Nottoway trashed with abandoned limb-lines

Published 10:30 am Thursday, June 21, 2012

Spirit of Moonpie and I spent the 8th through the 11th on the Nottoway below the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries from the Route 671 ramp.

The water was pretty normal looking and five feet on the U.S. Geological Survey gauge in Sebrell.

Trash was not too bad on and in the river this trip. I only picked up a few bottles. However the river was very trashed with abandoned limb-lines. Gobs of string with hooks, orange survey tape and pieces of fabric softener bottles hanging from trees littered the shoreline from the narrows all the way to Checkerboard Corner.

Then again from the Bronco Club downriver a ways the river was plastered with lines. They were properly marked with the owners’ names, etc., but these people evidently don’t know they must be removed when finished being fished.

Leaving these devices is an eyesore and a threat to wild animals that can become entangled. So take ‘em with you when you leave so I will not have to make that phone call to Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Conservation Police Officers.

Fishing on this trip was a mixed bag. I only caught four largemouth to two pounds. All were caught on top-water, but it was truly slow fishing.

The bream fishing was very good. I caught plenty of big fat black bream using an itty bitty Rapala. I imagine someone with a fly rod could clean up.

I also caught a few catfish at night. However that was terribly slow.

The mosquitoes, however, did pretty well those three nights as Moonpie and I (well me anyway) lost about a pint of blood. I saw plenty on Moonpie, but I think they were sucking air.

Now I got to tell you this story. The other day I was doing an Eco-Cruise with the Village people (no, not the musical group) and downriver from the old Franklin dump, I picked up this bottle floating in the river.

It was a pint milk bottle with “Baker’s Dairy Franklin Va.” on it. Pretty bizarre — it was floating down the river.

Come to find out it was Kaye Wade’s father’s business back in maybe the 1930s, early 40s, and once was owned by a Mr. Bradshaw. Maybe somebody out there can tell me more.

Now I’ve got a beef. Upon retuning to the boat landing, I found a note on my windshield. It had been there for a few days and was barely legible, and in fact, I could not read it all.

Of course it was not signed, which is such a cheese because I cannot answer any of the comments directly to the issuer.

The note ranted on about the Kennedys and Riverkeepers being environmental criminals? Which I do not understand.

It also said that if I had a smaller boat and truck, maybe the environment would be better off? Of course this person did not explain why. I assume it was directed at gas consumption, or pollution from the motor.

So let me just say the motor on the pontoon boat is one of the cleanest, most efficient U.S. Environmental Protection Administration-rated outboards made.

Also on this extended four-day patrol, I used four gallons of gas in the boat. The truck…well not so good on gas, but I need a robust truck to haul all the Riverkeeper boats to the river so I can do my thing.

People who anonymously leave me notes accomplish and say nothing. So if you have a beef, or don’t like my boat, dog or whatever, just call me, e-mail me or something, and let’s discuss it like adults.

And think on this, while you’re out there running around putting nameless love notes on my truck and complaining about the way I do things, I’ll be cleaning up and working to improve the two rivers we call the Nottoway and Blackwater.