Monday, March 7, 2022

Christie conquers the Bassmaster Classic

 Posted
by Wayne G. Barber 

GREENVILLE, S.C. — For years, Jason Christie has had to live with the crushing weight of leading pro fishing’s biggest event twice on the final day, only to fall short.

But no more. 

The 48-year-old pro from Park Hill, Okla., led once again going into Championship Sunday and this time sealed the deal in dramatic fashion with a final-day limit of 17 pounds, 9 ounces that made him the champion of the 52nd Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Classic presented by Huk at Lake Hartwell. His three-day total of 54-0 was only 5 ounces better than that of second-place finisher Kyle Welcher, who shared the lead with Christie going into the final day.

The event drew a Classic-record 154,932 fans.

“Honestly, when I was sitting at the door waiting to come in and weigh my fish, I thought I had given it away again,” said Christie, who pushed his career earnings with B.A.S.S. to $1,668,011 with the $300,000 victory. “Stetson Blaylock had just weighed in a big bag, and Kyle Welcher used to be a professional poker player, so I knew he had more than what he was saying. 

“I knew it was gonna be close. I honestly thought there could be a tie, and that was scary for me because I didn’t have any fish left.”

Christie certainly found plenty of fish throughout the week as he alternated between deep- and shallow-water patterns that were about as different as two techniques can be.

He caught half of his weight targeting bass on Garmin LiveScope in a 15- to 30-foot drain that he said held “hundreds of fish” the first two days. He used a spinning rod with a 3/16-ounce jighead and a prototype lure from Yum that only this week earned an official name, the FF Sonar Minnow, which stands for “Forward Facing Sonar Minnow.”

“It’s a bait that I can cast to the fish and work the rod and keep it on him; the bait does not move forward,” Christie said. “It’s a technique that I’ve been working on for about five years now.

“A lot of times you throw a swimbait over the top of them and they’ll just trail it. But you can drop this bait right to the fish and keep it on top of him.”The event drew a Classic-record 154,932 fans.

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Grackles anyone ?

 Posted by Wayne G. Barber &  Photos property of Wayne G. Barber 


  • Common Grackles are resourceful foragers. They sometimes follow plows to catch invertebrates and mice, wade into water to catch small fish, pick leeches off the legs of turtles, steal worms from American Robins, raid nests, and kill and eat adult birds.
  • Grackles have a hard keel on the inside of the upper mandible that they use for sawing open acorns. Typically they score the outside of the narrow end, then bite the acorn open.
  • You might see a Common Grackle hunched over on the ground, wings spread, letting ants crawl over its body and feathers. This is called anting, and grackles are frequent practitioners among the many bird species that do it. The ants secrete formic acid, the chemical in their stings, and this may rid the bird of parasites. In addition to ants, grackles have been seen using walnut juice, lemons and limes, marigold blossoms, chokecherries, and mothballs in a similar fashion.
  • In winter, Common Grackles forage and roost in large communal flocks with several different species of blackbird. Sometimes these flocks can number in the millions of individuals.




Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Seeforellen strain brown trout return in the Nutmeg State

 Posted by Wayne G. Barber 


The return of the Seeforellen strain Brown Trout! This fall, we plan on stocking nearly 6,000 seefs, which will be close to 14 inches in length!
This special strain of Brown Trout has not been stocked during the fall in Connecticut since 2016 when they were discontinued from production due to staffing, space, and budgetary constraints. Seeforellens will be stocked into 7 lakes total (Long Pond, Highland Lake, East Twin Lake, West Hill Pond, Beach Pond, Crystal Lake, and Squantz Pond) where they will provide late fall and winter (through the ice) season fishing opportunities.
In addition to providing good access to fishing, these suite of lakes were also chosen because they provide a better opportunity for Seeforellens to “holdover” and grow to a larger size. In the past, our studies have shown that this strain of brown trout can grow to sizes larger than 20 inches when they holdover in Connecticut Lakes! So, please (drum roll anyone) welcome back the Seeforellens. Coming to a lake near you!The return of the Seeforellen strain Brown Trout! This fall, we plan on stocking nearly 6,000 seefs, which will be close to 14 inches in length!
This special strain of Brown Trout has not been stocked during the fall in Connecticut since 2016 when they were discontinued from production due to staffing, space, and budgetary constraints. Seeforellens will be stocked into 7 lakes total (Long Pond, Highland Lake, East Twin Lake, West Hill Pond, Beach Pond, Crystal Lake, and Squantz Pond) where they will provide late fall and winter (through the ice) season fishing opportunities.
In addition to providing good access to fishing, these suite of lakes were also chosen because they provide a better opportunity for Seeforellens to “holdover” and grow to a larger size. In the past, our studies have shown that this strain of brown trout can grow to sizes larger than 20 inches when they holdover in Connecticut Lakes! So, please (drum roll anyone) welcome back the Seeforellens. Coming to a lake near you!

Monday, November 1, 2021

The Rut is on drivers !

 Posted by Wayne G. Barber 


 Did you know a driver crashed into a deer once every two hours on average in Massachusetts between October and December last year? That's because it's peak deer mating season, which means more deer are on the move and potentially crossing busy roads around dusk and early evening. (Think 6-8 p.m.) And with Daylight Savings coming this weekend, deer may be on the roads even earlier. Stay sharp out there.