Angler #1

Making the Canal a Real Recreational

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303 posts in this topic

26 mins ago, Kones1 said:

Ill say it again. If the average person witnessed this style of what comm people call sustain able it would come to an abrupt end. For sure. Just because something has been done a certain way for a long time doesn’t make it the best way for the sea , only for the harvester. And these study’s you mention, who did them, when,how and most importantly who paid ? It really beginnig to appear all the rec people need lobbyists , just to keep things fair. O and sustainable. For us all. 

The average person doesn't have a clue as what is sustainable and what is not, when it comes to anything in the ocean. If you're talking about the "studies" that I mentioned, the bottom trawling study was done by the University of Rhode Island and the bycatch sustainability studies are contained in the stock assessments for each species done by the Northeast fisheries science center.

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17 mins ago, robc22 said:

Probably not.........

The public's demand for seafood is always very high. Again.....They like their scallops..........

Even the average lefty in Massachusetts wants their tasty scallops, bottom bouncing chains be damned. That's where the culture is from a consumer standpoint

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2 hours ago, Kones1 said:

In today’s world if it’s not sustainable it simply should not be allowed. I’m absolutely and positively certain of this. Dragging iron and chains across the sea floor is WRONG for so many reasons. That is habitat destruction and indiscriminately kills. Not sustainable. If the word bycatch has to be used in a netting fishery,guess what ? Not sustainable. The way comm is fishing is simply not sustainable. This cannot be accepted any longer. These methods must change. They are no longer sustainable.  We know this now. We knew this years ago. Why are we even debating this.  

You continue to leave out the single biggest problem with the survival of the striped bass - recreational angling.   We aren't debating anything, you are pointing fingers all over the place looking to assign blame - as is your right - but you keep leaving out the biggest threat. Recreational striped bass angling is unsustainable at these levels. We know this. We knew this years ago. Yes, here we are :blackeye:

 

TimS

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2 hours ago, pogie_boy said:

 

Maybe as a demonstration, we could wait for a busy summer day down at City Hall plaza.. hook a long-ass chain between two trucks and then drag the chain through the crowds and say that we were just looking to collect some people to take our survey on the effects of current commercial fishing methods on the undersea environment?  

I do like this idea...it should be reserved for politicians where they gather rather than on the general public...but it would help with a visual representation of what goes on down there...maybe drag the chains through a flower garden...then through a playground (empty, of course) and let them see what happens  :laugh: 

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9 mins ago, TimS said:

You continue to leave out the single biggest problem with the survival of the striped bass - recreational angling.   We aren't debating anything, you are pointing fingers all over the place looking to assign blame - as is your right - but you keep leaving out the biggest threat. Recreational striped bass angling is unsustainable at these levels. We know this. We knew this years ago. Yes, here we are :blackeye:

 

TimS

Tim,

I think you need to be more specific. It's not necessarily the act of recreational fishing that's causing the threat.  It's the present daily bag limit, and uncontrolled poaching associated with recreational fishing that causing the present situation to be unsustainable.

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9 mins ago, TimS said:

You continue to leave out the single biggest problem with the survival of the striped bass - recreational angling.   We aren't debating anything, you are pointing fingers all over the place looking to assign blame - as is your right - but you keep leaving out the biggest threat. Recreational striped bass angling is unsustainable at these levels. We know this. We knew this years ago. Yes, here we are :blackeye:

 

TimS

I agree. Been happening for years all over.And now recently witnessed in a very condensed area by many fishermen and non fishing people alike in the canal which I’ve mentioned my opinion more than a few times on. So I have said things regarding recreational fishing before. I personally won’t fish there for many reasons,the most important being I don’t find it sporting.  Like punt gunning ducks was not sporting. My opinions are just that, mine. Mentioning this is maybe just another side of multi sided conversation is all. Please don’t get all mad at an old guy for expressing his feelings as I feel I’ve been around long enough to have witnessed and lived through things that are repeating themselves again. With all due respect gentlemen 

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Tim I would like to thank you for directing this conversation in a positive manner. Every one that fishes, do not, nor will not always agree as to the best solution to engage what every one that fished has been facing . Our Striped bass resource is in trouble, some will admit it and others will not . WE all have our own ideas , our own ways of perhaps making a difference, the resource only cares that something be done and rather sooner then later. Or is to late now?

 

I go back to my Golden Cod resource that was by far one of the most popular resources in Massachusetts for those of us that fished from the shore. No Boat. It was able to support all of the tackle shops in business through out our State , because folks liked eating the catch they caught . Where today can you go during the fall, hard winter months and early spring to catch any fish at all now? It began on Thanksgiving and ended early to mid May. That was almost a 7 month fishery for shore bound recreational fishermen.

 

Then we allowed the draggers to fish inside the 3 mile limit and take every thing they could and that was the beginning of the end of a once proud and great fishery for recreational folks. We did not support this process and wrote , had seminars about the this loss as it was occurring and we were supported by the local  news papers of the time and even law enforcement as well. It was the beginning of the end for me as they would come into the areas where these fish would often mix with Silver hake , pollock  flounder, sea bass, striped bass, smelt in the dead of the night inside the inner harbors where these draggers tied up there boats . It was an illegal act as in most cases they over looked the regulations that they were required to follow , but by going at night it was not so obvious to the regulators.

 

You mentioned that the reason the cod were along the coast line was because the deep water habitat was overcrowded and that may be or not? Looking for food [I can say the food they ate were mostly crabs , sea worms and shrimp along with smelt.] Every fish that I caught during some period of my life I did a visual inspection of what they ate and with out question they were all well fed and a mix of females that would be laden with roe , ready to let go or so I thought.

We saw the handwriting of the wall and thus began a change in what size fish we would keep and how many . We could litter y fill a bathtub between two fishing in a night of fishing . That normally would be around 12 to 14 hours , depending upon the tide changes and where we set up to fish. By the way ,although cod fish are not known for a fight , but given the circumstances they were. We had times we even had them on surface plugs and they did explode on those like a bass.  

I on the other hand have always felt that some were coming in to  spawn and I have sustained my thinking over these many years since they are no longer with us to fish on as losing the marked fish or those imprinted to come back each year were totally removed and broke decades of journeys they traveled going back to when Lief Erickson came here to fish for them in another time.

The Vikings searched the world looking for the Golden Cod and they found them here along our coast line, at least that is what has been conveyed to me .

 

If both users groups are unwilling to come together in any type of compromise then we will see the same loss as my cod fish . Houston we have a problem and it is the users with the most bodies right now fishing on them that need to come together , cooperatively, collaboratively to make the real changes as to how we all fish on them going forward. It could happen right here in Massachusetts first if we all let it or not. In what form is the striped bass the most valuable. Commercially or Recreational  ? Which form helps to generate the best economy for the states is a question unanswered. Which form serves the best for the resource, given we now have so many folks just fishing on one species of fish. Do we know the actual limits that can be taken from this resource here and elsewhere? Is Politics going to continue how we manage a declining population of fish? More questions then answers 

 

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11 mins ago, Kones1 said:

Comm  guys don’t poach ? You are kidding right?

Kones most who fish know that commercial poach fish in one form or another. Recreational also poach as well.  Given the numbers both contributed to the kill. Some fail to except what they know to be true and turn a blind eye for what ever reason .

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Posted (edited) · Report post

@Angler #1 to your point on localized, tribal populations removed from the ecosystem:

 

I don't know about other species, but this point has been well established with cod. The inshore cod of yesteryear had specific drift patterns with their distinct spawning grounds/eggs in the WMCCurrent. Once removed, and depopulated, the inshore strain no longer released their eggs along that track and so it disappeared.

 

Offshore cod have different drift patterns with their eggs. ...So repopulating the inshore grounds with inshore cod may take many, many decades, even lifetimes, to restablish those fish via outlier egg/fry from offshore fish.

Edited by rst3

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You know , it’s nice to be able to converse like this,remaining civil and respectful on such a passionate matter with so many sides to it. Human nature being what it is. 

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32 mins ago, bob_G said:

Tim,

I think you need to be more specific. It's not necessarily the act of recreational fishing that's causing the threat.  It's the present daily bag limit, and uncontrolled poaching associated with recreational fishing that causing the present situation to be unsustainable.

Nope, I agree with Tim, its the simple fact of millions of recreational fishermen catching  and killing too many striped bass. Poaching is never good, but I doubt that eliminating all poaching, even if it could be done, wouldn't put a dent in the problem. The present daily bag limit is one fish, toucan't go any lower than that. If you up the minimum size you'll use wind up with both higher release mortality and higher levels of poaching. IMHO the only way to significantly reduce mortality, and this has proven to be true across multiple species, is to have a shorter season. And I don't mean a closed season during the winter when most people aren't fishing and there aren't many, if any, fish around anyway. 

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34 mins ago, bob_G said:

Tim,

I think you need to be more specific. It's not necessarily the act of recreational fishing that's causing the threat.  It's the present daily bag limit, and uncontrolled poaching associated with recreational fishing that causing the present situation to be unsustainable.

Bob, it's the everything to do with recreational striped bass fishing - the catch and release and the harvest. "Uncontrolled poaching" is hard to estimate but illegal harvest is considered part of the overall mortality. It's truly the act of recreational fishing that is the biggest single source of mortality for the striped bass. It's not separated from poaching, it's only separated into recreational and commercial fishing. The bag limits, size limits and season are the tools used to regulate recreational fishing mortality - and they aren't doing a sufficient job. 

 

TimS

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I've been following this lively thread with great interest and appreciate the thoughts and concerns expressed by the moderator and the long standing members.  If I may I'd like to add a few additional comments that I hope will address some of what I think needs clarification.  

Several have expressed concern about ASMFC sitting on it's hands while the current population of Atlantic Coast stripers continues to decline.  That's not the case and never has been since stock recovery was achieved in 1995 under the Atlantic Striped Bass Management Plan and recreational and commercial fisheries reflecting increased stock abundance resumed.    Since it's inception, the plan has been adjusted in response to stock condition. The most notable, Addendum IV was approved in 2014 following a benchmark assessment and catch was reduced 25% in 2015 to lower the fishing mortality rate.  In addition to annual stock monitoring which involves less intensive assessment, another so-called bench mark assessment is due out in February.   This assessment involves all the state and federal scientists (hopefully feds) and number crunchers and is as up to date and definitive as the catch and monitoring information will allow.  The earlier signs that things looked good has been replaced by less optimistic speculation.  This change is allegedly due to higher than expected harvest rates, a higher large fish catch, higher recreational landings and catch and release mortality rate and other factors.  We'll see in February.

 

DMF and the Marine Fisheries Advisory Commission are already discussing a suite of management adjustments including a gaffing ban and mandatory use of circle hooks for most bait applications.   These possible changes are proposed for this year with possibly more significant adjustments in 2020, if required.  Similar to the 2015 25% reduction, all the ASMFC states will be required to come up with reductions tailored to reduce their fisheries to what ever levels are needed.  

 

As to the big debate about what constitutes a commercial fisherman,  since he doesn't hold a commercial permit Carl is not a commercial fisherman as an individual.  He cannot, as an unlicensed individual, sell, barter, etc. any fish he harvests.  He is, however, part of or the crew participating in a commercial fishery; essentially the same as a crew member on a 100' dragger.  He is free to consider himself what he wants to be, helper, assistant, whatever, but as a participant in a commercial operation, he is a crew member and as such is considered a commercial fisherman when it comes to enforcement of laws and regulations.   I asked a retired Environmental Police Captain what happens to the crew when a violation is encountered and his response was "they all go to court".  Of course there are obvious exceptions to this and officer discretion surely plays a role if they  encounter violation(s) when obvious non- participants are aboard (family,  photographers, observers, etc.).  I am aware of court cases where the charges against the crew were dismissed because the judge/magistrate determined they could not have  known what the Captain was up to.  In violations involving for-hire operators, things get tricky and the involvement of the clients and the Captain's role in these situations has been raised in this thread and debated in this forum often and is a topic of hot debate among the regulators as I type this.   The recent tautog bust in Hyannis is a case in point.  Bag limits on Party boats is another. As noted, the different states are all over the map on this.   

 

Lastly,  the inevitable issue of law enforcement arises.  As a long standing critic of the former Office of Environmental Law Enforcement (now the Environmental Police) particularly the hierarchy,  I am buoyed by some of the recent events affecting that agency.  Most noteworthy is the removal of the former forgettable Colonel McGinn and the installment of a career Environmental Police Captain, Tony Abdal-Khabir as acting Colonel.   I have heard good reports about Tony, reputedly a tough but fair minded coastal officer and we should all push for him to be appointed as the "permanent"  Colonel.   The quotes are for the fact that, unlike the Directors of Marine Fisheries and Fisheries and Wildlife,  the Director of the Environmental Police is co-terminus and is subject to removal with every administration change.  The aforementioned two Directors can only be appointed or removed with the approval of their Boards.  This has provided a level of professional oversite and continuity not enjoyed by the Environmental Police and it certainly shows.  To prevent Colonel Abdal-Khabir from suffering the same fate as his two long ago career EPO predecessors replaced by non EPOs, a legislative overhaul of the Environmental Police needs to be accomplished.  It's a little overdue as the Commission that was constituted to make recommendations for improvement completed their business in 2005, I believe.    

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