.


Coming Attraction


It’s not quite ready, but in the near future we will be announcing a new type of Western Outdoor News subscription: the digital-only WON subscription. We know that the larger market is for our print publication – it’s user-friendly, you can take it anywhere, pass it around and it doesn’t need batteries or a power cord. But there is a new market emerging for digital-only publications, for the benefits noted above and others, and we will soon be making available a WON digital-only subscription that does not include the print edition of WON and will provide all the details once it is ready.


Link for the WON Digital Editions:


https://epub.pubservice.com/Login.aspx?PC=WN


Link for the Summer Special:


https://www.wonews.com/pc-296-122-won-summer-special-1-year-52-issues-for-3495-h.aspx



Merit McCrea's Blog

Mexico closes bluefin tuna sportfishery
The back-story (or at least part of it)

On or about July 14 Sportfishing Associatioon of California (SAC) President Ken Franke received an Email from CONAPESCA, and the following notice was published:


“Please be advised of the following:


importantnotice


In accordance with the Mexican Govement (SIC) regulation revisions, the capture of Blue Fin Tuna (Thunnus Orietals) (SIC) in Mexican waters is forbidden for the remainder of the 2014 calendar year.


Any incidental catches are to be released.


This Measure will be strictly enforced by Mexican authorities. Please avoid any fines or penalties.”


With this terse note the Mexican waters bluefin tuna was closed to sportfishing.


But how did this come about, seemingly out of the blue? Why? Did the “enviros” pay off the “Mexicans” to stick it to sport fishing, or what?


In order to tell the story I’ll first have to give a brief rundown on bluefin, then select bluefin fisheries, and finally on at least some of how this came to be and what we might expect in the near future.


The bluefin tuna that we catch are very fast growing pan-Pacific fish. They may live as long as 20 years, but usually much less. They grow to reproductive age in 3 to 5 years and weigh about 100 pounds at 3 years old. The fish we catch here are 1.5 to 3.5 years old.


Mature fish migrate to the Western Pacific and are known to spawn in the Japan Sea (July-August) and the East China Sea (May-June). There is a directed fishery “Toro” fishery in these areas on “zero-aged fish” which are those less than 1 year old.


pacificbluefintuna

PACIFIC BLUEFIN TUNA
span the North Pacific, two international fisheries management zones and many nations’ waters. As 1.5- to 2-year-olds bluefin cross eastward from spawning areas in the Far East to our Pacific Coast. First mature at 3 to 4 years old and 100 pounds they migrate westward. At 8 years old, the age of a barely legal calico, a bluefin tuna will tip the scale at more than 350 pounds. Figure source: IATTC Special Report No. 2


It is a culturally significant small boat fishery were the fisher’s are “mostly old men” as related in a 2010 presentation. Nevertheless the fishery puts a significant strain on the reproductive ability of bluefin.


In our area (Eastern Tropical Pacific, ETP) the Mexican purse seine and tuna pen fishery is a recent development of the last 15 years and imparts about 20 percent of the total fisheries impact on the stock. This stock is managed internationally by the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC). Apparently this impact was about 20 percent more than current productivity could support.


The population of mature bluefin in the Western Pacific has fallen steadily and precipitously since the fishery’s inception. A single strong year-class of adult fish can be seen making its way through the fishery, year after year, and few younger fish seem to have recruited into the adult stock.


In a recent paper presented by the Scientific Advisory Committee (IATTC, SAC) in their May meeting of this year Mark N. Maunder et al. reviewed the current stock assessment methods and estimated that the spawning biomass had fallen precipitously since the mid-2000s to an unprecedented level of just 4 to 6 percent of “unfished biomass.”


This month several important things happened concurrently. Foremost was the 87th meeting of the IATTC in Lima, Peru (July 14-18) to which the Mexican Tuna Pen operation now has a representative, according to sources. Mexico reached their 5,000- ton bluefin limit, with CONAPESCA posting notice to stop the commercial fishery on July 11, and finally the notice regarding all bluefin in Mexican waters.


For the conspiracy theorists out there, PEW Charitable Trusts, the philanthropic arm of Sunoco with its $5 billion endowment picked up the torch and began promoting the need for fisheries restraint regarding Pacific bluefin some months ago.


PEW and several other notable deep-pocket charitable organizations have been quick to pick up any evidence that shows the failure of institutional management or the lack of management of Public Trust marine resources. Many among the fisheries see this as part and parcel with their ongoing drive to “privatize” these public resources.


The theory goes like this: just like giving the Wild West to homesteaders back in the 1800s enriched the wealthy by providing property to be aggregated, owned, leased and loaned on, so might there be similar prospects for the world’s oceans. Legacy rights and priority for fishing within the ocean’s “public trust lands” have repeatedly been a thorn in the side of big industry.


In the 1970s and 1980s fisherman with grass-roots environmentalists at their side won compensation for lost fishing access due to oil spills, cables laid on the seafloor in their way, etc.


Now the dynamic is changed. Many Environmental Non-Governmental Organizations, or ENGOs as they are called, derive primary support from charitable entities like PEW Oceans, and this has grass-roots pro-fishing organizations on both coasts crying foul.


So with a nod to those that harbor feelings of mistrust for anything PEW supports regarding fisheries, and despite the seemingly more abundant, albeit largely immature, bluefin in our waters in recent years, bluefin tuna stocks of mature fish are really low and appear to be dominated by just a single year-class.


A fellow scientist Jeffry Barr writes: “An interesting question is, what will the U.S. do for its territorial waters given that it appears that the 5,000 mt quota for the entire Eastern Pacific is close to (or has been) met? The current IATTC meeting is underway in Lima, Peru, and the U.S. delegation has submitted a proposal with regard to setting next year's quota at 3000 mt, and 2500 mt in 2016. Interestingly, the ‘Explanatory Memorandum’ portion at the top of the proposal contains the following language:


‘In paragraph 4 the U.S. suggests that each nation with non-commercial (aka sportfishing) catch take measures domestically to reduce catch consistent with IATTC scientific staff recommendations. The U.S. is currently analyzing a suite of options related to reduced catch limits and will take action in September 2014 to implement its final decision.’”


IGFA Conservation Director Jason Schratweiser circulated an email in support of the drastic conservation measures being proposed for Pacific bluefin tuna saying, “I know this doesn’t bode well for CA recreational anglers that target bluefin. However, I’m not sure what other options exist to rebuild a fishery that’s been depleted this much.”


The bright side is, as noted in Maunder et al.; bluefin tuna’s life history traits of quick growth and rapid reproduction lend themselves to a rapid recovery, if only the Pacific Rim nations can lay off them for a few years.


As always the challenge for any international fishery remains: Can we trust other nations to follow suit? Will we in our conservationist zeal only have once again exported our sins to some “developing nation,” one that will catch these fish and sell them to us in unmarked cans? (While figuratively appropriate the fact remains that bluefin tuna are far too valuable for any can, and in fact are far too pricy for any major U.S. market.)


* * *

Merit McCrea is the saltwater editor for Western Outdoor News. He is a veteran Southern California partyboat captain and marine research scientist with the Love Lab at the University of California at Santa Barbara’s Marine Science Institute. He can be reached at: merit@wonews.com.


Jim Niemiec's Blog

16th Youth Safari Day — Just outstanding
For adults, too. as thousands attend


ysdofficialgreeter

YOUTH SAFARI DAY OFFICIAL GREETER — Frank Flynn, a long time member of the LA Chapter of Safari Club International, greeted families and directed them to the many events. WON PHOTOS BY JIM NIEMIEC


Thousands of youngsters and their parents enjoyed a wonderful day in the great outdoors while attending the 16th Annual Youth Safari Day held at Raahauge's Shooting Complex in Corona on Saturday. The event was a total success for the kids with lots of volunteer efforts from the Los Angeles and Orange County chapters of Safari Club International, dedicated conservation groups, the shooting sports industry, local gun and sporting goods stores and the many volunteers that showed up to offer up an excellent introduction to the outdoor world to kids who would not otherwise become aware of how much there is to do outside.
 

"It all came together today for the kids to enjoy a great day involving many outdoor activities. By far this year set records for attendance and the number of events available for youngsters to participate in. It's really heart-filling for those of us on the Youth Safari Day committee and the hundreds of volunteers and companies that come together each year to introduce young boys and girls to the many events that are manned by great people who are willing to share their knowledge of the outdoors with children of all ages and their parents. We have seen this event grow over the years and this year's record attendance was jump started by nearly 3,000 pre-registered kids," said Dennis Anderson, chairman of Youth Safari Day.


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SINGLE ACTION SIX SHOOTER — Jacob Douglas had a steady hand and hit a metal target while shooting a 38 cal. single action six shooter off hand.


Western Outdoor News and this hunting editor have been strong supporters of Youth Safari Day since its inception and this year it was rewarding to see many new kids show up along with kids that have been coming to this event in prior years. WON had a chance to visit with a few families during the course of the morning and this is what some parents had to say about Youth Safari Day.


"This is a wonderful way for youngsters to learn about how to properly and safely handle firearms and other outdoor equipment. This is the second year that I have brought my son Jacob to Youth Safari Day and he is having a blast. We drove up from Vista and are already making plans to come back next year," said Mike Douglas. Jacob then offered the following, "I really like the shooting events especially the cowboy booth where I got to shoot a 38 caliber lever action rifle and single action six shooter. It was totally awesome and I can't wait to do it all over again next year."


Western Outdoor News then caught up with Shawn and April Gill of San Jacinto who made the drive over to Youth Safari Day with their 7-year-old son Robert. Robert had never held a shotgun but was in the capable hands of a Turner's Outdoorsman skilled shooter who talked about safety and proper gun handling prior to putting a 20 ga. shotgun shell in the chamber of the soft shooting Benelli auto-loader. Young Robert was on target as he dusted the first clay bird thrown across the range.


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TEACHING SAFE GUN HANDLING — The staff at Turner's Outdoorsman were instructors on the shotgun range to make sure that youngsters knew about safe gun handling.


The Gills had this to say about Youth Safari Day, "It's a great venue for kids to learn all about the outdoors and experience things that they would not normally have a chance to participate in. We felt that this was the right place for our son Robert to learn about shooting and gun safety. The instructors were patient and thorough with kids and we had a high comfort level for our son as we moved on to the .22 pistol range."


There were many events for the kids to participate in including: airsoft guns, archery, BB guns, Cowboy shooting, decoy painting, falconry, fishing and casting, hound dog show, hunter safety, mountain men black powder, nature walk, kayaking, .22 pistol and rifle ranges, rock wall climbing, safari van, Starlight Kennels water dog show, petting zoo and so much more.


WON made it a point to visit with Dan Kenney, president of the Los Angeles Chapter of SCI to get his thoughts on Youth Safari Day.


"Our members are dedicated to conservation and promoting hunting and outdoor activities. This event provides young people a chance to participate in and learn about hunting and the outdoors. This is a great event because many of these kids would never have a chance to participate in these activities otherwise," said Kenny.


Youth Safari Day is over for 2014 but there are already plans for the 2015 event that will be held again at Raahauge's Shooting Complex next July. For more information on getting involved with this venue, to offer up support or volunteer to work a booth log on to their website at youthsafariday.com.


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FETCH — Jennifer, a 7 year old girl from Long Beach, throws a bumper for the black lab, Walter to retrieve.



bigcrowdwatched

BIG CROWD WATCHED shooting star Dan Carlisle break a variety of targets.


kayakingwaswet

KAYAKING WAS WET but fun.


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LEARNING TO CAST at a young age. WON PHOTOS BY JIM NIEMIEC


Carrie Wilson's Blog

Helicopter Fishing?
Question: You’ve answered readers’ questions several times in the past about the legalities and illegalities of fishing with a remote controlled boat. But my question is about a radio controlled helicopter. I just saw a video on YouTube showing a guy maneuvering his helicopter around a small lake that was dangling a line with a hook and bait on it. The craziest part of this was that he actually caught a sunfish with this rig and the helicopter flew the fish back to him on shore so that he could take it off the hook and release it back into the water. Seems like a great idea but I’m betting it isn’t legal in these parts. What do you say? (Steve C., Chico)

helicopterfishing

Photo from Creative Commons


Answer: All fish caught in freshwater must be taken by angling which means hook and line with the line held in the hand, or with the line attached to a pole or rod held in the hand or closely attended in such a manner that the fish voluntarily takes the bait or lure in its mouth (California Code of Regulations Title 14, section 1.05). Thus, the remote controlled helicopter could be used as a vehicle to take the line out further but the line would need to be directly controlled by the angler. Depending upon the location where the “helicopter angler” wants to use it, they should first make sure there are no local ordinances or specific rules imposed by the lake property owner or concessionaire prohibiting this practice and the flying of remote-controlled helicopters.


Bow hunting with a concealed firearm?


Question: When bow hunting in California, can you carry a concealed firearm if you possess a concealed carry permit? (DeWayne T.)


Answer: Unless you are an active or honorably retired peace officer, as specified in Fish and Game Code, section 4370(b), you may not carry a firearm during an archery only (AO) deer season or while using an AO tag, regardless of whether the firearm is concealed. Fish and Game Code, section 4370 requires:


(a) In every area in which deer may lawfully be taken during the general open season, there is an archery season for the taking of deer with bow and arrow. … Except as provided in subdivision (b), a person taking or attempting to take deer during such archery season shall neither carry, nor have under his or her immediate control, any firearm of any kind.


(b) A peace officer … whether active or honorably retired, may carry a firearm capable of being concealed on his or her person while engaged in the taking of deer with bow and arrow in accordance with subdivision (a), but shall not take or attempt to take deer with the firearm.


AO tags/seasons are only one option though. You can instead choose to hunt during the general season under a general tag with a bow, and then you could carry a firearm. Hunting under the AO authority grants a special opportunity to archers in exchange for leaving the firearm in camp.


Catching big fish from a pier


Question: While fishing from a public pier without a fishing license, am I allowed to go down onto the beach to land a big fish that I hooked on the pier? (Pete T.)


Answer: No. A fishing license is required when fishing everywhere except from a public pier. Even if you hooked the fish on the pier and only came down onto the beach to land the fish, you would need a valid license to avoid a potential citation. Purchasing an annual fishing license will make this a non-issue; or you may want to buy a pier net to help you land bigger fish from the pier.


Peacocks


Question: Is it legal to trap wild peacocks? If so, is it legal to sell them? Is it legal to kill wild peacocks? (R. Om)


Answer: Peacocks are not protected by California Fish and Game laws and so the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) has no regulations regarding trapping, selling or taking them. Check with your local animal control as peacocks are domestic animals.


Carcass possession limits?


Question: I fish for rockfish out of Santa Barbara and afterwards freeze the carcasses to use for crab bait. I am aware of the daily bag limit for rockfish but have not found any regulations for the left over carcass (head, body, skin and guts). Are there any possession limits for rockfish carcasses? (Jim P.)


Answer: Although the general rule is once the meat has been removed and consumed or given away and you only have a carcass, it no longer counts as part of your possession. However, even parts of fish are legally considered “fish.” The letter of the law is you may not possess more than a daily bag limit of fish. So, if you catch fish and take them home to clean and you freeze the carcasses for use as bait in the future, be sure you do not take more than a possession limit of carcasses with you when you go crabbing.


* * *


Carrie Wilson is a marine environmental scientist with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. While she cannot personally answer everyone’s questions, she will select a few to answer each week in this column. Please contact her at Carrie.Wilson@wildlife.ca.gov.



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