Andy Becker, Lindenhurst, NY
Scott, First off let me say that I have been a follower of your blog since its inception & have enjoyed reading every word. I like the way you & Mary approach boating, life & traveling together. I have been a sportfisherman for the past 25 years & have owned & fished my 31' Rampage for the past 19 years here in the Northeast. I fish both inshore & offshore. The shark pictured on the MAD FISH HUNT page is a thresher shark. I would estimate the weight in the 300-400lb range. Thresher shark makes excellent table fare, some say better than mako shark or swordfish. I have caught thresher shark in the 200-400lb range & can tell you that they are delicious & that none of the meat went to waste as they freeze well & some of it was distributed to friends & family. As long as the fish is being eaten there really should be no problem in keeping a fish like that. The teeth & jaws of a thresher shark are rather small for the size of the fish & I would doubt that the fish was taken for that reason. In other parts of the world "game fish" are regularly eaten. Here i the Northeast no one would think of keeping abillfish, but as I am sure you know, they are eaten in other parts of the world. Many shark tournamnets here now prohibit the keeping of blue sharks & have reasonable minimum sizes on other species of sharks. Yes, many species of shark & billfish are over fished. However I contend that a rod & reel angler can be selective of the fish he wants to keep returning those (hopefully tagged) that he does not want. Perhaps instead of just taking a picture Nordhavn should encourage tagging. Once again I want to thank taking us along on your little ship.
Fair winds, smooth seas, tight lines & screaming reels,
Scott Flanders from Egret responds:
Andy, I was looking at a more global picture than specifics. I imagine few N owners are as familiar with fishing as you. Those who are, know what to do. I'm fairly familiar with what you are saying. We used to own a boat named Tag em All with a tag flag inbetween the script, were members of IGFA and practiced what was right. In our own perhaps not so subtle way we are trying to encourage conservation. To make things easier perhaps the contest rules sould say: all fish not to be eaten should be released alive. Size will be determined by photographs, angler's dubious estimates and a panel of less enthuisiastic PAE judges. Thank you for your input & tight lines to you as well. (Ed. note: we will be adding this condition to the Mad Fish Hunt rules.)