A state of the art fish cleaning facility has been proposed for the Mazurik Access Area located on the north side of Marblehead Peninsula, just west of Lakeside and a few miles from Port Clinton.
State officials have been studying the sophisticated Barracuda, installed late last year by the Cleveland Metroparks at the Gordon Park launch ramp at East 72nd Street in Cleveland. The Barracuda is produced by Quality Machine and Manufacturing of Des Moines, Iowa, and it is industrial strength. It is expensive, at more than $40,000,
Director Mary Mertz of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources said much-needed shoreline fish cleaning stations are being considered for Avon Lake, Huron and Marblehead. Director Mertz said the proposed three public fish cleaning stations on the Lake Erie shoreline would also include restroom facilities, also much needed at most public launch sites.
The 15.9-acre Mazurik Access Area is one of the busiest launch areas in the Lake Erie Island region, providing boaters and anglers direct access to Lake Erie by offering a four-lane concrete boat ramp, a protected boat bay and safe harbor, and an accessible fishing pier.
While commercial fish cleaning is offered by companies in the Port Clinton area, fish cleaning by sport anglers has long been considered a problem.
“We can easily understand the need for public fish cleaning facilities along the Lake Erie shoreline,” said Mark Cahlik, who owns Bay’s Edge Fishing Cleaning in Port Clinton. “We’ve been cleaning record numbers of walleye, yellow perch and catfish this year, and know public facilities are needed.”
Visiting anglers have been known to clean their walleye and yellow perch on the piers, launch areas and break walls, in motel rooms and on boats while still on the water. Fish entrails quickly deteriorate and smell if disposed of in garbage cans or dumpsters.
It is illegal to toss fish waste into public waters.
Veteran fishermen who are conscientious about disposing fish entrails usually freeze them in plastic bags, and put them in garbage cans and dumpsters on pickup day.