rafolo

Striper overfishing

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Hello all,

 

It seems general concensus is that numbers of fish and size of fish are both down Over the past few years. I have always assumed the decreases have been due to overfishing and mismanagement. There is a fellow on the fly fishing forum who claims it has nothing to do with commercial overfishing but rather because of “recreational” overfishing. I fly fish and never keep my catch except for maybe 1 fish every couple of years if we are having a gathering of friends. I catch a lot of fish and land them quickly and handle them safely and return them quickly. Does anyone support the theory of rec fishing as a cause in the downturn in size and numbers? Why would they not allow commercial fishing for stripers in the canal if recreational fishing h was the problem?? 

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10 mins ago, rafolo said:

Hello all,

 

It seems general concensus is that numbers of fish and size of fish are both down Over the past few years. I have always assumed the decreases have been due to overfishing and mismanagement. There is a fellow on the fly fishing forum who claims it has nothing to do with commercial overfishing but rather because of “recreational” overfishing. I fly fish and never keep my catch except for maybe 1 fish every couple of years if we are having a gathering of friends. I catch a lot of fish and land them quickly and handle them safely and return them quickly. Does anyone support the theory of rec fishing as a cause in the downturn in size and numbers? Why would they not allow commercial fishing for stripers in the canal if recreational fishing h was the problem?? 

Dude,it's not a "theory",it's a fact that recs take way more than comms.It's not a hard google search if you actually wanna know the facts rather than using inductive logic to try and validate your opinion.

Hit up C Witek,he made a great post about it a while back and can probably point you in the right direction.

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So you don’t fish anymore in the name of conservation? I’m sure it is multifactorial but calling people who fish recreationally as “putting the beat down on the poor fish and killing babies” is a bit over the top. Tell you what, ill keep fishing and practice careful catch and release. I’d be surprised if a single fish I have caught has perished. You should definitely not fish anymore since your conscience is bothering you and you are so concerned about the babies. lol

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Mismanagement is the underlined problem. Both sides have their flaws and the finger pointing doesn’t correct issue. Management does.

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Rafalo,  There are a lot of factors in regards to the striped bass numbers being what they are right now. To answer your question, the recreational sector kills way more striped bass then the commercial interests.

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1 hour ago, slip n slide said:

Dude,it's not a "theory",it's a fact that recs take way more than comms.

 

The data from recs is  very much an estimate, and there are quite a few who as suspicious of the means of estimating population and harvest.  

 

At the very least, the word "definitely" and "fact" should, in my humble opinion,  be avoided.  

 

 

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2 hours ago, rafolo said:

So you don’t fish anymore in the name of conservation? I’m sure it is multifactorial but calling people who fish recreationally as “putting the beat down on the poor fish and killing babies” is a bit over the top. Tell you what, ill keep fishing and practice careful catch and release. I’d be surprised if a single fish I have caught has perished. You should definitely not fish anymore since your conscience is bothering you and you are so concerned about the babies. lol

It's pretty well established at this point that even when practicing C&R there is an 8% to 9% mortality rate among striped bass. This holds even when good release and revival procedures are followed. I won't stop fishing by a longshot but it's important to at least be aware of the reality of C&R.

 

That said I would still like to see the striped bass be granted gamefish status along the entire East coast.

Edited by Sandbar1

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Thank you everyone who has chimed in on this subject. I was not aware how many components have led to the present situation. Hopefully if we realize we are “all” part of the problem we can “all” work together to assure the healthy return of the striper population. 

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49 mins ago, rafolo said:

Thank you everyone who has chimed in on this subject. I was not aware how many components have led to the present situation. Hopefully if we realize we are “all” part of the problem we can “all” work together to assure the healthy return of the striper population. 

Rafolo,

 

I applaud you for continuing your search. This is what this website and any other should facilitate. 

 

As you can see, you will run into a few individuals that have established their point of view as the fact, and the debate is over. Just like Global Warming. 

 

Keep searching. Others will chime in with its “the commercial guys” and others will argue “it’s the Rec guys”. 

 

But it, like any knowledge, is a worthwhile search and journey. 

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12 hours ago, rafolo said:

Hello all,

 

It seems general concensus is that numbers of fish and size of fish are both down Over the past few years. I have always assumed the decreases have been due to overfishing and mismanagement. There is a fellow on the fly fishing forum who claims it has nothing to do with commercial overfishing but rather because of “recreational” overfishing. I fly fish and never keep my catch except for maybe 1 fish every couple of years if we are having a gathering of friends. I catch a lot of fish and land them quickly and handle them safely and return them quickly. Does anyone support the theory of rec fishing as a cause in the downturn in size and numbers? Why would they not allow commercial fishing for stripers in the canal if recreational fishing h was the problem?? 

The numbers in the last benchmark stock assessment suggest that a combination of recreational landings and recreational release mortality accounted for 90% of all striped bass fishing mortality in 2017.

 

If you go to the asmfc website, click on the "calendar" link and then go to the "meeting archives" link, you can pull up the presenations from the February 2019 meeting, which breaks things out very nicely.

 

There are always multiple factors contributing to a fisheries decline.  In the case of striped bass, recreational overfishing was certainly a big part of the problem.  It was made worse by below-average recruitment from 2004-2010, and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission's failure to tighten regulations in response to a falling spawning stock biomass.  The ASMFC is always very slow to adopt needed restrictions, and very quick to find reasons to maintain or increase landings, which is why, in its more than 75-year history, it has never managed to rebuild even one overfished stock and then maintain that stock at sustainable levels.

 

Things have gotten better since the collapse of the late 1970s/early 1980s, but there's still a long way to go.

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Massachusetts requires circle hooks when fishing with bait.  That seems a sensible way to decrease unintentional kills.  I also think the slot limit (28"-35") makes sense.  

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It's to bad the guys with the PHD's didn't have an Idea on how bass travel from south to north and then back south again.

Only so many go through the canal the rest head south around the cape.

Today being different from the good ol days that we know have over 30,000grey

seals waiting for supper.

Our wonderful conservationists have more power against the State than all the fishen clubs in Massachusetts. So  I don't expect any changes.

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Kay Moulton at Surfland used to say the extra time taken to find cameras, pose pictures, etc. further increases that recreational mortality rate. If there's one thing we could all do in her memory......skip the pic.

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2 hours ago, CWitek said:

The numbers in the last benchmark stock assessment suggest that a combination of recreational landings and recreational release mortality accounted for 90% of all striped bass fishing mortality in 2017.

 

If you go to the asmfc website, click on the "calendar" link and then go to the "meeting archives" link, you can pull up the presenations from the February 2019 meeting, which breaks things out very nicely.

 

There are always multiple factors contributing to a fisheries decline.  In the case of striped bass, recreational overfishing was certainly a big part of the problem.  It was made worse by below-average recruitment from 2004-2010, and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission's failure to tighten regulations in response to a falling spawning stock biomass.  The ASMFC is always very slow to adopt needed restrictions, and very quick to find reasons to maintain or increase landings, which is why, in its more than 75-year history, it has never managed to rebuild even one overfished stock and then maintain that stock at sustainable levels.

 

Things have gotten better since the collapse of the late 1970s/early 1980s, but there's still a long way to go.

 

1 hour ago, oldgoat said:

It's to bad the guys with the PHD's didn't have an Idea on how bass travel from south to north and then back south again.

Only so many go through the canal the rest head south around the cape.

Today being different from the good ol days that we know have over 30,000grey

seals waiting for supper.

Our wonderful conservationists have more power against the State than all the fishen clubs in Massachusetts. So  I don't expect any changes.

 

1 hour ago, KennebecJake said:

Kay Moulton at Surfland used to say the extra time taken to find cameras, pose pictures, etc. further increases that recreational mortality rate. If there's one thing we could all do in her memory......skip the pic.

All those things are true and all add to the overall population decline but they don't account for or cause there to be acres of dead stripers floating in the ocean off North Carolina.  High grading by commercial guys does that.  State legislators that pass laws allowing high grading also are to blame.  

Stripers are highly migratory and cross state lines frequently.  They should be managed by a system that takes that into account.  There has to be Federal regulations to cover the whole coast.

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I'll add 2 cents to this thread.

 

As a recreational surf fisherman & fly fisherman I got to fish my very near by home waters this year for the whole spring spawning run season. I fly fish for Shad & Stripers in the Rappahannock River, VA and have been doing so for 25 years. Short of the dangerous fish stock collapse of the late 80s ... this Spring run season for Stripers was the poorest in memory. That was my observation and another long time Spin fisherman I met, who has fished up river like me for 20 some years.

 

The Striper stocks are definitely down. Almost all of the spring season in Virginia waters is a well regulated  / mandated "Catch & Release" season. Then it turns to a short (30 days) slot limit keeper season. The very few "keepers" I managed this year were all released ... as I'm very concerned over the low numbers of fish.

 

Fishing stocks are heavily pressured for sure.  With GPS & drones ... large schools of fish have a hard time "escaping" capture once targeted. Overall Fisheries management is Ad-Hoc & crisis oriented ... done at the state level it will always be so, Im afraid.

 

Personally I'd like to see a much more aggressive federal policy that would extend far out into the ocean (I'm thinking Cape Cod / Grand Banks). But then everyone cries foul and we're back to the brink (of extinction?) with many stocks of fish.

 

IMO.

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