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I'm not sure this is a good thing if the striper population is on the decline. Seems to me they will have no refuge anywhere. I'm sure the main interest is from the O.C. and mid-atlantic fisherman that want to follow the fish east as the water gets colder. Not trying to get anyone fired up but I'm just interested in hearing the pros and cons of this possibility. BTW Peaky's is in Princess Anne on the Eastern Shore.


MEETING TO BE HELD ABOUT OPENING EEZ TO STRIPER FISHING

January 11, 2010: On Saturday, January 15th, commercial and recreational anglers will meet with State Senator Jim Mathias at Peaky's Restaurant to determine what steps need to be taken to allow fishermen to fish for striped bass in the EEZ (outside 3 miles). The meeting will begin at 10:30 AM and all interested fishermen are invited to attend.
 

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The Striped Bass gets hammered all the way down the coast by rec. & comm. fishermen & have only one place to survive. There are on the decline by most reports & now you want to go pass 3 miles and catch whats left. I guess some people wont be happy until they close the season again to Stripers completely, then you wont have nothing to fish for in the winter.
 

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Say bye bye to the remaining Rockfish if that passes. I can see everyone buying new CC's to pursue Croaker and Spot because that is what will be left, oh I forgot the rays.
 

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I am all for them opening the EEZ if they reduce the creel to one fish per angler. As it stands now, many boats fish outside of 3 miles, very few get caught, but all come home with 2 big bass per angler. Since enforcement of many, many miles of open water is so difficult, managing through a tighter creel at access points would seem to be more cost effective and much easier to enforce. Keep in mind striped bass were given gamefish only status in federal waters by President Bush.

Just one opinion.
 

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My understanding, although I've never met him, is that the Senator has a generally good head on his shoulders when it comes to fisheries and other environmental issues. He does have an obligation to listen to views on all sides on an issue so that he makes an educated decision. For those of us who think that the stripers need more, not less, protection, this could be an opportunity to make sure he hears from BOTH sides of the issue.

This could also be an opportunity for anglers on both sides of the issue to reach common ground and form a more powerful voice. I am skeptical that the EEZ restriction is very effective. It's just too hard and expensive to enforce. In my novice view, a better alternative -- as others have suggested -- is to lower the creel, institute a slot, or both, rather than use territorial restrictions to protect stripers. This would allow for more efficient and effective enforcement, since law enforcement could position itself at harbor entrances and other choke points to search vessels, rather than chasing boats all over the ocean and trying to prove where a fish was caught.
 

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I think you all might be missing the point: it is tecnically impossible for MD to open waters for which they do not have jurisdiction. If you want those waters opened you need to go a little higher than a State Senator.

Just so no one is confused, I am not personally endorsing opening or not opening the EEZ - Although recent population indications show that any increase in effort or harvest may be unwise at this time.
 

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IMHO - it would be a death blow.

Imagine 2-3 big trawlers dragging a net through a school of tightly bunched Rockfish. These boats deal in tonnage - few good passes and school is gone. They do not go out for a few hundred pounds of fish.

Same thing could be done with 75 to 100 rec boats - just takes longer.
 

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I think you all might be missing the point: it is tecnically impossible for MD to open waters for which they do not have jurisdiction. If you want those waters opened you need to go a little higher than a State Senator.

Just so no one is confused, I am not personally endorsing opening or not opening the EEZ - Although recent population indications show that any increase in effort or harvest may be unwise at this time.
Thanks for the correction. When I hear Mathias I automatically think of the late Charles and the U.S. Senate. And it gets more confusing when you toss Congressman John Sarbanes into the mix. What's up with these MD bloodlines, anyway?
 

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Bad idea.....these big spawners need some place where they can hide
I agree in principle, but in practice they seem to not actually be hiding...at least if the strories of rampant poaching in the EEZ are to be believed. That's why I think a more effective, enforceable way to protect them is in order, although I applaud what finally appear to be serious enforcement efforts this winter.

BTW, congrats on posting a real Jefferson quote. A ton of fake quotes are attributed to him and often appear on sig lines, but your quote has some legitimacy. However, once he became Prez and was faced with practical challenges to his philosophy, Jefferson changed his tune pretty dramatically and became downright Federalist. He'd have opposed the creation of the EEZ in the 1790s, but then sent the Navy out to blast poachers in the EEZ in the 1800s.
 
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