Poached fish make my day

I was having a bad day on Tuesday — that is, until a few tons of poached fish showed up and brightened my outlook.

Yes, only an environment reporter can say something like that.

I was having one of those days when every little thing annoyed me and nothing seemed to be going right. I do believe I told a coworker that I felt like punching everyone in the face. I was only half joking.

Poached Chesapeake Bay rockfish seized by police, photo by multimedia journalist and environment reporter Pamela Wood.
My, my, that's a lot of illegal rockfish.

But later that night, I checked Twitter and saw The Baltimore Sun promoting a story by Candy Thomson about a big fish poaching operation that was uncovered near Kent Island.

As I read the story, at first I was mad that Candy beat me to it. But she’s a good reporter and has good sources within the Natural Resources Police. She earned it.

I had to quickly let my envy go and get right on the story. It was after 6 p.m. and I was home, but I immediately dialed up the police spokesman and got moving on the story.

My adrenaline was pumping, I was following a hot story. All was right with the world.

The story developed Tuesday night and through Wednesday as the cops kept finding more nets and more fish.

Of course, I’m just as dismayed as everyone else is about blatant disregard for fishing rules and I’m amazed at the sheer amount of fish that were caught.

But it’s also exciting to chase down a story that is going to be read like crazy and talked about a ton. It’s cool that I get to see cops in action, tallying up the bad guys’ misdeeds.

On days like these, I love my job.

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