Published 7:45 am Friday, November 26, 2010

by Jeff Turner

A dove visits with the Spirit of Moonpie on the Blackwater River. -- JEFF TURNER | TIDEWATER NEWS

Spirit of Moonpie and I spent the 19th through the 21st on the Blackwater above Joyner’s Bridge.

The water was 52 degrees, clear and 4.80 on the U.S. Geological Survey gauge at Burdette. Trash was light on this part of the river, which stunned me because of what else I found.

I could tell the river has been well fished since I was last there in January. I have never seen so much fishing line in the trees, on logs, everywhere. I eventually figured out that some num-skulls had used monofilament to set limb lines up and down the river. and left the line in the trees.

They were not the only guilty ones though because I also found fishing line with corks all up and down the river, hung up on stumps and logs.

Maybe it was the same ignorant people. Maybe it was the same people I found that had camped along the river and carved their initials “MD + CD 10-16-10” in giant letters in the trees.

What really frightens the heck out of me is that this is stuff 8-year-olds do, and to think there are people with the mentality of an 8-year-old out piloting boats up and down the river and camping is unnerving.

Actually 8-year-olds today I’m sure know better than to do stuff like that.

Anyway, I’ll let our new Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries conservation police officer know what to look for.

The fishing on this trip was pretty slack. I caught a few bass on a shad crank bait and one speckle, but that was ‘bout it. I tried for black fish, but they still have not stacked up yet.

Moonpie and I had a strange visitor drop by on this trip. We were fishing in a cove down river when we noticed a bird in the water swimming beside the boat.

“Grab it,” Moonpie hollered. “I don’t think it knows how to swim cause it’s lying on its side.”

I grabbed the litter getter and rescued (see photo) what turned out to be a white dove. We cleaned it off, gave it some energy drink, and the critter seemed like it was just fine ‘cept maybe a bit bruised up.

The visitor stayed with us for the rest of the trip, and I’ve never heard so much cooing on the two rivers we call the Blackwater and Nottoway.