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AnglerFish Guides

333 Victory Rd. Quincy MA 02171

Boston Charter Fishing Reports


Winter Fishing Attire

Posted on June 14, 2013 at 1:05 PM Comments comments (99)
Originally published January 2012 in Coastal Angler Boston: - What to Wear?   By Capt. Tim Egenrieder
Late February, a few years back, I was steelhead fishing with a good friend.  It was a few degrees colder than freezing, light snow in the air and we were standing in 38-degree water up to our waists.  The water was that perfect shade of green and as the sun lifted I could see quite a few beautiful fish in my drift.  2 fly changes later and “thunk”, I was tight.  I yelled out, “this is going to be a great day, get the camera.”  That’s when it became clear the day would not go as planned.  His hands were shivering so bad that he could barely hold the camera.  I had to give up the hole and the perfect drift and head 30 minutes down the road.  I don’t expect to ever again see someone that excited to buy clothes at a 24 hr Wal-Mart.
I have only had a few notable occasions where a medical emergency has ended an outdoor excursion. However countless fishing, hunting, hiking, rafting, kayaking, skiing and camping trips have prematurely ended due to someone getting cold
There are only 3 ways that the winter elements can make you miserable: temperature, moisture and wind.  This misery is completely preventable.  Here are a few tips so that your buddy doesn’t have to frequently remind you of the day he gave up a perfect early steelhead bite to take you shopping.
Important  - what you should not do:
Cotton is evil.  If you are out in the cold and have the slightest chance of sweating or getting wet – DO NOT WEAR COTTON.  You are better off naked than wearing wet cotton. Cotton rampantly soaks up moisture and dries very slowly.  Your body will try and fail to heat the accumulated water in the cotton layer removing precious energy from your core. Jeans, white socks, t-shirts, sweatshirts or most of what you are probably wearing now are worthless when wet in the cold.
Never break a sweat and Never shiver.
What you should wear:
Always dress in layers.  The 3 layers to consider are primary, insulation and protection.
The primary layer is next to your skin.  Look for silk or 100% synthetic fabrics.  Different manufacturers call their synthetic fabrics different things.  Almost all of them work well at both wicking away moisture from your skin and giving you a primary layer of insulation keeping you warm. Tags from the manufacturer are fairly accurate for the degree of warmth they provide.  The primary layer should be a snug fit but not too tight. 
Next is the insulation layer.  Wool and fleece are all you need to consider here.  Both trap air between fibers keeping the cold out and the warmth in while wicking away moisture.  I find that wool can be bulky, restrictive and often too warm.  Fleece is incredibly comfortable, very warm and gives the greatest range of comfort.
The protection layer is exposed to the elements.  This is of course dependent on the planned activity.  The primary function is to block wind and water.  I prefer PVC coated bibs (oilskins) on the boat, neoprene waders when cold weather stream fishing and higher tech fabrics for most other activities.  Look for waterproof, windproof, hoods and fastening cuffs to keep the external elements out.
Headwear is a must.  It is well known that the majority of your heat can escape through your head.  Wool and fleece are again the only options.  The warmest hat I own is made of tightly woven wool and the non-itch liner still itches.  I usually take this with me but start with a fleece hat and neckliner and see if I can get away with it.
The one place that I always prefer wool is on my feet.  Merino wool socks have become very cheap.  I like to wear 2 pairs of socks.  100% Merino wool is best next to my skin for warmth and comfort and then a thick wool sock 2 layer for insulation.  Always take this combination with you when trying on boots.  I usually end up getting boots one size bigger to accommodate the added bulk.  Boots and socks that are too tight will restrict blood flow making your feet much colder.
Fingerless wool gloves are great when you need to stay warm while being able to full use of your hands.  Otherwise wear waterproof, well-insulated loose fitting gloves or mittens.
Finally, Never use fabric softener or dryer sheets on synthetic fabrics.  The components of these products cling to your clothes diminishing their water repellency, breathability and moisture wicking.  I always hang dry my synthetic fabrics as well. 
Everyone is different.  The ideal components for you will depend on numerous factors.  I figured out what suited me from a season as a ski lift operator in college and hundreds of Lake Erie steelhead trips.   Never wear cotton, buy quality materials and layer them.  Done right, 20 degrees in blizzard like conditions can feel the same as it does in your living room.

Cod Worms Article December 2011

Posted on June 14, 2013 at 12:58 PM Comments comments (169)
Originally published in Coastal Angler Boston: December 2011

On a late season tuna drift, I noticed a few decent marks passing along the bottom and I decided to drop a jig and teaser down.  It didn’t take long before we had enough cod on ice for a few dinners. 
I’ve filleted a lot of cod and I’ve seen worms in most of them, but the fillets from this day were particularly loaded with the little critters… As usual all the typical crews’ response starting getting voiced – “that’s nasty” , or “eh, just some extra protein”, and “don’t worry, they can’t survive human digestion”, and several “no way, I’m not eating that.” among others.  I used to be in the extra protein camp.  Having researched it, not anymore:
What are they?
The Cod Worm, or more correctly the Seal Worm (Pseudoterranova spp) is a parasitic nematode.  It is a roundworm that is present in an estimated 75-90% of all Atlantic Cod.  They can be brown, red, pink, yellow or white in color.  They can be found in many species of fish but are most commonly found in cod due to their living on the bottom in close proximity to grey seals.  As usual, blame it on the seals.
The Seal Worm has a 4 stage larval process.  The life cycle begins when the final infected host (usually a grey seal) releases eggs of the worm in their feces into sea water.  The eggs immediately hatch into a larval stage.  The larvae are consumed by small crustaceans, which then are preyed upon by fish.  The 3 stage of larval development has a specially formed tooth that enables penetration of the gut into the flesh of the infected fish.  This is stage that you see in the fillets of the cod.  Finally, the host fish is consumed by a marine mammal (or human) where the larvae reside in the bowel where they seek a member of the opposite sex for mating.  The life cycle is completed when the female lays eggs that exit the host’s body through its feces.
Humans are an accidental host of Seal Worms.  They easily survive your digestion process and can even complete the 4 stage of development in our bowel.  They can survive in up to 80% brine solution and can easily survive a low temperature smoking process.
The Good News (Sort of)
Fortunately, most of us are not frequent consumers of raw cod, nor should we be.  The worms can be killed by freezing at -10 degrees F or by cooking to 140 degrees (keep in mind that household freezers are typically set to 0 and cod is opaque and flaky at 130).  The commercial processors use a candling table which shines a light up through the flesh making the larvae easier to see.  This can be done at home with a pane of glass positioned over a fluorescent lamp.  The larval worms might be 1-3 cm long, but only 5mm when coiled in the fish’s flesh. Needlenose or tweezers are all you need to remove them.  Soaking the fillets in brine or lemon juice can make them easier to remove. 
Basically remove all that you can see and make sure you thoroughly cook the fillets for the ones you couldn’t.  Or, just do what restaurants do - bread and deep fry them.
Worst Case.
So let’s say you consume a quantity of infested flesh – what happens next?  Potentially nothing.  You may pass them before they take up residence.  You can even become mildly infested and be completely asymptomatic.  The 3 to 4 stage of development can take from 3 days to 3 weeks.  In this time, you may have the abdominal pain / distress and you may experience other weird symptoms like tingling in the throat or arms.  In very rare cases you can become allergic to the slime that that worms produce from their skin.  Unless you are regularly consuming undercooked or raw infected fish, the entire adult lifecycle will complete its course within a month.
Do keep in mind that parasites have not survived most of eternity by making their hosts sick.  Their entire reproductive lifecycle depends on the hosts maintaining overall and intestinal health.  This is also not a new concern, with reports and scientific studies on these worms from the 1950’s, and comprehensive studies of health effects from over 30 years ago.  You can continue to enjoy catching and eating cod.  Seal digestive systems are often loaded with these worms because they don’t fillet, inspect, freeze, and then cook their catch, but you can.

Fishing Reports Page is Created!

Posted on February 12, 2013 at 3:03 PM Comments comments (409)
This is our first post on the new blog.  Check out our fishing highlight video from last year.  There are plenty of big fish pics and great video segments from our year in Boston Harbor.  Enjoy!