Fishermen React to Proposed Striped Bass Catch Limits

Striped bass.

Striped bass.

BUZZARDS BAY – A series of meetings are underway discussing the catch limits on striped bass in Cape Cod waters and beyond.

Striped bass have been on a decline for several years now, according to Cape Cod Salties Fishng Club Acting President Joseph Ginetti.

But, he said, the catch limits have not been reduced since 1994.

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One of the options for fisheries managers in setting the new regulations is status quo.

Ginetti said, the Salties are against that. “If we go with status quo, they’ll be nothing done to preserve this fish,” he said.

Ginetti said the striper fishery is unique. “It’s not only a sporting fish; it encompasses everything. It goes for the recreational angler, the boating angler, the charting angler, the commercial angler.”

“We happen to be as a fishery, both recreationally and commercially, killing off more fish than have been reproduced. That means the striped bass may soon be in danger of not being as large schools as there have been and not being as active in the waters of this area,” he said.

Fishery officials are considering reducing catch limits on striped bass amidst concerns that the population is being overfished.

Ginetti said he would like to see increased regulations both commercially and recreationally.

“Something has to be done because if it’s not done, the same thing that happened to the cod is going to happen to the striper. The cod have been decimated in these waters. So we don’t want to see the same thing happen to the striped bass,” he said.

Ginetti also expressed concern that without reduced catch limits, the striped bass will be overfished similar to what has happened to cod.

He said the Salties wants the catch limit cut in half from 2 to 1.

“What the Cape Cod Salties would like to have seen done is one fish per recreational angler at about 32 inches and on the commercial side we’d like to see them put a 25 percent reduction in the catch implementing it in 2015,” he said.