Why Fishing Is Not For The Faint Of Heart

Fishing is one of my family’s favorite pastimes. For as long as I can remember, my parents would set aside an entire week during my summer break from school for that. We would rent a cabin by the river or lake and pack our bags and canoes. Sometimes, we would sleep in tents or even camping cars.

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During that week, chicken, pork, or beef was at the back of our minds. My mom knew a lot of recipes that involved fish as the main ingredient. Everything from stew to soup to grilled – we enjoyed them all, especially since the fish was always fresh. It was something that we could not enough of, frankly speaking.

My family still does this tradition every year, even when I am already in my mid-20s. I don’t usually take a leave of absence because I allocate those days to that fishing week. What is even better is that my cousins, aunts, and uncles come with us, so it is like a week-long reunion.

The thing is, I know that fishing is not for everyone. To be precise, it is not suitable for the faint of heart because:

You Will Be Dealing With A Wiggly Fish

The first thing that irks some people is the truth that the fish will fight back when you try to take it out of the water. Its body will wiggle from the moment you pull the line, making the task challenging. Even when it is on the boat already, it may not be easy to hold because the fish scales are too smooth. Thus, newbies tend to yell or jump in surprise when the fish slips out of their hands.

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You Have To Remove The Hook From The Fish’s Mouth

It is an exciting sight when a fisherman raises his rod, and a hefty fish is at the end of it. What non-fishing folks may not realize, however, is that the hook pierces the mouth of the fish. The latter does not bleed a lot in that area, but it can be too much for a few individuals.

You Need To Open The Fish And Pull Out Its Guts

A movie or TV show where people are fishing and camping can be a bit misleading, in the sense that they only show the fish on the grill after catching it. What you have hardly seen in media is the process of removing the guts. After all, it requires slicing the fish’s belly and pulling out everything inside except for the bones. This procedure is necessary, though, to make sure that you will eat clean fish. The guts tend to go back to the water and serve as fish food.

If you find the de-gutting process gory or barbaric, though, fishing may not be for you.

The Fish Smell Won’t Go Away With Water And Regular Soap

You do not hear fishing enthusiasts complain about the smell that lingers on their hands, but it is not a myth. Fish odor can genuinely stick to your skin, especially while cleaning the fish because it releases chemicals that give off the universally known fishy smell. What’s worse is that the scent does not go away with water and regular soap alone, so forgetting the special detergent during your trip entails that the stink will remain with you until you go home.

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Final Thoughts

I decided to write this blog not to discourage you from learning how to fish but to keep you from quitting when you see or experience the things mentioned above. When you know what to expect beforehand, and you still go for it, it means that the hobby will stick for long.

Good luck!

 

 

 

Where To Eat The Best Seafood Cuisine In Phuket

 

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Visiting Phuket, Thailand won’t be complete without having a taste of their seafood extravaganza. The island is not only known for its beautiful beaches but also for the rich marine life that has tourists and locals appreciate seafood more and eating the likes of giant prawns, crabs, and sweet shrimps should never be missed while you’re in this colorful island. (more…)

How To Make Fishing Enticing For Someone Who’s Never Done It Before

When I pick up a new hobby, I love sharing it with my family and friends. It has never bothered me even if they end up being better at it than me. It merely indicates that there is someone who can help me learn the ropes.

The thing is, I have tried new hobbies that my loved ones have started doing, too. When I brought my brother to a boxing class, and he loved it there. One time, I wanted to learn how to bake and asked mom to tag along with them. She turned to be a natural baker and loved the activity as well.

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If there’s something that not a lot of my friends and family cannot accept, though, it’s my love for fishing. I did not grow up around bodies of water; the closest beach was a plane ride away. But somehow, when I was given a chance to start fishing, you could say that I got hooked.

Noodling, angling, netting – I have tried different techniques to catch a fish. I am not against fishing at any time of the year either, considering you can do it even the water is frozen solid.

Now, it has taken a while before I have encouraged my parents and siblings to go fishing with me. I tried many things to get them to hold a rod. At a low point, I even bribed them, but that did not end well for me. My family took my bribe but managed to come up with excuses not to come with me at the last minute.

Nevertheless, it did not stop me from coaxing my loved ones to try fishing. It was not until last year that I got my family to do it, and now they keep on asking me when we can go again.

If you want to accomplish the same thing, here’s how you can entice someone to go fishing with you.

Rent A Cabin Near A Fishing Lake

The first thing you can try is renting a cabin by the lake. There probably isn’t a single soul in the world who has never dreamed of waking up in one. You can open the door and bask in the beauty of nature.

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Despite that, when you are deciding where to bring your family, you should make sure that the lake has fish. This way, you can suggest fishing to them one morning.

Give Your Family Something To Do While Waiting For The Fish

One of the reasons why your loved ones may not be up for fishing is that they have zero patience for waiting. When you do this activity, after all, you may have to wait for hours before a fish takes your bait. Some species are smarter than you expect as well, in the sense that they can eat your bait without touching the hook.

To keep your family from getting bored, therefore, you should think of games that you can play while waiting.

Prepare A BBQ Party Afterward

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Another thing you can do is announce that you will prepare a BBQ party after fishing. There will be all kinds of meat, including the fish that any of you may catch. In this manner, you may encourage them to take fishing seriously because there is a yummy reward in the end.

Don’t give up on your family if they don’t like fishing as much as you do. Try coaxing them with the tips mentioned above. Good luck!

 

 

 

Knowing Island Creek Oysters And The Oyster Farming Process

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Skip Bennett has founded and still owns Island Creek Oysters (ICO). With the help of oyster farmer Christian Horne, his local fish market owner and friend Don Murray, and his father Bill Bennett, the Island Creek Oysters has been staying true to its mission since its establishment: Grow. Give. Enjoy.

History

It was the year 1992 when Skip Bennett had been initiated into oyster-growing in Island Creek, Duxbury, where he spent most of his life. Before that, the quahog razor clams that Bennett was working on became infected. However, instead of letting it pull him down, the ICO founder decided to focus all his attention on oysters. Since making that decision, the following occurrences happened:

• Skip Bennett partnered with Christian Horne in 1997 and founded Island Creek Oysters.

• They were later joined in the year 2000 by Don Murray and Bill Bennett, Skip Bennett’s friend and father, respectively.

• The four of them sold oysters from the back of a truck to some restaurant chefs.

Because of Skip Bennett’s and his associates’ passion for oysters, ICO is now producing more than 100,000 oysters per week, and their customers now come from all coasts.

Oyster Farming Process

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The growing, planting, and harvesting process for oysters take 18 months. The work is tedious, but allow us to break down the steps below:

• Seeds of 2 millimeters arrive every May from New England hatcheries in blue cloth packets that can hold 2 pounds of baby oysters.

• The seeds go to the bottom of the handmade upwellings that comprise of eight boxes, a beautiful mesh screen as a bed, and a white pipe that keeps the baby oysters fresh all the time.

• When the last quarter of July comes, and the baby oysters are already ¼-inch long, they are graded or sifted to separate the still-small oysters from the larger ones.

• The ¼-inch oysters are brought to the nursery where they will remain to double in size for 2 to 3 months.

• After that, the oysters are planted in the acreage of underwater ground, where they all continue to grow until after winter.

• Eighteen months after the growing process, the harvesting of oysters through handpicking and dragging takes place when there is low tide and high tide, respectively.

• The harvested oysters are then culled in oyster barges to know which ones are ICO-material or not.

• The oysters that have passed through the oyster barges successfully get washed. The goal is to get rid of all the muds that stuck on them. Workers manually count the shellfish into mesh bags, pack them into ICO trucks, and deliver the bags to your favorite restaurants.

Final Thoughts

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Island Creek Oysters allows visitors who want to experience being an oyster farmer firsthand. It has also ventured to the catering business, and it is suitable for all kinds of events that have guests who want to have raw bar experience. Anyone can shop for shellfish, gears, and packages online through the ICO website.

 

 

 

How Fishing Can Positively Affect Your Health And Happiness – Psychologists Recommend This Hobby

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We often overlook fishing as a sport that can also burn calories. Often we think that fishing is just lounging in a boat and waiting for a fish to take the bait, but it is so much more. Who knew that fishing can be rewarding and have significant effects on our overall physical and mental health? Even psychologists, who are specialists in the mental health field. This article will teach us the benefits we get from fishing and how it affects our mental state.

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Here’s Why Therapists Say Fishing Can Be Therapeutic

Fishing can make anyone a better person. It is not just backed up by therapists, but also backed up by science. Don’t be fooled by the traditional stereotype of fishing. Anyone, no matter the age, gender, and income level, can participate in fishing activities or fish themselves. Most families have already been doing this as a weekend activity in any accessible lakes or fishing sanctuaries.

They say it can be therapeutic. But how and why? Read on.

It Is Definitely Relaxing

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Fishing involves waiting, and that’s a fact. All you need to have is a fishing rod, a couple of baits, lots of patience and maybe a snack for yourself. Since it involves waiting, it will coincidentally also involve looking around and appreciating your surroundings. Sooner or later, as you wait for a fish to bite your bait, you will feel yourself to be one with nature.

This fishing activity will let you breathe fresher air. The calmness, pollution-free, and vibrant colors of the surrounding environment will decrease your stress and anxiety. Unlike in the city or the confines of your home, there are no exerting pressure or mental force here. In your home or office, there may be that piles of documents that scare you. In a fishing sanctuary, there is none.

It Teaches You The Art Of Patience

Therapists treat fishing as a reflective and meditative activity by its nature. There are an essential tip and lesson that fishing beginners should know. That is, not everybody will hook a fish at every fishing activity. Therapists, however, believe that this will never cause you more significant stress or anxiety. It will instead teach you the unwillingness to quit.

Therapists point out correctly that people should learn how to have patience and deal with impatience. In the real world, everything takes time. Impatient people are the ones prone to stress, depression, high blood pressure, and physical weakness. Fishing is one of the activities that will bestow the proper patience upon you.

It Can Improve Your Balance

Whether or not you are joining a regular fishing activity with practiced fishers already with you, this expedition will nevertheless teach you some physical balancing techniques. It is some form of exercise. It requires physical strength this time, forcing you then to move and crack those tight joints from working or overthinking.

It Can Boost Your Immune System

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As mentioned, fishing still requires movement not just mere sitting or waiting. It does not only involve balancing techniques, but it has something to do with finding the perfect fishing spots. The ideal fishing sanctuaries are usually in natural places which will require walking, hiking, biking, or even paddling.

For beginners, this may sound like troublesome mainly if you are not into exerting that much physical effort. However, fishers who were once a beginner just like everybody else can say that the excitement and the unwillingness to quit will motivate you to go a little further. Sooner or later, you will be into the art of fishing and everything that comes with it (such as physical exercise).

Moreover, being outdoors is in itself already benefits our physical well-being. Imagine getting plenty of vitamin D that you would not get if you are staying most of the time indoors. Science reports that vitamin D plays a significant role in improving our mood, boosting our energy, and making us happier.

It Promotes Family Bonding

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Letting go of the ugly sight and mental and emotional exhaustion brought about by official or school paper works will do wonders even with your communication with your family. While waiting for a fish to hook in your bait, talk with your kids or parents about their week in school or work. Talk about your next family vacation.

Think of this activity as one where you will and should never take your phone or paper works with you. It is the time where you should keep in touch with each other’s personal lives.

With all of these facts in mind, fishing can be an option for you to lead a happy and satisfying life in the long run. Catching a fish is only a bonus. Think of it as a reward once you felt that you are one with nature, improved your mood, and got in touch with family and friends once again. For beginners, there are a lot of organizations and fishing programs in your area that will help you get started, starting from the tools and skills you need to have if you want to begin.

How To Make Fishing Enticing For Your Kids

Fishing is one of those family-friendly activities that both parents and kids can enjoy. Not only does it give you the chance to bond with each other, but it also allows everyone to commune with nature and stay away from mobile devices even for at least a couple of hours.

The thing is, it is not always easy to coax the children to go fishing. That is especially true for those who are used to the city life where fish can either be seen in tanks or supermarkets. Some agree to come, considering you promise to get ice cream for them afterward. Others may show interest in the beginning, but they might drop the rod to do something else.

If you want the young ones to enjoy fishing as much as you do, here are some tips to remember.

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1. Go Fishing During A Nice Weather

The first thing that makes kids act erratically is the changing weather. For instance, the sun’s shining brightly when you enter the car, but the rain started to pour as you are setting up. That can alter their mood and possibly cause them to whine and want to go home. Read more about it at Babble.

What you should do is find out the kind of weather that you can expect on the day that you plan on fishing with the family. The aspects you ought to look at are the chances of raining, humidity level, et cetera. This way, you will be able to decide if you picked a great day to fish or you have to reschedule it for the children’s sake.

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2. Choose An Excellent Fishing Area

Another fact to keep in mind is that youngsters lack the patience that adults can typically exhibit when fishing. If you can sit beside the lake or on a boat for almost half the day without catching anything, the kids may feel bored after waiting for ten minutes or so. In case you love to stay still, well… you know that that’s not among the most excellent points of any child.

The ideal thing you can do is to look for a spot where fish is abundant. We are talking about unpolluted rivers, lakes, or even streams in which the children can catch something a few minutes after casting their line. That may prevent them from wandering around to, say, find a dragonfly or ask for their gadgets.

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3. Settle With Basic Fishing Gears

Since you wish to fish with young kids, you should avoid buying expensive gears for them for the first time. You have no idea yet how much they will like the activity – or if they will even be okay with catching live fish. Some children, after all, get scared when they see it flapping around or splashing water on them.

For your little ones, therefore, it seems more practical to make a fishing rod out of a wooden stick instead of getting a real one in the beginning. It should not be difficult to tie a string on one end of a fallen twig or branch and attach the bait to it. If the experience makes your children want to go fishing with you again, then you may consider buying better equipment for them.

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4. Don’t Stay Outdoors For Too Long

Fishing with children is different from doing it with adults – that’s for sure. The latter may not mind getting rained on, but the kids might catch the flu once they stay under the rain. Although you may find the activity calming too, you should know that the little ones always look for adventure more than relaxation.

That’s the reason why you cannot plan a full day outdoors when you are with kids. You may try it for an hour to check how they like the place. If they do, then you can return to your fishing spot again and perhaps extend your stay for a bit. As long as the idea of fishing seems fun for them, everything will be fine.

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5. Pay Attention To Your Kids

Finally, you should remember to focus on the children – not on your fishing rod – no matter how much you love the activity. If you are concerned about the number of fish you can catch, then you should have brought them along another day. However, since your goal is to teach them how to fish, you need to ensure that they are enjoying themselves outdoors.

What most parents usually do is that they leave their pro fishing gears behind on purpose. If the children have to use improvised rods, they make something similar too. You will also be able to talk with the kids freely in this manner.

To Sum Things Up

Fishing with the people you love can bring you the best memories that you can hold on to for a long while. Try to teach your children how to fish so that you will be able to bond over this activity even when they are all grown up.

Good luck!

Explore The Rich Coral Reefs Of Similan Island

Situated 84 kilometers northwest of Phuket, Similan is one of the most popular island groups in the Andaman Sea.  It is best known for the awesome surprise waiting right at the bottom of the clear blue waters surrounding it.  Divers all over the world wanted to explore its richness.   This little island is also frequented by many yachts and tourist boats.

 

Source:  pixabay.com

 

What makes this archipelago so attractive?  What attracts people into this little island is not just what is found on the island, but more of the exciting things you can see beneath.  Countless and most breathtaking coral growths can be found only in Similan, that it has become the playing field for most divers.

 

Coral Reef

Divers are interested in a place that has abundant marine life.  They are experts when it comes to coral reefs, and diverse coral reef ecosystem is found in this tropic island of Similan.

 

When I first toured the island with my son, I was amazed to see these under-the-sea explorers jump from their boats and swim around.   My son was one of them, and upon their return, we all watched the videos they took while they swam around the reefs.  The reefs look weird and at the same time wonderful.   They talked about how marveled they feel as these beautiful creations surrounded them.  The reefs were just there, beautifully painting the underwater with its variety of colors, making it look splendid, as they serve as home to many different fishes and critters.

 

What Are Corals?

Many are confused about what corals are. Are they fish, plants, or rocks?

 

Corals are animals that look both like a plant and a rock.  Coral reefs came into existence through the symbiosis of corals and algae that resides in their tissues.   It provides them with food (photosynthesis) and the reason for their perfect, brilliant colors.

 

Colors Of The Rainbow

Watching my son and his team roaming the bottom, swimming around the reefs, I imagine them like those we see in the coloring books.   I was actually just waiting for Sponge Bob to just come out from one of those colorful reefs.

 

The colors in the screen of what we were watching were so vibrant, ranging from brown, pink, yellow, purple, blue, more than the colors of the rainbow.  They say these colors are produced depending on the mix of the algae that are found in their tissues.  There are also corals that are fluorescent.  The unusual patterns of colors are because of the outlandish concentrations of algae in those corals.

 

Types Of Corals

Different kinds of corals are identified into eight categories.

 

Source:  photolib.noaa.gov

 

Massive corals are the pillars of most reefs.   They look like boulders and their size varies, anywhere from the scope of tiny egg to a huge two-story house.

 

Encrusting corals are commonly seen on shipwrecks by divers.  They are fast growing and form a crust on the bedrock and spread all over the surface creating a thin colorful exterior.

Source:  photolib.noaa.gov

 

Table corals are also one you can recognize easily with its rising trunk and attached branches that expands horizontally and create the table-like assembly.  They are identified with the El Nino effect and coral bleaching.

 

Elkhorn corals got its name from the horns of elks.  They bulge out vertically growing many off shooting side branches.

 

Mushroom corals resemble a cup of a mushroom.  These corals are solitary corals that settle on the ground, unattached.  They could grow up to 25 cm in diameter.

 

Digitate corals are like fingers or big clumps of cigars.  These corals have no branches and grow vertically.

 

Branching corals are the most common types of colorful small corals.  They have a form like that of a tree that has many branches and that grew some secondary branches.

 

Foliose corals can be easily recognized by its broad plate-like winged part that protrudes from the coral bed.  Most often, they are called salad corals or leaf corals because they bear a resemblance to giant lettuce head.

 

Diversity in the corals depends on many factors like its environment and geographical location.  Some say that genetics can also play a role in their degree of variance.   What we saw in Similan are different from what can be found in the Red Sea and the Caribbean.

 

Reference:

Khao Lak Explorer Dive Center. Different Coral types and how to recognize them.   Retrieved from https://www.khaolakexplorer.com/marine-life-guide/coral-types/.