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Fishing Etiquette

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So this is a bit of a rant, please bear with me.

I took my wife and two of my aunts fishing in Dularge on Saturday, 7/21. We left at sunrise and arrived at our fishing spot about 6:40. Upon arrival, I positioned the boat upwind, at the mouth of a canal to start on the western point and drift through the mouth, with the wind, as my trolling motor decided it wasn't going to work that day(an entirely different, but equally frustrating rant) . The canal is exactly 45 yards wide(according to google maps) and I positioned the boat about 15yrds into the canal so that they could make the short cast to the western point and I could make the longer cast to the eastern point. I start off by getting my crew's lines in the water and about that time a well known guide, whose name I will not reveal, decided to pull up about 50 yards away from me with his group. I hoped that his intention was to move past us into the canal and fish the weir or perhaps some of the points upstream. However, he deployed his trolling motor and positioned his boat about 25 yards(about half of a cast distance, perhaps less than that with the wind) away from us. I then asked him if he intended to fish so close to us and he told me that he did. I then had some tense words with him, explaining how rude and improper his actions were. We saw literally NO OTHER BOATS on our way to the north side of Lake Merchant and dozens of places he could have chosen to fish with no one there. He let me know that they would be fishing there and that I could fish wherever I wanted. After about 10 minutes of no bites on the eastern point, we then moved upcurrent, into the canal, about the same distance away(about 20 yards) to fish the point they were on(as I planned from the beginning). As my Aunt is asking me who he is and why he is acting this way, not loudly, but regular conversation level, I explained to her that he was a guide and before I could get another word out he responded yelling 'YEAH I'M F***ING GUIDE'. I then let him know about himself again, not cursing, staying calm, but very direct, letting him know how rude he was and that his actions were uncalled for. He then must have realized how uncomfortable he was making everyone, he got really nice, very quickly(most likely because he lost his temper and cussed in front of the family, children included, that were his clients that day) and tried to help me with my trolling motor trouble. I wasn't interested in his help and I politely let him know it. He continued to try and help with my trolling motor trouble and then began giving me and my other passengers directions on where to cast. This qualified as too little too late, not to mention I have fished this canal about a dozen times before and caught 12 keepers exactly where he was sitting(and where the wind would have carried us, as I had planned) about a month before with my sons. We didn't need his help, just for him not to come sit on the spot I arrived at first and was actively fishing. They kept a few from that spot and about 30 minutes later, they moved on.

That being said, I have been blessed to have been on many, many guided trips over the last 10 years(I've only had my boat about 18 months), with probably 35 different guides. I have become good friends with many of them and I truly understand the pressure that they are under to make wild animals(duck, geese, fish, deer, hogs etc.) available to their customers to catch or shoot. It is a difficult job, I do not envy their position. However, in my opinion, as they are on the water more than anyone, they should be the stewards of polite boating and fishing. I'm sure that his crew showed up late and that resulted in me being in 'his spot' before he arrived. This however should have prompted him to go to spot number two as opposed to squeezing in next to me at a narrow canal mouth. I slow down for their docks, even though their boats are elevated, I would NEVER pull up inside of casting distance of anyone, much less someone trying to make their living out there, I slow for everyone fishing or anchored if I can't pass more than 50 yards away. This is YOUR WORKPLACE, treat it as such. Remain polite and professional, at all costs, so that others may follow suit and if they don't, you have the moral high ground. Do not ruin what is supposed to be a fun, blessed day on the water by being rude and hard headed. You made your crew uncomfortable and you embarrassed yourself. I grew up fishing with my grandfather, he would have cranked the Yamaha and made a couple of circles around you after the first conversation. This is the type of incident that made him quit fishing Grand Isle Fri-Sun, as I know many who live there and those who are retired refuse to fish the weekends because of googans who don't know any better, and people like you, who know better, but choose to act selfishly. The other thing that you need to realize is that you are recognizable and that if I so wished I could burn you down on social media, Google, Louisiana Sportsman, etc., but I choose not to because I am a small business owner and I know how badly online reviews can hurt you.

I apologize for being long winded, for my many grammatical errors and the frequent use of parenthesis. I appreciate any feedback, whether you agree with me or not. I will not reveal the guides name, or boat because I do not wish to hurt his business. AND I must say again that his boat was so close you could hear every word of conversation on each boat from the other. Thank you for listening, happy boating and tight lines.
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Re: Fishing Etiquette
BBQKing: Sir---many, many pats on your back and my compliments for YOUR PROFESSIONAL DEMEANOR! IF that guide's crew for that day was not family, possibly they were embarrassed to the point they will not choose him in the future and make that known amongest others/may even make social media posts themselves as per their discomfort---there are too many guides to choose from. Sincerely, John Castelluccio, Jr.
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I hate to see posts like this especially in my area. Sorry that happened to you buddy but you don’t have to worry about me ever doing anything like that
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Professional guides should know better than anyone the importance and value of boating/fishing etiquette. Boating/fishing etiquette is a simple set of common sense, common courtesy rules to make everyone's experience more safe and fun.
Unfortunately there are some people who seem to believe, or just don't care, that those basic rules apply to everyone but them.

You are a better person than I am...I would have posted pictures as well as names.
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BBQKing,Sorry to hear about your run-in with someone who should definitely know proper fishing etiquette.Have a funny story to relate and the gent that coined the term,'Professional Dummy' is no longer alive and he would certainly get a kick outta me relating the story.Seems there were a few guides,'Professional Dummies' as Mr.Bill Hungerford would call them(he was a fishing machine,especially on Lake Pontchartrain)that routinely followed him way too closely.He kept most of his fishing spots and secrets close to the vest,probably took some to the grave!On one trip where I was fortunate enough to be a passenger,we had a well-known Lake P fishing guide follow us way too closely and Mr.Bill uttered something to the effect of,'Look at the Professional Dummy and dummies with him',obviously not too fond of guides that consistently followed him way too closely and I just laughed.He was certainly a very ornery fellow and hated having anyone invade'his' fishing space.I did have a different well-known Lake P fishing guide get way too close to me while I was pulling in very nice flounder while jigging the Causeway and I shoulda let this 'dumb ass' have it but I refrained,getting a kick outta the looks on his clients' faces when they saw the doormat I landed.Hope the guide community does not give me grief,I am just relating what Mr.Bill Hungerford said.In my estimation,2-3 cast lengths away is plenty far enough and less than one cast length is not proper fishing etiquette.I rarely fish weekends for a lot of reasons,one of them being pressured fish and folks with no sense of fishing etiquette.

Mandevillian
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I hate to say it Capt. Rob, but tis true. That makes me think twice about using any charter service in that area.
I'm not nearly as graceful as the BBQKing, and me thinks it would not have ended so well.
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This is the reason I won't fish weekends, weekdays seem to be a whole lot calmer, some guides are very courteous in there approach when they see you fishing others just blaze in and out and shut the fishing down for everyone, when this occurs it usually sparks a verbal confrontation
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Unfortunately, it's not just guides doing this kind of stuff! There are more and more people trying to fish the same areas each year. People ought to use a little common sense and consideration while out on the water. I am actually very surprised you don't hear of more 'boat rage' incidents on the water.
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Next time take a picture with your cell phone and post it with your rant. Pictures always add to the story..
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Fishing buddy and I had funny situation,coulda been bad had either of us had hot tempers.It happened last year while we were fishing some Lake P SW platforms and we extremely slowly motored up to set of pilings with another fellow fishing(we used I-Pilot trolling motor,not big motor)and the fellow fishing the outside set of Pilings made a comment to one of his buddies,who came up after us,that he was catching fish til some a**holes showed up(bear in mind we were about 3-4 cast lengths away)and I was cool with this gent's misguided comments but my buddy,the boat owner and captain,was not and not long after,I hooked nice speck,probably well over 2 lbs,and I missed the fish and then I yelled to my buddy,'Dang,missed an a**hole fish!!' and he had just landed very nice speck,probably close to 3 lbs,after which the gent that complained quietly motored away for possibly greener pastures,kinda ironic that we were the ones catching,not the other way around!!This was NOT on a week end but week day and I rarely,if ever,fish week ends.Hunting is a different story as we typically out-work about 100% of the other waterfowl hunters and I do hunt week ends,though prefer week days!!I rarely have guides get too close,other than the Lake P guy from a few years ago and the fellow specializes in Causeway and Trestles trolling trips,something I rarely participate in!!Lucky me!!

Mandevillian
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courtesy is rare these days............. some guides are guilty, but the recreational fisherman by shear number are the worst. I once had a guy cast over the back corner of my boat where his line was on top of my motor. I grabbed a knife to cut the line but missed it by a few seconds. I said something to him and without hesitation, he said, 'well the fish seem to be in that one spot ' !! I said, learn to find fish and I'll guarantee you that you can find another spot in this marsh holding fish. everyone wants it easy........ learn to find your fish.
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Agreed It's not just guides its a bunch of folks, Like the guy running the 20' plus G-3 close in to the rocks while a bunch of folks were anchored up fishing but there some folks that are very courteous on the water as well. I hate to admit it but I have drifted up on folks fishing not paying attention, apologized and Trolling Motored off, focused on fish I guess. LOL
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You’re right of course, it’s not just guides, it’s everyone. I think guides would want to be the most courteous, to encourage it among other boaters. However, it is a problem we all have to take responsibility for. Not long back someone wrote on here that he was fishing and his boat was swamped by someone failing to slow when passing him. Absolutely ridiculous. We all need to be mindful of others on the water. This is a cautionary tale for everyone.
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'There are some people who can't spell BOAT correctly three times in a row...LET ALONE OWN A BOAT'!!! 'THEY are Everywhere... LMAO

THAT INCLUDES one charter captain in particular who fishes the Trestles, Lake Borgne area, Castle and Biloxi-marsh areas! He will pass between you and the Trestles while you are casting towards the Trestles-out 35'-50', pass within 20'-25' of other boats fishing the Castle-area so as to anchor alongside another charter boat (numerous times)!!!
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Sad,but true,John C,Mr.Bill Hungerford,God rest his soul,swore that a certain well-known Lake P guide(makes his own soft plastic lures,about the only clue I will give)would not even use his own lures with clients,opting for nothing but live bait and Mr.Bill,for one,hated live bait of any kind,guess he adhered to the axiom,'Anyone can catch a fish with a fish!!!' I fished the Causeway today with a buddy and we saw zero boats out there,love fishing during week when lot less pressure on already-pressured resource!!Can't wait to take vacation and hope Lake P salinity gets right about teal season!!

Mandevillian
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Hmmmm. I've known a lake P guide for nearly 20 years who produces his own lures. He uses live bait, because his clients don't have the skill to fish with plastic; hence, live bait will catch fish. Lake P is a different skill than marsh fishing; I digress. This gentleman, and I mean a true gentleman, has performed multitude of selfless acts on, and off of the boat. He serves his fellow human beings in a consummate, exemplary manner in which we could all learn from. I'm sure we're talking about a different character......
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iron maiden,I am not calling out any specific Lake P guides,ya gotta consider the source,if you will.Mr.Bill Hungerford was a legendary Lake P fisherman,proud as a peacock regarding his numerous Lake P fish and he was mad at the gent I was referring to as he claimed this guide routinely followed him,never used his lures,and 'crowded him' so don't get too worked up about what I was trying to convey.What my intent was that even guides sometimes have mental lapses,though none of the ones I used to use ever displayed anything other than exemplary fishing etiquette and one used to make sure we never had rods bent with 'googans' looking on and I have had him instruct me to keep the rods down(lost quite a few very big specks that way) while folks were trying their best to get in on the action.I had a duck hunting buddy(fanatical duck hunter)get mad at me a few years ago as we were fishing the Trestles(combat fishing at its finest)and he wanted to get in on the action by getting right on top of other fisherman,and I absolutely refused to budge and was nabbing fine Trestles specks on my favorite soft plastics and did not see the need to crowd anyone!!If ya ever had the chance to have had a conversation with Mr.Bill Hungerford,you would readily pick up on his stubborn and ornery nature.I was going to lobby the LAWLF to name the 3 pilings lashed together about 3-4 miles SSW of Goose Point Hungerford Reef,in memory of Mr.Bill.I believe he still holds a few State Records for Stripers and Hybrid Stripers!!Good fishing to ya!!

Mandevillian
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I was fishing once out by the rigs in lake borgne. We pulled up to the rig and noticed that there was another boat there catching fish. We politely pulled up to the total opposite side of the rig from him and began fishing. A few minutes go by and we see another boat heading right for the rig. I chuckled to my buddy i was fishing with and said 'you ready for a show?' I could just tell by the way this guy was driving that he was about to pull right up on side of the other guy fishing. Sure enough, he pulls up within 20 feet of the other guy and starts casting towards his boat. So close that he almost hit the other boat with his hook. The guy that was there first let it go for a few minutes until the guy almost casted on to his boat. When he said something to the guy about how rude he was being, the other guy blew his lid and threatened to swim over and fight him on his boat. We sat back amazed how stupid this guy was acting after HE invaded someones space and was being a complete jacka**. After the wife of the guy told him he was being ridiculous he decided to leave. The guy that was there originally kept fishing and caught his limit with a smile. Its crazy how rude and inconsiderate people can be.
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Another gem of a display of extremely poor fishing etiquette,this one aboard my antique 16 ft Manatee tri-hull that my dad and I painstakingly restored to better-than-new quality.At the time,I was living in Ole Metairie,had an old neighbor who loved to fish and I made the decision to get us some fine live shrimp,launched outta Bonnabel boat launch and my dad,my old neighbor,and me hit the set of pilings almost to S end of Causeway,probably where a small rig had been located.There was a fellow and his wife fishing,the wife was nabbing plenty of fine specks and my old neighbor kept casting all the way across their lines,though my dad and I repeatedly warned him not to do so and the guy with his wife kept giving him some mean stares(don't blame em one bit)and they finally left and I was extremely apologetic and I hope the fellow knew that about my only recourse,short of knocking my neighbor overboard,would have been for us to leave.This same fellow was fishing Buras with me and another buddy(camp owner)and he wanted to keep every red he caught and my buddy and I seized the moment,measured his 'keeper reds' and maybe 3 out of his haul made the grade and boy was he mad and we impressed upon this fellow that the captain(me)and everyone aboard was subject to fines,gear seizure,etc,and it took everything we had to convince him he was definitely in the wrong.Fast-forward to now and both he and my dad are deceased and bet my dad laughing in Heaven and this fellow still mad at us!!

Mandevillian
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Well I got a good one for you....I was in PAC this morning and fishing deep marsh and coming back out well a guy in a mud boat came to where I had to exit to open water and killed it...I figured maybe he was going to inform me I was in private marsh or something and when I got out the the lil bayou I was in thought maybe he was going to fish the tide coming thru so gave him a wide berth with the troll motor....All of a sudden he cranked up and went thru....Sat there and let me come thru in peace....He could have easily motored thru but stopped and let me fish thru....Now that's respect above and beyond on the water....
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See this alot in all different places , was out with a friend yesterday at Grimich fishing were heading to our normal spot passed 20+ boats all on top of each other , got to our spot started catching right off the bat then the boats swarmed in like the plague , we would move away then would swarm again , im all good with boats around me but i you shouldnt be able to just about jump from boat to boat
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First thing good job on keeping your cool 👍🏻👍🏻

You know we see all these fishing shows on tv but they never discuss fishing etiquette maybe it’s time some of these local shows do a segment on it. There are plenty of boat “owners” if asked really wouldn’t know some of the given etiquette rules of fishing are like:
*proper boat distance when fishing with other boats.
*how approach a group of boats fishing.
An remember you were there before he was so if he wanted that spot get up and out early.

BUT being a “fishing guide” HE should have know better! PERIOD!!
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