The Riddler

Amendment 7: Is it enough to rebuild Striped Bass Stock?

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Posted (edited)

3 hours ago, pakalolo said:

C&R accounts for a LOT of dead bass. 

Not anymore now that we’re using circle hooks and not using gaffs.  We’re all good now- keep everything within the slot.

 

 

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Edited by Fitzy

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8 hours ago, MakoMike said:

Doesn't happen simply because most of us who are willing to take the time to do it don't have the political connections to make it happen. I know because I've tried.

Figuring out how to develop those connections is part of the process

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Posted (edited)

5 hours ago, pakalolo said:

C&R accounts for a LOT of dead bass. 

A released fish has a very solid chance of surviving.  Survival is probable.  Can’t say the same about a fish in a cooler. 
 

Gotta be a realist and acknowledge that any type of fishing, C&R included, is worse than no fishing from a mortality standpoint.  
 

That said… if everyone who targeted striped bass released them, the stock would rebound.  If everyone harvested them, it would tank.  Quickly.  We can all agree on that.  
 

So what’s the point of saying that released fish die a small minority of the time? Harm reduction works.  Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good. 

Edited by Bluetaildragger

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18 hours ago, Bluetaildragger said:

A released fish has a very solid chance of surviving.  Survival is probable.  Can’t say the same about a fish in a cooler. 
 

Gotta be a realist and acknowledge that any type of fishing, C&R included, is worse than no fishing from a mortality standpoint.  
 

That said… if everyone who targeted striped bass released them, the stock would rebound.  If everyone harvested them, it would tank.  Quickly.  We can all agree on that.  
 

So what’s the point of saying that released fish die a small minority of the time? Harm reduction works.  Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good. 

Right now, what you say is true, at least with respect to striped bass.  On average, for every released bass that dies, roughly 10 survive.  However, should the bass population ever decline to the point where a fishing mortality reduction greater than 50% is required, release mortality could become a critical issue, as it now accounts for about 50% of fishing mortality each year.

 

They're facing this issue right now in the South Atlantic red snapper fishery, where release mortality of incidentally-caught fish in other fisheries is so high that the recreational red snapper fishery in the South Atlantic is open for a single weekend, and there are people questioning whether it ought to happen at all.

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On 11/4/2022 at 7:24 PM, pakalolo said:

Yes. Trust the science 

Well then pak............we're screwed !!

 

 

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Posted (edited)

On 11/4/2022 at 9:08 PM, CWitek said:

Figuring out how to develop those connections is part of the process

Charles..............you're giving a righteous answer here and asking for an impossibility when we are talking about the masses !!

 

Please.....we need the ASMFC to do a "BETTER" job !!  That's what they are there for!

 

 

Edited by yogiiiboy

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10 hours ago, yogiiiboy said:

Charles..............you're giving a righteous answer here and asking for an impossibility when we are talking about the masses !!

 

Please.....we need the ASMFC to do a "BETTER" job !!  That's what they are there for!

 

 

It's not an impossibility at all.  

 

It's just that most people are lazy.  They like to talk, they like to complain, but they don't like to put in the time and effort that it takes to make a difference.

 

There are surf clubs and striped bass clubs in every state on the striper coast.  Each one of those clubs is capable of establishing the position of "conservation director" or whatever they want to call them, who will establish a relationship with the state fishery managers, the two ASMFC appointees, and provide some input on fishery issues.  The state managers would welcome the input, particularly if the people in question take the time to learn how the system and the science work.

 

That's what the commercial and for-hire groups do,  They create relationships, stay in contact with regulators, and constantly press their positions.  For the most part, recreational groups don't.  Then they complain that the system is rigged in favor of the commercials and for-hires.

 

In many cases, the ASMFC reps are just responding to the comments that they receive.

 

When anglers show up, the ASMFC has been reasonably responsive.  Amendment 7 started out being a disaster, had all of the really bad provisions stripped out of it, and ended up being a decent document, largely because anglers got off the couch and made their thoughts known.

 

The problem is largely what motivates anglers.  They'll complain about conservation issues, but unless there's a document out there, they won't proactively get off their ample posteriors and make their thoughts known.  On the other hand, when Addendum VI would have required circle hooks in rigged eels, THAT was seen as an issue worth getting involved in.  State managers got a bunch of calls and letters expressing outrage over the possibility that eelskin plugs might no longer be legal (even though few people actually use them) and that rigged eels could be rendered ineffective.  And the ASMFC made the requested changes in response.

 

Always easy to point fingers at people, and say they should be doing a better job.  But when it comes to conservation advocacy, we should all be pointing our fingers at the mirror, because we could be doing a far better job, too,

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2 hours ago, CWitek said:

It's not an impossibility at all.  

 

It's just that most people are lazy.  They like to talk, they like to complain, but they don't like to put in the time and effort that it takes to make a difference.

 

There are surf clubs and striped bass clubs in every state on the striper coast.  Each one of those clubs is capable of establishing the position of "conservation director" or whatever they want to call them, who will establish a relationship with the state fishery managers, the two ASMFC appointees, and provide some input on fishery issues.  The state managers would welcome the input, particularly if the people in question take the time to learn how the system and the science work.

 

That's what the commercial and for-hire groups do,  They create relationships, stay in contact with regulators, and constantly press their positions.  For the most part, recreational groups don't.  Then they complain that the system is rigged in favor of the commercials and for-hires.

 

In many cases, the ASMFC reps are just responding to the comments that they receive.

 

When anglers show up, the ASMFC has been reasonably responsive.  Amendment 7 started out being a disaster, had all of the really bad provisions stripped out of it, and ended up being a decent document, largely because anglers got off the couch and made their thoughts known.

 

The problem is largely what motivates anglers.  They'll complain about conservation issues, but unless there's a document out there, they won't proactively get off their ample posteriors and make their thoughts known.  On the other hand, when Addendum VI would have required circle hooks in rigged eels, THAT was seen as an issue worth getting involved in.  State managers got a bunch of calls and letters expressing outrage over the possibility that eelskin plugs might no longer be legal (even though few people actually use them) and that rigged eels could be rendered ineffective.  And the ASMFC made the requested changes in response.

 

Always easy to point fingers at people, and say they should be doing a better job.  But when it comes to conservation advocacy, we should all be pointing our fingers at the mirror, because we could be doing a far better job, too,

The masses won’t do it…… most probably have lost faith in the system thinking that all east coast states will get on the “same” page!!  Only way it works….

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3 hours ago, yogiiiboy said:

The masses won’t do it…… most probably have lost faith in the system thinking that all east coast states will get on the “same” page!!  Only way it works….

You're right, they won';t do it, because in the end conservation doesn't matter enough for them to come out.  And "losing faith in the system" is always a good excuse for inaction; you convince yourself that "what I say doesn't matter," and then you can stay home and watch TV, go out to a bar, or spend the night casting into a largely empty ocean, instead of trying to make a difference.

 

But if you tried to ban bait fishing with eels, or wanted to outlaw livelining bunker, or fishing with chunks, you'd see anglers swarm to the meetings to defend their bait pails.

 

Because that would matter enough to say something.

 

I still think back many years ago, to when there was an important fishery meeting, and almost no one showed up.  The surf crowd was particularly absent.  I asked folks later why they were no-shows, and just about all of them said that they had to go to Montauk, to catch the October full moon.

 

That pretty well says it all.

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5 hours ago, CWitek said:

You're right, they won';t do it, because in the end conservation doesn't matter enough for them to come out.  And "losing faith in the system" is always a good excuse for inaction; you convince yourself that "what I say doesn't matter," and then you can stay home and watch TV, go out to a bar, or spend the night casting into a largely empty ocean, instead of trying to make a difference.

 

But if you tried to ban bait fishing with eels, or wanted to outlaw livelining bunker, or fishing with chunks, you'd see anglers swarm to the meetings to defend their bait pails.

 

Because that would matter enough to say something.

 

I still think back many years ago, to when there was an important fishery meeting, and almost no one showed up.  The surf crowd was particularly absent.  I asked folks later why they were no-shows, and just about all of them said that they had to go to Montauk, to catch the October full moon.

 

That pretty well says it all.

Charles-

 We've been around the block awhile........and saying "it's a good excuse and/or convincing myself" is not accurate.  This whole picture has a political component to it and some of the back door deals over the years that have been exposed on this forum from some of these southern states ends up putting a bad taste in your mouth.  These actions have been mentioned here on more than one occasion about the political BS that collated around the Maryland and Virginia brass!  Again, it's useless to get any type of real success when you have these two heavy hitters not playing by the rules.  With other aspects beyond our control, elements such as pollution and legislation are on the politicos who represent us to make it right..........and they haven't held up their end of the bargain.

 

 

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12 hours ago, yogiiiboy said:

Charles-

 We've been around the block awhile........and saying "it's a good excuse and/or convincing myself" is not accurate.  This whole picture has a political component to it and some of the back door deals over the years that have been exposed on this forum from some of these southern states ends up putting a bad taste in your mouth.  These actions have been mentioned here on more than one occasion about the political BS that collated around the Maryland and Virginia brass!  Again, it's useless to get any type of real success when you have these two heavy hitters not playing by the rules.  With other aspects beyond our control, elements such as pollution and legislation are on the politicos who represent us to make it right..........and they haven't held up their end of the bargain.

 

 

Yet when Maryland and Virginia (and the PRFC and DC) tried to derail the Addendum IV process, and stretch out the fishing mortality reduction over three years, they lost, outvoted by the New England states, New York, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina, and I believe some of the other jurisdictions, too.

 

As a matter of fact, in the last decade, I don't recall when Virginia and Maryland prevailed on an important vote.  And while Northrup was governor, Virginia and Maryland opposed one another on bass issues.  So maybe things weren't quite that politically cut and dried.

 

Yes, in political processes, deals are made.  And sometimes you lose.  But you don't say "OK, I lost" and walk away.  You get up and get back in the fight, and keep fighting for as long as it takes to get the job done, regardless of the losses in between.

 

Making an excuse and quitting is, it shouldn't need to be said, merely the path of a loser.

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1 hour ago, CWitek said:

Yet when Maryland and Virginia (and the PRFC and DC) tried to derail the Addendum IV process, and stretch out the fishing mortality reduction over three years, they lost, outvoted by the New England states, New York, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina, and I believe some of the other jurisdictions, too.

 

As a matter of fact, in the last decade, I don't recall when Virginia and Maryland prevailed on an important vote.  And while Northrup was governor, Virginia and Maryland opposed one another on bass issues.  So maybe things weren't quite that politically cut and dried.

 

Yes, in political processes, deals are made.  And sometimes you lose.  But you don't say "OK, I lost" and walk away.  You get up and get back in the fight, and keep fighting for as long as it takes to get the job done, regardless of the losses in between.

 

Making an excuse and quitting is, it shouldn't need to be said, merely the path of a loser.

You know as well as as I that politics works in many ways.  There’s a good argument for these people making those stock numbers look any way they want to fit their agenda.  Either way, there aren’t enough bass to continue with these harvest numbers.  We need to institute a moratorium because too many work around the system, adjusted harvest regulations or not……..too many.  If you shut it down, there’s very little wiggle room to be seen out there hunting bass.  

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4 mins ago, yogiiiboy said:

You know as well as as I that politics works in many ways.  There’s a good argument for these people making those stock numbers look any way they want to fit their agenda.  Either way, there aren’t enough bass to continue with these harvest numbers.  We need to institute a moratorium because too many work around the system, adjusted harvest regulations or not……..too many.  If you shut it down, there’s very little wiggle room to be seen out there hunting bass.  

There is NO argument that I can think of to support the allegation of "these people making those stock numbers look any way they want to to fit their agenda."  The folks who compile, analyze and report on fisheries data are competent, dedicated scientists, and you libel them by suggesting that they would compromise their personal and professional integrity by suggesting that they would manipulate the data to produce a preordained result.  Not sure what you do for a living, but I'm guessing that you would strenuously object if someone said that you would compromise your own professional integrity just to achieve a desired result.  I know that I threatened to resign--quite noisily--more than once when such a suggestion was made to me.

 

Going to the rest of your comments, I'll first note that, even in the depths of the striped bass collapse of the past century, there was never a coastwide moratorium imposed, and that even with the spawning stock biomass at roughly 30% of what it is today, a moratorium wasn't needed to rebuild the stock within 10 years.  Massachusetts and New Jersey, both states with significant harvests, never shut down, New York only shut down for one year--and that was PCB-related, not a conservation closure--and Virginia shut down for one year, but only after rebunilding was well underway.  Calling for a moratorium sounds good, but it would do nothing to prevent the 50% of fishing mortality attrubutable to catch and release.  

 

We could outlaw targeting striped bass as part of a moratorium in an effort to address the release mortality issue, but at that point, we'd see just what you mention--too many will then start targeting bluefish in the wee hours of the morning, using that as a way to "work around the system" and continue to bass fish.  Because in the end, while people may cry about the current state of the bass fishery, and say they want moire regulation, most don't want regulations that impact them.  

 

So anglers call for gamefish status, because they're not commercial fishermen.  People talk--and you can see this on a thread right on this page--about how to get around the circle hook rules, because they want to throw rigged eels with J-hooks.  I know a surfcaster who is very involved in conservation issues, who opposed in-water release of large bass because he fishes jetties in rough conditions where in-water release woud be dangerous--so he'll keep talking about conservation while bouncing bass off the rocks under conditions that make successful release more likely.  Catch and release anglers call for moratoriums, because they don't keep many fish, and can live with catch and release--but would be very upset if all targeting was outlawed.  I see folks who talk a good game "fishing for bluefish" in the EEZ every fall, and catching their bass "by acciedent."

 

So yes, I get a little touchy when everyone attacks the science, but no one provides any contrary science in support, and more upset when they attack the scientists who are doing their best to produce good advice, even if that advice gets ignored.  Those folks, underpaid and underappreciated, deserve more respect.

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1 hour ago, CWitek said:

There is NO argument that I can think of to support the allegation of "these people making those stock numbers look any way they want to to fit their agenda."  The folks who compile, analyze and report on fisheries data are competent, dedicated scientists, and you libel them by suggesting that they would compromise their personal and professional integrity by suggesting that they would manipulate the data to produce a preordained result.  Not sure what you do for a living, but I'm guessing that you would strenuously object if someone said that you would compromise your own professional integrity just to achieve a desired result.  I know that I threatened to resign--quite noisily--more than once when such a suggestion was made to me.

 

Going to the rest of your comments, I'll first note that, even in the depths of the striped bass collapse of the past century, there was never a coastwide moratorium imposed, and that even with the spawning stock biomass at roughly 30% of what it is today, a moratorium wasn't needed to rebuild the stock within 10 years.  Massachusetts and New Jersey, both states with significant harvests, never shut down, New York only shut down for one year--and that was PCB-related, not a conservation closure--and Virginia shut down for one year, but only after rebunilding was well underway.  Calling for a moratorium sounds good, but it would do nothing to prevent the 50% of fishing mortality attrubutable to catch and release.  

 

We could outlaw targeting striped bass as part of a moratorium in an effort to address the release mortality issue, but at that point, we'd see just what you mention--too many will then start targeting bluefish in the wee hours of the morning, using that as a way to "work around the system" and continue to bass fish.  Because in the end, while people may cry about the current state of the bass fishery, and say they want moire regulation, most don't want regulations that impact them.  

 

So anglers call for gamefish status, because they're not commercial fishermen.  People talk--and you can see this on a thread right on this page--about how to get around the circle hook rules, because they want to throw rigged eels with J-hooks.  I know a surfcaster who is very involved in conservation issues, who opposed in-water release of large bass because he fishes jetties in rough conditions where in-water release woud be dangerous--so he'll keep talking about conservation while bouncing bass off the rocks under conditions that make successful release more likely.  Catch and release anglers call for moratoriums, because they don't keep many fish, and can live with catch and release--but would be very upset if all targeting was outlawed.  I see folks who talk a good game "fishing for bluefish" in the EEZ every fall, and catching their bass "by acciedent."

 

So yes, I get a little touchy when everyone attacks the science, but no one provides any contrary science in support, and more upset when they attack the scientists who are doing their best to produce good advice, even if that advice gets ignored.  Those folks, underpaid and underappreciated, deserve more respect.

Maybe I misspoke with respect to the “numbers” …… my intent was concerning the political element of this whole issue.  Science brings it the powers to be and from there you cannot trust the system to do what is best for stock recovery, imo.  I’ve worked at many levels of state and federal government and what I’ve seen with what “brass” do with data would blow your mind.  This may not be an extreme case of it…..but none of know what goes on behind the scenes.  I may be partial to this point of view because of this experience…..but don’t kid yourself as we hear of the occasional shenanigans that get reported from time to time, especially from some here on this forum that are in the trenches concerning this issue.  We cannot be naive with this.

 

I guess we agree to disagree at this point!!

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