finefish

Worst Start In Years

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271 posts in this topic

37 mins ago, Seadogg said:

My biggest issue with that plan is how easy small fish are to catch. They’re uneducated and aggressive, making them easy targets. Even bait dunkers with Mickey Mouse setups can get into those consistently. If a slot limit we’re imposed, let’s say at 28-34”, sure you’d be keeping breeders, but isn’t that better that taking fish which have never gotten the chance? 

 

Even if it was a slot and anything over 48” for trophy hunters, the fish would still be better off than they are now. 

Way to complicated for the casual fisherman to understand plus the C&R mortality would offset any gains...…...IMO

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25 mins ago, b-ware said:

Way to complicated for the casual fisherman to understand plus the C&R mortality would offset any gains...…...IMO

But people are catching and releasing fish all the time. I can’t remember the last time I kept a fish, and I fish nearly every day. That being said, if we limit the amount of fish that can be harvested by means of a slot, wouldn’t that still improve things even by a small margin? 

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Just a thought.

My wife and I really enjoy fresh striper. I limit my fish take to 4-6 fish between 28"-34" each year.  If the minimum size was dropped 24" I would still only keep 4-6 fish annually. I wonder if other conservation minded fishermen would follow suit?

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11 mins ago, bob_G said:

I limit my fish take to 4-6 fish between 28"-34" each year.  If the minimum size was dropped 24" I would still only keep 4-6 fish annually. 

I only keep about 4-6 each season as well. If the minimum was dropped to 24" it wouldn't change the amount I keep. I'd keep the same number. However I wouldn't keep a 24", 25" fish. The fillets are too small. The perfect sized fish for me is around 32". The shoulders are big enough to get some thicker fillets.

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1 hour ago, Seadogg said:

But people are catching and releasing fish all the time. I can’t remember the last time I kept a fish, and I fish nearly every day. That being said, if we limit the amount of fish that can be harvested by means of a slot, wouldn’t that still improve things even by a small margin? 

The problem, as I and many others see it, is the C&R mortality.  The number being used I believe is 9 %, I would personally believe, from what I have seen the number would be closer to 30 % and these numbers carry through 16" fish all the way up.  Fishing, as mentioned many times, is a blood sport, fight a fish to exhaustion and it will probably be incapacitated enough to be caught and eaten by a number of predators or succumb to stress related causes.

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1 min ago, b-ware said:

The problem, as I and many others see it, is the C&R mortality.  The number being used I believe is 9 %, I would personally believe, from what I have seen the number would be closer to 30 % and these numbers carry through 16" fish all the way up.  Fishing, as mentioned many times, is a blood sport, fight a fish to exhaustion and it will probably be incapacitated enough to be caught and eaten by a number of predators or succumb to stress related causes.

I see what you’re saying, but there are ways to enjoy this activity and keep the well-being of the resource a priority.

 

And again, if there is a slot limit, a huge portion of the biomass is exempt from legal capture. If their survival rate is 70% (your estimate) isn’t that still improving things in the long run? 

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6 mins ago, Seadogg said:

I see what you’re saying, but there are ways to enjoy this activity and keep the well-being of the resource a priority.

 

And again, if there is a slot limit, a huge portion of the biomass is exempt from legal capture. If their survival rate is 70% (your estimate) isn’t that still improving things in the long run? 

I would really like to agree with you but seeing the class (or lack off) fishermen out there today I just cant'.  I think back to fishing in the 80's and 90's with a 36' size limit the fishermen showed a lot more respect than they do now.  Of course that was before cell phones with cameras, the internet and the hooray for me attitudes.  What we need are true honest to goodness sportsmen who respect the resourse, take only what is needed.  How many fish would have a better chance of survival if they were released without a 15 minute photo shoot......

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47 mins ago, b-ware said:

I would really like to agree with you but seeing the class (or lack off) fishermen out there today I just cant'.  I think back to fishing in the 80's and 90's with a 36' size limit the fishermen showed a lot more respect than they do now.  Of course that was before cell phones with cameras, the internet and the hooray for me attitudes.  What we need are true honest to goodness sportsmen who respect the resourse, take only what is needed.  How many fish would have a better chance of survival if they were released without a 15 minute photo shoot......

Believe me man, I’m with you. I’m 33, maybe younger than you, but fishing has been a passion of mine since I could walk. My grandfather taught my dad right, and my dad taught me right. I know as well as you that too many of today’s anglers aren’t treating the resource well, but I believe that by imposing a stricter limit on which fish can be outright killed, those outside the slot might just have a better chance to grow and breed.

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I may be getting too cynical these days, but....

 

I feel like there are a lot of similarities between gun laws and fishing regs in terms of the people that dont follow them, don't follow them, regardless. 

 

I fear that changes will be followed by the group of people that would have the least impact on the issue. we see pretty crazy poaching busts often where there are sometimes hundreds of undersized fish. 

 

not saying we don't change the laws, but I think the real impact is in real penalties. and I mean real, like up to and including jail time. 

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17 mins ago, HugeDinghy said:

I may be getting too cynical these days, but....

 

I feel like there are a lot of similarities between gun laws and fishing regs in terms of the people that dont follow them, don't follow them, regardless. 

 

I fear that changes will be followed by the group of people that would have the least impact on the issue. we see pretty crazy poaching busts often where there are sometimes hundreds of undersized fish. 

 

not saying we don't change the laws, but I think the real impact is in real penalties. and I mean real, like up to and including jail time. 

Agreed. It is one thing to put a law in place, but proper enforcement and true consequences is what gives a law backbone. 

 

Every time I read about a poaching bust the poacher merely receives a citation. I’m willing to bet most of the time they don’t show up in court. It’s time to get back to gear confiscations, vehicle confiscations, and fines. For 100 schoolie type poaching a little jail time seems completely appropriate. Poach on that level is essentially a rape of our waters. 

 

C&R and regulation abiding anglers also need to be vigilant about reporting poaching. If anglers perceive that a DEM officer may pull up at any minute, they will be more likely to follow the law. 

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4 mins ago, S.K.S said:

Agreed. It is one thing to put a law in place, but proper enforcement and true consequences is what gives a law backbone. 

 

Every time I read about a poaching bust the poacher merely receives a citation. I’m willing to bet most of the time they don’t show up in court. It’s time to get back to gear confiscations, vehicle confiscations, and fines. For 100 schoolie type poaching a little jail time seems completely appropriate. Poach on that level is essentially a rape of our waters. 

 

C&R and regulation abiding anglers also need to be vigilant about reporting poaching. If anglers perceive that a DEM officer may pull up at any minute, they will be more likely to follow the law. 

Now these are words of wisdom that should more decide to engage the legal process the whole resource would be the benefactors as well as those who fish for sport and an occasional one to take home to eat. Many of the words spoken here and elsewhere have been printed over many decades and are not with out merit even today .

Those of us whom decided to get involved with these issues over time have found that the general population of those who fish to be complacent and even in some cases disrespected. Many words of wisdom over many years has found tone deaf fishermen to any idea in regards to   putting in the time towards actually organizing under one banner for the sake of the aquatic resource that favors the fish and not those seeking it. .

We can continue to sit here and complain and actually come up with some great ideas, but until we as sportsman can actually seek a positive solution that benefits the resource we may as well go in the back room and talk to the walls. We will continue to get the same results .

You generally see those who complain the most are the ones that are all talk and no action and that is a hard nut to crack if only it is about themselves and for what ever reason are afraid to get down and dirty and use our numbers to make the changes needed in some form or fashion.

I have offered myself to bring about needed changes,more open dialog with those that make the laws and enforce them and have even had some that posted that they would be part of the process, only to later say that they do not work with group representatives and are loners what ever that means .

This is not something that you engage during the heat of summer fishing,in my mind, but in the cold of winter when every one can bring an open mind to the table to work out the challenges we all face now fishing, especially here along the Cape Cod Cod Canal     

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2 hours ago, bdowning said:

Only thing that got crushed was the bruins. :box:

Nah I definitely crushed some beers too.  The real thing that got crushed was financial dreams of the poor guy outside TD Garden who had made the "Bruins 2019 Stanley Cup Champs" hats who was trying to sell them to the crowd as they were leaving for $80 a hat.  He was completely oblivious to the fact the Bruins had just lost badly as he tried to sell those hats to everyone in B's apparel.  

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Both SKS and Angler #1 made good points as this thread appears to be winding down.  I've talked about laws, regulations and enforcement in some of my few previous posts.  The latest need to reduce bass harvest on an expedited basis will doubtless produce additional regulations, some of which will pose enforcement challenges.  Mandatory circle hooks, gaffing bans, possible slot lengths, seasons, quota reductions, etc. are just some of the proposed measures being evaluated  by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission.  The goal of this Addendum (striped plan adjustment) is to have the changes in place by early 2020 to catch the beginning of the MD and VA early fisheries and obviously, the later coastal fisheries before the Spring northward migration. 

Some additional updates, if I may.

1. Enforcement:  Twelve new EPOs are in training; 6 are completing their field training and should be deployed in the next couple of months and 6 are near the end of their police academy training.  In addition there is a Senate addition to the current 2020 budget  that would add funding for additional officers.  The 2020 budget is being debated by the joint legislative conference committee so if you know a legislator, give him a heads up with your support.  

The current EPO director position is still vacant with a EPO Capt. filling in as Acting Director.  He's a good man but is rumored to be near retirement.  Allegedly, a nationwide search is underway to hire a "permanent" Director so we'll see how that goes. Hopefully, it will be some one with professional expertise and experience as opposed to the two previous duds whose main claims to fame were drivers during their bosses' campaigns.

2. Education:  There was a good recent thread on this forum regarding signage along the Canal or lack thereof.  I did a little survey of the mainland East end and found nothing at the Sagamore Bridge,  a small sign to the right of the East end jetty entryway about the need for a marine rec license  and NOTHING at the Scusset fish pier.  I urged DMF to use some of the marine recreational license dedicated revenues for expedited multi language sign placement and they said they are on it. We'll see.

They are promoting circle hooks, catch and release care and I believe they are exploring ways to reach out to the various ethnic groups that enjoy fishing.  

It's well known among you that conservation violations face difficult going in the courts. Toward that end, DMF has ramped up a alternative enforcement process which involves bringing  egregious violators before a Fish and Game Dept Attorney for a hearing which has resulted in several significant actions. A Connecticut fisherman who was running Block Island bass into Massachusetts has been banned for life from fishing in Massachusetts.  A lure maker who walked out of the court after dismissal of a solid case has received a three year ban from fishing.  A tautog charter boat Captain can't fish the fall tautog season any more.  The main problem with the adjudicatory hearing process is that it's labor intensive which limits how many procedures the single attorney can handle but it does get people's attention. These findings could be better publicized, however.

Lastly, as has been mentioned ad nauseam on this forum, if you witness a violation, call the HOTLINE-800-632-8075.   

    

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