We had a slow pick going of mostly short blacks. I look up to see a 40+ foot boat running downtide & downwind right at us. The captain proceeds to put on the brakes & drop anchor about 200' in front of us. He put his vessel in reverse & now is setting his anchor uptide & upwind like somehow physics won't affect his boat. Of coarse after his boat settles in he is now 50'-60' right smack in front of us (over our anchor rode). The wind is forecast to gust to 25kts & that now has me concerned for if he breaks loose there will be little time to avoid a collision. I also can't readily move as my anchor is under his vessel. I'm also steaming about this guy just mugging the spot I'm on.
I'm trying my best to just ignore the fact that he's there & just fish. This is when I see one of the guys fishing catch what appears to be an obviously short blackie. I wait to see if they measure it & toss it back. Nope, it went right into the bucket. Next I see a porgy about the size of my hand enter the same bucket. That was the last straw as now I'm really mad. My partner & I have been putting back every fish that is undersized & these guys mug me & are keeping those fish. No way!
I grabbed my phone & googled the DEC poaching hotline. Two & half hours later here comes a DEC patrol boat steaming directly at my new pal. They board him & we see a DEC officer dumping fish over the side. The officer gets back on his boat & they proceed to drift back about 100 yards for what must have been 15-20 minutes. The DEC now approaches our vessel & we show them our catch. They proceed to tell us that the boat in question had 7 short fish on board. They then go to the poachers & hand them their tickets. That 15-20 minutes was spent writing I guess.
I checked the fines & found that it is $154.00 per count.
Moral of the story: You can either mug me or keep short fish, but you can't do both.
Edited by Sig, November 10 2015 - 09:06 AM.