Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Scallop draggers - Barnegat Light

"We drag it just above the bottom - the steel rings and fingers scrape em up, into the bag", said the captain of the William & Lauren. "Shouldn't be giving away my secrets - but that's about all there is to it." (click on the 3rd thumbnail to see details)

We never think about scallop draggers until we see a short item about a winter search off the coast of New Jersey or Nantucket. That's why the Coast Guard developed Rescue 21. And that's why there are rigid-inflatable motor life boats with a pair of 200 horsepower engines ready to fly out of the Coast Guard stations at Barnegat Light, Atlantic City, New Bedford and the other fishing ports along the coasts. Speed could save a crew member, like on the F/V NORTHERN EDGE – Dec. 20, 2004, 75-ft scallop boat sank 45 miles SE of Nantucket, 5 lost, 1 survivor.

These shots were taken at Barnegat Light and the Marina at Barnegat Light, a busy fishing port more famous as a summer resort beach town on the Jersey shore 45 miles south of Sandy Hook.

Here is some video of a scallop dragger at work. I know there are people who think it is crude, rapacious, and destructive of the ocean bottom. Maybe but I really don't feel any sympathy for a scallop as I bake it or an oyster as I pop it into my mouth with some tabasco.