Pictured: The Department of Environmental Conservation provided an educational session for fishing club members before they lowered their reels into Twin Lakes.
Photos courtesy of the Seaford School District
Seaford High School’s new fishing club is giving students an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and participate in an activity that is very popular in an area that borders an ocean and is filled with ponds, lakes and streams. The new club, advised by band teacher Dr. Anthony Romeo, had two fishing trips in the fall.
The first venture was to Twin Lakes Preserve in Wantagh, with 15 students attending. In addition to fishing, there was also an educational presentation by representatives from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. They taught students about fishing laws and requirements, and discussed the ecology of local freshwater lakes. Sophomore Denys Zagrebin caught the first fish on the trip.
The second trip was in partnership with science teacher John Posillico’s marine biology class. More than 40 students boarded the Yankee III fishing boat out of Captree State Park. Students caught fluke and sand sharks during the catch-and-release excursion, that also included an ecological education component.
Dr. Romeo said that the fishing club launched this year, following strong interest from students and approval from the board of education. The club has 38 members and officers include President Joanna Bello, Vice President Tate Gatto, Secretary Victoria Stebner and Treasurer Ava Caruso. Members include a mix of novice and experienced fishers.
Trips will be held in the spring, summer and fall, while winter activities will include environmental lessons and gear-making sessions. Dr. Romeo said that over the next few months while the weather is cold, students will learn how to make their own lures, rigs, weights and fishing rods, with support from guest speakers.
Dr. Romeo, a certified DEC instructor, said the club provides a way for students to learn about the environment while enjoying a peaceful recreational activity.
Joanna, who has been fishing since she was in elementary school, said it is a good way to introduce new students to the hobby.
“There’s a lot that comes with fishing,” she said. “We help each other out.”
Denys picked up fishing a few years ago when his family moved to Seaford from Brooklyn and he was closer to the ocean. The trip to Twin Lakes was his first freshwater fishing experience.
“It’s a great time,” said Denys, who got a yellow perch for his first catch. “I got to catch a bunch of fish and talk to people about fishing.”