On a scale of 0-10, the weather this past Saturday was stuck at about a 4, but we didn't let that stop us from hosting a fishing clinic at the East River State Park.
We were off to a rocky start (full disclosure: if you think you've caught a pun, you're probably right; we've stocked this blog full of them), mostly because our Program Manager is not what you would call an ultra-competent fisherperson.
Most of the praise has to go to Victor Acosta from the NYS Parks Department East River State Park, who was really the heart and sole of this class. Victor kindly donated his time and shared his fishing gear with us (and showed us the proper casting form).
We also learned more about the kinds of fish commonly present in the East River (which, fun fact! is not a river at all, but a strait connecting Long Island Sound with New York Bay the Bronx River), including striped bass, bluefish, and porgies. And, when we checked on our oysters, we found baby shrimp in their cages! Shrimp can't survive in highly polluted waters, so this is a sign that, slowly but surely, the East River is getting cleaner.
You do need a fishing license to fish, but it's easy (and free!) to obtain on the NYSDEC website here.
The New York Department of Environmental Conservation ((NYSDEC) has lots more helpful tips and information about saltwater fishing, which you can access here, and more about fishing in general with its "I Fish NY" guide here.
It's time to reel in this blog post, but we hope you'll come join us for future events. Upcoming ones include:
July 7: Learn more about community solar, with special guest host Sustainable CUNY).
July 14: Have fun getting down and dirty while keeping our parks clean and healthy with Tree Care Tuesday.
July 21: Help build a DIY rainwater harvesting set up and learn more about how to increase water conservation, with special guest hosts Citizens Committee of New York.
July 25: Bring in a sample of your backyard soil to be tested! With special guest host Urban Soils Institute).