Provincetown Reopens McMillan Pier to Squid Fishing

CCB MEDIA PHOTO Provincetown Harbormaster's office

Provincetown Harbormaster’s office

PROVINCETOWN – Provincetown has reopened MacMillan Pier to evening fishing after it was shut down for a few nights due to squid fishing crowds getting out of hand.

“Basically, what we had gotten to is people getting a little too casual out here,” said Provincetown Harbormaster Rex McKinsey. “Leaving garbage around the pier, getting ink on the buildings and people’s cars, and then open containers, beer cans, nip bottles and things like that.”

McKinsey said the Pier will remain open as long as visitors follow the rules which include staying off the boats and no fishing where the boats are tied up.

McKinsey also stressed that drinking on the pier is not allowed.

“You can’t have open containers out on the streets. The pier is no different,” he said. “Given the nighttime activities, I really, really want to urge people that drinking on the pier is just simply not allowed.”

McKinsey said the trash left behind was also a factor in closing the pier.

“You don’t come to somebody’s house or somebody’s yard party and leave garbage all over the place,” he said.

McKinsey said the last few nights have been better since the pier was reopened to squid fishing.

“That was pretty much a shot across the bow for a few nights,” he said. “And everybody seems to be taking that in stride and behaving and cleaning up after themselves a little better.”

The opportunity to catch squid, which is used as bait, is short. Schools of squid are attracted to the lights of MacMillan Pier, which cause them to go into a feeding frenzy, according to McKinsey.

“We have had a really good squid season the last several years after a number of years of not really having any squid at all,” he said. “The greatest thing about being able to come out on MacMillan Pier and go squid fishing is that people bring their families out. The kids are out here doing squid fishing, in some cases, for the first time.”

McKinsey said other towns that have had issues with squid fisheries have shut down the piers to all fishing.

“That’s not what we are trying to do here,” he said. “We want people to come out and enjoy commonwealth tidelands and enjoy Provincetown’s piers.”

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