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Last updateWed, 19 Nov 2014 8pm

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Check Stations are fading fast

Several years ago VDGIF made it optional to check your big game via the Internet or by phone. Many people really appreciated the opportunity to make a call from their cell phone or home phone, create their own check card of sorts and not have to stop somewhere to check their deer or turkey (or bear).

Some got upset by the idea claiming that people would cheat and take their chances heading home with their game and then hurry up and butcher the animal. If not caught by then, the feeling was that they would opt to skip checking their animal and then save a tag.

Surely this has occurred but it also likely occurred without the option of using the phone or Internet to check game too. Perhaps now it is just a bit easier to cheat. However, that is not the focus of this column this week. Regardless of what we feel about the phone or Internet check system it is here to stay.

Officials at VDGIF have faced lagging license sales over the past decade and rising costs. The facts required that the leadership at VDGIF be creative in using our license monies to run the agency. Just in case a reader does not know, VDGIF is run on hunting, fishing and trapping license sales and tax proceeds from boat licenses and registrations. None of your state tax money goes to fund this agency. Taxes paid on

Read more: Check Stations are fading fast

Outdoors Report - April 18, 2012

Rappahannock River
Ken’s Tackle (898-1011) reported some shad caught above the fall line and at Old Mill. There were no reports of shad or herring at the City Dock.
Little Falls’s (540-656-8696) reported bass hitting well on the Rappahannock River. A few white perch were hitting too.
Catfish seem to be on the really small side on the river lately. Some anglers were catching plenty of crappie using minnows on the river out of Hopyard. One boat had 32 crappie caught.

Potomac River
Lil Falls reported great bass angling in the creeks and really good catfish action to include a 30-pound fish on cutbait. Snakeheads are getting ready to spawn. Look for them at the headwaters of creeks.
Aqualand (301-259-0572) is telling us that catfish are taking all kinds of bait off their beach now. Use cutbait to catch fish. Bloodworms are taking perch too.

Ponds/Lakes—
Mott’s Run Reservoir (540-786-8989) is reporting good Shellcracker action and some ring perch being caught. Windy conditions made it tough to fish the reservoir.
Lil Falls reported awesome action for bass and crappie at Fort AP Hill ponds. Minnows were working on the crappie. Plastic worms for the bass.
The bite at Lake Anna has been tough but fishing uplake seems to be best for crappie and bass right now. Check out McCotter’s blog at http://mccotterslakeanna.blogspot.com. Ponds were good for panfish using live bait and plastic worms this past week. Try weedlines and lily pads.

Saltwater
The spring striper season in the bay opens April 21.
Fishing ID Number REQUIRED in tidal water!
Don’t forget to get your Fisherman Identification Program Number. You need one in Virginia in tidal waters and in saltwater no matter if you are fishing for saltwater fish or not. Don’t get a ticket. They are being issued now! Maryland waters, to include the Potomac River, require one too. Just because you are registered, as a Virginia angler does not mean that FIP number is good in the Potomac River. Get a Maryland number separately. Virginia anglers can get one online by calling 800-723-2728. Or you can go online to register in Virginia, go to www.mrc.virginia.gov/FIP/index.shtm. For Maryland, go to www.dnr.maryland.gov/swregistry.asp.

Spring Turkey Season
Bag Limit: One per day, bearded turkeys only. Hunters may take one, two, or three bearded turkeys depending on how many turkeys were taken in the fall season.
Seasons: Statewide April 14 through May 5: One-half hour before sunrise until 12 noon each day.
May 7 through May 19: One-half hour before sunrise to sunset.
Fishing Day in King George
May 5—Annual Kids Fishing Day. Fishing at a private pond for kids and their parents. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Call 775-4FUN to register. Registration required. Free event.

Outdoors Report - March, 28, 2012

Great weather started leaves popping, dogwoods blooming and fish biting.

Rappahannock River
Catfish are spotty biting right now. Amazingly, most catches are coming on nightcrawlers vs. cutbait from our reports.
Ken’s Tackle (898-1011) reported white perch biting in Fredericksburg. Shad and herring have arrived in Fredericksburg but are spotty so far. Sometimes the bite is on but still not quite reliable yet.
Pern’s Supermarket (775-7817) told us they have bloodworms, nightcrawlers and other bait available.

Potomac River
We are hearing that the bass bite in creeks is heating up on creek edges and shallows were bass are staging for the spawn.

Read more: Outdoors Report - March, 28, 2012

Outdoors Report - March, 21, 2012

We start our weekly fishing report this year with a BANG! Fishing is quite good all around although the weather sure is fickle.

Rappahannock River

Overview: Fishing is quite good but still can be sporadic. White perch have been hit or miss. When they are on they are HOT though but when they are OFF you need to

Read more: Outdoors Report - March, 21, 2012

Fishing season is heating UP

Last week’s column about curing the itch started an itch in me while writing it. Temperatures that flirt with the 70s and 80s always get me going.

The problem with spring is that there are too many chores outside that interfere with fishing! Regardless, one must have their priorities in order and take some time to wet a line and cook up some fresh fish.

There usually is talk about fish spawning early when we get a warm string of days. I must be gathering some years under my belt

Read more: Fishing season is heating UP

Curing “The Itch”

Spring never seems to come fast enough, particularly if you like to fish and you are a school-aged boy. The chill of winter had not even really left and yet there we were, striding at a brisk pace down an old logging road not far from our homes with fishing rods in our hands.

The calendar said March, but in our minds it should have been April at the least. It did not matter what the calendar said; we were going fishing. The temperatures had flirted with 70 degrees a half dozen times and the sun lingered in the western sky over an hour longer than it did at the end of deer season, so we had to have some relief. There was but one way to get that relief, and we were on the way to get it.

It seemed that we were not the only ones trying to hurry spring along on that fine March day. The toads and frogs had set

Read more: Curing “The Itch”

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