Big Butterfly Ray and Pushy Game Warden!

Discussion in 'Bay Fishing' started by Tmaio123, Jul 12, 2018.

  1. Tmaio123

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    It was a ray kind of day in the South Bay today. Wow! That rhymes LOL! Anyway, caught a ton of macks at SI pier. Mostly baby ones, but they were fresh which is all that matters. I actually caught a few on just bare hooks. The tide was incoming for almost the entire afternoon. I fished with my brother as usual and of course he out-fished me. He was also using frozen anchovies and some frozen Walmart shrimp along with the fresh macks. AKA he was using 3 poles all with different bait. I just used the fresh macks for sharks, but didn't get any. I caught a ton of small flying saucers, and one 10-15lb diamond ray. My brother caught a couple of baby smoothhounds, a china croaker, 2 Corvina, a ton of small flying saucers, and a big butterfly ray with a 45 inch wing span. We estimated it to be in the 30lb range. I do want to say that besides the butterfly ray which was caught on a chunk of Mack, all the other fish were caught on whole frozen anchovy, yes even the China croaker and corvina.

    Side note- Had the game warden come over today. Kinda was shocked to see him thinking this was the last place he would lurk. He almost was searching for things he could bust me on. My brother and I knew he was spying on us from a distance when he said that he thought he saw us put a fish that we caught in the ice chest. We assured him that we released all of the fish, and that the only fish in the ice chest from today was the macks. He kept saying that things weren't adding up and that he saw us put a fish in the ice chest. I told him once more that the only fish I took was a Mack that I threw out for chum. He then said," I better not find any fish buried in the sand." I told him that we would never do that and that we know the size limit and regulations on fish very well. He then said good luck and have a good day and left. I have complete respect for law enforcement out there, but it just seemed like this officer was a bit pushy. It just seemed to me like he was searching for something to bust us on. Anyway, not a big deal, just thought I'd share with you guys if maybe one of you has had a similar experience.

    Til next time...

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  2. Pecci

    Pecci Well-Known Member

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    Their job is to look for something to bust you on. Do everything right, as you do, and you'll always win. It' sad. but the Wardens, where I lived in the MidWest, would quickly, but respectively check, then offer us pointer's on how to do better.

    That's a big ray!
     
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  3. natural_one

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    Did he hassle you before or after you made a sandcastle and played tic-tac-toe on the ray?
     
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  4. Tmaio123

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    Before
     
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  5. skrilla

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    They're trained to do that. One time I had 2 wardens pull up and check me. One veteran and a new guy fresh out the academy. The veteran had the new guy flip over rocks down at Harbor Island. Meanwhile I joked to the veteran warden about how I should stash lotion, a *****, and some Redbull in my backpack for next time. Then gave him credit for attempting to hold back his laughter.
     
  6. VetfromMinnesota

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    If you caught a California Butterfly Ray that was 30 pounds, I hate to break this to you, but you released a fish that would shatter the current world record of 21 lbs 8 oz that was caught in San Diego Bay in 2015.
     
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  7. fisheromen

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    Why torture that creature???
     
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  8. Tmaio123

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    I'm not very good at predicting weight on fish. I never got to pick it up. My brother estimated to be over 30 lbs based on how it felt. Based on the wing span of 45 inches, how much do you think it weighs?
     
  9. Tmaio123

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    LOL! What do you mean?
     
  10. VetfromMinnesota

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    I checked the details of the world record and the 21 lbs 8 oz fish was length 38” and girth was 76”. Unless I am mistaken, girth is all the way around so the girth of a Ray should be a hair more than twice the wingspan. Your fish sounds larger as yours would have a girth about 14” more than the record fish.

    That would likely put it in the 28 to 32 pound range
     
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  11. scisports

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    I think he means why is dry sand all over the ray's back, and with what look like tic tac toe designs, which looks like you were messing with it longer than needed for CPR..... Perhaps it flipped over or something?
     
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  12. Tmaio123

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    SMH. First of all those marks on the fish was my brother trying to wipe off the sand before the picture. We realized that it wasn't working and knew we needed to take a couple pics, get the wing span, and release it. The ray swam off with no problem at all. For somebody to say that we were "torturing" the ray is a total misunderstanding of the situation and a bit of an insult. And yes he did flop a lot in the sand. We we're fishing off of a beach don't you know.
     
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  13. VetfromMinnesota

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    Don’t sweat his comment. Having landed a large number of rays on the beach, they frequently get covered in sand, especially if you have to flip it over to pull the hook.

    Rays are extremely hardy like catfish and can survive long periods out of the water. They are also very unique with behavior. I have released a couple that turned around and partially beached themselves and seemed to want to hang out. Eventually they would leave but they stuck around a while. They were not in distress either.
     
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  14. Tmaio123

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    Yes and I'm pretty sure rays dig themselves into the sand as camouflage to hide and attack prey.
     
  15. Bear6813

    Bear6813 Well-Known Member

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    The S&R brothers hitting it hard, Congrats my friend!
     
  16. galen

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    Dry sand ain’t wet sand. I’m no biologist but for sake of photo quality, bring a Big Gulp cup and give him a quick shower before his 15 minutes of fame are up! I fish almost exclusively from a boat, so no sand, dirt or grass for me. I will go on the record for many others and say it’s no more than a pet peeve to see photos of dirty fish when in most cases the ocean they just came out of is no more than a few steps away. If you dragged a mermaid out of the bay wouldn’t you give her a rinse before showing her off to your friends? Just sayin’!
     
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  17. Troy

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    lol at people’s reactions and comparing a ray to a mermaid.

    Solid report from someone who’s always posting reports.
     
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  18. mikecheck1212

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    Hmmm...at this point pouring water on the thing does nothing for the ray if he releases it afterwards anyway...only makes the picture better..
     
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  19. Tmaio123

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    Thanks...It's nice to know I've got a little support LOL
     
  20. Bear6813

    Bear6813 Well-Known Member

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    We got your back
     
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