Talk about lesser known fins

Published 9:02 pm Friday, October 26, 2018

There’s a lot more to life in Suffolk waterways in each season of the year than many locals may realize, and that seasonal diversity will be the highlight of the latest presentation organized by the Nansemond River Preservation Alliance.

“Fishes of the Nansemond River and Chuckatuck Creek: When Habits Collide” will be the focus of the River Talk on Tuesday at the C.E.&H. Ruritan Hall, 8881 Eclipse Drive. A social period will begin at 6:30 p.m. before the presentation starts at 7 p.m. This event is free and open to the public.

Chad Boyce, district fisheries biologist with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, will discuss the wild diversity in Suffolk waterways to promote understanding and stewardship.

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“We’re here to educate people on what is the status of the fish population of this area, and that’s why we invite experts who are very knowledgeable of those topics,” said NRPA President Elizabeth Taraski, while also encouraging both experienced and newer anglers to clean up after themselves while they’re fishing.

Boyce plans to give a primer on the general usage of the Nansemond River and Chuckatuck Creek by populations of fish that vary throughout the calendar year.

“What I want to do is talk about the seasonal changes in the fisheries in those waters,” he said.

He’ll also introduce some frequent visitors that may be new to some at the presentation, like the hogchoker, a fish that utilizes Suffolk’s rivers year-round. There’re also river herrings that come in the spring months before migrating out when temperatures drop in the fall, just like the king and Spanish mackerel juveniles that come in the summer and vacate when it gets cold.

“Lots of oceanic fish utilize the rivers as nursery habitats,” he said.

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