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Saturday, September 15, 2018

4 Years A Nemesis: Operation Mud Sunfish (2018)

Date: 8/27/2018
Date Written: 8/28/2018

This was a last second scheme to give the kids a suitable farewell to summer. Since my days off are usually torrential downpours it was a nice change of pace to see 85-90 degree weather with the words humid attached, at least for beaching purposes. The wife and I decided it would be a one day beach trip and off went went to Sandy Hook, NJ. 3 hours down, 3 hours back. 

We made it to the beach and the babies quickly ran to the water, after all I do refer to them all as water babies. It didn't take long before Kori started pointing out the elephant in the room, the fish were in the swimming area in a big way and it was hard to ignore. Kori told me to go get my fishing pole and with peer pressure like that from a wife, who am I to say no. Every Russo save for Tony got a lifer Northern Kingfish today. I intentionally only brought freshwater gear and bait for after the beach when every one slept. I didn't want to intermingle fishing with family time. But hey when you run a fishing blog this sort of thing happens. Kori goaded me into fishing by pointing out the obvious, that the water was THICK with fish. Almost Florida levels of fish. Rays moved in packs, Kingfish chased bait into the rip, silversides danced in the waves as predators came in. It was hard to miss other people catching left and right. So I made the trek to the car and grabbed my mushy semi melted redworms. I could of tied literally anything on the end of my line and lament leaving my gear at home. I quickly found Kori’s motives out as she “borrowed” the rod for an hour not exactly what I had in mind or planned for but I will take it!!!! Also Maddy decided that after all these years of fishing with me she is now afraid of fish out of water, which is odd seeing as she completely solo caught that fish while I had my back turned and proudly brought it to me, camera popped out all of a sudden it was the clown from IT!

I planned to do some "View Askew Universe"/Kevin Smith Movie touring while in the area but the babies were very hungry so we headed to a local Longhorn Steakhouse where everyone got to show just how much of an appetite all day swimming can work up.

We traveled another hour south for my new arch nemesis the mud sunfish. Its been 4 years and 3 trips, a collective 19 hours of driving specifically to target these guys. You can read about 2015 here or 2017 here. So yeah me and this fish have some history. I got some super secret intel I'm not publishing online but changed the game and with that the Mud Sunfish became a much easier adversary. I drove home singing along to my favorite songs with snoozing kids and a happy wife, not only that but two hard adversaries on the lifer list were stricken down. #183 Northern Kingfish and #184 Mud Sunfish. If I don't hit my target of 200 species by 3/22/2019, this is a major consultation.

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