Freddie Finds A Bunker Crop
by Allan Appel | Jul 5, 2012 12:01 pm
Posted to: Fair Haven
Summertime ... and the fish were jumping. At least at the Mill River bridge off Lombard between East and James they were.
Thousands of bunker swirled beneath the span at high tide.
A fisherman without his pole, Freddie Morales, strolled by and said, “I wish I owned a bait shop.”
It was late Tuesday morning. Normally, Morales said, he snags a few bunker with a three-way-hook, takes the bunker, which are bait fish, and goes to do more serious fishing further down the Mill where it passes under Chapel Street. His other favored spot is off the Tomlinson Avenue Bridge, he said.
Morales explained that the schools of bunker swirl in narrows under bridges in their attempt to escape the striped bass and the blue fish that lunge at them to eat them from below.
“The stripers and blue fish like the deeper water,” he said.
As the fish moved slowly under the bridge and downstream in a large swirling circle, you could hear the splashes of the lunging hunters and the dashes of the hunted as they breached the surface of the water.
Also visible on the backs and flanks of the bunker were red blotches. In the sunlight you might mistake them for coloration. In fact they were bloody bite marks.
Morales took off his Miami Heat cap and looked wistfully at the action below.
“You should go to the Grand Avenue Bridge, man. You see stripers this big,” he said, indicating a length of about two shoe boxes.
Then he put on his cap, walked to East Street and turned south. “I wish I could go fishing,” he said, “but I have to pick up my wife.”
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Hate to rain on everyone’s parade, but the Stiped Bass and Bluefish that you can catch in Long Island Sound and the surrounding rivers (Mill R.,Quinnipiac R.) are FULL OF PCBs!! The DEEP recommends that you eat at most 1 meal per month.
I don’t think you are raining on anyone’s parade HewNaven, the fishermen in Fair Haven eat it every other day, undersized AND caught without a license while fishing illegally off a bridge that has signs all over it saying “no fishing”. They don’t care.
your not raining on anyones parade your fust being FICKLE local fisherman have known this for years.i am licensed for both fresh and salt water and enjoy fishing as a family sport.catch and release only.also there are many out of work MEN and WOMEN that fish for a meal as our forefathers have .as a lifelong resident of the city and fisherman I have NEVER heard of anyone getting sick from the fish.I do eat many BLUECRAB caught from the shallows and shores and i’m in good health. nothing more or less than the chemicals that they pump into all the store bought products including YOUR beef,pork,poultry.as a side note i have a BEAUTIFUL backyard flock of inner city chickens that provide great healthy eggs everyday.lifelong city resident
I have seen giant schools of Bunker (aka Menhaden) off that very same bridge. The swirling school is like some living vortex.
You can’t catch these with bait, because they eat plankton.
You can’t really eat them either—the Indians used them as fertilizer.
A license is need to net them. But foul-hook away….