codfish

Commercial season starts Monday

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...and they want to place blame on the recs for this, and change regs against recs......

 

If its so bad this year, what will next year bring?

 

Abolish the comm fishery (would 'almost' stop poaching by eliminating a legal sales market)

Change rec size to 32" (or greater) 1/day

 

 

 

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30 mins ago, Riptide said:

34% in mid August.  Gonna need a hell of a fall run to make my prediction falter.  Only a 3% change after the last Comm day.  It sucks whats happened to such an amazing fishery.

Back, years ago, when ASMFC dropped the size limit and increased the bag limit for the recreational fishery, it opened the floodgates for increased mortality; and the boat/tackle industry jumping on board to push their bass agenda to maximize their profits, only perpetuated the killing. The striped bass fishery became the playground for everybody (rec and commercial)...been at this for 50 years...seen it all.  Thankfully, there are enough triggers/safeguarding of recruitment to turn it around...the fishery will rebound....maybe not as fast as most will want, but it will rebound...we're all going to have to sacrifice, as in the past......

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Update on various conservation measures being proposed by ASMFC. This now goes to the states for public hearings. Check out the Option 3 table, if nothing else...
 
 

STRIPED BASS UPDATE – OF CIRCLES AND REGULATIONS

A quick look at the outcome of the ASMFC’s Striped Bass Management Board discussion at the Summer Meeting and what’s in store for the upcoming Public Hearings.
STRIPED BASS UPDATE – OF CIRCLES AND REGULATIONS
The Atlantic Striped Bass Management Board approved Addendum VI for Public Comment. Addendum VI will revise coastwide commercial and recreational regulations to address overfishing.
 

 

On Thursday, August 8, the Atlantic Striped Bass Management Board (Board) of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) met as part of the Annual Summer Meeting in Arlington, VA. On the agenda for the Board was to consider Draft Addendum VI for Public Comment; and to consider postponed motions from April 2019 to initiate an Amendment to the Atlantic Striped Bass Fishery Management Plan to address the needed consideration for change on the issues of fishery goals and objectives, empirical/biological/spatial reference points, management triggers, rebuilding biomass, and area-specific management.

The latter motion—initiating the Amendment to the Atlantic Striped Bass Fishery Management—was postponed once again to the Spring Meeting in May 2020  to allow time for the former motion to be addressed. This action was somewhat expected in that you don’t want to put the cart ahead of the horse, so to speak.Regarding the former motion, the Board approved Addendum VI for Public Comment. Addendum VI will revise coastwide commercial and recreational regulations to address overfishing. This action is in response to the 

Atlantic Striped Bass Benchmark Stock Assessment which found that the resource is overfished and that overfishing is occurring.

As reported in the March 2019 issue of [..], 

“Overfishing is simply when the amount of fish being removed from the biomass is more than the number of new fish being recruited into the biomass. The second issue, the Stock Assessment Report Stated, is that the spawning stock biomass (SSB) is overfished. A stock that is overfished is when the biomass has fallen below the stock threshold. What is threshold? It is the minimum number of fish that the SSB cannot fall below without managers having to take action to rebuild the SSB back to the target level. Threshold and target are the two biological reference points (BRP) which any fishery management plan (FMP) uses to determine the health of a stock.”

Included in the approved Addendum are three options, each with a set of sub-options. They are:

  • Option 1: status quo which would result in no change in management and allow fisheries to continue to operate under Addendum IV;
  • Option 2: implement equal (18%) reductions for both the commercial and recreational fisheries;
  • Option 3: implement proportional reductions to the commercial fishery (1.8%) and recreational fishery (20%) based on annual harvest figures.

Options 2 and 3 include a slate of specific management sub-options for consideration (see below), and an additional set of sub-options will be available for the public comment period which include a slot limit consisting of a harvest range with a minimum length of 30 inches and an as-to-to-be-determined maximum length. This maximum length is going to be determined by the Technical Committee and will be available prior to the public hearings. Please note that these options are for the ocean, only, and fisheries inside the Chesapeake Bay have a different set of options which can be found at ASMFC.org and will be included in the public comment.

MANAGEMENT OPTION #2

OPTION%202.jpg

MANAGEMENT OPTION #3

OPTION%203.jpg

Further, as part of Addendum VI, the subject of mandatory circle hooks use when using bait for striped bass was discussed, and three unique management options for their implementation are being considered. They are:

  • Option A: Status Quo which simply recommends that states promote the use of circle hooks to reduce discard mortality;
  • Option B: mandatory implementation of the use of circle hooks;
  • Option C: mandatory promotion of the use of circle hooks by developing public education and outreach campaigns on their benefits. This last option would also require updates from each state on the public education and outreach efforts in annual state compliance reports.

CIRCLE HOOK OPTIONS

CIRCLE_HOOKS.jpg

Public Hearings on Addendum VI will be held in each state from Maine to North Carolina over the next several weeks. Stay tuned  for official announcement of the meeting dates, times and places as soon as they are available.

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On 8/10/2019 at 2:29 PM, ged said:

Stripers have been on the decline for a while. The truth is that we have more fisherman in MA now because there are less fish in NJ, NY, CT and RI. 

 

Something I had not considered before... The NMFS takes figures from each of the coastal states, but when anglers move en-masse from one state to another, wouldn't that really screw up their calculations?     I'm asking because I don't know, and maybe it's insignificant, but maybe it's not.     If a good % of the biomass was really in the CCC, and thousands of anglers are comfing from NJ,NY,CT, RI, etc.. to the CCC , then perhaps it is statistically significant from a management point of view?     Like you can't say there are 10K anglers in MA if there are another 10K coming from other states, you know?

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Having an 18" min in the chesapeake reduces the removal of fish more that a slot? Hard to believe that, but I have very limited knowledge of that fishery.

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note that the old 36" limit is at least one of the options being considered for rec harvest reduction, although i dont think theyll go that far. the powers that be consider the current state of the fishery as "overfished" and not a "crash" like the 80s. at least so far. 

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Posted (edited) · Report post

It is a giant cluster if a math problem including a lot of dynamic data. Each area is dependent on many changing variables, yet, we are constantly in repair mode.  We may need to lay this out and get lots of scientists involved. Here is the list to start with: 

 

  • Big fish make little fish.
  • Little fish take time to be big fish. 
  • Fish swim, eat, and reproduce.
  • Commercial fishing knows how to catch and kill lots of big fish.
  • Most recreational fishing is catching little fish.
  • There is lots of missing data and most illegal activity goes unreported.
  • Incentives exist to encourage illegal activity  / poaching.
  • We do a terrible job of policing current rules.
  • Fish biologists need jobs and need to keep a queue of issues in the backlog.
  •  We have to be sensitive to any economic impacts.
  •   We are hurting animals and affecting a species and other species. 
  • Seals are so cute.
  • Swimming with white sharks is not like swimming with dolphins.

 

Oh ya, one more.. the last time we had this issue, we fixed it and likely put way less time and people to decide.

 

Just sayin.  

 

Edited by NHAngler

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20 hours ago, Kones1 said:

In the past a moratorium worked well. In a few years , holy moly !!! 

Massachusetts never ever had a moratorium on Striped Bass, They managed it by increasing the size of the fish one could take to 36 I believe for awhile 

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4 hours ago, Wilgabeast said:

So I hear starting next week there will be 4 commercial  days a week .. what days I wonder 

Crazy way to respond to the lack of fish, kill more

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16 mins ago, ged said:

Crazy way to respond to the lack of fish, kill more

What about the biomass past the 3 mile , hmmm nobody counts them ask a squid boat .

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Well,  when the crash became apparent, Ma didn't really respond right away with a 36" minimum length.  They took baby steps, slowly leading up to it, and culminating with the 36" length.

Before the bass fishery crashed, the minimum length was 16" to the fork of the tail. No license, no daily limit, no quota. As long as they were 16" you could take all you wanted.

The first restriction was around 1980-81.  A daily limit of sort. You were allowed four (4) fish daily between 16-24". All the rest had to be over 24". Still no limit, license or quota. This never worked, and it was impossible to enforce.

The bass continued to decline.  Finally Ma got serious, and went to 36" across the board, rec and comm. Recs were allowed one (1) daily.   I'm really not sure about the dates and regs beyond this point because I was offshore lobstering, and only doing occasion rec bass fishing when time permitted. I do know a license was required, and a quota was implemented. But I'm not certain of the facts at this point, and don't want to speculate.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

I found this in the regulations:

 

The commercial striped bass open fishing days during the season are Monday and Thursday for all gear types. If an open fishing day falls on the 3rd or 4th of July or the quota remains open on Labor Day, the commercial striped bass fishery will be closed.

 

Not sure what this means, maybe they only close it on Labor Day and then open it afterwards, or close it for the season after Labor Day. 

Edited by buz23

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