06-26-2012, 11:46 AM
Actually, I'm not making that up.
It is a fact that boat ownership has increased exponentially since the late 90's. And although the economy has caused a slight dip in recent years, as late as '05 numbers were still way up, and in the world of boats over 40', the numbers from '96 to '07 had increased almost 70%.
These are valid statistics I used in writting my business plan for opening a boat dealership here in the Bay that within about 2 years was among the top grossing dealerships in the country in both brands carried.
As far as crab licenses, I'm glad the buy back was brought up. Since va and md bought back almost 1000 licenses in the last few years (md is looking to reduce licensing by 50%) you should be seeing less crab pots, and not more, as some may perceive. And this also stands to point out that steps are being taken to address concerns.
I'm not a waterman, but speak to a number of them frequently, and saw the reclaimed and empty pots they brought back. So, I'm just repeating what I've been told, and what I've seen. Granted, the general consensus here is that watermen can't be trusted, so I'm sure that doesn't carry much weight.
But I also know that the 2 crab pots hanging from my dock don't seem to catch squat without bait in them. Maybe I'm doing something wrong..
As far as the anecdotal entanglement claim, I look at it this way. Let's say that drifting boater drifted into my anchored boat while I was ashore. My anchorline becomes entangled in his lower unit, and rather than take a minute out of his busy day to untangle it, he cuts my anchor line. I'm at fault for my boat now being cut loose?
Hmm.. tough call. But believe I'd be looking for his hide when I found him.
Matt, if you want me to sign on to your point that your concern is based on wanting to rid the bay of pollution (and not just disdain for watermen), I'll not disagree. Pollution needs to be stemmed, and as the elimination of licenses occurs, pots will become fewer and fewer, which should help with that, as well as user conflict. Sacrifices are being made to that end.
But, I have to ask, as a concerned lover of our Bay dedicated to battling pollution, are there other fronts you're taking your fight to?
I made an appeal to the members of this site to help me in making a film regarding the pollution of the Bay...
I got 3 Private Messages with offers to help, and the thread sank into oblivion...
Care to guess who did not make any offers to help?
06-26-2012, 12:47 PM
To understand the issue completely you need to know what they were saying before the collapse, what they were saying 10 years later, and what they are still recommended today, even with a notable uptick in abundance.
Originally Posted by paxfish
"The Chesapeake Bay blue crab fishery is severely overcapitalized in terms of the quantity of gear applied to the harvest."
"A variety of programs are now being considered for funding that are designed to employ crab fishermen in work programs and to involve them in other fishery ventures, like cage oyster aquaculture and spat on shell oyster production. The funds will also be utilized to reduce over-capitalization of the crab fishery through a crab license buy-back program."
"Improve effort monitoring
Controlling effort has been the foundation of crab management in recent years. The principal tools used by managers
have been limited entry, size & catch limits, and seasonal closures. However, the total amount of effort expended in
the fishery remains poorly quantified, making the effectiveness of management efforts difficult to assess. As part of a
long-term management plan, tighter effort controls may be necessary. Effort monitoring programs could be improved
by incorporating crab pot tagging so that crab pot effort is measurable and enforceable."
06-26-2012, 02:41 PM
When Maryland began implementing national policy to deal with impaired bodies of water on the 303(d) list, I spent four years working with the county and state to organize force a structured approach to dealing with bacterial impairments. I was able to generate enough support to bring in antibiotic resistance testing, but it wasn't conclusive enough to put the political wheels in motion. Turns out there is not much political appetite for fixing water pollution in the bay. The sources and types of water pollution make solutions far from one-size-fits-all but in most cases it just comes down to money. Not enough to fix, or too much on the line.
Originally Posted by buckshotgumbo
Littering the bay with lost crab gear is no different. Crabbers want business as usual. The rest of us just want something that makes sense. In my view, getting to a solution starts with assigning responsibility. If crabbers are not responsible, because of some unwritten entitlement that they can put as much gear anywhere they want, then the first step to fixing this is to change the commercial fishing entitlement. Lets identify clear boundaries where crabbers can put gear, and place restrictions on where recs can operate boats. In Virginia that might be hard since their entitlement program says comms can put gear anywhere, in any river, any creek, surround your pier... Not sure how that nonsense came to be, but I guess possession (of the entitlement) is 9/10s of the law.
06-27-2012, 07:26 PM
Nice to hear of your involvement, and I'm sorry the testing was inconclusive.
I can also see how it could be terribly frustrating to be a waterfront owner in VA and have to deal with their pier surrounded by pots.
Almost surprised a pissed homeowner hasn't gone out and cut them all loose!
06-28-2012, 01:38 PM
Pretty sure a bright orange cork would work just as well on a white cap day.
Originally Posted by chesbay2
Some of the paint scheme on the corks literally might as well be ocean camo. Jus sayin.
06-28-2012, 01:58 PM
Clearly you need to bone up on the word "exponential." The fact is, boat ownership in Maryland, and new boat replacement in Maryland has declined significantly in the last 5 years.
Originally Posted by buckshotgumbo
What happened to your boat dealership?
I'll take a shot - the other 4996 members of Tidalfish? I don't remember seeing your proposal - what were the goals of your production? Why did the proposal die?
Originally Posted by buckshotgumbo
06-28-2012, 04:27 PM
I appreciate the grammar lesson. But since you wish to call my reference into question, I'll go ahead and do the same, and ask that you bone up on the word "significant". It is a fact that boat ownership of vessels over 40' increased 68% from '96 to '07, call it what you want, but thats.. well, significant.
The reason I sited that was that owners of large boats are less likely to take the evasive action that we in small boats can to dodge pots, or they may just leave her on autopilot..
I stated that there has been a dip in the last few years. In 2007 there were 202,812 registered boats in MD, the most current info on the states has us at 193,259. That's a decrease of about 5%, and the year is only half over. I have not looked at the other states that enjoy the chesapeake (pa and va come to mind), but generally the mid atlantic states are still doing pretty well on boat ownership statistics, and if they do drop, it's only by maybe a couple points.
Not what I would call significant.
Considering that the drop in boat ownership is not terribly great (or exponential, for that matter), but there have been a relative sharp decline in crabbing licenses (buy backs, etc), the fact still remains that there is a strong argument remaining that boat traffic is the primary cause for lost pots.
I will also point out that the Coast Gaurd states that the biggest cause of accidents is inattentiveness, followed by inexperience.
That's interesting to me considering the current topic is how all these pots are being lost.
As far as the dealership, I assume you're wondering if it's still open due to the economy. It's still there. Thanks for the concern.
Unfortunately one brand went belly up. The economy had a bit to do with that, as did poor management, and a niche market.
The other brand has decided to impliment a factory direct option that we did not agree with, so although the business is still a dealership, it decided to focus it's monetary efforts on it's root business, which is boat building, upgrades, modifications, etc. To that end, business is good.
As far as my proposal, it was in the "Bad Water" thread that started after the sewage dumps and subsequent algae blooms came to light.
The goal was (and still is) to try to bring the pollution issues our Bay faces to the forefront. A good friend of mine owns a television production company and is helping put a short 10-15 minute professional quality film together. The idea is to film the algae blooms, the fish kills, the sewage dumps, etc. And also interview a variety of scientists and doctors that have dealt with the deterioration of water quality and the illnesses and infections it's causing.
One person I've spoken with (who contacted me through another site) has children that have been infected by poor water, and is now considering relocating as a result of his families inability to enjoy the Bay lifestyle, so not only is it a health issue, it's becoming an economic issue as well.
Then, the idea is to upload the video to youtube, and make it go viral. Email the link to everyone we know, our gov't officials, post it on websites, and so on, in hopes that someone takes notice.
Will it work? Who knows. But we're doing it on our time, and on our dime. No extensive, grant backed studies or agendas.
The project is not dead, and we're putting film together as schedules allow.
Perhaps I should have started a new thread under a heading calling for help, but the topic was near the top of the general discussion page here for a couple days, so I assumed most had read it. Unfortunately I was wrong, as it obviously slipped by a few..
That being said, considering the number of members here that are interested in the health of the Bay, I was a little disappointed when the threa slipped into obsurity after a few days.. But not surprised.
I've got a feeling I may not be well liked by some here, and it wasn't a thread about evil watermen raping the Bay or harrassing people, so I wasn't shocked when a thread about the water quality in which I was looking for help didn't go to 10 pages...
Last edited by buckshotgumbo; 06-28-2012 at 05:15 PM.
07-01-2012, 06:02 PM
Originally Posted by buckshotgumbo
Heard of anytjing like that but it would not surprise me..your post has the tone of nothing constructive
07-01-2012, 09:00 PM
And if that happened, would it be the watermans fault his pots were "lost" or the criminal that maliciously cut them off?
It's quite obvious you want to lay all the blame for the lost pots on the watermen so you can follow up with your wish that if they don't take care of "their" problem, then the entire crab fishery should be shut down, which is absurd.
Your argument that the lost pots are all being cut off during the crab wars was shot to pieces, and you now even admit you wouldn't be surprised if homeowners were cutting pots off.
If we want to sight the studies, the bycatch IS the big concern with the pots, and biodegradable panels were brought up, which a number of people thought made sense, but not to you. Because short of a total overhaul (or shut it down), no other answer will suffice.
So now we have to figure out how to get VA and MD to completely change the entire industry, or they need to stop crabbing.
Talk about posts not being constructive?
I think I've constructed a point that you're just mad at watermen, and you've helped.
07-02-2012, 07:31 AM
I have repeatedly offered my opinion that this many pots didnt get lost by accident. I stand by that opinion based on magnitude of gear lost and the geographic location of studied loss and of density of recent loss based on condition of gear recovered and last but not least based on anecdotal claims of local watermen. My opinion is so far only disliked not substantially challenged and the challengers have so placed all the blame on recs as if comms have no responsibility which is laughable. By constructive I mean having something to say other than having opinion about my opinion. For example you could propose a solution. Maybe you would like to limit the rights of tec boatrrs so comms can kill marine life more efficiently.