Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Sea Lice Tell the Story

Check out the sea lice on the body of this fresh run striper.
Migrating fish tend to have sea lice which they pick up from
migrating in the cold, deeper water.
I was catching decent numbers of schoolies last evening. All of them had sea lice on their bodies.  These are small orange/brown lice that cling to the stripers' bodies.  The stripers pick them up in deeper water as they migrate northward. It's a sure bet that these are migrating fish. They will lose this lice over time and as the water warms up.
The holdovers that reside in many of the state's saltwater ponds and rivers do not have sea lice. That is one way that fishermen often tell whether they are catching holdovers or fresh run stripers.
Migrating stripers continue to stream into RI waters.  They are along the oceanfront and in the Bay in increasing numbers.  The sizes are also increasing with good numbers of fish in the 24 to 28 inch range, though there are a lot of small ones under 20 inches. I have not caught or heard of a fish over 30 inches.
Parking continues to be a massive headache and is keeping lots of fishermen away from the water's edge.