During this troubling time, many people are taking up new hobbies to busy themselves. One hobby that has taken off during the pandemic is fishing. This hobby helps individuals see nature, enjoy the outdoors, and relax.
Many people think that all they need is a rod and reel to go fishing, but they’d be wrong. Before going, read up on the Rules and Regulations and the Creel Limit for Connecticut State Fishing. After becoming familiar with the Rules and Regulations, a fisher needs to purchase a fishing license. The Saltwater License costs about $10.00 dollars, the Freshwater License costs $28.00, and a Combination Freshwater/Saltwater License costs $32.00. Prices vary according to ages. New licenses must be purchased every year at bait shops, certain town halls, or online.
When buying supplies, go to local bait shops. One local bait shop is Dee’s Bait and Tackle in New Haven, which has been family-run since 1955, or other stores that carry fishing equipment such as Bass Pro Shops or Dick’s Sporting Goods. Fishers find local bait shops are more reliable since they have most likely been around longer, and the shops carry live bait.
When purchasing supplies, a good rod and reel can cost approximately $30.00. Tackle boxes hold all of the extra supplies. Paul White, a fisher for 50 years, said to have, “Extra hooks, pliers, split shot weights, hook remover/extractor, bobbers, chain or rope to put through gill of fish until done fishing (if taking fish home), lures if not bait fishing and a tape measure.” Another item to take is scissors in case the line gets caught and it needs to be untangled. The main type of bait that is recommended for fishing is nightcrawler worms for freshwater fishing and sand worms for saltwater fishing. Power bait and shiners are also good options, but they are most often used by experienced fishers.
There are many things to consider when deciding on a spot to fish, like what type of water is ideal to fish in and what type of fish is preferred to catch. James Carangelo, a fisherman for 42 years, says that, “As a beginner, you should always go with an adult or a dependable person, so if you fall in they would be there to rescue you or get help so you don’t get hurt or drown[...]Safety should always be in the forefront when fishing.” Knowing the terrain is beneficial not only for the fishers safety, but for knowing where the good fishing spots are. Two well known places for freshwater fishing are Wharton Pond in Wallingford and Southard Falls in Oxford. The main freshwater fish are trout, bass, perch and salmon. The well known places for saltwater fishing are the Sandbar in West Haven, Lighthouse Point in New Haven, Branford Point, and the Guilford dock. Saltwater fishing areas can have striped bass, bluefish, fluke, cod, bluefin tuna and many others, depending on how far out the fisherman decides to go and how deep the line is. No matter where a fisher decides to fish, they will find nature at its best, with its tranquil, relaxing waters.
The weather and time of day also affects the fish. Michael DeGregorio, a fisherman for 79 years and bait store owner of Dee’s Bait and Tackle for 65 years, says that for him, fishing, “Makes [him] forget about the world around [him].” Fishing helps develop deeper patience. It is also a stress reliever since the fisher can become one with nature. The hobby gets the fisher out of the house and into nature, a thing many people forget to appreciate.
Every fisherman’s big dream is to snag the ‘BIG ONE.’ So, if quarantine is becoming boring, go out into nature and develop the new hobby of fishing.