Stripers Forever sent out an email to its membership containing this graph* and the following statement:
The graphic released with the MD DNR report depicts the numbers of striped bass spawned in the Chesapeake Bay. Since most stripers that migrate north and south along the coast are born in the Chesapeake Bay, the MD DNR graphic indicates how future runs of stripers along the Atlantic Coast will measure up. The outlook for the species is not an optimistic one.”
In a second email Stripers Forever sent another note:
“On Nov. 2nd the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission – ASMFC – will vote on a proposal to allow states with commercial quotas to transfer the quota that they did not report as caught one year to the following year. This means that if a state’s commercial quota was 1,100,000 pounds, and only 990,000 was reported caught in 2011, the new quota in 2012 could be 1,210,000 pounds.”
Stripers Forever is asking that you write the governors of the affected states: Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
Here’s the suggested letter:
On Nov. 2 the Atlantic States Marine Fishery Commission will vote on a proposal to allow the commercial striped bass quota that states fail to catch in one year to be added to the next year. I strongly disagree with this plan to kill more striped bass. Striped bass fishing has declined greatly in recent years, and it is already costing jobs in the guiding and tackle communities where the value of striped bass far exceeds commercial landings. The trend in spawning success is clearly down, and we should be looking for ways to conserve striped bass not to kill more.
The proposed quota roll over would encourage under the table sales of striped bass that would not count against quotas. The striped bass commercial community has a proven history of doing just this kind of thing. It would be a poor policy to offer incentives for illegal activity.
I urge you to direct our state fishery director to vote against this proposed quota roll-over at the upcoming meeting, and to direct him to look for ways to conserve striped bass for recreational angling rather than deplete them for commercial purposes.