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Old 20-08-2010, 17:31   #31
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Floating lines are illegal in BC as well.
If a crab pot line is off the beaten path I try avoid it. If it is in a main channel, tough ****. The next guy may not have a cutter on. I owe him some consideration, far more than the nut who put it in the main channel.
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Old 20-08-2010, 17:52   #32
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Trouble is, those have to be replaced periodically and a lot of less than ethical watermen wire them shut.
Given the legal size of crabs is determined by size I don't see the accusation as holding any water either. By the time anything like that decomposes the crabs are already dead. In VA they regulate the traps for crabs by the number of "cull rings". These rings allow small crab to escape. By law all traps are required to be inspected on a periodic basis. During the bad crab season of the past few years many waterman made a partial living rounding up abandoned traps. If you had several hundred traps in place each day and had to check them every other day I doubt you could eat regularly and not lose a few once in a while. Traps are lost. I don't see that as is intentional. The trap has value and a trap with crabs also has more value.

The fact that people make a living on the water is no basis to berate them for doing so legally by asserting they don't do so legally. A line caught in a prop has already lost 100% of it's value to the person it belongs to if you have or don't have line cutters. It then becomes your problem. Line cutters I really don't feel are that effective especially if you think you ignore the issue and just travel at whim. They may help in some cases but they are by no means assurance or protection from the consequences.
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Old 21-08-2010, 06:17   #33
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Originally Posted by Brent Swain View Post
Floating lines are illegal in BC as well ...
Not so.
Excerpted from Canadian Sport Fishing Guidelines for Crab:
“... Buoy Lines
It is recommended that harvesters use sinking line.
If you use floating line, ensure that there is a weight attached to keep the excess line below the surface of the water. This will ensure that your line doesn't become entangled in boaters' props ...”

HereFisheries and Oceans Canada | Pacific Region | Publications | Sport Fishing Guidelines for Crab (Brochure)
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Old 21-08-2010, 07:35   #34
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Fish and crab traps are not supposed to be laid in a channel. If you find that they are, you should notify the Coast Guard and/or the Marine Police who will generally come and remove them.

Sailing at night outside of channels in Florida inland waters can really be problematical. If we have to do so, we generally post a watch at the bow with a spot-light unless there is very good moon light. Floats are supposed to have reflective paint/tape to make them easier to spot at night although, frankly, we rarely find that to be so. SO far, we've been lucky.

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I have never seen the coast gaurd or police remove anything from the water. Im sure it happens but i can remeber numerous radio broadcasts that have gone on for days alerting boaters to floating refrigerators,logs and recently on the bay a stove. I dont know what happens to them maybe they get picked up at some point. Im pretty sure they will come out if you hit one and get holed. intersting if they are really moving pots out of the channel
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Old 24-08-2010, 10:01   #35
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I say cut it in half to acess the "catch" and toss it back.
Hauling up a trap that is not yours, if you're caught, will result in a VERY BIG FINE in Florida. I haven't read the law, but I doubt that it has exceptions written in for cases where the trap fouls your prop, or even for cases where the trap is in a channel. I would be extremely careful about hauling up any trap while in Florida, no matter what the reason.
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Old 24-08-2010, 10:52   #36
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I doubt that people will use this factor as a major reason in selecting a hull design, but I should mention that those sailboats with a full keel or cut-away forefoot that is contiguous with the rudder side over these traps and lines without concern. I've ignored traps in Maine(with toggles) and in Florida for many years. The only time I ever caught a trap line was when I was in reverse. Take care and joy, Aythya crew
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Old 24-08-2010, 11:12   #37
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Hauling up a trap that is not yours, if you're caught, will result in a VERY BIG FINE in Florida.
Worse yet local waterman actually know which traps belong to who. If any of them saw you it would not be good.
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Old 24-08-2010, 11:53   #38
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during the near year of cruising the gulf coast, we found many many many traps in the seaways--not in major channels--but really near cat island and out off the florida coast--keeping a lookout wasnt difficult--the only time we could not see the traps was in rough waters and high winds.
of course we joked about pulling one if we caught it- but we didnt catch one and managed to completely avoid the traps . isnt that difficult--most are laid out in a square or diamond pattern or in long lines and have space between to traverse the area so as not to catch them. just gotta stay awake closer in to shore--we liked 100 mi out--was perfect--no traps and lots of fishies to eat.
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Old 24-08-2010, 16:11   #39
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Worse yet local waterman actually know which traps belong to who. If any of them saw you it would not be good.

Yea, I wouldn't do it as I don't want to get shot either.

What if I just left a note for the damages and a PayPal account #?
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Old 27-08-2010, 17:59   #40
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In Canada traps are required to be tied shut with a decomposable line so they rot open if lost.
I have plans to make my skeg slide over any submerged lines . Only the skeg catches them now, just barely
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Old 27-08-2010, 19:21   #41
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While renting a marina's mooring in Casco Bay for a week I was awakened by a lobster trap float tapping on my hull at night. I asked the marina staff it it would be appropriate for me to grab the float line with a boathool from my dinghy and drag the trap about ten yards away. They were aghast and told me that nobody touches a lobsterman's traps! They said my only recourse would be to petition the Harbormaster. I decided I could sleep with a little tapping. Take care and joy, Aythya crew
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Old 27-08-2010, 20:12   #42
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Coming down the West Coast of Mexico and Central America was a minefield of 500 foot fishnets and long lines. At night if you saw someone standing in their small boat waving a flashlight at you, you'd better do at least a 90* turn and often you turned into another fishermans net.
The Caribbean had fishtraps all over the place.
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Old 28-08-2010, 21:22   #43
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Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
Not so.
Excerpted from Canadian Sport Fishing Guidelines for Crab:
... Buoy Lines
It is recommended that harvesters use sinking line.
If you use floating line, ensure that there is a weight attached to keep the excess line below the surface of the water. This will ensure that your line doesn't become entangled in boaters' props ...

HereFisheries and Oceans Canada | Pacific Region | Publications | Sport Fishing Guidelines for Crab (Brochure)
Gord,
I think you're cutting that explanation a little fine.
The upshot is it's illegal to let the line FLOAT.
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