Thursday, September 26, 2019

Speak Up for Striped Bass

More than enough evidence has demonstrated that the striped bass population along the eastern seaboard is currently in trouble and has been for some time. Stripers have been in this spot before. Anglers helped put them there in the 1980’s and here we are again. Now things must change in order to right the ship.

The Atlantic Striped Bass Management Board has developed a draft addendum to Amendment 6 to the Interstate Fishery Management Plan for Striped Bass with proposed changes to coastwide commercial and recreational regulations to address overfishing. This document presents background on the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission’s (ASMFC) management of striped bass, the addendum process and timeline, and statement of the problem. Most importantly, this document also provides management options for public consideration and comment.

Public hearings to discuss and comment on the proposed regulation changes are underway. Connecticut’s two hearings took place this week. I attended the one in Bridgeport. There were approximately 30 anglers in the room, less than half of whom went on record. Staggeringly low in my opinion. I’m told there were about 50 people at the hearing in Old Lyme. Better, but still an embarrassingly small number of anglers. Kudos to those folks that spoke up in favor of stronger conservation efforts to protect striped bass. If you were there or couldn’t make it, you are still encouraged to submit written comments before October 7, 2019 at 5:00 p.m.

So please take a look at the document and proposed options. Make an informed decision on which options will best help get striped bass stocks back to where we need them to be. Whatever your opinion is, it’s important to make it known to the ASMFC. Comments may be submitted by email, mail, phone, or fax. Please use the following contact information. Email: and be sure to use subject line of Striped Bass Draft Addendum VI.  Mail: Max Appelman, FMP Coordinator Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission 1050 North Highland Street Suite 200A-N, Arlington, VA 22201. Phone: (703) 842-0740. Fax: (703) 842-0741.

Thank you.