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<DIV> Fish Report 3/23/10

Goin Fishing

Flounder Regs

CCA's "Train Wreck"

Regular Tog Trips Sailing Through April 1st: (Light Winds Thursday 3/25!) Boat sells out at 14 - Green crabs provided - Cabin heated - Leave at 7:00 for these trips (or earlier if all are aboard) - Return no later than 3 - 3:30 (usually) - $100.00 buys a spot - Reservation a must, that phone number in signature - Email does not work for reservations - Call - Leave a good phone number--Cell--in case of cancellation.

Tog Limit is 4 fish @ 14 inches - We encourage the release of all females under 16 (and some way bigger too!!) Fish Pool is decided by length so tagged and released fish can count too.

Stay tied-up Easter Sunday.

Have Coast Guard inspection in the second week of April - Will announce more trips when I get an all clear from them...........

Hi All,

There is a sigh of relief among the coast's flounder fishers today, Maryland DNR has reversed course and adopted a longer flounder season with a 19 inch fish.

We can officially fish until Thanksgiving.

Very nearly had a much shorter season. Atlantic Coast MSSA, Larry at the Coastal Fisherman newspaper, OC's State Delegate--Jim Mathias, myself & many other fishers, local press and even Candy Thompson at the Baltimore Sun set up an awful howl..

Different somehow.. Eh, having DNR listen isn't so new; It's having them dig in, see if there's substance in the complaint -- and respond.

That's different. Pleasantly so.

Can't swear to it, but I think the same thing is happening at the Federal level.

I was on a huge rec-fish conference call last week with NMFS director Eric Schwaab & staff; From Alaska down and around to back up the East Coast it seemed pretty evident that accumulating errors in the data are pinching the system all over---many different problems all stemming from data.

Nothing concrete yet in way of action, just possibilities: Lot of listening getting ready to happen.

NOAA just announced that Russell Dunn has been appointed National Policy Advisor on Recreational Fisheries. That's a brand new position, reports directly to the boss-lady, Dr. Lubchenco. In the same press release they announced a 22 member Recreational Fisheries Working Group..

In mid-April there's a recreational summit in Silver Spring.

Big possibilities.

There still remains the darker possibility that 2010 was the year few party boats could survive.

Black sea bass regulations are still up in the air. We rebuilt these fish with barely a care, first just a size limit, then increases in size with a 25 fish creel.. I still assert that we do not have a management plan on sea bass that can actually work, but even in its scientifically-impaired fashion we somehow have a better sea bass population than before management.

We just can't go fishing.

With cbass closed that fishing pressure shifts--All along this coast tautog fishing will not be made better because of the extreme reaction of closing sea bass over highly-suspect data.

That's just the tip of it.. Plenty more fisheries in similar trouble.

Closing sea bass--reacting to the data in such fashion--was just wrong. We ought to know by now that the Marine Recreational Fishing Statistics Survey--MRFSS--is being replaced for good reason.

Just today one of the guys that is always digging into data, Buddy, sent me a bit of raw 2009 MRFSS flounder data -- 44 observed fish from private boats in July/August are tossed into MRFSS's computer---just 44 observed flounder.. These practitioners of the statistical dark-arts turn 44 into 45,281 flounder caught/kept and 595,190 caught/released.. Pow!

That's so cool. Reminds me of the guy that used to sell tickets when I was in my early twenties.. Always biting -- Always filling up sacks..

Crunched a bit, just back of the envelope stuff; 45,281 flounder means 91 boats with 3 people aboard limited out everyday it was fit to go --- the rest of the boats had a solid bail of smaller ones.

Hmmm.. that's not how I heard it.

No, I don't think so..

Looked at another way: During the same period (July/Aug 2009) 725 flounder are said to have been caught/kept on the party boats that fish exclusively for flounder in the back bays and a few on the Chesapeake. MRFSS also has 18,325 thrown back--released.

Using just their fish data and a ball park guess of clients, I estimate the back-bay party boats caught/kept 12.8 fish per day on average or 0.04 keeper fish per person.

<DIV>Party boats turn in daily catch data so we should be able to see almost exactly what they caught. Sometimes it seems like MRFSS is using that data, sometimes not. Given my familiarity with the fishery I see no reason to seriously doubt these

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I will be joining Capt. Monty on the Morning Star tomorrow!

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Yep. I hear he is one of the best around. Looking forward to posting a report tomorrow afternoon. :icon_thumright:

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I'll be going out on April 3 . Capt Monty is having 12 hr trips that weekend, can't wait.

Great Capt & crew

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