Visitors flock into Delaware

A harbor seal pokes its head above the water as it swims at Coursey Pond near Felton on Wednesday. (Delaware State News/Marc Clery)

Cold to warm and back to cold. So far that has been the winter here and we are good with it.

Fishing has been decent for those that want to brave the elements. Sea bass will be over on the 31st of December and everyone will concentrate their efforts on tautog. That fishing has been decent as well with some large quality fish brought to the cleaning table. Charters are doing well and filling up on the weekends.

Blanket of snow geese

The snow geese are flying all over the state now and the fields are covered. Hunters are getting a lot of birds. The season lasts until Feb. 4 and there is no limit on the amount of snow geese you bag. The sky is so full of the snow geese you can barely see much else. Birds are flocking to the ocean too by the thousands and that is quite the spectacle.  Farmers are not big fans of these snow geese for obvious reasons. Canadian geese are being bagged rather quick on most days.

Coursey seal

We have yearly visitors in Delaware during the winter, the seals that migrate to our area and winter in our waters.

Usually you see them at the ice breakers, inner and outer walls and around the Indian River Inlet  A juvenile harbor seal managed to swim up the Murderkill river at Bowers beach all the way to the spillway at Courseys Pond above Milford.

The photo of the seal that appeared on Wednesday’s front page of the Delaware State News was taken by Jason Daniels.

It has been there for a couple of weeks, and the Marine Education, Research and Rehabilitation Institute has volunteers onsite to keep the public away from the seal.

Federal law states you have to be a hundred and fifty feet away from a seal.  They may look like cute puppies,but they do not have the demeanor of a cute puppy.  Do not approach or try to interact with a seal if you see one. Best description I saw on one Facebook page was when someone asked if that was a seal: “Freshwater pond pig. Unheard of to see in Delaware,” wrote Robin Adino.”

Expo coming up

If you haven’t heard by now, the first Delaware Outdoor Expo, presented by Delaware State News, is March 11. It will start at 8 a.m. at the Delaware State Fairgrounds in Harrington.

This will be a great time and feature a lot of vendors. Perfect way to stock up for the coming fishing seasons and any of your favorite outdoor activities.

We will have presentations and speakers. Harry Aiken will be doing a presentation on surf fishing. If you haven’t had the chance to meet and chat with Harry, you won’t want to miss this. He has forgotten more about surf fishing than most of us will ever learn. He is a wealth of knowledge, and enjoys sharing his experiences. He is the guy that cast a baseball out of Yankee stadium, something no one has ever done even with a baseball bat.
That in and of itself is an amazing story. We hope to see you there in March.

Sitting on perch

In the meantime, the white perch fishing is decent if you can get some grass shrimp. You will have to catch them, but it is worth the work. These warmer days are getting the bass a little stirred up and feeding more. The pond action has been decent.  Most of us are just waiting for the yellow perch bite to really turn on,and as usual we dream of the spring run and what will happen.

Rich King’s outdoors column appears Thursdays in the Delaware State News.

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