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CSMA Striped Bass- A Put and Too ManyTake Fishery

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Topic: CSMA Striped Bass- A Put and Too ManyTake Fishery
Posted By: Rick
Subject: CSMA Striped Bass- A Put and Too ManyTake Fishery
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 10:13am
The NCWRC monitors striped bass, American and hickory shad, and river herring since it has overlapping jurisdiction of anadromous fishes with NCDMF. Unlike NCDMF, the NCWRC reports its findings annually.

The current data on the Neuse River striped bass fishery is quite compelling, and indicates upwards of 40-70% mortality each year since 1994. Interestingly, the reported harvest and discard from the recreational creel survey, combined with the commercial trip ticket data, do not approach the level that would be required to explain the observed mortality. This is outlined in more detail in Appendix A and B of the linked Neuse River report. The NCWRC also monitors the contribution of hatchery-origin fish to the spawning stock using Parentage Based Tagging, a genetics technique that approaches a 100% ability to accurately assign hatchery/wild origin. The NCWRC results agree with ECU’s otolith microchemistry work that the population is comprised of almost 90% hatchery-origin fish.


It is my understanding that the NCWRC has presented these data and analyses to NCDMF. At this time NCDMF has declined to conduct a stock assessment on CSMA striped bass and given an indication that the DMF will wait until fall 2018 before discussing potential management changes to this important fishery paid for by sportsman's dollars that supports what is basically a hatchery based put and take fishery.


Important: “Interestingly, the reported harvest and discard from the recreational creel survey, combined with the commercial trip ticket data, do not approach the level that would be required to explain the observed mortality.”


I personally wonder what percentage of all the striped bass caught in DMF managed estuarine gill nets are being reported on trip tickets. For those interested in this subject, you can review Appendix A and B in this attached link.


NCWRC- Neuse River 2014 Striped Bass Data- http://1drv.ms/1NDDSoL" rel="nofollow - http://1drv.ms/1NDDSoL


The ECU otolith microchemistry study-
http://thescholarship.ecu.edu/handle/10342/1806" rel="nofollow - http://thescholarship.ecu.edu/handle/10342/1806


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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.



Replies:
Posted By: sea byrd
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 11:34am
A good analogy would be if a co-op planted a crop of sweet potatoes, paying the expense for the crop. Then when harvest time is ready a couple of folks slip in (with the blessings of regulators) harvested all they wanted and left the co-op with nothing but leftovers......and very strict harvest parameters at that.

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<div style="display:none">fiogf49gjkf0dFavorite pastime. Catching fish and eating the few fish I am allowed to keep. At least I am not killing four times the number I eat.


Posted By: TomM
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 11:45am
I do not think NCWRC will continue this as the goal was to build a sustaining stock.


Posted By: Redfish
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 11:50am
Why stock for you know who to harvest?  Stupid.


Posted By: chriselk
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 11:56am
So Rick if I recall the commercial CMSA Striped Bass fishery is a directed fishery with an annual quota of 25,000 lbs.  I am presently having trouble downloading the actual comm catches in the CMSA (not at home, and personal hotspot choking on the large doc)-so I dont know comm harvest-perhaps someooe has it handy.

From the WRC paper you cited, anglers caught about 2,000 lbs. 

So IF the comms are harvesting even close to the quota they are exceeding rec harvest about ten fold.  

Since we are buying comms the fish, I think the comms need to buy us all a beer. Or the catches reversed.

Based on WRC info, it should be closed like the Southern region.


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The above comments are my personal opinion and do not represent those of any organizations or agencies I may be a member of.


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 11:58am
Be interesting to know what it cost to raise a fish to stocking size in comparision to what the price paid to the commercial fisherman at the fish house is.



Posted By: dead_fowl
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 2:42pm
The exact same scenario exists in the Pamlico River as well.




Posted By: capt_gordon
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 2:55pm
Lets stop talking in euphemisms. Dumb people don't understand irony. The net industry in the Albemarle Sound management area is taking tons and tons (literally) of stripers out of the water and not reporting them. There, I said it.  Can we get somebody to do something about it now? (probably not, as usual)

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Capt Gordon
"The albatross and the whale they are my brothers"


Posted By: TomM
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 3:44pm
A lot of those come from the shad fishery. Dominion stocks them to go thru dams grow up and get caught in a net for roe. Sounds stupid is stupid!


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 4:18pm
Originally posted by chriselk chriselk wrote:

So Rick if I recall the commercial CMSA Striped Bass fishery is a directed fishery with an annual quota of 25,000 lbs.  I am presently having trouble downloading the actual comm catches in the CMSA (not at home, and personal hotspot choking on the large doc)-so I dont know comm harvest-perhaps someooe has it handy.

From the WRC paper you cited, anglers caught about 2,000 lbs. 

So IF the comms are harvesting even close to the quota they are exceeding rec harvest about ten fold.  

Since we are buying comms the fish, I think the comms need to buy us all a beer. Or the catches reversed.

Based on WRC info, it should be closed like the Southern region.


You'll find it here-  http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/05-striped-bass-csma-ssr-2015" rel="nofollow - http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/05-striped-bass-csma-ssr-2015

Commercials land twice as many of our fish that we are paying for than we do.  Commercials have averaged a landing value of $2.38 per pound.

Average Commercial Landings and Value 2005-2014 – 23,623 lbs. / $56,297

2014 Commercial Landings and Value 25,085 lbs. / $68,607 (quota managed)

Average Recreational Landings 2005-2014 – 10,275 lbs., 2014 – 13,371 lbs.

I saw the figure of $1.2 million annually spent by the NCWRC to stock just the Neuse being quoted by Capt. Dave Stewart on another website.  That value was based on a personal conversation that Dave had with Ben Ricks.  Ben is a biologist with NCWRC and one of the authors of the Neuse River data study linked above.

Let's think about it this way for 2014-
25,085 (Commercial) + 13,371 (recreational) = 38,456 pounds landed in Tar, Neuse and Cape Fear at a cost of at least $1.2 million to stock.  That is $31.20 per landed pound and the commercials are selling their catch for $2.38 per pound. 

...only in NC when managed by the NCDMF, because we're "Different".




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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: BaitWaster
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 6:54pm
Originally posted by Rick Rick wrote:


It is my understanding that the NCWRC has presented these data and analyses to NCDMF. At this time NCDMF has declined to conduct a stock assessment on CSMA striped bass and given an indication that the DMF will wait until fall 2018 before discussing potential management changes to this important fishery paid for by sportsman's dollars that supports what is basically a hatchery based put and take fishery.


While I agree the commercial take is disproportionate and need to be reassessed, NCWRC gets about a third of its funding from licenses and about a third from General Fund appropriations. 

Sound like it's become like the trout streams in the western part of the state.


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I'm not here for a long time, but I'm here for a good time.

The days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations
Well, I have really good days - Ray Wylie


Posted By: TomM
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 8:15pm
BW you are a numbers guy. If a third of their budget comes from the general fund then how many commercials benefit from money collected from all taxpayers in the state? Any SCFL money going to that pot? Agree with you this needs a fresh look.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 9:04pm
Originally posted by BaitWaster BaitWaster wrote:


Originally posted by Rick Rick wrote:

[COLOR="black"]<span style="font-family: Calibri"]

It is my understanding that the NCWRC has presented these data and
analyses to NCDMF. At this time NCDMF has declined to conduct a stock
assessment on CSMA striped bass and given an indication that the DMF
will wait until fall 2018 before discussing potential management changes
to this important fishery paid for by sportsman's dollars that supports
what is basically a hatchery based put and take fishery.</span][/COLOR]

While I agree the commercial take is disproportionate and need to be reassessed, NCWRC gets about a third of its funding from licenses and about a third from General Fund appropriations. 

Sound like it's become like the trout streams in the western part of the state.


I certainly don't fully understand the funding of our hatcheries, but slide three in this link suggests that they are heavily funded, possibly solely funded, through taxes paid by those intended to be the beneficiary, recreational sportsmen.

http://216.27.39.103/Portals/0/Fishing/documents/SFR_Pub.pdf" rel="nofollow - http://216.27.39.103/Portals/0/Fishing/documents/SFR_Pub.pdf

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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Crabby Captain John
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 9:12pm
Originally posted by Rick Rick wrote:


I personally wonder what percentage of all the striped bass caught in DMF managed estuarine gill nets are being reported on trip tickets. For those interested in this subject, you can review Appendix A and B in this attached link.
 
 
Think their math for striped bass is better than for sea turtles by more than a tiny little bit? Not me.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 9:52pm
I think you'll also find this 2015 NCWRC funding report interesting. General funding has dropped from 32% in 2008 to 17% in 2014.

Those Dingell-Johnson dollars gave NCWRC $8,052,302 in 2014.

http://www.ncleg.net/documentsites/committees/JointAppropriationsNER/Reports%20Submitted%20to%20the%20Committee/1e.%20WRC_Federal_Grants.pdf" rel="nofollow - http://www.ncleg.net/documentsites/committees/JointAppropriationsNER/Reports%20Submitted%20to%20the%20Committee/1e.%20WRC_Federal_Grants.pdf

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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: BaitWaster
Date Posted: 08 December 2015 at 10:53pm
General Fund appropriations now at 14% in 2015 ($11.3 million). License 26% ($20.9 million). 

http://www.ncwildlife.org/About/FinancialSummaries.aspx#32611105-net-receipts" rel="nofollow - http://www.ncwildlife.org/About/FinancialSummaries.aspx#32611105-net-receipts


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I'm not here for a long time, but I'm here for a good time.

The days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations
Well, I have really good days - Ray Wylie


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 12:53am
BW - That money is to cover many acres of water and fish not to mention nonfinned game and lands from Murphy to Manteo. What is NC DMF funding and how much are they contributing to striped bass or even shad stocking? Are they even willing to consider this important information in their regs or use it in a stock assessment when someone else has done most of the work for them? I doubt it! They probably find it interesting but want to wait until 2018 (or sometime thereabouts) for the next scheduled assessment and stacked fishery management team process which would probably take another 4 or 5 years to implement. If so that new grandchild would be half way to needing a license before this info would be used. They'll probably blame it on the Corps since Falls Lake went in at about the same time their was a proliferation of gill net usage.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 8:33am
Given the above striped bass data is it possible that NC is in violation of federal law concerning use of its Dingell-Johnson funds?

It appears that the NCWRC is using those dollars as intended with the NCDMF converting at least 2/3 of the public benefit from striped bass restoration to commercial fishing interests with the primary purpose of producing income.

"In addition to establishing wildlife refuges and sanctuaries, the federal government provides states with financial assistance to fund projects pertaining to fish. This funding was created by the Federal Aid in Fish Restoration Act (16 U.S.C.A. § 777-777k), more commonly known as the Dingell-Johnson Act, which was passed in 1950. This act directs that funds derived from the federal excise tax on fishing rods, creels, reels, and artificial lures, baits, and flies be annually apportioned among the states, 40 percent on the basis of geographic area and 60 percent on the basis of the number of persons holding paid fishing licenses. These funds can be used by the states for "fish restoration and management projects" or, since 1970, for "comprehensive fish and wildlife resource management plans." The Dingell-Johnson Act specifies that its provisions are to apply only to "fish which have material value in connection with sport or recreation in the marine and/or fresh waters of the United States." With the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act of 1980 (16 U.S.C.A. §§ 2901–2911), commonly referred to as the Nongame Act, a similar funding program was provided for the protection of nongame fish and wildlife. The FWS is responsible for maintaining and administering these trust funds."

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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 9:25am

§80.51   What activities are eligible for funding under the Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Act?

The following activities are eligible for funding under the Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Act:

(a) Sport Fish Restoration program. (1) Restore and manage sport fish for the benefit of the public.

(2) Conduct research on the problems of managing fish and their habitat and the problems of fish culture if necessary to administer sport fish resources efficiently.

(3) Obtain data to guide and direct the regulation of fishing. These data may be on:

(i) Size and geographic range of sport fish populations;

(ii) Changes in sport fish populations due to fishing, other human activities, or natural causes; and

(iii) Effects of any measures or regulations applied.

(4) Develop and adopt plans to restock sport fish and forage fish in the natural areas or districts covered by the plans; and obtain data to develop, carry out, and test the effectiveness of the plans.

(5) Stock fish for recreational purposes.

(6) Acquire real property suitable or capable of being made suitable for:

(i) Sport fish habitat or as a buffer to protect that habitat; or

(ii) Public access for sport fishing. Closures to sport fishing must be based on the recommendations of the State fish and wildlife agency for fish and wildlife management purposes.

(7) Restore, rehabilitate, improve, or manage:

(i) Aquatic areas adaptable for sport fish habitat; or

(ii) Land adaptable as a buffer to protect sport fish habitat.

(8) Build structures or acquire equipment, goods, and services to:

(i) Restore, rehabilitate, or improve aquatic habitat for sport fish, or land as a buffer to protect aquatic habitat for sport fish; or

(ii) Provide public access for sport fishing.

(9) Construct, renovate, operate, or maintain pumpout and dump stations. A pumpout station is a facility that pumps or receives sewage from a type III marine sanitation device that the U.S. Coast Guard requires on some vessels. A dump station, also referred to as a “waste reception facility,” is specifically designed to receive waste from portable toilets on vessels.

(10) Operate or maintain:

(i) Projects that the State fish and wildlife agency completed under the Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Act; or

(ii) Facilities that the agency acquired or constructed with funds other than those authorized by the Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Act if these facilities are necessary to carry out activities authorized by the Act.

(11) Coordinate grants in the Sport Fish Restoration program and related programs and subprograms.



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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 9:27am

§80.54   What activities are ineligible for funding?

The following activities are ineligible for funding under the Acts, except when necessary to carry out project purposes approved by the Regional Director:

(a) Law enforcement activities.

(b) Public relations activities to promote the State fish and wildlife agency, other State administrative units, or the State.

(c) Activities conducted for the primary purpose of producing income.

(d) Activities, projects, or programs that promote or encourage opposition to the regulated taking of fish, hunting, or the trapping of wildlife.



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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 10:38am
I would ask if anyone sees the irony in the following NCDMF presentation, but irony is  something that is deliberately contrary to what one expects. 

Sadly, what we've come to expect from management at the NCDMF is exactly what we are getting- management of our resources not for sustainability, best use and highest economic yield, but for building a bureaucracy of funding and staff  supported by keeping as many competing user groups and unsustainable gear and practices fishing on our depleted and declining stocks.


  • Approximately 95% of all striped bass in the CSMA are or hatchery origin, paid for by sportsman's dollars.
  • Over 66% of those hatchery origin fish are being landed by commercial fishermen seeking income.

Yet, in this 2009 presentation on the NCDMF's use of sportsman's dollars, the Division was spending almost 1/2 million dollars to-

  • Monitor the status of striped bass stocks in the Albemarle Sound/Roanoke River in the Albemarle Sound/Roanoke River system to assess the effectiveness of management measures being taken to management measures being taken to support a popular recreational fishery in the region.
  • Obtain monthly estimates of striped bass catch, harvest, and effort by recreational anglers for each of the following: Pungo, Tar/Pamlico, Neuse, and Trent rivers.

The Division is spending recreational dollars to monitor the recreational fishery while facilitating the commercial harvest of over 66% of the total landed resource.

It's a slap in the face. 

Just get the nets off our recreational fish.  Spend the money enhancing the resource; it's a put and take fishery.  Simple!

With proper management, a spawning population can be established but not with the current level of commercial pressure.


http://www.ncfisheries.net/mfc/MFC_downloads/sept2009/MFC%20Sport%20Fish%20Restoration%20Presentation%209-25-2009.pdf" rel="nofollow - http://www.ncfisheries.net/mfc/MFC_downloads/sept2009/MFC%20Sport%20Fish%20Restoration%20Presentation%209-25-2009.pdf

 




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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 11:27am
Or let the comms pay to stock 66% more fish. Have accuratre reporting and when all their fish are caught then they have to stop landing and using gear that by catches striped bass.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 12:03pm
From the study linked above, this is important and must be addressed-

"Recreational harvest and discard, as well as commercial harvest, contributed modestly to
the overall mortality rate (Table B.3). “Cryptic mortality”, or mortality not accounted for
through reported harvest or natural mortality, was greater than the reported recreational or
commercial exploitation in all scenarios."

Something is killing more fish than natural mortality+commercial harvest+recreational harvest combined.

This is not an emigration issue-
The potential for migration to affect cryptic mortality must also be addressed as the Neuse River is an open system allowing fish to swim into Pamlico Sound and other adjacent waterbodies. Emigration of Neuse River Striped Bass would be assigned to cryptic mortality. However, analysis of NCDMF tag-return data indicate very little emigration of Neuse River Striped Bass and few reports of immigration by fish originating from other waterbodies(NCDENR 2014). Therefore, considering the Neuse River a closed system is a tenable assumption.

Who is exploiting this fishery and preventing recovery of the breeding stock? 

When cryptic mortality is included, the commercial sector could easily be responsible for 85% or more of all CSMA striped bass mortality.

If cryptic mortality cannot be assigned to natural mortality or migration, it must be assigned to exploitation. Exploitation can be characterized as the “…sum of all fishery-induced moralities occurring directly as a result of catch, or indirectly as a result of contact with or avoidance of the fishing gear…” .  ICES (1995) formalized the components of exploitation by the equation where F is exploitation; FCL represents commercial landing mortality; FRL denotes recreational landing mortality; FSL is subsistence fishing landing mortality; FB represents illegal and misreported landing mortality; FD is discard mortality; FO denotes mortality of fish captured by fishing gear but not landed (drop out mortality); FA represents mortality due to fish who avoid the gear but die from stress or injuries incurred during gear avoidance; FE is mortality resulting from fish contacting but escaping the gear and eventually dying; FG is mortality resulting from “ghost” fishing gears (i.e., abandoned); FP represents predation of fish who escape from or are stressed by fishing gear and would otherwise live; and FH denotes mortality due to fishing gear induced
habitat alterations.


Many of these potential sources of exploitation are likely insignificant for many fisheries,
including the Neuse River Striped Bass fisheries. In the Neuse River, FCL and FRL are reported and were included in this analysis, as well as the recreational component of FD. The NCDMF trip ticket program is a direct census of FCL. Since FRL is calculated from survey data and is not a census, FRL parameter uncertainty should be evaluated to explore its effect on cryptic mortality.  ICES (1995) suggests FB and FD can have a large influence on exploitation, as well as FG in the case of gillnet fisheries. Therefore, FB , FD , and FG should be investigated as they potentially contribute significantly to the cryptic mortality observed in the Neuse River Striped Bass population.

The NCWRC is spending a lot of time, effort and dollars to develop this important fishery.  Mismanagement of this fishery is a NCDMF problem that needs immediate action.

Yield-per-recruit analysis indicated a 26-in MLL would be required to attain an SPR of 0.45 if exploitation is reduced to the CSMA management target (Table C.2). However, harvest regulations in inland waters are unlikely to affect Neuse River Striped Bass mortality at the current level of angling effort. Less than 3% of the angling effort and 2% of the Striped Bass catch (harvest and discards) occurred in inland waters in 2014. The NCDMF creel survey indicates that almost all recreational Striped Bass landings occur in coastal waters. Commercial and recreational harvest in the Neuse River has been low, yet similar, since 2004 (NCDMF, unpublished data). Given the high spawning stock mortality in 2014 and evidence of long-term recruitment overfishing, more conservative management actions are needed in coastal waters to reduce exploitation.


Management Recommendations
1. Implement a 26-in MLL in inland, joint, and coastal waters of the Neuse River for
recreational and commercial fisheries in conjunction with a substantial reduction in
exploitation. Maintain current recreational daily creel limit (2 fish/d) and closed
season (May 1–September 30). Commercial discard mortality must be reduced to
meet the Ftarget specified in the FMP. Protecting the female spawning stock through
an increased MLL in conjunction with reduced exploitation is expected to increase
SPR to the target (SPR = 0.45) used to create the F biological reference point in the
FMP, potentially improving wild recruitment. If actions to reduce exploitation are
not implemented, population recovery will not occur and alternative management
strategies that improve inland angling opportunities (e.g., put-grow-take, minimized
regulations) should be explored.

2. Continue stocking a goal of 100,000 phase-II Striped Bass in 2015 utilizing
broodstock collected from the Neuse River. Preliminary results of a NCSU telemetry
study of phase-II Striped Bass suggested poor post-stocking survival. Therefore,
enhance hatchery fish foraging ability by feeding live forage at least 1% body weight
per day for 5 d prior to stocking. Introduce predatory fish before stocking to develop
predator avoidance behavior. Culture two unique genetic batches of phase-II fish to
evaluate stocking success at inland stocking locations. Inland stocking locations will
be chosen based on potential carrying capacity of phase-II fish and potential trophic
interactions with resident species.

3. Elucidate mechanisms affecting natural recruitment. Despite evidence of adult
spawning, as well as egg and larval collection in previous research, PBT analyses
indicates the Neuse River Striped Bass stock remains hatchery dependent.
Streamflow, trophic interactions, juvenile nursery habitat, and stock-recruit
relationships should be investigated to isolate likely determinants of mortality
bottlenecks. In 2015, stock genetically unique Striped Bass larvae in Smithfield to
determine if recruitment bottleneck occurs in the egg stage. Beginning in 2016,
implement egg and larvae sampling program to estimate egg production, mortality
rates, and identify utilization of available nursery habitat. Consider use of in situ egg
and larval bioassays to evaluate egg and larval mortality.

4. Quantify economic impacts of the Neuse River Striped Bass stocking program.
Economic cost-benefit analyses and biological statistics (e.g., hatchery contribution,
discard mortality) should be considered when evaluating the stocking program.

5. Develop NCWRC Boating Access Areas on the Neuse River upstream of Smithfield,
NC. Current access is limited for boat angling and NCWRC field sampling, despite the
availability of fish habitat during average to above-average spring streamflow.



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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 3:00pm
Originally posted by dead_fowl dead_fowl wrote:

The exact same scenario exists in the Pamlico River as well.


Yes, it does.  Here is the link to the Tar River Data-  http://1drv.ms/1XWOh5R" rel="nofollow - http://1drv.ms/1XWOh5R


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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Crabby Captain John
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 8:04pm
As more is learned it becomes evident the industry is receiving more entitlements than imaginable.


Posted By: Warning Shot
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 8:55pm
All of this information is probably not even on the radar screen of the NCWRC Commissioners. Let's let them know in no uncertain terms that we object to sportsmen's license monies and Wallop-Breaux (formerly Dingell-Johnson)funds being spent to support a commercial fishery:

http://www.ncwildlife.org/contacts.aspx#551694-h2commissionersh2

....and NCWRC's Director:

http://www.ncwildlife.org/contacts.aspx#551693-h2directors-officeh2





Posted By: WaterDog
Date Posted: 09 December 2015 at 9:55pm
There's a whole lot of interesting stuff here as it pertains to the CSMA striped bass population.

What I find so interesting is the set back requirement on the large mesh to prevent excessive striped bass harvest.....even though just about every fishermen know that you find the striped bass hundreds of years OFF  and not on the shoreline the majority of the time! Wacko  NCDMF did that "study"to justify that a set back reduced gill net mortality. Perhaps we should look into this so called "Study" and who did it.

And, in regards to the mysterious mortality - we all know of folks who catch 50 to keep their ten. Been talked about many, many times. But we all know that, according to DMF, that no fishermen "targets" bycatch.




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Capt. Tom Roller
http://www.waterdogguideservice.com - WaterDog Guide Service
Beaufort/Atlantic Beach, NC
252 728 7907
919 423 6310


Posted By: bernpackbkr
Date Posted: 10 December 2015 at 9:34am
Originally posted by todobien todobien wrote:

Or let the comms pay to stock 66% more fish. Have accuratre reporting and when all their fish are caught then they have to stop landing and using gear that by catches striped bass.

This is what we should be demanding - if they want to harvest stocked fish, they ought to pay for them.  Sounds like a great use of the commercial fishing fund that was established to pay for observers.  

I think the problem would take care of itself.  


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Trent Woods, NC


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 10 December 2015 at 10:00am
Originally posted by bernpackbkr bernpackbkr wrote:

Originally posted by todobien todobien wrote:

Or let the comms pay to stock 66% more fish. Have accuratre reporting and when all their fish are caught then they have to stop landing and using gear that by catches striped bass.

This is what we should be demanding - if they want to harvest stocked fish, they ought to pay for them.  Sounds like a great use of the commercial fishing fund that was established to pay for observers.  

I think the problem would take care of itself. 


First- 
How are commercials going to pay on average a stocking fee $30 to $40 per pound of landed fish when they only receive $2 to $3 per pound in income for that fish?  I don't care what kind of math you do on that fact, it's going to be a negative margin of at least $27 per pound. 

They'll pay $750,000 to harvest $75,000 worth of fish.  You are right, the problem will quickly take care of itself.

Second-
The commercials are responsible for 66% of the landings.  They may be killing close to 85% to 90% of the fish due to unreported landings and discard mortality in the gill net fishery.

As Waterdog pointed out above-  high-culling for the biggest 10 fish will contribute significantly to cryptic mortality, unaccounted for mortality.

You can see in the proclamation below that targeting striped bass in the Pamlico, Pungo, Neuse and Bay rivers along with Jones Bay is acceptable.  There is no associated "primary catch" target % required.  Target % of primary catch in the Pamlico Sound and West Bay is an enforcement joke, just like the red drum fishery.

http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/proclamation-ff-08-2015?p_p_id=56_INSTANCE_yeO7&p_p_lifecycle=0&p_p_state=normal&p_p_mode=view&p_p_col_id=column-2&p_p_col_count=2&page=1" rel="nofollow - http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/proclamation-ff-08-2015?p_p_id=56_INSTANCE_yeO7&p_p_lifecycle=0&p_p_state=normal&p_p_mode=view&p_p_col_id=column-2&p_p_col_count=2&page=1

You can also see that a "fishing operation" can consist of the fishermen and his 9-year old daughter who also possesses a SCFL in her name.  This allows a boat on the Neuse, Tar, Pungo, Bay and Jone Bay to target schools of striped bass and keep targeting those schools high-culling for the twenty largest fish.

FF-8-2015

PROCLAMATION

RE: STRIPED BASS SEASON - COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATIONS - INTERNAL COASTAL WATERS OF CRAVEN, BEAUFORT, AND PAMLICO COUNTIES, PUNGO RIVER, WEST BAY, AND PAMLICO SOUND

Louis B. Daniel III, Director, Division of Marine Fisheries, hereby announces that effective at 8 :00 A.M., Sunday, March 1, 2015, the striped bass season WILL OPEN in the areas described below for COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATIONS. The following restrictions will apply:

I. AREA DESCRIPTION ( http://portal.ncdenr.org/c/document_library/get_file?uuid=306ed112-c67d-41c4-8f09-359bccdb1c4a&groupId=38337" rel="nofollow - See Map )

A. Pamlico and Pungo rivers and their joint and coastal water tributaries west of a line beginning at a point on the north shore 35° 22.3622' N - 76° 28.2032’ W (Roos Point) running southerly to a point on the south shore 35° 18.5906’ N - 76° 28.9530’ W (Pamlico Point).

B. Jones Bay/Bay River - west of a line beginningat Sow Island Point at 35° 13.0167’ N - 76° 29.7000’ W, running southwest to a point at Bay Point at 35° 11.0833’ N-76° 31.5667’ W, then running southerly to Maw Point at 35° 09.0333’ N-76° 32.1667’ W.

C. Neuse River - west of a line beginning at Maw Point at 35°09.0333’N - 76° 32.1667’ W, running southeast to Point of Marsh at 35° 04.5500’ N - 76° 28.2333’ W.

D. West Bay- south of a line beginning at a point at 35° 03.5167’ N - 76° 26.1333’ W, running southeasterly to a point at 35° 02.1833’ N-76° 21.7500’ W.

E. Pamlico Sound- south of a line beginning at a point on Roanoke Marshes Point 35° 48.3693’N- 75° 43.7232’ W, running southeasterly to the north point of Eagle Nest Bay 35° 44.1710’N – 75° 31.0520' W [southern boundary of the Albemarle Sound Management Area (ASMA)] and north of the boundaries of I.A. – I.D. and north of a line from Camp Point at 35° 00.0833’ N - 76° 14.8000’ W, through Wainwright Island running southeasterly to a point on Core Banks at 34° 58.7853’ N -76°09.8922’ W.

II. SIZE and HARVEST RESTRICTIONS

A. It is unlawful to take, possess, buy, sell or offer for sale striped bass less than 18 inches in total length.

B. In Areas I.A., I.B. and I.C., it is unlawful for an individual or fishing operation, regardless of the number of persons or boats involved or the number of areas fished, to take, possess, transport, buy, sell, or offer for sale more than ten (10) striped bass per day in any combined commercial fishing operation, except that a fishing operation consisting of more than one SCFL holder onboard may be in possession of up to two daily harvest limits. A SCFL holder must accompany each single harvest until the time of sale to a dealer that holds a valid 2014/2015 Striped Bass Dealer Permit validated for the Central Southern Management Area.

C. In Areas I.D. and I.E., it is unlawful for an individual or fishing operation, regardless of the number of persons or boats involved or the number of areas fished, to take, possess, transport, buy, sell, or offer for sale more than ten (10) striped bass per day in any combined commercial fishing operation, except that a fishing operation consisting of more than one SCFL holder onboard may be in possession of up to two daily harvest limits. A SCFL holder must accompany each single harvest until the time of sale to a dealer that holds a valid 2014/2015 Striped Bass Dealer Permit validated for the Central Southern Management Area. Striped bass shall only be taken in conjunction with other finfish species and striped bass are limited to 50% by weight of the combined daily harvest.




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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 10 December 2015 at 10:39am
Please note that this is a targeted fishery under a quota.  It is not a bycatch fishery.  The NCDMF is allowing the targeting of hatchery raised striped bass for commercial profit.

Also note:
  • The commercial minimum size limit is 18"
  • The 22 inch to 27 inch total length no possession slot limit for striped bass established in N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rule 15A NCAC 03Q .0107 does not apply to commercial fishing operations in Joint Fishing Waters.
  • The quota for striped bass in the CentralSouthern Management Area (CSMA) by commercial operations is 25,000 pounds established by the North Carolina Estuarine Striped Bass Fishery Management Plan (FMP) Amendment I.
  • This quota is not to prevent regulatory discards, which is evident in proclamation verbiage that states "All striped bass taken during season closures and all undersized striped bass shall be immediately returned to the waters taken, regardless of the condition of the fish."


15A NCAC 03Q .0107 SPECIAL REGULATIONS: JOINT WATERS

In order to effectively manage all fisheries resources in joint waters and in order to confer enforcement powers on both fisheries enforcement officers and wildlife enforcement officers with respect to certain rules, the Marine Fisheries Commission and the Wildlife Resources Commission deem it necessary to adopt special rules for joint waters. Such rules supersede any inconsistent rules of the Marine Fisheries Commission or the Wildlife Resources Commission that would otherwise be applicable in joint waters under the provisions of 15A NCAC 03Q .0106:

 

(1)Striped Bass

(a)It is unlawful to possess any striped bass or striped bass hybrid that is less than 18 inches long (total length).

 

(b)It is unlawful to possess striped bass or striped bass hybrids between the lengths of 22 and 27 inches (total length) in joint fishing waters of the Central Southern Management Area as designated in 15A NCAC 03R .0201.

 

(c)It is unlawful to possess striped bass or striped bass hybrids May through September in the joint fishing waters of the Central Southern Management Area and the Albemarle Sound Management Area.

 

(d)It is unlawful to possess striped bass or striped bass hybrids taken from the joint fishing waters of the Cape Fear River.

 

(e)It is unlawful to possess more than one daily creel limit of striped bass or striped bass

hybrids, in the aggregate, per person per day, regardless of the number of management areas fished.

 

(f)Possession of fish shall be assessed for the creel and size limits of the management area in which the individual is found to be fishing, regardless of the size or creel limits for other management areas visited by that individual in a given day.

 

(g)It is unlawful to engage in net fishing for striped bass or striped bass hybrids in joint waters except as authorized by rules of the Marine Fisheries Commission.

(2)Lake Mattamuskeet:

(a)It is unlawful to set or attempt to set any gill net in Lake Mattamuskeet canals designated as joint waters.

 

(b)It is unlawful to use or attempt to use any trawl net or seines in Lake Mattamuskeet canals designated as joint waters.

 

(3)Cape Fear River. It is unlawful to use or attempt to use any net, net stakes or electrical fishing device within 800 feet of the dam at Lock No.1 on the Cape Fear River.

 

(4)Shad: It is unlawful to possess more than 10 American shad or hickory shad, in the aggregate, per person per day taken by hook-and-line.

 

History Note:Authority G.S. 113-132; 113-134; 143B-289.52;

Eff. January 1, 1991; Amended Eff. July 1, 1993; November 1, 1991;

Temporary Amendment Eff. May 1, 2000;

Amended Eff. July 1, 2008; September 1, 2005; April 1, 2001; August 1, 2000.

 




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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 23 December 2015 at 1:36pm
The link to this article was sent to me by a good friend who is long in the tooth in the fight for sustainable fisheries.  After reading it and given how the NCDMF is managing our CSMA stripped bass fishery, I thought a link would fit nicely here.

http://www.coastalreview.org/2015/12/12223/" rel="nofollow - http://www.coastalreview.org/2015/12/12223/

If you're interested in the first part it is here-  http://www.coastalreview.org/2015/12/12194/" rel="nofollow - http://www.coastalreview.org/2015/12/12194/

Rachel Carson and the Great Awakening

by http://www.coastalreview.org/author/jared-lloyd/" rel="nofollow - Jared Lloyd

Last of two parts

BEAUFORT — In his autobiography, Benjamin Franklin famously declared that it was “So convenient a thing to be a reasonable creature, since it enables one to find or make a reason for everything one has a mind to do.” Such was the driving ideology behind Manifest Destiny. The rise and fall of empires are hinged upon these words. As is the lengths to which we will go in order to rationalize our pursuit of money and profit.

America, in the 18th and 19th centuries, was seen as a ripened fruit ready to be plucked. With maps that still contained the phrase Terra incognito scribbled out across blanks spots, this was a land of seemingly inexhaustible resources. Great forests stretched further than a man could walk in a month’s time. Schools of fish leaped into boats on their own accord. Waterfowl along the coastal marshes blackened skies during the migration. And it was such images of America’s low hanging fruit that ultimately drove the colonization of and immigration to this New World.

Take a moment to consider this. If it was inexhaustible natural capital that was a driving force for the creation of America’s colonies, and the ambition to exploit and profit from such resources fueling the motivations of those who risked everything to travel oceans to reach these shores, then what does this say about the ideological seeds from which our culture and civilization grew?

Such notions are not lost to the primary sources of history. Upon returning home to his native France, Alexis Tocqueville compiled a book that today continues to stand as one of the most important historical accounts of pre-Civil War American society – Democracy in America. In discussing the general mindset of the people that he met on his travels in 1831, Tocqueville observed, “the American calls noble and praiseworthy that ambition which our medieval ancestors used to describe as slavish greed …” He explains that “This love of money has, therefore never been stigmatized in America and … it is held in high esteem.”

This was the ideological underpinnings from which natural resources were exploited and profits were made. And it was this backdrop from which the commodification of nature would become rationalized, institutionalized, protected by the fullest extent of the law and practiced with religious fervor. To commodify nature effectively turned everything from fish, fowl, forests and rivers into inanimate lifeless items for sale. To think of such things as resources or capital effectively shrink wraps and sticks a smiling label on such “products” and “goods,” to borrow a modern-day concept, forever severing their connection to a once living, breathing member of this world. Fish becomes seafood. Forests become lumber. And all of it is for sale in the land of milk and honey.

Then Along Came Rachel Carson

When Rachel Carson first came to Beaufort in the 1930s, it was on the heels of a paradigm shift in American culture and politics. The wanton destruction of 19th century had not been without its detractors. Emerson and Thoreau helped bring about an American romantic movement in the early part of that century, followed by artists such as the landscape painter Thomas Cole. In 1864 George Perkins Marsh published his groundbreaking book Man and Nature that for the first time rationally and scientifically detailed the effects of America’s fire sale of nature. And all of this would culminate at the turn of the 20th century in Theodore Roosevelt, a self-taught ornithologist and naturalist and then president of the United States, declaring that “The United States at this moment occupies a lamentable position as being perhaps the chief offender among civilized nations in permitting the destruction and pollution of nature.”

http://www.coastalreview.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/carson-carson-e1450726751878.jpg" rel="nofollow">Rachel Carson arrived in Beaufort as Americans were beginning to awaken to the the natural beauty that surrounded them. Her writings would help us understand what we were losing. Photo: Library of Congress

Rachel Carson arrived in Beaufort as Americans were beginning to awaken to the the natural beauty that surrounded them. Her writings would help us understand what we were losing. Photo: Library of Congress

Of all the hidden worlds that Carson reveals to us in her first book, Under the Sea Wind, of all the species that she details the daily dramas of life and death, the American shad stands as an important example of how the whims of the market can have a ripple effect through entire ecosystems and human communities that depend on them. Ironically, nearly every species that she depicts in her books can stand in as an example of this, but it is the decline of shad that had the greatest impact on North Carolina.

In Under the Sea Wind, Carson paints a picture of an emblematic moonlit night in the month of May, where fisherman of various sorts fought both nature and each other for access to the annual spring run of roe-filled shad moving into the estuaries and up the rivers. Mobile gill netters argued bitterly with the workers of stationary pound nets for a piece of the action each night. The west bank of the North River in eastern Carteret County was chocked so tightly with impoundment nets that navigation itself was nearly impossible, and to set a gill net meant to sabotage other fisherman in the process.

Yet, what is not revealed in her story, is that these watermen were fighting for mere scraps left over from the great feast that was once the spring shad run in North Carolina.

The great spawning runs of fish across North America are by and large a thing of the past now remembered only in accounts from a time before markets got a hold of them. The one notable exception, of course, is salmon, and only in British Columbia and Alaska due to some of the most austere commercial fishing regulations on the continent. Whether we are speaking of American shad runs on the Roanoke River or Yellowstone cutthroat trout on the Snake River, the scenario was quite similar to the picture we have today of salmon in coastal Alaska with both man and beasts lining the riverbanks to reap the harvest of one of nature’s most extraordinary bounties.

The Founding Fish

http://www.coastalreview.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/carson-shad-landings-e1450727287817.jpg" rel="nofollow">carson-shad-landings In North Carolina, the American shad was the lifeblood of the land, driving both ecosystems and settlement patterns of natives and colonists alike. A hundred miles from the coast, the density of these shad runs meant that little more than a basket was needed for scooping fish from the rivers and packing barrels with a year’s supply of protein. This was a subsistence way of life that stretched all the way to the foot of that Appalachian Mountains where shad were once harvested as far west as Wilkesboro – a run of 450 miles upriver from the coast.

All of this changed when shad become a commodity, a marketable resource. More shad meant more money and in short order commercial fisherman began stretching seine nets across entire river mouths effectively cutting off entire shad runs to all points west. Whole ecosystems struggled to function. Upriver, poor farmers and wealthy plantation owners alike banded together to declare that shad was the “common rights of mankind” for which they were being deprived of by the greed of the few.

What had once been a free and natural bounty that most of the North Carolina colony had come to depend upon, was now a commodity for which most of the colony was forced to purchase. Some historians have argued that it was the destruction of the shad runs by the likes of commercial fishing operations along the coast that helped force a market economy on North Carolina, pushing the colony toward large-scale agriculture and dependency on the slave trade.

By the mid-1700s, the writing was already on the wall as to how all of this would ultimately play out. In 1764, North Carolina’s colonial assembly began the first attempts at putting reigns on the coastal fishery when they tried to ban the use of double seine nets by “avaricious persons.” Gov. William Tryon, the same governor that crushed the North Carolina Regulators, claimed this to be “destructive of the spirit of industry and commerce” and set about vetoing any bill that attempted to ban, limit or regulate the commercial seine netters. Coincidentally, the famed Tryon’s Palace sits along the Neuse River in New Bern, where many commercial seine netters hailed from.

Political positions wax and wane, and the natural lifespan of politicians necessitates change to some degree. In 1787, with the free-market evangelist Tryon out of the picture, North Carolina enacted a general statute authorizing counties to appoint commissioners for the purposes of inspecting rivers and streams to make sure that at least a quarter of the channels was left open for runs of fish during the spawning season.

http://www.coastalreview.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/carson-shad-boat.jpg" rel="nofollow">The photograph of shad fisherman in Manteo was taken about 1900. Photo: UNC libraries

The photograph of shad fisherman in Manteo was taken about 1900. Photo: UNC libraries

Try as the state may however, such measures had already come half a century too late. Between over-harvesting at the coast and the mills damming up creeks and rivers inland, populations of American shad began to plummet. Half of the state had long turned away from its dependency on spring shad runs and even coastal markets were beginning to look to other species of fish such as mullet, given the sad state of shad populations.

By 1852, the Select Committee on Fisheries reported that North Carolina’s rivers which were once overflowing with shad in the springtime were now virtually empty. The fishery had been abandoned on most of the principle rivers. Only the Chowan River and Albemarle Sound could the commercial shad fisherman still be found, according to the Select Committee’s report “where seins are used of more than a mile in length and thousands of drag and set nets dot over the waters in every direction” – all desperately clinging to a fish and a way of life that they had come to destroy.

The story of North Carolina’s shad fishery is not unique. Similar stories played out along the Eastern Seaboard from Florida to the Canadian border. And it was the overfishing and complete collapse of certain fisheries like shad that would lead to the creation of the U.S. Commission on Fish and Fisheries in the Department of Commerce in 1871 for the purpose of investigating why fish stocks were declining. Shad populations, it was discovered, had declined 99 percent by then.

It is said that drastic times call for drastic measures and by the following year, a fortune was being spent on the construction of fish hatcheries in order to artificially stock rivers to keep the fishery alive. In 1873, North Carolina’s first hatch of some 45,000 shad were released in the Neuse River from the site of the new federal fish hatchery in New Bern, ironically near Tryon’s Palace.

Feds to the Rescue

Federal tax dollars went toward building shad hatcheries near the mouths of most of the major shad rivers in North Carolina. For about a decade even the state itself got into the business of trying to help rebuild the shad population, but gave up in 1885, washing its hands of responsibility for artificially stocking rivers.

Over the coming years, some 4 billion baby shad would be hatched and released in waters up and down the East Coast in a desperate attempt to save the species from oblivion. Yet even now, after 142 years of annually raising and releasing shad into the waters of North Carolina to compensate for the fire sale that once took place here, the shad population is “stable but low,” according to the latest assessment. North Carolina is one of the few states that still allows for a commercial fishery for shad and two hatcheries continue to operate for this reason – one in Edenton, the other in Watha in Pender County, which dump millions of dollars and shad into trying to keep this industry artificially alive.

http://www.coastalreview.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/carson-punt-gun-e1450727595906.jpg" rel="nofollow">Huge guns -- cannon, really -- were mounted on the bows of punt boats. One well-aimed shot could bring down hundreds of egrets, pelicans and other birds, whose plumage then decorated womens hats. Photo: N.C. Division of Archives and History

Huge guns — cannon, really — were mounted on the bows of punt boats. One well-aimed shot could bring down hundreds of egrets, pelicans and other birds, whose plumage then decorated women’s hats. Photo: N.C. Division of Archives and History

The U.S. Commission on Fish and Fisheries underwent a name change to the Bureau of Fisheries in 1903, which employed Carson when she arrived in Beaufort. And it was in Beaufort, or more specifically, Piver’s Island, that the second-largest bureau laboratory was located – established as the southern counterpart to Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute in Massachusetts and strategically located for its proximity to what was the most important commercial fisheries in the South.

Shad were not the only species that toed the line of extinction by the end of the 19th century. Nearly every single species described in Under the Sea Wind came a hair’s breadth away from never making it into Carson’s book for the simple fact that they almost didn’t make it to the century.

At the time that Carson arrived to the area, a team from the bureau in Beaufort was studying local population of diamondback terrapin, a species of turtle that Carson so elegantly described in her book. Throughout Colonial times and into 1800s, terrapins were seen as a nuisance species by commercial fisherman in North Carolina’s estuaries as they were so numerous that nets would oftentimes break under the weight of so many turtles. For this reason, an entire wagon load of these beautifully colored turtles of the salt marsh sold for a single dollar. By the 1920s, however, terrapins were so rare that a dozen of these turtles fetched $90 on the market in North Carolina and significantly more elsewhere. For a brief time, the bureau attempted to establish a diamondback terrapin hatchery in Beaufort, but by the end of World War I, the wild population was so low that the hatchery was closed and the idea abandoned.

Such destruction was not limited to life under the sea of course. Even the birds found themselves at the fate of the market. Looking back into the pages of history, we find that the first wave of outside interest along our coast was not for the fish but for the waterfowl. As Union soldiers filtered their way out of North Carolina and back north again after Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox, they took with them tales of inexhaustible numbers of ducks, geese and swans that blackened the skies over the sound country during fall migration.

Punt Guns and Ladies’ Hats

The first gunners who came south to confirm such stories were the wealthy captains of industry. Names like Carnegie, Mellon, Morgan and the Roosevelt family took great interest in the sport hunting opportunities along the barrier islands and sounds. But soon followed the market hunters, who employed the use of disastrous weapons called punt guns. These guns were little more than homemade cannons. Technically a shotgun, punt guns were often 10 feet long and so heavy that they had to be mounted to the front of the boats that gave them their names. These guns were loaded with enough shot that it was not uncommon to take out 50 – 100 birds in a single blast. Nets were strung between boats to scoop up the thousands of dead birds floating on the water’s surface at the end of a morning’s hunt.

http://www.coastalreview.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/carson-peanuts1-e1450727966641.jpg" rel="nofollow">By the time &amp;quot;Silent Spring&amp;quot; was published in 1962, Rachel Carson was a household name, as evidenced by this &amp;quot;Peanuts&amp;quot; cartoon at the time.

By the time “Silent Spring” was published in 1962, Rachel Carson was a household name, as evidenced by this “Peanuts” cartoon at the time.

The nuptial breeding plumes of egrets were once worth more than their weight in gold, leading to only a small handful of breeding colonies that survived the insatiable women’s fashion industry. Brown pelicans were shot and sold with such fervor that their entire eastern population had been reduced to one single breeding colony off the coast of Florida for which President Theodore Roosevelt protected as the first National Wildlife Refuge. Black skimmers, who figure prominently in Under the Sea Wind, to this day are still a threatened species in North Carolina thanks to egg harvesters that would annually raid every nest they could get their hands on – colony sizes were once officially measured in the number of bushels of eggs that it contained.

From red wolves to red-cockaded woodpeckers, if it were not for a paradigm shift in America around the early 20th century, so much of the incredible diversity of this state and nation would be little more than sketches and watercolor paintings in obscure notebooks of 19th century naturalists.

This was the world in which Rachel Carson began her nature writing career within – one where stories like those detailed in the report from the first expedition to Roanoke describing natives stopping to fill multiple canoes with fish in a matter of half an hour to offer as gifts to the English ships were now a thing of the past. By the 1930s these stories were just that – stories. Such depictions were pure fiction, abstract words and concepts scribbled upon paper documenting a fantastical world of plenty that could only be dreamed of. But this was also a world in which the words of John Muir had been taken to heart, where giants like Teddy Roosevelt could come to power and bring about sweeping political change toward the natural world.

Rachel Carson waded the shallows around Bird Shoal when America’s culture had just pass through a great crossroads. Our society had been left with a decision to make at the outset of the 20th century: Would we allow for species such as the American shad, great egrets, diamondback terrapin, and black skimmers to slip over the edge of oblivion? Was this the legacy that we wanted to leave for future generations – a world devoid of that which both our nation and cultural identity had been built upon? Thankfully, the collective voice of America had cried, “No.”

Rachel Carson began her career as an author allowing her creative genius to drift across the salty waters of Back Sound. The words she set down in books like Under the Sea Wind revealed to the nation a world unseen, largely unstudied, as unknown as outer space, yet as familiar as the old oak tree in the front yard. She would end her career by giving teeth to a movement that stood to shake the very foundation of America’s industry to its core. A smallish, soft-spoken woman, who never married, cared for her aging mother and orphaned niece, who wrote in first person about sanderlings and mackerel, who was entranced by the sea and the natural world, who would be labeled a communist operative in the age of McCarthyism for writing her book Silent Spring, who would be investigated by the FBI, stalked by men in dark suits hired by chemical corporations, and die of cancer – that plague of the 20th century she so passionately warned about. This was Rachel Carson. And her life and legacy lives on in the descendants of black skimmers, ospreys, and diamondback terrapins of North Carolina that she would bring to literary life in Under the Sea Wind.






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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: TomM
Date Posted: 23 December 2015 at 1:56pm
And after all these years American shad are still netted after being hatchery raised and released as far upriver as Kerr lake. Will the lesson ever be learned. Nice article.


Posted By: BaitWaster
Date Posted: 23 December 2015 at 3:59pm
RE - shad: Grew up eating white shad in the spring at my grandparents in SC.  And my Dad has vivid memories of his Dad/my Grandfather walking a number of miles to fish a hoopnet in the Black River (SC).  Fresh fish was a welcomed change during the Depression from a winter of eating nothing but collards, salt pork, sweet potatoes and yardbird.
 
In SC, both a commercial and recreational gill net fishery:
http://www.dnr.sc.gov/marine/shad/" rel="nofollow - http://www.dnr.sc.gov/marine/shad/ 

But "American shad native to rivers south of the Cape Fear River die after spawning, while some shad in rivers north of the Cape Fear survive to spawn again the following year." 
http://www.fws.gov/raleigh/pdfs/sis/american_shad_profile.pdf" rel="nofollow - http://www.fws.gov/raleigh/pdfs/sis/american_shad_profile.pdf

Commercial shad fishing is still permitted Georgia: http://www.georgiawildlife.com/sites/default/files/uploads/wildlife/fishing/pdfs/regulations/ShadRule2014.pdf" rel="nofollow -
http://www.georgiawildlife.com/sites/default/files/uploads/wildlife/fishing/pdfs/regulations/ShadRule2014.pdf

Virginia appears to be much more restrictive and appear to be phasing it out: http://www.mrc.virginia.gov/regulations/fr530.shtm" rel="nofollow -
http://www.mrc.virginia.gov/regulations/fr530.shtm

No commercial shad harvest in Florida since 2000.

NJ has a single family that is permitted gill net commercial harvest of shad for a festival: 
http://www.njskylands.com/odfishsha" rel="nofollow - http://www.njskylands.com/odfishsha

But back on topic, if the commercial harvest can be definitively shown to be almost exclusively of stocked fish (any fish) primarily stocked for the the benefit for recreational fishing, hard to make a case for continued commercial harvest on these fish.


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I'm not here for a long time, but I'm here for a good time.

The days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations
Well, I have really good days - Ray Wylie


Posted By: Crabby Captain John
Date Posted: 23 December 2015 at 3:59pm
It seems it would be more efficient to simply expand the hatcheries and grow the shad to size~~ eliminate putting them in the ocean at all.


Posted By: BaitWaster
Date Posted: 23 December 2015 at 4:03pm
Originally posted by Crabby Captain John Crabby Captain John wrote:

It seems it would be more efficient to simply expand the hatcheries and grow the shad to size~~ eliminate putting them in the ocean at all.

Biology of the species (shad) makes this impractical/expensive.


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I'm not here for a long time, but I'm here for a good time.

The days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations
Well, I have really good days - Ray Wylie


Posted By: Chuck Laughridge
Date Posted: 23 December 2015 at 4:16pm
So Bernie, you're advocating closing the Cape Fear, Neuse/Trent and Tar/Pamlico to commercial fishing for striped bass/rockfish because almost 100% of those fish are stocked based on both otolith  studies and the newer DNA data? 

And yes, I know the rock are a by-catch fishery in, primarily the shad (American & Hickory) fishery, and are worth way more than the shad which are the target species.

Costs about $100,000.00 per river system to stock these phase 2 (5/7 inch fingerlings) and I think the shad fishery in those three river systems is somewhere in the 30/40 thousand dollar range.

Good Fishing & Merry Christmas!!!


Posted By: BaitWaster
Date Posted: 23 December 2015 at 4:43pm
IF my qualifiers "definitively", "exclusively" and "primarily" are met, hard to argue against.  Big smile

Hope to see you on the water soon.  Heading down after Christmas for ~ week.  Maybe the weather will be kind to me for a change.

"Good Fishing & Merry Christmas!!!"




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I'm not here for a long time, but I'm here for a good time.

The days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations
Well, I have really good days - Ray Wylie


Posted By: Chuck Laughridge
Date Posted: 23 December 2015 at 10:03pm
Warm up your flyrod and we'll catch some specks.

Good Fishing & Merry Christmas!!!


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 25 December 2015 at 11:49pm
Hard to prove "definitively" to some folks. The big year class or two in the A.R. stock will be straYing down and mixing with other stocks on the nonspawning grounds so if sample lower neuse or Pam or Pam sound it will complicate data to doubting Thomas' or those looking for a way to hide the reslity

Chuck you are forgetting those fish caught as bycatch in smaller mesh. There are a bunch of rock in Manns Harbor that are gonna be just the right size to stick in 3.5 inch soon...regulatory discards.


Posted By: Chuck Laughridge
Date Posted: 26 December 2015 at 6:15am
Haven't forgotten those rock at all, my younger brother, as trifling as he is, keeps me posted almost daily.  Don't like the way it is managed but it is under an FMP that works on the "stop light" approach and is done in conjunction with NCWRC.

Good Fishing!!!  


Posted By: cnaff
Date Posted: 26 December 2015 at 8:49am
It's managed such that hook and liners, and castnetters have a ball. No observable enforcement to dissuade creative use of the stripers, but even less discernment upon the wipers that followed stockers from guess where. Oh, I got checked by a land based unit when I ran my buddy to shore to clear fly line from the tromo. We looked suspicious, compared to business as usual going on out by the bridge.

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V/H Dog


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 26 December 2015 at 10:48am
Does that stoplight apply as they to the southard? Kind of like those hybirds strayed up from the tarpam


Posted By: CapRandy
Date Posted: 27 December 2015 at 6:09pm
All the rules and restrictions in the world will not work unless you honor them or enforce them.As far as a honest count on takes,well you can forget that.

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Murder is killing but all killing is not murder


Posted By: cnaff
Date Posted: 28 December 2015 at 10:32am
The thing is Cap, I think we can establish that there are human beings who will behave honorably in any number of venues. What we so depressingly chronicle on this board, is that North Carolina marine resources are historically and relentlessly damaged by a class of people who inform us it is their birthright to do so. A major part of this fact is that the state has enabled and supported these efforts to delapidate our resources; the state obfuscates the facts surrounding the doings of such operators, protects them and refuses to recognize the rights of other citizens to these resources, tacitly, by the state's overt behavior; the state uses its appointed officials to threaten citizens who attempt to report violations, thwart citizens who participate in meetings to find alternatives to such primitive disregard for responsible allocation and conservation of the resource, allowing threats and implied threats to be delivered AT OFFICIAL COUNCIL meetings; and further, law enforcement officers are integral to this campaign of intimidation and neglect because they tacitly communicate by their actions that any average citizen is more likely to die of old age before the state summons up the brains to protect the resource, and even more distant is the day the state of north carolina will summon the moral rectitude to ameliorate its assault on its citizens through willful, criminal bungling of conservation policy, while assisting in blaming the victims of resource depletion by the very perpetrators who take the resources, as if they are the true and rightful owners of all the waters they see. They haven't stopped some of us in noticing their game, and people like Rick deserve our attention and gratitude for so ably making the point that this is a tangible continuum of state supported corruption, writ large and lasting for the past 100 years and more. Mere citizens are, thankfully, a group one can count upon for far better moral and ethical behavior and understanding than any sized group of state officials, save maybe, the highway patrol.

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V/H Dog


Posted By: BrackishWater
Date Posted: 02 January 2016 at 9:32pm
Great article and another history lesson...those that choose to ignore the lessons of their past are doomed to repeat them.

Also refreshing to hear the Coastal Federation speak on behalf of our coastal fisheries. They have long been silent on the subject.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 24 February 2016 at 9:15pm
Another year of commercials killing as much as 85% of our CSMA stocked fish starts. Life is just grand under current management!

http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/proclamation-ff-10-2016" rel="nofollow - http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/proclamation-ff-10-2016

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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Stump1187
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 10:21am
Status Quo keeps chugging along. 


Posted By: 23Mako
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 10:21am
Par for the course: 

The 22 inch to 27 inch total length no possession slot limit for striped bass established in N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rule 15A NCAC 03Q .0107 does not apply to commercial fishing operations in Joint Fishing Waters.


Posted By: kshivar
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 10:24am
It is really breathtakingly ridiculous but sadly the norm


Posted By: Stump1187
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 10:38am
At this point, isn't the Striper commercial fishery liken to welfare? I mean it comes out of our pockets to stock the fish...


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 11:49am
Maybe we should request that NCWRC use the fish raised using moneys from rec licenses and excise tax on fishing equipment etc put any striped bass being stocked in the Neuse into Falls Lake and in the Tar into Rocky Mt reservoir. Some will stay in the lakes and some will move downstream. At least those in the lakes will have a chance to get some size to them and survive. The other alternative would be to just stop stocking them and use that money to raise some other kind of fish. Maybe get a big water chilling system for the hatcheries and raise mountain trout to stock in piedmont and upper coastal plain waters in the winter. Or raise the stripers to eating size and allow holders of rec license to stop by and pick them up for free for dinner vs giving free money to the netters.


Posted By: Stump1187
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 12:06pm
Originally posted by todobien todobien wrote:

Maybe we should request that NCWRC use the fish raised using moneys from rec licenses and excise tax on fishing equipment etc put any striped bass being stocked in the Neuse into Falls Lake and in the Tar into Rocky Mt reservoir. Some will stay in the lakes and some will move downstream. At least those in the lakes will have a chance to get some size to them and survive. The other alternative would be to just stop stocking them and use that money to raise some other kind of fish. Maybe get a big water chilling system for the hatcheries and raise mountain trout to stock in piedmont and upper coastal plain waters in the winter. Or raise the stripers to eating size and allow holders of rec license to stop by and pick them up for free for dinner vs giving free money to the netters.

No.

They should be used to stimulate the economy by bringing in $$ from rec anglers, just like the trout hatcheries in the western part of the state. The way it is now, it is being used to raise Stripers to pad the pockets of commercial fishermen, a supplement or welfare if you will. They then take this resource and sell it for a few bucks or less on the pound. 


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 12:41pm
I agree with what should be happening. Well actually more of the opinion they should be used to build up the population such that they no longer even need to be stocked. This would fit in with your statement about stimulating the economy by rec anglers. If things aren't going to change I would rather not see my license/excise tax money being used to raise fish to be caught and sold for less than it even costs to raise them.



Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 12:43pm
With the couple of big year classes in the Roanoke Albemarle system lots of those fish will be roaming down into the Pamlico so the boys ought to have good income this spring.    


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 1:14pm
My public comments at last week's MFC meeting in Wrightsville Beach.

Feb. 18th, MFC Meeting Public Comment

Good Morning.

Today, I’d like to discuss Central Southern Management Area striped bass.  Management of striped bass within the CSMA is the sole responsibility of the MFC and the WRC.

Striped Bass in the CSMA are considered a stock of concern by the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries.  Due to heightened concern in the Cape Fear River and its tributaries, a no commercial harvest regulation was established starting on July 1, 2008, setting precedence.

Today there is compelling data that shows you should close the Neuse and Pamlico Rivers along with their tributaries to commercial fishing.

The CSMA is a hatchery origin put and take fishery.  Parentage Based Tagging shows that 95% of the Neuse River stock is of hatchery origin.  Tag-return data indicates that the Pamlico and Neuse Rivers are essentially closed systems.

Federal money through excise tax on sport fishing gear under the Dingell-Johnson Act is paying for the stocking of CSMA striped bass.  It appears that the WRC is using those dollars as intended and the MFC is converting at least 2/3 of the public benefit from striped bass restoration to commercial fishing interests in violation of federal law.

It is prohibited to use Dingell-Johnson funds for the primary purpose of producing income.  Data shows that over the last ten years commercial fishermen landed 70% of the CSMA striped bass with recreational anglers landing 30%.

Since 1994 the Neuse and Tar River systems have experienced an annual mortality of 40% to 70%.  The reported harvest and discard from the recreational creel survey, combined with the commercial trip ticket data do not approach the level that is required to explain that level of mortality.  Data suggest that gill net mortality is being significantly under reported on trip tickets.  When cryptic mortality is included, the commercial sector could easily be responsible for 85% or more of all CSMA striped bass mortality.

Present management of this important fishery is preventing re-establishing a sustainable spawning stock biomass, which is making recovery impossible.  Managing the fishery for predominately commercial harvest is placing the whole stocking program in jeopardy. 

I ask that you take action, it is within your authority to immediately close this fishery to commercial fishing in its entirety or in parts that you deem fit. 

Please do so, sooner rather than later.  Later may be too late and forever. 

Ending the stocking program would allow those fingerlings to find a permanent home somewhere else and NC risks not being able to re-establish an adequate or economical stocking source in the future.




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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: cnaff
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 4:31pm
Excellent presentation , Rick. I think the situation points toward dmf having a legal obligation to rectify this, and if they will not, it constitutes culpability ,by the law, in allowing this commercial harvest to take place. How is it that in a state so rife with capable lawyers, no controlling legal authority asserts itself in such clear cut cases? I mean, this is EXACTLY the scenario the LAW was intended to forfend. I would think the AG has considerable onus upon himself to seek relief for the citizens of the state from this state of affairs. Instead we're damned if we recognize the theft, and a blithering fool, if we think state personnel will seek anything like compliance.

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V/H Dog


Posted By: Crabby Captain John
Date Posted: 25 February 2016 at 6:39pm
Originally posted by Stump1187 Stump1187 wrote:


No.
They should be used to stimulate the economy by bringing in $$ from rec anglers, just like the trout hatcheries in the western part of the state. The way it is now, it is being used to raise Stripers to pad the pockets of commercial fishermen, a supplement or welfare if you will. They then take this resource and sell it for a few bucks or less on the pound. 
 
It is a form of welfare ~ another entitlement for the commercial industry. At some point the feds will shut off the $$$ and recs get hit again. At times I think it would be worth it if the comms had none to catch and the fish houses only sold what they got from outside NC.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 04 April 2016 at 9:31am
Another year on the Neuse and Pamlico of "legal" harvest is over.  It started on March 1 via Proclamation FF-10-2016 and ended with the proclamation below.

Commercials land 70% of these fish in which 90%-plus are coming from stocking.  It is estimated that they are killing 85%-plus of the fish when unreported harvest/catch is included.

This must be addressed before the 2017 season opens.

Please get involved.  Your talking points are above, just read the thread.



FF-15-2016

PROCLAMATION

RE: STRIPED BASS SEASON - CENTRAL SOUTHERN MANAGEMENT AREA (CSMA) COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATIONS - INTERNAL COASTAL WATERS OF CARTERET, CRAVEN, BEAUFORT, AND PAMLICO COUNTIES, PUNGO RIVER, WEST BAY, PAMLICO SOUND


Jim Kelley, Acting Director, Division of Marine Fisheries, hereby announces that effective at 12:01 A.M., Monday, March 21, 2016, the striped bass season WILL CLOSE in the areas described below for COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATIONS.

I. AREA DESCRIPTION

A. Pamlico and Pungo rivers and their joint and coastal water tributaries west of a line beginning at a point on the north shore 35° 22.3622’N - 76° 28.2032’W (Roos Point) running southerly through Marker #1 to a point on the south shore 35° 18.5906’N - 76° 28.9530’W (Pamlico Point).

B. Jones Bay/Bay River - west of a line at Sow Island Point at 35° 13.0166’N - 76° 29.7000'W, running southwesterly to a point at Bay Point at 35° 11.0833'N - 76° 31.5666'W, then running southerly to Maw Point at 35° 9.0333’N - 76° 32.1666'W.

C. Neuse River - west of a line beginning at Maw Point at 35°9.0333'N - 76° 32.1666’W, running southeasterly to Point of Marsh at 35° 04.5500'N - 76° 28.2333’W.

D. West Bay- south of a line beginning at a point at 35° 03.5166’N - 76° 26.1333’W, running southeasterly to a point at 35° 02.1833'N - 76° 21.7500'W.

E. Pamlico Sound – south of a line from Roanoke Marshes Point 35° 48.3693’N - 75° 43.7232’W; to the north point of Eagle Nest Bay 35° 44.1710’N – 75° 31.0520'W (southern boundary of the Albemarle Sound Management Area) to the boundaries at the mouths of all the rivers described in I.A. - I.D. and north of a line from Camp Point at 35° 00.0833’N - 76° 14.8000’W, through Wainwright Island running southeasterly to a point on Core Banks at 34° 58.7853’N - 76° 09.8922’W.

II. SEASON
No person may take, possess, transport, buy, sell or offer for sale striped bass from the area defined above, except dealers will have until March 28, 2016 to sell, offer for sale, transport, or have in possession unfrozen striped bass taken in this fishery prior to the closure.

III. GENERAL INFORMATION

A. This proclamation is issued under the authority of N.C.G.S. 113-170.4; 113-170.5; 113-182; 113-221.1; 143B 289.52; and N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rules 15A NCAC 03H .0103, 03M .0202, and 03O .0500 et seq.

B. It is unlawful to violate the provisions of any proclamation issued by the Fisheries Director under his delegated authority pursuant to N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rule 15A NCAC 03H .0103.

C. The annual allotment of the Central/Southern Management Area quota (25,000 pounds) for striped bass has been reached. The intent of this proclamation is to equitably distribute the quota established by the North Carolina Estuarine Striped Bass Fishery Management Plan.

D. The striped bass Dealer Permit validated for the Central Area is no longer valid upon this closure. Permittees must submit required reporting logs (where such reports have not been faxed) to the Division of Marine Fisheries’ Elizabeth City office by March 26, 2016.

E. Contact N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries, P.O. Box 769, Morehead City, NC 28557 252-726-7021 or 800-682-2632 for more information or visit the division website at http://ncmarinefisheries.net" rel="nofollow - http://ncmarinefisheries.net

F. In accordance with N.C. General Statute 113-221.1(c) All persons who may be affected by proclamations issued by the Fisheries Director are under a duty to keep themselves informed of current proclamations.

G. This proclamation supersedes Proclamation FF-10-2016, dated February 24, 2016. It closes the CSMA commercial striped bass fishery.

March 18, 2016
12:30 P.M.
FF-15-2016

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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 04 April 2016 at 11:40am
A few talking points summarized-

  • CSMA is the Central Southern Management Area that covers the area from Southern Roanoke Island to the South Carolina state line.  
  • Management of striped bass within the CSMA is the sole responsibility of the NCMFC and the NCWRC.  
  • Striped Bass in the CSMA are considered a stock of concern by the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries. 
  • Due to heightened concern in the Cape Fear River and its tributaries, a harvest moratorium was established starting on July 1, 2008, setting precedence for closures.
  • The Pamlico/Tar River, the Neuse River and the Pamlico Sound has a 25,000 pound annual commercial harvest quota.  This year (2016) commercial harvest opened on March 1st and closed on March 21st with the quota filled.
  • The NCWRC has asked the NCDMF to consider an early review of the scheduled 2018 FMP Amendment.  It will take two years for the amendment process, which means updated management goals will not have an effective date until 2020, which credible researchers say will be too late to save this fishery.  NCDMF at this point is sticking to the schedule.
  • Since 1994 the Neuse and Tar River systems have experienced an annual reported mortality of 40% to 70%.  The reported harvest and discard from the recreational creel survey, combined with the commercial trip ticket data do not approach the level that is required to explain that level of mortality.  Data suggest that gill net mortality is being significantly under reported on trip tickets.  When cryptic mortality is included, the commercial sector could easily be responsible for 85% or more of all CSMA striped bass mortality.
  • There is zero confidence in the ability or will of the NCDMF to address this issue in a timely and honest manner.
  • The CSMA fishery is in immediate danger of collapse.  This fishery should be closed to commercial harvest under emergency powers or at minimum under supplement authority.
  • It is currently estimated by biologists in both academia, those currently employed by and retired from the NCWRC and within the USFWS that if immediate action isn't taken that the opportunity to re-establish a wild spawning stock will be lost forever. 
  • Current research through otolith micro-chemistry and Parentage Based Tagging (PBT) shows that less than a 7% wild population exists in the Neuse River system.  There are similar indications for the the Tar/Pamlico River.  Continuing with current management will result in all wild fish being extirpated from the Neuse River by 2020.
  • Ninety-three percent (93%) of all commercial harvested Neuse River fish are from stocked origin coming from the USFWS Edenton Hatchery paid for using tax dollars. 
  • Reported commercial landings for the CSMA show that the commercial sector lands 70% of all fish.  NCWRC data shows that the commercial sector may be killing as much as 85% due to unreported landings and discards in other gill net fisheries.
  • Average Commercial Landings and Value 2005-2014 – 23,623 lbs. / $56,297   (70% of landings for the ten year period.)
  • 2014 Commercial Landings and Value 25,085 lbs. / $68,607
  • Average Recreational Landings 2005-2014 – 10,275 lbs.,  (30% of landings for the ten year period.)
  • 2014 Recreational Landings – 13,371 lbs.
  • Commercial average annual landing value for the 2005-2014 ten year period is $56,297 or $2.38 per pound.
  • Estimated cost is $2.30 per fingerling to stock the Neuse and Pamlico/Tar River systems. 
  • For the last ten years (2005-2014) annual stockings have averaged 239,491 Phase 1 fingerlings and 173,957 Phase 2 fingerlings combined in the Neuse and Tar/Pamlico River systems at an estimated annual cost of about $600,000 dollars.
  • We are spending over a half of a million dollars per year trying to recover this important fishery and then allowing commercial fishermen to kill any chance of that recovery for less than $60,000 of harvest income.
  • Present management of this important fishery is preventing re-establishing a sustainable spawning stock biomass, which is making recovery impossible. 
  • Managing the fishery for predominately commercial harvest is placing the whole stocking program in jeopardy. 
  • The Neuse River and its tributaries should be closed to all gill netting at the Minnesott Beach Ferry in order to control significant mortality from other gill net fisheries.


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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Stump1187
Date Posted: 04 April 2016 at 1:20pm
Biggest take away??

This is welfare for Commercial Fishermen. 


Posted By: themoose
Date Posted: 05 April 2016 at 10:02am
Originally posted by Stump1187 Stump1187 wrote:

Biggest take away??

This is welfare for Commercial Fishermen. 


I refer to the mountain trout stocking as "food stamps for the rural poor".



Posted By: eastcoastsports
Date Posted: 05 April 2016 at 10:25am
I disagree.  When an angler buys a fishing license he/she has limits and has paid for the trout that were stocked.  The majority of stripers  are paid for by recreational fishing license.  If net fishermen want to keep harvesting and selling fish that are paid for by recreational anglers they should pay for the privilege to do so.

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East Coast Sports & Topsailcharterfishing.com
http://www.eastcoastsports.com - www.eastcoastsports.com
Surf City, NC 28445
(910) 328-1887


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 05 April 2016 at 11:02am
Originally posted by eastcoastsports eastcoastsports wrote:

If net fishermen want to keep harvesting and selling fish that are paid for by recreational anglers they should pay for the privilege to do so.


The FWS is spending almost a $1-million annually to stock the portion of the CSMA where commercial striped bass harvest is allowed.  Commercials are reporting harvest on 70% of the fish generating a total gross revenue of less than $60,000 per year.  The commercials are killing another 15% to 20% of the fish through unreported landings and discard mortality in other commercial fisheries.

Think about it this way-
Stocking costs $1-million per year total with commercial gill netter's proportional share of that cost being $700,000 enabling them to harvest 25,000 pounds at $28.00 per pound in stocking cost.

Commercial gill netters sell those 25,000 pounds for $59,500 or $2.38 per pound yielding a net loss of $25.62 per pound or ($640,500) per year.

It hard to make a profit on 8-cents of income for every $1 spent...unless it's not your dollar!

Welfare and stupidity are both understatements for this DMF boondoggle.






-------------
fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Stump1187
Date Posted: 05 April 2016 at 12:41pm
Originally posted by themoose themoose wrote:

Originally posted by Stump1187 Stump1187 wrote:

Biggest take away??

This is welfare for Commercial Fishermen. 


I refer to the mountain trout stocking as "food stamps for the rural poor".

I'll have to disagree with this Moose, sorry.

The stocked trout are there to boost the income of the entire community and has been proven to bring millions of dollars to the local economy. The reason why these fish are then open for catching is due to the mortality rate of the fish if they were to be left in the stream after the water warms. If the fish were left, they would die and go to waste. There is a fair amount of poaching during the catch and release season however.




Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 05 April 2016 at 12:57pm
That million dollars in stocking cost when properly managed to enhance the resource and a sustainable recreational harvest is worth multiples in economic impact to the New Bern and Washington/Bath areas.

http://asafishing.org/uploads/2011_ASASportfishing_in_America_Report_January_2013.pdf" rel="nofollow - http://asafishing.org/uploads/2011_ASASportfishing_in_America_Report_January_2013.pdf

...and do keep in mind that this commercial gill netting is not only killing any chance of striped bass recovery on the Neuse and Tar/Pamlico Rivers, but it is also killing many trophy size largemouth bass.

What is one 40-man recreational fishing tournament worth to New Bern in a year?

Louisville, KY says that  the total economic impact for the BASS Louisville Classic was $13 to $18 million. 

http://articles.baltimoresun.com/1991-07-31/sports/1991212111_1_bass-masters-classic-bass-tournament-louisville" rel="nofollow - http://articles.baltimoresun.com/1991-07-31/sports/1991212111_1_bass-masters-classic-bass-tournament-louisville

Dayton likes those real dollars also.

http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/business/aroundregion/story/2014/jun/10/landing-the-big-one/249363/" rel="nofollow - http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/business/aroundregion/story/2014/jun/10/landing-the-big-one/249363/

While the future Craven Classic Striped Bass Tournament isn't a BASS Classic, the money is just as real as the fact this fishery is dead without some timely action.





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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Crabby Captain John
Date Posted: 05 April 2016 at 7:33pm
Originally posted by themoose themoose wrote:

Originally posted by Stump1187 Stump1187 wrote:

Biggest take away??

This is welfare for Commercial Fishermen. 


I refer to the mountain trout stocking as "food stamps for the rural poor".



I don't really see it that way and certainly do not knowing all the entitlements of the commercial industry.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 13 July 2016 at 9:02am
Here is one more recent piece of work clearly showing both the problem and the causes of that problem for Neuse River striped bass.  Ending commercial harvest, a gill net ban to the mouth of the Neuse (to control discards) and a recreational slot limit to protect the older fecund females would do a lot for a sustainable recovery.  Commercial harvest and commercial discards are the main controllable culprits preventing successful re-establishment of a spawning stock biomass in the Neuse. 


Evaluation of Juvenile and Adult Striped Bass Mortality, Distribution and the Implications for Recovery Efforts in Neuse River, North Carolina By Caitlin Bradley.  A thesis submitted to the Graduate Faculty of North Carolina State University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science Fisheries, Wildlife and Conservation Biology Raleigh, North Carolina 2016, Evaluation of Juvenile and Adult Striped Bass Mortality, Distribution and the Implications for Recovery Efforts in Neuse River, North Carolina.  APPROVED BY:  Dr. James. A. Rice- Committee Co-Chair, Dr. D. Derek Aday- Committee Co-Chair and Dr. Joseph E. Hightower.

Link to the thesis-  http://1drv.ms/b/s%21ALHvxdSx-xlqgUo" rel="nofollow - http://1drv.ms/b/s!ALHvxdSx-xlqgUo

Pertinent Bullet Points
  • Total annual discrete mortality of phase II stocked juveniles was 66.3%.
  • Adult total annual discrete mortality was 39.4% within a portion of the Neuse River where fishing pressure from the commercial sector is low.
  • Adult total annual discrete mortality was 54.3% throughout the entire Neuse River.
  • Adult discrete natural mortality was 20.1% and neither juvenile nor adult natural mortality was correlated with water quality.
  • The abundance of adults and older adults was most sensitive to natural mortality of juveniles and adults, and next most sensitive to commercial harvest and discard.
  • Eliminating all fishing mortality would have the greatest impact on the population and would result in a 25-fold increase in abundance of adults ≥ age 6.
  • Results suggest that high mortality rates are preventing the development of a sufficient abundance of adult spawning stock – particularly older fish – necessary to allow adequate spawning for population recovery.


From pages 59-61
All modeled management scenarios would increase baseline abundances, and some scenarios were predicted to have substantial increases. In particular, the population abundance of adults and older adults were predicted to increase by 5.24 and 25.51 fold if all harvest and discard mortality was eliminated (Table 2.4; Figure 2.2). While doubling the stocking number and eliminating all harvest was not as effective, it still resulted in a 4.06 and 10.47 fold increase in adult and older adult abundances (Table 2.4; Figure 2.2). The elimination of all commercial mortality was the third most effective management strategy to increase adult and older adult abundances (2.57 and 7.34 fold increase). Eliminating all recreational mortality was the least effective management scenario (1.54 and 2.65 fold increase; Table 2.4; Figure 2.2). Interestingly, some management scenarios affected adult and older adult abundances differently. The management scenario that affected adult abundance the least was eliminating all recreational mortality (1.54 fold increase), while doubling the stocking number had the least effect on older adult abundance (2 fold increase; Table 2.4, Figure 2.2). In all but one management scenario (double the stocking number), older adult abundance responded more strongly than adult abundance.

As expected, our age-based population model estimated a low abundance and truncated age distribution of Striped Bass in the Neuse River. Adult and older adult population abundances were most sensitive to natural mortality of juveniles and adults, as well as commercial harvest and discard mortality. Results showed that eliminating all fishing morality would have the greatest impact on increasing abundances of adult and older adult Striped Bass in the Neuse River, while eliminating all recreational mortality would have the least impact on adult abundance and doubling the stocking number would have the least impact on older adult abundance. Interestingly, the effectiveness of decreasing mortality rates was age-specific and was not necessarily correlated with magnitude of rate.  These unintuitive results elucidated the importance of clearly defined management goals (i.e., increasing adult abundance vs. increasing abundance of older ages) and the importance of life stage simulation analyses in identifying the most effective management strategies when trying to rebuild a population and when managing a put-and-take fishery.

Our baseline modeling results predicted a low abundance and truncated age distribution for Striped Bass in the Neuse River given current vital rates, which is similar to empirical data from monitoring programs (Rachels and Ricks 2015; Table 2.2). Low abundance and a truncated age distribution may be contributing to the lack of recovery of the Striped Bass population in the Neuse River by limiting the number and fecundity of individuals spawning.
For those interested, here is the Rachels and Ricks study- http://1drv.ms/b/s!ALHvxdSx-xlqgTA" rel="nofollow - http://1drv.ms/b/s!ALHvxdSx-xlqgTA



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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: chriselk
Date Posted: 13 July 2016 at 10:24am
Rick,
Read it yesterday.  The results confirm and extend the earlier studies.  The path is clear for what the MFC must do.

We presently have few, very few, older adults.  

"Olsen and Rulifson (1992) found that in the Roanoke River age-3 Striped Bass produced about 180,000 eggs, whereas age-10 fish produced over two million eggs."

This is the "FFF" often cited in fisheries literature.  "Fat Fecund Females" that are critical to so many species.
 


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The above comments are my personal opinion and do not represent those of any organizations or agencies I may be a member of.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 13 July 2016 at 11:22am
Yes and the viability of eggs from younger fish is also a problem.

"Not only were larger fish more likely to make spawning migrations, they also have higher fecundity and can produce offspring with higher survival than smaller and younger individuals. Olsen and Rulifson (1992) found that in the Roanoke River age-3 Striped Bass produced about 180,000 eggs, whereas age-10 fish produced over two million eggs. In addition to being more numerous, the eggs and subsequent larvae produced by older and larger females were as much as 20% larger than those produced by smaller females (Monteleone and Houde 1990). Ultimately, truncated adult size can reduce juvenile recruitment (Cowan et al. 1993) because size is positively correlated with survival of embryos and larvae (Secor 1990)."

How much time is the NCMFC going to give the NCDMF to continue to play with the studies and numbers?  The facts are clear for this Put-Grow-Take fishery.

"The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries (NCDMF) used recreational creel survey data and commercial independent gill net survey data to estimate harvest and discard in the Neuse River. They estimated that 38% of the fishing-related mortality of Striped Bass in the Neuse River was attributed to commercial harvest, 28% to commercial discard, 22% to recreational harvest and 12% to recreational catch-and-release mortality (hereafter referred to as ‘recreational discard mortality’; NCDMF and NCWRC 2013)."


Water quality is NOT the issue.

Natural mortality might be tweaked long-term with the Millburnie Dam removal and working with ACE on releases from Falls Lake...but those people in Raleigh aren't going to go thirsty, nor will their grass. 

Stocking different genetics to affect egg flotation definitely needs to be studied.

Fishing mortality and discards is the current issue that needs full attention.


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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: TomM
Date Posted: 13 July 2016 at 11:26am
So on the Roanoke what are fish over 28 inches legal. State can't even make appointments to MFC. Sad


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 13 July 2016 at 1:27pm
The current FMP schedule has Inland Striped Bass up for review in 2018-2019, which means 2020 at best before management changes occur under current protocol.

From the record-

North Carolina Marine Fisheries Commission
May 18-20, 2016
Motions

Striped Bass Motion by Rick Smith to direct division staff to meet with the Wildlife Resources Commission staff, and bring joint recommendations to the August meeting in regards to addressing problems with striped bass reproduction in the Neuse and Tar rivers. Also, direct staff to expedite analysis of fin clip data on fin chip samples currently possessed by the division. The division should also provide a method of determining whether or not the old strain of stripers still exist in the Neuse and Tar rivers. Second by Mike Wicker. Motion passes 5-1 with one abstention.





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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 14 July 2016 at 4:07pm
...and one more piece of a puzzle has come to the table.

We know that current NCDMF management practices are preventing a multi-million dollar recreational striped bass fishery, primarily based on catch and release, on the Neuse and Tar Rivers.  This is happening so that the NCDMF can support a commercial fishery that grosses about $75,000 in landings from a Put-Grow-Take fishery with approximately $750,000 is stocking cost.

The new piece of the puzzle is why the NCDMF is promoting the public consumption (without proper warnings on frequency and serving size) of a fish that science has found the public should avoid eating due to mercury and PCBs.



http://appliedecology.cals.ncsu.edu/fish-consumption/" rel="nofollow - http://appliedecology.cals.ncsu.edu/fish-consumption/

http://appliedecology.cals.ncsu.edu/fish-consumption/avoid-these-fish/" rel="nofollow - http://appliedecology.cals.ncsu.edu/fish-consumption/avoid-these-fish/

http://appliedecology.cals.ncsu.edu/fish-consumption/nc-map/" rel="nofollow - http://appliedecology.cals.ncsu.edu/fish-consumption/nc-map/



What are PCBs

http://appliedecology.cals.ncsu.edu/fish-consumption/pollutants/polychlorinated-biphenyls-pcbs/" rel="nofollow - http://appliedecology.cals.ncsu.edu/fish-consumption/pollutants/polychlorinated-biphenyls-pcbs/

Why are we concerned?

PCBs are known as a “probable carcinogen,” or likely to cause cancer in humans. PCBs build up in your body fat and remain there over time.

Possible Health Effects of PCBs in Children and Infants:

  • Developmental issues in children whose mothers were exposed during pregnancy
  • Lower birth weights
  • Weaker immune systems

Possible Health Effects of PCBs in Adults:

  • Low-level exposure: airway irritation, stomach upset, depression, tiredness
  • High-level exposure: chloracne (rash similar to severe acne)
  • Cancer

For those too young to remember Buck Ward owner of Ward Transformer Company, or not living in NC at the time

http://raleighpublicrecord.org/news/2009/05/14/toxic-clean-up-continues-near-rdu/" rel="nofollow - http://raleighpublicrecord.org/news/2009/05/14/toxic-clean-up-continues-near-rdu/

http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/counties/wake-county/article10027130.htm" rel="nofollow - http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/counties/wake-county/article10027130.htm

http://sph.unc.edu/files/2015/08/SRP_Soil-Still-Toxic-25-years-later.pdf" rel="nofollow - http://sph.unc.edu/files/2015/08/SRP_Soil-Still-Toxic-25-years-later.pdf

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warren_County_PCB_Landfill" rel="nofollow - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warren_County_PCB_Landfill




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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: TomM
Date Posted: 14 July 2016 at 9:27pm
Same warning here and on the lakes


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 14 July 2016 at 10:23pm
Yes. I've seen signs at public access areas on the lakes warning recreational anglers about consumption. The only commercial fishing on the lakes for stripers is illegal. You think any of that still goes on?

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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: TomM
Date Posted: 14 July 2016 at 10:41pm
Not in a long time. Last was gill net stretched across tailrace in Roanoke Rapids lake. Blue cats have taken over. 117 pounds in Gaston. Should not eat them either. Weyerhaeuser in Plymouth did the dioxin furan thing long ago plus Mercury from plants. If state would tell the truth most coastal and inland fish have issues. Not supposed to fish large herring for stripers but at an unnamed landing below occoneechee neck😡


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 11 November 2016 at 9:42am
More delay from the NCDMF.

http://1drv.ms/w/s!ArHvxdSx-xlqgU7HFd0e72N0ge4I" rel="nofollow - http://1drv.ms/w/s!ArHvxdSx-xlqgU7HFd0e72N0ge4I

"At this time, the division does not recommend implementing immediate management measures. The role of fishing mortality, stock status, reference points, and allocation issues are most appropriately addressed through the upcoming, expedited review of the fishery management plan, and work on this has already begun in close coordination with the Wildlife Resources Commission."


(Side Note:  "close coordination with the Wildlife Resources Commission"  The first that the WRC heard of the two linked documents was when I call them on Wednesday.  The WRC supports immediate action up to an including closing the CSMA to commercial harvest and limiting all gill netting within key areas of the Neuse to control "cryptic" mortality.)

If it wasn't NCDMF (we're different) this would be unbelievable.  As it is, it's more status quo to protect commercial gill netting interests and jobs at the division which are based on a smoke and mirrors game of "managing" overcapacity and unsustainable fishing.


http://1drv.ms/b/s!ArHvxdSx-xlqgU-HVcFInHXaleVF" rel="nofollow - http://1drv.ms/b/s!ArHvxdSx-xlqgU-HVcFInHXaleVF

Overall Project Summary
Overall, 84.5% of the striped bass collected in the Bay, Neuse, Pamlico, and Pungo Rivers were stocked fish of a hatchery origin. These fish were produced by 19 different mothers across five year classes, beginning with the 2010 year class which was the first genetically trackable year class. The ‘wild’ striped bass (15.5% of catch) were not restricted to the largest fish collected. Unfortunately, as a result of both the similar size distributions of cultured and ‘wild’ fish and the lack of a unique genetic signature of the ‘wild’ fish, we are not able to determine if the ‘wild’ fish are from older, genetically non-trackable year classes or represent true wild recruitment.

As I posted in another thread-

This is a ....no-brainer.  I was speaking figuratively not prophetically literal.

The two linked documents above are the missing "handouts to come" for the 3PM discussion at next week's MFC meeting.





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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 11 November 2016 at 10:10am
...and just to restate my opinion based on what I have learned through my personal conversations with numerous credible biologists and many hours reviewing the data-

  • The CSMA is almost a 100% put-grow-take fishery.
  • The predominance of few CSMA "wild fish" are thought to be fish stocked prior to genetic tagging.
  • There is a slight mixing of fish in the Pungo that come down the IWC from the Alligator River.
  • There is a slight mixing of fish in the Pamlico Sound that come from Roanoke Sound.

 

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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: bakesta
Date Posted: 11 November 2016 at 10:20am
The "enablers" continue to fight for the gillnets.


And the MFC will blindly follow them "to avoid controversial issues"LOLLOL


Now we just have to figure out which MFC member will be the fiddle player as Rome burns.

And for goodness sake - please make sure they have their manual that ensures proper deck chair arrangement for the Titanic.  LOLLOL

  
Image result for all is well animal house


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"Do the right thing. It will gratify some people and astonish the rest." --- Mark Twain


Posted By: j.willis
Date Posted: 11 November 2016 at 11:22am
Just an observation:

Topic: CSMA Striped Bass- A Put and Too ManyTake Fishery
       Posted: 08 December 2015 at 10:13am

This thread was started 11 months ago and we're still advocating for corrective action.
   


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 11 November 2016 at 11:50am
If no restriction on harvest is pursued, maybe the alternative would be to cease stocking in the rivers until post FMP and dependent on its outcome. Fish could be stocked in inland reservoirs and maximize stocking in Cape fear instead or those funds used to grow other fish. Although it may not be illegal to grow fish with rec dollars for comm to harvest it certainly doesn't seem ethical.


Posted By: themoose
Date Posted: 11 November 2016 at 12:10pm
Originally posted by todobien todobien wrote:

If no restriction on harvest is pursued, maybe the alternative would be to cease stocking in the rivers until post FMP and dependent on its outcome. Fish could be stocked in inland reservoirs and maximize stocking in Cape fear instead or those funds used to grow other fish. Although it may not be illegal to grow fish with rec dollars for comm to harvest it certainly doesn't seem ethical.


That's most likely a reasonable solution... move the stocked fish to the Cape Fear or inland lakes.

As a fair solution... there is no chance it will be implemented.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 11 November 2016 at 12:48pm
Please write letters to your legislators, NCDEQ, NCDMF, NCMFC, McCrory and Cooper.  Call the NCMFC members voicing your concern and asking for action.

The minimum action needed is to close the commercial harvest of striped bass in the CSMA and require full-time gill net attendance within CSMA waters. 

What the MFC should do is:

  • Match the proposed 2017 WRC rule change increasing the recreational minimum size limit to 26"
  • Close all commercial harvest of striped bass in the CSMA.
  • Prohibit all gill net fishing in the Neuse(Minnesott Beach/Cherry Branch) and Pamlico(Bayview/Aurora) rivers at the ferry lines to the inland water boundaries.
  • Require full-time gill net attendance in all remaining CSMA waters.

Find the commissioners telephone numbers here-
http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/north-carolina-marine-fisheries-commission" rel="nofollow - http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/north-carolina-marine-fisheries-commission


Note:  The NCDMF link shows four recreational seats listed with one at-large seat listed.  Per statute the seat assignments are 3-3-2-1.  Is anyone driving the boat over there that can read or proof read?  Koury should be listed as an at-large seat. Laughridge, Shute and Smith are the recreational seats.  Corbett, Rose and Willis are the commercial seats.  Gorges now sits in the coastal at-large seat.  Koury will sit in the non-coastal at-large seat.  Wicker is the science seat.



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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 11 November 2016 at 3:31pm
Define gill net attendance.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 11 November 2016 at 4:03pm
Todobien

I feel your pain-

While the NCDMF/NCMFC has done a fairly good job defining gill net attendance for the recreational commercial gear license holder
"Must be immediately adjacent to the net (either in a vessel, in the water or on shore) and immediately available to work the net and no more than 100 yards from the net at all times (not in a building or structure)."

and a good job defining those areas that require attendance-
http://reports.oah.state.nc.us/ncac/title%2015a%20-%20environmental%20quality/chapter%2003%20-%20marine%20fisheries/subchapter%20r/15a%20ncac%2003r%20.0112.html" rel="nofollow - http://reports.oah.state.nc.us/ncac/title%2015a%20-%20environmental%20quality/chapter%2003%20-%20marine%20fisheries/subchapter%20r/15a%20ncac%2003r%20.0112.html

even including a pretty map
http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/attended-gill-net-areas" rel="nofollow - http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/attended-gill-net-areas

It's difficult to find any "official" definition of "attendance" in state statute or rule as it pertains to commercial fishing operations.

Does it exist?

The DMF has touted the importance of attendance requirements to the Feds in both ITPs as an important measure reducing ESA interactions and mortality.  Is it real or is it a hollow promise?

"Proclamation authority allows NCDMF to implement timely responses (i.e.,within 48 hours) that may provide increased protection of sea turtles, for example appropriate restrictions may include gear or area restrictions, attendance requirements, modifications in observer coverage, increased enforcement, or a combination of these and other restrictions. The need for additional management measures or better direction of resources will be determined by NCDMF in consultation with NMFS."  Adaptive Management and Mitigation Measures, ITP 16230

We know these two are flat out lies, terms that the NCDMF never intended to meet, and are out of compliance on both-
"In addition to the adaptive management activities described above, NCDMF must ensure (i.e. issue a proclamation) that all commercial and recreational fishermen report all incidental captures of sea turtle to NCDMF and require that fisherman follow the requirements listed below for the safe handling, resuscitation and disposition of any incidentally captured turtles."

"NCDMF will monitor six primary management units in inshore waters as described in the conservation plan. NCDMF will monitor at least 7% (with a goal of 10%) of large mesh (≥4.0 ISM) gillnet trips in each area during each of 3 seasons (i.e., spring, summer, fall) as defined in the conservation plan."


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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 11 November 2016 at 11:02pm
Any idea what percentage has been covered...at least of those with trip tix as there is no idea of other effort? Even saying that being available to work net doesn't mean much as one could watch all their floats go down and not work the net. One would think attending a net woild mean working it. Similar to when one has attendance due to health issyes the attender doesn't leave the patient to soak in their own filth not get med or not get nourishment


Posted By: cnaff
Date Posted: 12 November 2016 at 9:36am
If a loya looked at that definition for attendance and applied it to a lawsuit to stop the malfeasance by state personnel, then we might realize that we have already defined attendance and the gillnetters would be required to understand it, too. It's that damn simple. Or does it take official NC retardation to ignore legal precedent? What about the original wording of the law authorizing a recreational put and take fishery? Are we picking our nose but failing to wipe the snot as it rolls on down onto our toes?

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V/H Dog


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 08 February 2017 at 7:21pm
Moving this back to the top.  It's on next week's MFC agenda in Wilmington.

A few talking points summarized-

  • CSMA is the Central Southern Management Area that covers the area from Southern Roanoke Island to the South Carolina state line.  
  • Management of striped bass within the CSMA is the sole responsibility of the NCMFC and the NCWRC.  
  • Striped Bass in the CSMA are considered a stock of concern by the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries. 
  • Due to heightened concern in the Cape Fear River and its tributaries, a harvest moratorium was established starting on July 1, 2008, setting precedence for closures.
  • The Pamlico/Tar River, the Neuse River and the Pamlico Sound has a 25,000 pound annual commercial harvest quota.  This year (2016) commercial harvest opened on March 1st and closed on March 21st with the quota filled.
  • The NCWRC has asked the NCDMF to consider an early review of the scheduled 2018 FMP Amendment.  It will take two years for the amendment process, which means updated management goals will not have an effective date until 2020, which credible researchers say will be too late to save this fishery.  NCDMF at this point has agreed to move it up one year.  We need to hold their feet to the fire and not allow this to be delayed.  We've seen enough Deny, Defend, Defect and Delay on this issue from NCDMF.
  • Since 1994 the Neuse and Tar River systems have experienced an annual reported mortality of 40% to 70%.  The reported harvest and discard from the recreational creel survey, combined with the commercial trip ticket data do not approach the level that is required to explain that level of mortality.  Data suggest that gill net mortality is being significantly under reported on trip tickets.  When cryptic mortality is included, the commercial sector could easily be responsible for 85% or more of all CSMA striped bass mortality.
  • There is zero confidence in the ability or will of the NCDMF to address this issue in a timely and honest manner.
  • The CSMA fishery is in immediate danger of collapse.  This fishery should be closed to commercial harvest under emergency powers or at minimum under supplement authority.
  • It is currently estimated by biologists in both academia, those currently employed by and retired from the NCWRC and within the USFWS that if immediate action isn't taken that the opportunity to re-establish a wild spawning stock will be lost forever. 
  • Current research through otolith micro-chemistry and Parentage Based Tagging (PBT) shows that less than a 7% wild population exists in the Neuse River system.  There are similar indications for the the Tar/Pamlico River.  Continuing with current management will result in all wild fish being extirpated from the Neuse River by 2020.
  • Ninety-three percent (93%) of all commercial harvested Neuse River fish are from stocked origin coming from the USFWS Edenton Hatchery paid for using tax dollars. 
  • Reported commercial landings for the CSMA show that the commercial sector lands 70% of all fish.  NCWRC data shows that the commercial sector may be killing as much as 85% due to unreported landings and discards in other gill net fisheries.
  • Average Commercial Landings and Value 2005-2014 – 23,623 lbs. / $56,297   (70% of landings for the ten year period.)
  • 2014 Commercial Landings and Value 25,085 lbs. / $68,607
  • Average Recreational Landings 2005-2014 – 10,275 lbs.,  (30% of landings for the ten year period.)
  • 2014 Recreational Landings – 13,371 lbs.
  • Commercial average annual landing value for the 2005-2014 ten year period is $56,297 or $2.38 per pound.
  • Estimated cost is $2.30 per fingerling to stock the Neuse and Pamlico/Tar River systems. 
  • For the last ten years (2005-2014) annual stockings have averaged 239,491 Phase 1 fingerlings and 173,957 Phase 2 fingerlings combined in the Neuse and Tar/Pamlico River systems at an estimated annual cost of about $600,000 dollars.
  • We are spending over a half of a million dollars per year trying to recover this important fishery and then allowing commercial fishermen to kill any chance of that recovery for less than $60,000 of harvest income.
  • Present management of this important fishery is preventing re-establishing a sustainable spawning stock biomass, which is making recovery impossible. 
  • Managing the fishery for predominately commercial harvest is placing the whole stocking program in jeopardy. 
  • The Neuse River and Pamlico River, and tributaries, should be closed to all gill netting at the NCDOT Ferry routes in order to control significant mortality (cryptic mortality) from non-directed gill net fisheries.



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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: bakesta
Date Posted: 08 February 2017 at 9:37pm

I sent this almost a year ago and the only thing that has happened since then is that the DMF has continued to stall while fighting to protect commercial harvest.   They even wasted some money determining that the WRC is right.


Nothing has changed - commercial fishermen can still kill as many as they want as long as they only report 25,000 pounds.  No lawsuits, no bills, no petition for rule change - just another year of stocked fish being slaughtered.


Feel free to steal this and send it to whoever you want.  If you find someone who cares, that would be great - and a surprise.




April 8, 2016

 

 

 

Dear MFC Commissioners,                                       

 

I am writing this letter to ask you to take immediate action to stop the commercial harvest of striped bass in the Central Southern Management Area (CSMA).  The three river systems in the CMSA (Tar/Pamlico, Neuse, and Cape Fear) are stocked each year with striped bass by the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission (WRC).  Harvest of striped bass in the Cape Fear river is already closed in order to establish a breeding population that will be self-sustaining.  Farther north in the CSMA, the Edenton National Fish Hatchery supplies the WRC with approximately 100,000 phase II fish (150-250 mm) each year for both the Tar/Pamlico and Neuse river systems (1,2).  Like the Cape Fear striped bass program, these stockings have a goal of re-establishing a natural breeding population that is self-sustaining.  Unfortunately, this project is failing due to overfishing by commercial fishermen.  

 

Not only does the WRC stock these fish, but they have also conducted cutting edge scientific experiments aimed at understating the populations.  What they have found is disturbing.  Genetic marking studies by the WRC have shown that at least 93 to 97% of fish in the Neuse and Tar/Pamlico rivers are derived from hatchery stocks and that very little, if any, natural breeding is occurring (1,2).  This finding is very troubling, but these particular populations of striped bass offer a unique opportunity that is quite rare in the complicated world of marine fisheries management.  While most marine species are difficult to assess, a known number of phase II fish is added to the respective rivers each year.  Natural mortality of these older fish has been well-studied so an accurate range of mortality rates can be used when evaluating the population.  In addition, these fish don’t emigrate.  They stay within the river system in which they were stocked and swim upstream each year during a set season, passing through relatively small sections of water where they can be routinely sampled.  Finally, a very limited recreational harvest is monitored via surveys while commercial harvest, which is limited to a yearly TAC of 25,000 pounds, is reported on trip tickets.  In essence, the only unknowns in this system are the number of fish killed and discarded by commercial gillnetters, the commercial gillnet harvest that is not sold, and illegal harvest.  Using all of this information, the WRC was able to complete a virtual population analysis (1).  This analysis indicated that “cryptic mortality” was greater than the reported recreational and commercial harvest.  Using even the highest known natural mortality rate in this analysis could not lessen this cryptic mortality to a level that would allow it to be explained (1).  Considering this, the most likely explanation for the cryptic mortality of CMSA striped bass is that it derives from illegal and underreported commercial harvest, dead discards from gillnets, and ghost fishing gear (1).  Taken together, the results of many years of studies on this fish population along with their recent genetic analysis have led the WRC to conclude that long term recruitment overfishing is occurring and that the stock would improve if this exploitation decreased (1).  Since recreational harvest is minimal, this can only be achieved by stopping the commercial harvest of CMSA striped bass.  Without stopping the commercial harvest of these fish, the joint effort of the WRC and the National Marine Fisheries Service to re-establish a self-sustaining population of striped bass in the Tar/Pamlico and Neuse river systems will continue to fail.

 

Now some will say that stopping this harvest will cause great hardship.  However, that is not the case.   At most, stopping the commercial striped bass harvest in all CMSA waters will eliminate the legal sale of 25,000 pounds of striped bass each year.  From 2005 to 2014, the average annual commercial harvest of striped bass from the CMSA was 23,623 pounds [only 168 commercial fishermen reported a striped bass sale in 2013, which is the latest available data (3)].  The CMSA striped bass harvest is on average, only 15% of the yearly harvest taken from internal waters in North Carolina, with the other 85% coming from the Albemarle Sound Management Area (ASMA) and Roanoke River Management Area (RRMA).  In 2014, the reported commercial harvest from the CMSA was 25,085 pounds and this had a value of $68,607.  This works out to an average of about $400 per commercial fishermen if about 168 fishermen reported sales in 2014 as was the case in 2013.  The cost of stocking these fish is estimated to be approximately $600,000.  These amazing numbers lead prudent people to ask a simple question - why does one state agency allow the harvest and sale of fish that cost other agencies nearly 10 fold more to stock?  And this stocking is occurring to try to re-establish a breeding population of this species!!  This just makes no sense, and that is why I am asking you to do the right thing and put an immediate stop to commercial harvest of striped bass in the CSMA. 

 

 

Thank you,


Bakesta

 

  

Literature Cited

 

1.  Rachels, K.T., and B. R. Ricks. 2015. Neuse river striped bass monitoring programs, populations dynamics, and recovery strategies. Federal aid in sport fish restoration project F-108. North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission Inland Fisheries Division. Raleigh, NC.

 

2.  Rundle, K.R. 2015. Striped bass fisheries and monitoring programs in the Tar river, North Carolina-2014. Federal aid in sport fish restoration project F-108. North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission Inland Fisheries Division. Raleigh, NC. 3.  2013. 

 

3.  Amendment 1 to the North Carolina Estuarine Striped Bass Fishery Management Plan.   Prepared By The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries and North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission with assistance from the Albemarle/Roanoke and Central Southern Management Area Fishery Management Plan Advisory Committees.  North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources, North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries. Morehead City, NC. page 144.

 



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"Do the right thing. It will gratify some people and astonish the rest." --- Mark Twain


Posted By: Crabby Captain John
Date Posted: 08 February 2017 at 10:05pm
Bakesta and Rick have factually stated facts that prove something must be done and done quickly. No big words were used so the members MFC and even members of the commercial industry can understand. It is past time for entitlements to the commercial industry stop. The cost to the resource and taxpayers is unsustainable.


Posted By: chriselk
Date Posted: 08 February 2017 at 11:26pm
Change, change, is gonna come.



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The above comments are my personal opinion and do not represent those of any organizations or agencies I may be a member of.


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 09 February 2017 at 3:19pm
I'm pretty sure that WRC and DMF have moved the FMP process for the CSMA striped bass ahead in its schedule.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 28 March 2017 at 5:22pm
Another commercial striped bass season is well underway.

By proclamation, Director Davis opened the fishery on March 1, 2017 and it will close when the commercials report landings of 25,000 pounds or no later than April 30th, a month from now.

I found it interesting that for the previous three seasons the 25,000 quota was landed within +/- 2 days of March 20th.

Closures
2016 March 21st
2015 March 18th
2014 March 20th

Did the fish get by the gill nets while heading up stream?

Will cryptic mortality (gill net bycatch) be up this year due to all the small fish that were being reported in the sound and rivers last fall?

With all the "striper talk" at the MFC level and Jerry's warnings to the commercials, are less fish being reported on trip tickets leading to increased cryptic mortality.

Additional Closure Dates
2013- April 15
2012- March 30
2011- March 25
2010- March 27
2009- April 10
2008- April 30
2007- April 3

The odds certainly say it should close by Monday.

Why in the world aren't we all raising hell with Raleigh about being true "Fishcal Conservatives".  Since when did allowing the commercial sector to kill 85% of the maturing fish for 10-cents on the dollar of stocking cost become fiscally responsible management?




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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Crabby Captain John
Date Posted: 28 March 2017 at 8:20pm
" will close when the commercials report landings of 25,000 pounds or no later than April 30th, a month from now."

The less on trip tickets the more that can be caught...... If they really wanted only a 25,000 pound limit they would have to post it as when 250 pounds was reported


Posted By: Glacierbaze
Date Posted: 28 March 2017 at 8:57pm
We all know that fish house owners can't afford a computer, and probably are not required to report more often than weekly, at best, by mail.  After 75% of the quota is caught, they should be required to report daily, and phone in any landings over a set poundage immediately.


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"You can never elevate your own character by stepping on someone else's."

"Never argue with a man who loves the sound of his own voice."


Posted By: BaitWaster
Date Posted: 28 March 2017 at 9:58pm
Originally posted by Glacierbaze Glacierbaze wrote:

After 75% of the quota is caught, they should be required to report daily, and phone in any landings over a set poundage immediately.

Very common in Council and ASMFC-managed fisheries with reduced daily trip quota, required timely reporting of daily landings and should also include pay back the next year with reductions.
 


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I'm not here for a long time, but I'm here for a good time.

The days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations
Well, I have really good days - Ray Wylie


Posted By: todobien
Date Posted: 29 March 2017 at 7:33am
Not sure which stock the quota being discussed is associated. But if it is the Neuse or Tar Pam stocks I don't think they are covered by a Council or Atlantic States Commission


Posted By: BaitWaster
Date Posted: 29 March 2017 at 11:35am
Don't think they are under any management other than state, just that this has been used by other agencies. 

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I'm not here for a long time, but I'm here for a good time.

The days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations
Well, I have really good days - Ray Wylie


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 29 March 2017 at 12:49pm
The estuarine striped bass FMP is a state plan.  One that is being poorly managed and failing miserably.

There is ZERO success on all of the objectives below.  It's a 100% put-grow-take fishery killing any thought of sustainable harvest, science and the Striped Bass FMP do not reside in the the same zip code at DMF, the age structure is truncated, bycatch moralities in the estuarine gill net fisheries exceed reported harvest and is preventing establishing a mature spawning stock biomass.

 
3.2 GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
The goals of Amendment 1 to the North Carolina Estuarine Striped Bass FMP are to achieve sustainable harvest through science based decision-making processes that conserve adequate spawning stock, provide and maintain a broad age structure, and protect the integrity of critical habitats.




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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: Rick
Date Posted: 04 April 2017 at 8:23am
Another commercial season is behind us.

manyna....manyna

Maybe next year those in control of management will come to their senses.


http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/proclamation-ff-9-2017" rel="nofollow - http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/proclamation-ff-9-2017

FF-9-2017

PROCLAMATION

RE: STRIPED BASS SEASON - CENTRAL SOUTHERN MANAGEMENT AREA (CSMA) COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATIONS - INTERNAL COASTAL WATERS OF CARTERET, CRAVEN, BEAUFORT, AND PAMLICO COUNTIES, PUNGO RIVER, WEST BAY, PAMLICO SOUND

This proclamation supersedes Proclamation FF-5-2017, dated February 24, 2017.  It closes the CSMA commercial striped bass fishery.

Braxton C. Davis, Division of Marine Fisheries, hereby announces that effective at 12:01 A.M., Monday, April 3, 2017, in internal coastal waters for the areas described below, the striped bass season WILL CLOSE for COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATIONS.

I. AREA DESCRIPTION

A. Pamlico and Pungo rivers - west of a line beginning at a point on the north shore 35° 22.3622’N - 76° 28.2032’W (Roos Point) running southerly through Marker #1 to a point on the south shore 35° 18.5906’N - 76° 28.9530’W (Pamlico Point).

B. Jones Bay/Bay River - west of a line at Sow Island Point at 35° 13.0166’ N - 76° 29.7000' W, running southwesterly to a point at Bay Point at 35° 11.0833' N - 76° 31.5666' W, then running southerly to Maw Point at 35° 9.0333 ’N - 76° 32.1666' W.

C. Neuse River - west of a line beginning at Maw Point at 35°9.0333 'N - 76° 32.1666’ W, running southeasterly to Point of Marsh at 35° 04.5500' N - 76° 28.2333’ W. 

D. West Bay- south of a line beginning at a point at 35° 03.5166’ N - 76° 26.1333’ W, running southeasterly to a point at 35° 02.1833' N - 76° 21.7500' W.

E. Pamlico Sound – south of a line from Roanoke Marshes Point 35° 48.3693’ N - 75° 43.7232’ W; to the north point of Eagle Nest Bay 35° 44.1710’ N - 75° 31.0520' W (southern boundary of the Albemarle Sound Management Area) to the boundaries at the mouths of all the rivers described in I.A. - I.D. and north of a line from Camp Point at 35° 00.0833’ N - 76° 14.8000’ W, through Wainwright Island running southeasterly to a point on Core Banks at 34° 58.7853’ N - 76° 09.8922’ W.

II. SEASON

No person may take, possess, transport, buy, sell or offer for sale striped bass from the area defined above, except dealers will have until April 10, 2017 to sell, offer for sale, transport, or have in possession unfrozen striped bass taken in this fishery prior to the closure.

III. GENERAL INFORMATION

A. This proclamation is issued under the authority of N.C.G.S. 113-170.4; 113-170.5; 113-182; 113-221.1; 143B 289.52; and N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rules 15A NCAC 03H .0103, 03M .0202, and 03O .0500.

B. It is unlawful to violate the provisions of any proclamation issued by the Fisheries Director under his delegated authority pursuant to N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rule 15A NCAC 03H .0103.

C. The intent of this proclamation is to close the commercial striped bass fishery in the CSMA because the annual quota (25,000 pounds) has been reached.

D. The striped bass Dealer Permit validated for the Central Southern Management Area is no longer valid upon this closure. Permittees must submit required reporting logs to the Division of Marine Fisheries’ Elizabeth City Field Office at 800-338-7805, 252-264-3911, or by fax at 252-264-3723 by April 8, 2017.


E. Contact N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries, P.O. Box 769, Morehead City, NC 28557 252-726-7021 or 800-682-2632 for more information or visit the division website at http://ncmarinefisheries.net

F. In accordance with N.C. General Statute 113-221.1(c) All persons who may be affected by proclamations issued by the Fisheries Director are under a duty to keep themselves informed of current proclamations.

G. This proclamation supersedes Proclamation FF-5-2017, dated February 24, 2017. It closes the CSMA commercial striped bass fishery.







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fiogf49gjkf0d
NC Fisheries Management- Motto: Too Little, Too Late, Too Bad   Slogan: Shrimp On! Mission Statement: Enable Commercial Fishing At Any and All Cost, Regardless of Impact to the Resource.


Posted By: jtoler
Date Posted: 04 April 2017 at 11:35am
So stripers can still be entangled and die in gill nets; they just can't be sold?

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Jill
Fly Fishing, messing with my mind since 2007.



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