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Friday, December 22, 2006


A fellow dock prowler and I are baffled at the history of the boat in today's picture. As I was making my waterfront rounds on December 15, I spotted a boat on a trailer at Children's Beach. I have never seen her here before neither has my prowler friend. I did a bit of research on the hull type and found out that she's a 26' Stanley Pulse Craft aluminum boat. Take a look at their website
Her name is Lophius which is part of the scientific name for the Anglerfish. The full scientific name is Lophius Piscatorius. I have no idea why this boat was here and I have never seen her since. If anyone has any information on this boat, please leave a comment in the comment section.

Straight Wharf Pigeon Update: I saw him down there today waddling around getting a free meal. He has gotten a lot heavier since I saw him a few weeks ago. I need to find some fat free food for him as does everyone else who feeds him. (or is it a her? I dunno).

A good amount of bay scallop boats were out. 15 in Town and 4 in Madaket. I know one guy made the journey all the way from Town to Madaket in his boat early this morning. I'm thinking he did not find anything out there because I saw him steaming along the north shore headed back to Town at around 10:30 am. He was still out at 4:00 this afternoon. Thats a long way to go in search of scallops. And an expensive boat ride seeing that the price of fuel is over three dollars a gallon now. I was speaking to a scalloper at noontime today and he showed me 3 sea urchins he had caught in his dredges today. I've only caught one sea urchin in all the years I've been scalloping. To catch 3 in one day is rare. He also caught two really nice old bottles. I wonder how many years those bottles were on the harbor floor.

The Ruthie B is currently sea scalloping. She left sometime yesterday as there was a good weather window. You need to keep a good eye on the weather and pick your days to fish this time of the year. They are steaming 8 hours to reach the grounds. You don't want to be down there when it's blowing hard. Although the captains of the big New Bedford boats would not give it a second thought. It's amazing the slop some of those guys will fish in.

I noticed Brant Point CG moved their fleet of boats into the Boat Basin today. That is always a good sign that a lot of S or SE wind is approaching us.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Head Of The Harbor Scallops

I took the above picture while scalloping at the Head Of The Harbor a couple of weeks ago. For a larger view, click on the picture and a new window will open up for a closer look. An area finally opened up there and I was able to get my five bushel limit in no time. The stock was of decent size but the weight was way off compared to previous years. When I fish up there I can always expect to get between nine and ten pounds to a bushel. This year I only got 6 pounds. Quite a difference. I hope this is not the case next year and the yields will return to normal.

Only a few guys went out scalloping today. I counted only four or five. I think the wind held a lot of them back. It was blowing pretty hard out of the west for most of the day. I know one boat pulled up to the dock at 3:30 this afternoon with four bushels. And that was with two people on the boat. That's a long day on a windy and rough harbor! But I guess if you love what you are doing, it doesn't really matter what time you get in or how many bushels of scallops you get.

While driving past Slosek's Farm on the Polpis Road today I noticed a huge flock of Canda Geese grazing on the grass in the field there. Around six or seven Snow Geese were among the Canada Geese. The geese may have been feeding on corn left over from the Summer as well as the grass.

AGM Marine was busy working in the Easy Street Basin today setting the pilings for the house which is on the road at North Wharf.

This past November, there was a very tame pigeon hanging around Straight Wharf particularly in the area of the Hy-Line office. The girls in the office there fed him on a daily basis. Whenever I was down there, I would feed him too. He would hop right up on a bench and sit with you. I noticed he was getting a little chubby as the month of November wore on. I haven't seen him for a long time. I wonder where he ended up.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

New SSA Fast Ferry

I got a call at work this morning from Jo Perkins telling me that the SSA's new fast ferry was coming here today. I had no idea the boat was coming today. Thanks for the heads up, Jo! I was at Brant Point when she came in and grabbed the above video clip of her. I must say, she doesn't look anything like a ferry. More like a luxury yacht. I will say that she looks much better than the Dead Cloud, though. I'd be interested to hear from anyone who was lucky enough to go onboard her today and have a look around. I'll wait until the public is invited for a look sometime in March.

I counted 15 boats bay scalloping today. That is a lot from previous counts. A lot of the guys came out of the woodwork today to get a few scallops for Christmas presents. It was a fine day for it, albeit a little chilly. I noticed an addition to the bay scallop fleet while I was making my rounds early this morning. Someone rigged up what appears to be a 19' Seaway boat with a Mariner outboard engine. Not sure who the captain of the boat is but I'll find out soon enough. I wish the guy luck. Scalloping is a tough racket to get into especially this year seeing that it's a lean year.

AGM Marine moved their barge from Polpis Harbor to Easy Street basin sometime yesterday.They finished rebuilding the wooden bulkhead between East and West Polpis Harbors. This project was way overdue. I have never seen the bulkhead in anything other than a horrible state of disrepair. It will be interesting to see the new one. Looks like they are going to drive the pilings for the house that was moved onto the roadway at Old North Wharf. A scalloper told me this afternoon that work on the Children's Beach boat ramp will begin shortly although I have not seen any activity down there as of late. I'm not sure who will be doing the work but my guess is that it'll be AGM Marine. The handful of scallopers who launch and haul their boats on a daily basis down there will be given free slips at Grey Lady Marine during the construction of the new boat ramp so I'm told.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Morning Commute 12/11/2006

I shot the above clip on 12/11/2006 when I was headed out to the scalloping grounds. It was taken with my digital camera. To post it here on my blog I had to compress the original file. That is why it is of rather poor quality. The original file is much sharper. Anyway, hopefully you'll get the picture (or video in this case) :^)

While making the rounds at the waterfront this morning, I noticed the Ruthie B was in. She left the day before yesterday presumably to go to New Bedford to pick up another scallop dredge to replace the one she lost. The western rigged dragger, "United States" was docked along side the Ruthie B. I'm thinking the United States is sea scalloping now because I see her here every other day or so. I haven't had a chance to go down and check out the Ruthie B or the United States to see what they are up to. Maybe tomorrow.

As for the bay scallopers, I counted 8 boats fishing in town and another 4 fishing Madaket. Two of those boats were up at Tuckernuck. It was a little breezy early in the morning with the wind out of the north but by early afternoon, the wind went almost to calm. I know one frogman that gets his 5 bushel limit of scallops every day. He goes to the same place every day. I have been thinking of learning how to dive for scallops. It seems like the best way to catch them nowadays.

I was talking to a charter boat captain down at the dock the other morning and he told me that he does not see as many sea ducks out on the harbor as in years past. I have noticed this as well. I remember back in the 80's and even in the 90's thousands and thousands of sea ducks while I was dredging the harbor for scallops. I saw mostly Eider ducks and Buffleheads with a few Brant thrown into the mix. Now I'm lucky if I see a few of these ducks here and there out on the harbor. I wonder where they all disappeared to?

Monday, December 18, 2006

GHYC Heavy Equipment

Today's picture was taken at Great Harbor Yacht Club. For a larger image of any picture I post here, just click onto it and a new window will open up with a larger picture. If any of you have been down around the GHYC area, you will no doubt notice all the activity there. Late last week several pieces of equipment were brought in. I noticed AGM Marine and Lawrence Lynch setting up shop on the other side of the street from where the old shipyard was located. I have never seen such huge machines used on Nantucket as they are using at GHYC. Lawrence Lynch has a big dump truck that you would see being used in a quarry. And AGM Marine has a crane with a very long boom. I don't know how they were able to move the crane across the road and make all the corners unless it comes apart in sections but it doesn't look like that is the case with this crane. I'm not sure what they are constructing there but the site is one big muddy mess. Come to think of it, how many construction sites have you seen that weren't a muddy mess?

Around 10 or 15 guys went out scalloping today. It was a nice day for it. A little rain in the afternoon but not much wind. I talked to one guy at noontime today and he told me that he spent the whole morning testing. He went all over the place eventually working his way outside. He went all the way down to Murray's cottage and said he only got 6 seed and not a single adult scallop! Not a good sign. I remember years ago spending a whole month outside getting my limit every day. We fished from the cut all the way down to fourth bend. It was an interesting place to fish. It was like a whole different world compared to inside. It was much cleaner and the grass was bright green and healthy. Everyone who fished out there caught not just tons of scallops in their dredges but other things as well. Anything from fishing lures to sunglasses to snorkels and masks. Too bad there wasn't scallops out there anymore. It would take a lot of pressure off of the inside. Hopefully in a few years it will come back and we'll have another huge set of scallops out there.

You have probably heard by now that the Ruthie B lost her sea scallop dredge late last week. I haven't heard how it was lost but they spent 7 hours with a grappling hook trying to recover it with no luck. I heard that a sea scallop dredge costs anywhere between 4 and 8 thousand dollars.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Scalloping At Dawn

Welcome to the maiden voyage of my blog, Nantucket Waterfront News. I have wanted to do this for a long time. I visit the waterfront on a daily basis, usually several times a day. Spending so much time down there, I see a lot of things going on and talk to a lot of people. I decided to keep a daily journal of the goings on around the waterfront and share it with you here. I also take several pictures with my digital camera on a daily basis. I have an extensive archive of waterfront pictures which I will post. I hope you will find my new blog interesting and a place where you can drop in and get all your waterfront news. Feel free to e-mail me with any thoughts or comments. Thanks.