View Full Version : From The APP 12/09/09

12-11-2009, 05:41 AM
Did anyone else notice this in yesterday's Asbury Park Press?

December 9, 2009

Time to take stock

Federal fishery managers are continuing to place strict catch limits on certain species of fish, even though the fish are not deemed "overfished." These limits punish the local fishermen and charter boat businesses that are already struggling with reduced limits from other fish species.

The local fishing industry suffered a setback in October when federal officials ordered a six-month emergency closure for recreational black sea bass, a popular fish for the fall charter boat industry. Now managers want to restrict that to two, 30-day fishing seasons for 2010. And the fisheries managers set the same low limits for winter scup — called porgies by Shore anglers — that were put in place when that stock was deemed overfished.

Members of the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission met Tuesday to set the 2010 limits. Fortunately, the panels agreed to reconvene in the coming months to update the stock status. Those members sympathetic to the plight of the recreational industry should make sure the local interests are better served. New scientific data showing that scup and black sea bass are not overfished, as had been previously thought, should result in an increase in catch limits.

The six-month closure eliminated about 85 percent of the 2009 black sea bass fishing season. And new limits for porgies could cut New Jersey anglers' daily limit from 50 to 10. Some members of the two panels say they are worried about their credibility with the fishing community. They should be.

Atlantic States Fisheries Commission member Thomas P. Fote said, "This is the same quota that was in place when the stock was overfished. This sends a very bad message out to the public. We have said this stock is not overfished."

Fortunately, the panels voted overwhelmingly in favor of directing their scientific advisers to meet again with the monitoring committee to review the latest available data. Hopefully, further evidence of a healthy fish stock will allow for increased catch limits and, in the case of black sea bass, a lengthier season.


Dave A
12-11-2009, 06:22 AM
Did not get the paper yesterday. Thanks for posting it. Who wrote the story?

12-11-2009, 07:56 AM
Did not get the paper yesterday. Thanks for posting it. Who wrote the story?

Not a story, it was an editorial. Stories in today's paper. One by John Oswald in Hook, Line & Sinker section, another by Kirk Moore in the news section.