|Rain needed to revive salmon, steelhead runs
The Sportsmanís Report
There are welcome rain clouds on the horizon, as the northernmost part of the state has rain forecast in the foreseeable future.
Hopefully, this will trickle down to our part of the country. Let’s hope it will be enough rain to reinvigorate the winter runs of salmon, steelhead and bait fish that are such an integral part of our fishing profile for both salt and freshwater habitat.
Bait shops are reporting excellent sturgeon fishing in San Francisco Bay, specifically Coyote Point, the Pump House and China Beach. Anglers are also landing striped bass in the 5- to 7-pound range.
The herring spawn in the bay has provoked a record haul for bait fishermen. The beautiful, silvery fish are loaded with egg sacks and are being netted by the cooler-full. If you are so inclined, cure your herring for baitfish in one of the recipes available on the net. Just Google herring cure for bait and choose the method that suits you.
On the hunting front, these are dog days of winter, one of the few bright spots are wild boar. The pigs are having litters and digging up the wild country in their happy pursuit of tasty things to eat. Do your part by bagging a hog this year, better still two pigs a year. This will help protect our wild ecosystem. The fewer snouts digging the turf the better. The wild boar is an introduced species – call them invasive and destructive. Cleaned and cooked in a turkey roasting bag with apple, thyme and lemon, they are called delicious.
Annual SOMA walk
The Sonoma County Mycological Association (SOMA) completed their annual winter camp over Martin Luther King weekend. Folks came west in droves to escape the freezing cold and snow drifts of New England. The attendees wore t-shirts and sunglasses during the day and a light sweater in the evening.
One thing missing were the mushrooms. Although the ID tables were packed, the forays over the weekend found very few edibles. In the end, our friends from the east reluctantly flew back home to the big freeze.
Empire Divers update
The local dive club, Redwood Empire Divers, is hosting their annual Jetty Cleanup Day at Doran Park again this year. The date for the cleanup is March 8, and all divers and family are invited to the dive and pot luck. Jerry Thoman is coordinating the event, email Jerrythoman@yahoo.com.
Bill Hanson is a Sonoma County native and a lifelong sportsman. He is the former president of the Sonoma County Mycological Association. Look for his column in The Community Voice each week.