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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I would like to propose a way for all of us to be able to continue fishing for Rockfish, but ensure we limit the taking of the major breeding population. There would need to be two parts to this proposal.

1. Establish a slot limit for Rockfish. I would recommend that scientist’s establish the sizes. It should be some where from 18 to 33 inches. Any other size fish would need to be released as quickly as possible. That would limit the number of breeding rockfish killed for the table. This method has been used very successfully for the Redfish and Snook to restore those fish stocks in our southern states. It should work for us equally as well.

2. Each angler would also be given a tag for one Rockfish over the 33 inch limit per year. It would need to be some type of tag that could be fastened to the jaw of the fish and once fastened could not be removed or unfastened without being broken. This would allow each angler to keep that one fish he or she determines is their trophy for that year. Yes I’m sure unscrupulous people would figure out how to get around this. But some folks are always going to do it and it would be up to the DNR police to enforce it. It’s designed to keep the honest people honest.

This slot limit and tag would have to be enforced for the entire migrating area of the Rockfish. It should not be born by just Maryland anglers. The number of fish kept per day should also be along the current limit. I think this would give us a manageable method of being able to catch and keep that one fish we deem as a trophy, but allow the breeding population of Rockfish to grow.

So what say the fellows of Tidal Fish? I’m sure everyone has an opinion. Let’s hear it!!!
 

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If we keep 18-33" fish, what ones are going to reproduce in the future... We already can only keep one fish per person during the migratory run and the season will be short with a April 21 opening day. It also appears to me that stocks are up with current laws if supposively more fish are being kept. I am all for protecting our fisheries but when we already have such restrictive limits and seasons, I would like to see more recreational fisherman push more towards keeping our sport alive..
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Echo (C&R)
I agree if everybody practiced C&R we would not have this discussion, but they do not. Hence we need a solution that all anglers can buy into.


Porkchunker
(Your proposal is not workable on a declining DNR budget that has effectively cut the DNR workforce by 25% since 2002.)
The devil is always in the details. I believe we fisherman need to come up with a plan that is acceptable to US and then take our case to DNR and the legislature. Yes I agree to implement this proposal it would take additional funding. It would have to come from US or the general fund. Either way the public is going to pay for it.
 

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Maryland already has a slot limit in its resident fish quota.

2 fish limit, one 18" to 28" and one 18" and over per day.
 

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tags

----Each angler would also be given a tag for one Rockfish over the 33 inch limit per year.

---I Ass-u-me you purchace a boat licence, to cover your anglers ,Do you propose a individual purchace of a (1 tag a year tag.) To be brought aboard by each individual on their Day on the Water---Its a deep subject , & a difficult one to originate--geo.
 

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Nut Rock,

Good post! I like your plan. When the meetings start to determine how MD will accommodate the payback, I hope you're there to propose it (or something like it). I'll be there!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Reds
(Maryland already has a slot limit in its resident fish quota.

2 fish limit, one 18" to 28" and one 18" and over per day.)

Yes you are correct Maryland does have a slot limit. But as I said in my post this burden should not be shouldered by Maryland alone. It should be adopted by all states that the Rockfish migrates to. A quick check of New York regulations allows 2 28 inches or bigger per day with no upper limit.

Capt.george

(----Each angler would also be given a tag for one Rockfish over the 33 inch limit per year.

---I Ass-u-me you purchace a boat licence, to cover your anglers ,Do you propose a individual purchace of a (1 tag a year tag.) To be brought aboard by each individual on their Day on the Water---Its a deep subject , & a difficult one to originate--geo.)

Yes that is my proposal. We would have to modify the boat license so each person could purchase the Trophy tag once a year. This would need to apply to private and charter boats. If they didn’t want to keep a Rockfish over 33 inches they don’t buy the tag.

Riverdance

Thanks for the encouragement. If I can get enough support with this post I will submit it to Maryland DNR.
 

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How about keeping the regs where they are and giving striped bass a game fish status? As mentioned before we are already only allowed to keep one fish per person during the spring migratory run....

I can not believe other rec fisherman are proposing more limiting limits, keeping only immature fish, and taxes on keeping a larger fish... :confused:
 

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Your proposal would mean stricter regulations of the migratory stock in almost every state.
The chances of the other states voting for that are slim and none.

Remember the Striped Bass is a boost to the economy for all the states. Voting stricter harvesting regs is not going to happen unless the stock shows serious depletion. Right now that is not the case.
 

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But as I said in my post this burden should not be shouldered by Maryland alone. It should be adopted by all states that the Rockfish migrates to. A quick check of New York regulations allows 2 28 inches or bigger per day with no upper limit.
How many immature, never spawned, never will have the oppurtunity to spawn, dead 18" fish is NY allowed to harvest. I understand the reasoning and why it's done in Maryland, but try and convince the other States why it's OK to kill a fish before it's been allowed to mature and proliferate at least once in it's life. Name me one other game fish (besides Red drum)that are not protected until it's reached sexual maturity.
 

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If the fishery is to be protected for "EVERYONE" then we should be smart enough to protect the "BREEDING STOCK"................that is.....the entire coastal fishery.

I think that if every coastal state required that "ANY" rockfish caught over 40-inches, must be returned to the water as soon as possible, then we should be able to maintain the fishery, "NOW" and for the "FUTURE".

If that is not agreeable, then the alternative would be to impose this every other year. This would help greatly to maintain the fishery that we now enjoy, for all interests.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
B-Faithful
(How about keeping the regs where they are and giving striped bass a game fish status? As mentioned before we are already only allowed to keep one fish per person during the spring migratory run....

I can not believe other rec fisherman are proposing more limiting limits, keeping only immature fish, and taxes on keeping a larger fish... )

I agree making Rockfish (Striped Bass) a game fish would definitely reduce the pressure on the large breeding size females. That could be part of the answer.

As for other rec fisherman proposing limits I want my grandchildren and great grandchildren to have at least as good but preferably better fishing than we have now. As for keeping only immature fish, and taxes on keeping a larger fish. As I first said let the scientist set the size limits where it most makes since. And yes I’ll pay a nominal fee to keep one big one a year if that will help reduce the killing off of the best breeders the Rockfish schools have. Everybody has to make choices. These are the best I can come up with. I’m willing to listen to anybody that has better solution.

Seahunter
As I said above. As I first said let the scientist set the size limits where it most makes since.

Riptide 1947
I agree this has to be something the entire coastal fishery buys into.
 

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Eminent Brothers,
I'd certainly like to hear from CCA Exec Director Robert, or someone else high on the food chain as to what went on with the DNR proposal made to the ASMFC. I picked up some magazines from up north and they do not like the fact that maryland gets to keep smaller fish then they do. Of course they refuse to understand they have a much bigger portion of bigger fish up there. They have been after us for years and they finally got over on us.
 

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short of a federal law{Game fish } ,i bet ya wont see that kind of co,op from each State.i agree that something needs ta be done.I usually C&R so it dont matter awhole lot ta me.I just hope that limits will help with all the Algea blooms and bait deplentions.Seems like Omega might get some distraction. Dave
 

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As I first said let the scientist set the size limits where it most makes since.
Are you saying currently scientists have no say in the size limit?

I'm wondering if you have a hidden agenda somewhere. The reason is because H King and his groups seems to think the stock is doing very well and that's the reason we, in MD, have been going over our quota. That is in addition to a flawed way of counting the catch.

You also have to think about this. If you put to strict a limit of Rockfish, other species will get hit harder or you will lose fishermen. Losing fishermen may sound nice, but then there goes the DNR budget and the voice of the rec fishermen will get quieter and quieter.

I feel everyone needs to think real hard before they purpose any restrictions.

- Dae
 

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B-Faithful
(How about keeping the regs where they are and giving striped bass a game fish status? As mentioned before we are already only allowed to keep one fish per person during the spring migratory run....

I can not believe other rec fisherman are proposing more limiting limits, keeping only immature fish, and taxes on keeping a larger fish... )

I agree making Rockfish (Striped Bass) a game fish would definitely reduce the pressure on the large breeding size females. That could be part of the answer.

As for other rec fisherman proposing limits I want my grandchildren and great grandchildren to have at least as good but preferably better fishing than we have now. As for keeping only immature fish, and taxes on keeping a larger fish. As I first said let the scientist set the size limits where it most makes since. And yes I'll pay a nominal fee to keep one big one a year if that will help reduce the killing off of the best breeders the Rockfish schools have. Everybody has to make choices. These are the best I can come up with. I'm willing to listen to anybody that has better solution.
Dont get me wrong I am all for preserving the stock for generations to come as I have 3 children. I just believe the regulations on rec fisherman are already very tight. Like I said, we are down to one fish per person over a very short time frame during the migratory run. I believe that overall the striped bass population to have continued to grow and is doing better than it has in 20 years. Evidence is the amount of fish being caught here and the ocean. As I grew up fishing in the 80's off of South Jersey, the bass population appeared to be a fraction of what it is today. I am sure there will be up and down years as all things in nature but I think the current regulations on rec fisherman are as tight as they should be without killing a sport and heritage. If the scientists believe the stocks to be in jeapordy I believe they need to look at the commercial harvest first as rec fisherman have given up their share. I guess the bottom line is that I am not a doom and gloomer like some.
 

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----Each angler would also be given a tag for one Rockfish over the 33 inch limit per year.

---I Ass-u-me you purchace a boat licence, to cover your anglers ,Do you propose a individual purchace of a (1 tag a year tag.) To be brought aboard by each individual on their Day on the Water---Its a deep subject , & a difficult one to originate--geo.
Geo- MD had a tag system back in the day for recs during trophy time. I don't remember how that was appplied to charters, do you?
 
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