Bluefish, Flounder, and Spot Proposed For Serious Reductions
The most annoying thing to follow is fishery management, not just follow, but understand in many cases. However if you don’t follow it, or get involved, you will see some serious reductions and changes. The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC) is proposing some big reductions for a few fisheries, or stocks.
Bluefish are overfished according the the MAFMC and they are requiring a 28% reduction. Bluefish are a coast wide managed species through the Magnuson-Stevens Act (MSA). Not by states via the ASMFC. A 28% reduction has been called for to rebuild the bluefish stocks, coast wide. That could mean a three fish limit coast wide, with or without a season. That remains to be seen but that what is being proposed. Too bad we can’t have striped bass managed this fast and efficient, say many anglers.
Next up is flounder, if these are managed coast wide and not by regional Conservation Equivalencies which some are asking to happen. We could be looking at a coast wide slot limit of 17 to 19 inches with a limited season. That means there won’t be anymore flounder tournaments, like the Flounder Pounder Open, or the canal tournament. You can’t have a tournament with a slot fish, it doesn’t work too well. Especially if it doesn’t occur during the set season. There are several meetings coming up soon via the ASMFC and MAFMC in the next few weeks to decide how summer flounder will be managed.
Finally spot and croaker could be regulated even more. Yes, you read that right, spot primarily a bait fish, could become regulated with bag limits for catching and possession limits on the number an angler can carry for bait. Read about the possible limits for spot. You have until January 10th to send in your public comments in for … Revisions to Spot Management using the Traffic Light Approach
The issues we face at management meetings boil down to not enough bodies in the room. People get frustrated hearing about these, but in the end we need more people involved at meetings. You can’t make changes when everyone thinks the decision has been made already and the meeting is just a formality, I hear that a lot. Get involved write emails, be nice and consistent in your correspondence as well. People don’t like to be talked at, they prefer to be talked to or with. Have alternative suggestions that make sense, pointing fingers and saying you can’t do this without a suggested alternative is a waste of everyone’s time.