Capt. Fred Roberts with Kidsday reporters Angelina Augusta and Victoria...

Capt. Fred Roberts with Kidsday reporters Angelina Augusta and Victoria Hand on his boat, the Yankee III. Credit: Veronica Weeks

The Yankee III charterboat out of Captree offers fun experiences for the summer. We went on this boat with our class to explore oceanography on the Great South Bay.

The boat’s captain, Fred Roberts, and his crew invited us on board, and we spent the day dredging, seining, looking through microscopes and visiting the wheelhouse. We were amazed at all the creatures that we got to observe, and the coastline was gorgeous.

The boat also takes passengers out to fish, and we wanted to know more about what adventures we could have onboard during the summer. We interviewed Capt. Roberts on his vessel, and this is what we discovered:

What is the strangest thing that you have ever caught?

Sharks! A thresher shark that was about 7 feet long. There were about 60 people on board fishing that day, and it took their lines out all at once.

What is your favorite thing about your boat?

My favorite thing is when we have a good day fishing and I get to see everyone come off the boat in a great mood. Especially the young people who don’t always get out on the Great South Bay.

Do you eat the fish?

Yes, I eat fish!

What is your favorite fish to catch?

I like bottom fishing, where you put the hook down on the bottom. I like sea bass, fluke and flounder fishing.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

Fish! Even if I have a day off, I am doing paperwork or picking up supplies for the boat.

How long have you owned the Yankee III?

I bought into the business back in 1983. I had a partner for about three years, but then I bought him out.

How many years of schooling did you need?

You have to log a certain amount of hours before you can run a boat this size. You need a minimum of 100 hours, and I also took courses from the Coast Guard. I currently have a 500-ton unlimited pilot’s license.

What is more popular for classes, fishing or oceanography?

It depends on the school district. Some districts frown on fishing and want something more educational, and that is why we offer oceanography. Some classes we take out do half fishing and half oceanography.

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