Raymarine Has New Owners

FLIR Systems has entered into an agreement with the Administrator of Raymarine plc to acquire all of the outstanding shares of its wholly owned subsidiary, Raymarine Holdings Ltd. TFLIR President and CEO Earl Lewis called it a "strategically compelling" transaction. "Raymarine is a leading brand in the industry and has an outstanding reputation for high quality marine electronics equipment," said Lewis in a statement. "When fully integrated, we expect to have a significant marine electronics business as part of our Commercial Systems business." Lewis said the acquisition will increase its distribution network with the addition of Raymarine's 1000 dealer outlets and 400 marine OEMs. FLIR intends to integrate its thermal imaging products with Raymarine's marine electronics technology. FLIR designs and manufactures thermal imaging and stabilized camera systems for different industries and applications. FLIR expects the transaction to be neutral to 2010 earnings

Spanish Wreck Gold Stolen

Two thieves stole a gold bar-recovered from a shipwreck of a Spanish galleon off the Florida Keys-worth an estimated $550,000. The 11 inch, 74.85-ounce gold bar was taken Wednesday from the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum where it had been on display for over 20 years. The bar was locked in a transparent case, and the thieves were caught on security cameras, and images of the two suspects are posted on the museum's website (www.melfisher.org), police and the FBI are searching for the men. The museum announced that their insurance company is offering a $10,000 reward for the return of the bar. The gold bar was recovered in 1980 from the 1622 Santa Margarita shipwreck, which Mel Fisher discovered. The ship was filled with gold bars, jewelry and silver coins

Fishing gear news

No gimmicks. No special effects. No fancy packaging or clever slogans."Best of Show" at fishing's annual ICAST tradeshow is about one thing, and one thing only: the best new products in the fishing world. Shimano won Best New Hard Lure, Freshwater Reel, Saltwater Reel and Saltwater Rod.

2010 ICAST Best Saltwater Rod Shimano Terez – This is a 60-pound rod that's thinner than your pinky finger. It has new K guides from Fuji that eliminate wind knots. Comes in five colors: sunset red, fighting lady yellow, emerald green, aqua and pearl white.

2010 ICAST Best Saltwater Reel - The Shimano Trinidad A - One piece framing allows for the Trinidad A to be narrower, while still keeping enough line capacity for tuna fishing, etc. It's got a brand new drag system with a wider range of settings than ever before, and it's corrosion resistant.

2010 ICAST Best Freshwater Reel – The Shimano Stella FE. It is an enhanced FD model with new X-Ship Double Bearing Supported Pinion Gear, which increases power and gear efficiency, and gives anglers ultra-light handle rotation. It's also super smooth.

2010 ICAST Best Hard Lure - WaxWing – they have an improved hydrodynamic body design, the Upper Wing makes the jig swim in zigzag motion, the Lower Wing makes the jig prevent rolling, Owner Tin-coated double hook, Stainless Wire-through construction, UV reactive paint on lateral line, Available sizes: 88mm/118mm, 14 available colors

2010 Outdoor Life's Editor's Choice for Spinning Reels - Stradic CI4

2010 Outdoor Life's Editor's Choice for Baitcasting Reels Core 50Mg

2010 Tackle Tour Shootout Champ for Cranking Reels - TackleTour.com - Curado 200E5

Pacific skipjack tuna levels declining

The Pacific skipjack tuna that provides some 55 percent of the world’s tinned tuna is now facing declines along with the Pacific bigeye and yellowfin tuna, according to reports presented at the Science Committee meeting of the Western Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) in Tonga this week. A record 2,467,903 million tonnes of tuna were caught in the Pacific last year. Of this, 73 percent was skipjack tuna mainly caught by large purse seine fleets using fish aggregation devices (FADs). The method is meant to increase catch levels and efficiency. It also allegedly results in large numbers of turtles and sharks being caught together with juvenile tuna. The already troubled bigeye and yellowfin tuna continue to decline, despite conservation efforts. The breeding population of Pacific bigeye tuna is now estimated to be down to just 17 percent, close to the levels of the Atlantic bluefin tuna, which is below 15 percent.

Boat Running on Meth

A U.S. man was arrested Sunday when federal officers found 144 pounds of methamphetamine and 10 pounds of cocaine onboard his boat. The man was returning from Mexican waters in a 23 ft. Bayliner Sunday afternoon when a marine unit from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection stopped the vessel. Officers boarded the boat and escorted it to the dock, where agents discovered a hidden compartment below. The drugs found are valued at $3 million and is the largest methamphetamine seizure at sea. The suspect was turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents with the Maritime Task Force.

Boat Loan Bank Fraud

A Michigan man was convicted by a federal jury in Detroit on charges of bank fraud for applying for hundreds of thousands of dollars in loans for boats that did not exist. William King of Bloomfield Township could face up to 30 years in prison. According to court documents, King falsified employment and income information for loan applicants, putting him on his payroll. Those four individuals then applied for loans for non-existent boats at three banks. Three of the loans were US$250,000. The loan applications were made with Bank of America, Chase Bank and Comerica. The scheme took place from May 2008 until July 2008. King was arrested before any of the loans were disbursed.

Are your nav aids up to date?

A consortium of government and industry firms tasked with promoting safer navigation practices says 64 per cent of US boaters are not concerned about the accuracy of navigational tools. The Alliance for Safe Navigation's survey of 7,570 recreational boaters found an "alarming" majority do not update their navigational tools. The survey measured the use and awareness of available updates to navigational tools like GPS, electronic charts and paper charts.

"Unfortunately, these survey results indicate that boaters simply are not aware of how often conditions change and how those changes can affect their safety," said Ron Walz of OceanGrafix, a founding member of the alliance. "The truth is that waters do change — and inaccurate chart information can turn a safe and enjoyable cruise into a dangerous situation."

The survey found that most boaters use some navigational aid, but that 79 per cent fail to track the weekly updates issued by the US Coast Guard. "Boaters cannot assume that their data is current: changes on and under the water happen, and they are significant and frequent," said David Enabnit, technical director at NOAA's Office of Coast Survey.

Commercial vessels are required by law to carry updated charts, but recreational boaters have no such legal obligation. The Alliance for Safe Navigation "strongly suggests" boaters carry updated navigational tools. Sponsored by NOAA, the alliance is made up of BoatUS, Jeppesen, OceanGrafix, the Sea Tow Foundation for Boating Safety and Education, and the United States Power Squadrons