Tag Archives: sport fishing

Sportfishing in the Virgin Islands and the Gulf Oil Disaster

St.Thomas Dockside Scuttlebutt
I rent a little dock space over at Sapphire Marina on St. Thomas and today I noticed that the marina was just about full. This is unusual for this time of year, when many of the boats take leave of the Virgin Islands during the dread Atlantic Hurricane Season. The other thing I noticed was that most of the formerly empty slips were now occupied by a fleet of top of the line sport-fishing boats.

I was told that most of these newly arrived vessels were refugees from the Gulf oil spill.

The sport fishing industry in the Gulf of Mexico is in big trouble. Really big, like it’s just about not happening at all, not now and probably not for a long time to come. Consequently, those in the sport fishing industry and who want to continue doing what they love to be doing are relocating, and many of them have chosen to come here to the Virgin islands, which some say is the sport fishing capitol of the world.

A captain from the Gulf Coast, who had arrived here on his sport fisherman described coming upon part of the spill.

Being someone who has never seen an oil spill, I had imagined it to be a shimmering film of oil floating on top of the water, making rainbow like colors in the sunshine, but something you could drive a boat through. Not even close.  The captain described it as an extremely large floating mass of thick gooey oil some 100 yards wide and an incredible six feet deep, a disgusting, impassable, mess that gets bigger every day.

It’s good to have new business come to the Virgin Islands, but not like this.

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