About "Catch & Research"

Welcome. I found my passion in ecological economics and fishing. They are all about pursuit of unknown and uncertain objects. I always enjoy the seemingly reckless pursuit itself. This blog is a record of my long journey in research and fishing. Your comments are welcome and appreciated.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

23 Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism

Prof. Ha-Joon Chang talks about his new book, 23 Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism. In this short presentation, he mentions very interesting things about economics nowadays.
Many academic economists today are not even interested in the real world. Actually, in deed, economic professions today (think) interest in the real world is the indirect admission that you are not very good. If you are very smart, you do really abstract mathematical modeling. If you are less good, you do econometrics, basically, manipulating statistics. If you are really down in the pits (???), then you are interested in the real world. That is a strange academic culture. (24:17-)
Well, according to him, I am clearly a third grade economist, and I am proud of that. It is worth-to-watch 30 minute presentation. I will definitely buy the book.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Proven Tip: Cork Stopper as a Hook Cushion

I have used cork stoppers as hook cushions, which I read about in an introductory fishing book. It is a good solution to handle and organize the sharp hooks. It is simple and cheap. Drink your favorite wine or beer (it may require you some money), and save the cork stoppers. Dry them fully, and put your hooks on them. A caveman can do.

Using cork stoppers makes it easy to organize a tackle box.

Couple of things to remember to use cork stoppers as hook cushions.
  • Dry them thoroughly before use. Soaked cork will rust your hook.
  • In the same reason, after using your hook, do not put them on the cushion right away. Dry your hook first.
  • If you drop your tackle box in water, you must dry your hooks and hook cushions separately. The same reason of rust prevention.
  • I tried to use plastic stoppers as hook cushions, but they were not as good as cork ones. Plastic stoppers are too tough. So, stick on conventional cork.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Fish Gripper

While kayak fishing, it is always risky to land ferocious fish which are hooked on crank bait. Because those treble hooks can hook myself, too. Ouch! I had a painful memory when I was landing striped bass couple of years ago. I tried to grab its mouth, but it shook its head at the very moment. It got my finger, but thanks god, I was using barbless treble hooks! It hurt but not that serious. If there were barbs, I don't even want to think about it. I was so lucky.

Since this experience, for my own safety, I exhaust fish before landing by dragging it over surface for a while. It is nothing different from chocking fish. It is not a bad tactic, but I always feel sorry for that. I also need to spend more time to revive the exhausted fish. You can consider to use a net, but a net takes space on already tiny kayak. Nylon nets also hurt fins of fish badly. Because nowadays I use mainly hard plastic lure, so I finally decide to have a fish gripper to reduce risk in landing.

I bought this Field & Stream's big game grip. Lately, I bought more Field & Stream's products than usual. But it was the only gripper at the store. More information is available at the linked web page.

So far, I am quite satisfied with it. Not only for kayak anglers, but for all anglers, I recommend fish gripper in general. It reduces all hassles in landing and handling fish.

Sponge grip makes the gripper easy to use with slimy hands. It was heavier than I thought. You need a bit of muscle to pull the trigger as shown in the picture above. A female angler complained about this. Durability of inner spring must be key review point. I will report about it later if I found any trouble.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Blue Crab in the Hudson

Weeks ago, I picked up a shell of crab. I have seen small crab shells at the Hudson shores, but this was relatively large. I measured it (12cm/5 inches) and took a picture of it in order to identify it at home. To my surprise, it turned out that the shell was Blue crab's. I didn't know that there are Blue crabs in the Hudson river. NYSDEC does even have a tagging program of the crab. I am not sure if crabbing is allowed in Troy dam section, but it must be nice to watch live Blue crab crawling around in the shallow water. Well, why lie... Yes, I want to catch and steam them to eat. Crabs are so yummy. If the river is not polluted with PCB, I might have started crabbing right away.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Reading at the shore

I went carp fishing this afternoon. I brought a book to read, and it was the first time ever in my whole fishing life that I wished no fish bite. The book was so interesting that I didn't want to be distracted. The book is Michael Sandel's "Justice: What is the right thing to do." I strongly recommend this book to anyone who lives in this time of chaos. It will refresh your sense of justice. Fortunately, carp cooperated until I left the shore.

Troy Fire Department's fire boat was the only distraction. It seemed that they were doing fire fighting practice. The boat's water gun shot out powerful stream of water in the middle of the river. It was so cool to watch.