Massachusetts Decides Not to Add Days to Commercial Striper Season

Extensive public comment against expansion taken into consideration.

Based on low landings and projections that the commercial striped bass fishery would not harvest its quota prior to the fish’s southerly migration, the Division of Marine Fisheries proposed on July 31 to increase the number of open commercial striped bass fishing days from two to four. Written public comment was accepted for a two-week period, and on August 15, the Division’s Director recommended taking no action at this time.

According to a press release, extensive public comment was taken into consideration, but the decision was based primarily on updated commercial landings data that show an increase in average daily landings. As of August 16, 2019, 41.5% of the 869,813 pound quota has been landed.

If landings decrease, DMF may consider increasing the number open days beginning in the latter part of September. However, if action is taken then, it will be done with the explicit intention of having 2019 landings not exceed a self-imposed 713,000-pound threshold. This threshold equates to the 18% reduction being proposed by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission for implementation in 2020 to end overfishing on striped bass and achieve the fishing morality target.


18 on “Massachusetts Decides Not to Add Days to Commercial Striper Season

  1. BrianP

    If you add in all the poached fish both commercial and recreational I’m sure the quota has already been met, however maybe I know nothing….

    1. Vince

      You’re absolutely clueless. Commercial quota has nothing to do with poaching. Poaching is a recreational issue. Any fish sold commercially is reported. You’re assumption is factless.

      1. BrianP

        Exactly, poaching isn’t included in any counts, that’s the problem,who knows how bad it is. If you don’t think commercial guys as well as rec guys aren’t poaching you have better faith in humanity than I plus numerous articles here on stripped bass to other species, seem poaching is a problem.

      2. BrianP


        In September of 2018, an Environmental Police Officer (EPO) from DEM’s Division of Law Enforcement (DLE) boarded a vessel associated with repeated hunting and fishing violations during a routine patrol in Point Judith. The front of the vessel appeared to be dipping low, as if there were considerable weight in the bow.

        The occupants of the vessel had stored their illegal catch in a hidden storage compartment in the bow. Once discovered, the EPOs seized 13 striped bass – 11 over the daily limit allowed with two persons aboard a vessel.
        According to the RIDEM, a common illegal practice is for Massachusetts commercial fishermen to fish the area around Block Island for striped bass under the guise that they are fishing recreationally and then transport them back to Massachusetts where they are sold. In an effort to curb this, a new regulation was adopted in 2015 that requires striped bass larger than 34 inches (the minimum commercial size) that are caught recreationally to have their right pectoral fin removed immediately. It is then illegal to sell or purchase a striped bass with a cut pectoral fin in both Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

      3. Vince

        Right, if anyone a commercial guy poaches, he’s going to sell it to the commercial market which counts towards the quota. Are you suggesting there’s a black market? LoL people just want to fill their freezers man.

  2. Mmikita

    We are having the same kind of arguments here in Florida over dialing back commercial fishing for spotted sea trout. They always show up in numbers at the meetings with their violins and stories of starving children at empty dinner tables if anything is done to limit their catch. That plus they are the fourth generation doing it. Stuff like that, Pathetic. Seatrout getting hammered. Everyone has to take a cut. plain and simple

  3. Robert moaa

    There is a handful of us that are fishing where the fish are night etc been doing it for 35 years the quota get filled quickly when there is a huge biomass that settles during the day and anyone that has a rod can catch if you have to work for um people don’t go and whinethat there is no fish their there put in the time and find um you want to complain look at the amount of charter boats in Massachusetts that take up to 6 fish a day do the math the guys that are doing this as a job maybe 30 boats are getting them if you want to go find um

  4. Robert Moss

    It’s simple if there is a huge bio mass that settles during the day everyone that has a rod and a permit gets um and the quota gets filled quickly if you have to fish nights find um on your own all of a sudden there is 40 boats on the cape that are doing it for real and by the way getting them quota gets filled slow put in the time like we have 35 years of it and you will catch fish it’s hard work and long nights but their there I wonder how many charters boats in mass are taking 6 fish a day 7 days a week

  5. Connor E Tardo

    As fisherman family- commercial! Get um, the fish- I feed my children the fish. MAYBE YOU ASK WHY I DON SELL THE FILLETS AND KEEP THD HEADS AND RACKS! how can a family live on such and these?! Commerce fishing is in our blood! America First! Protect the locals. Recreation fishing get in in the way too! Good for you!

    1. Captain Jon

      Recreational fishing for striped bass brings in billions of dollars annually throughout the eastern seaboard. This money helps support many jobs and family’s. If we ignore the evidence that clearly shows striped bass are overfished and in a state of decline in favor of doing whatever is “in our blood” then catching striped bass won’t be in our families futures for very long, and the money that is brought into our community’s through recreational fishing will dry up.
      If you’re relying on feeding your family with an overfished and declining fish species, I would strongly suggest you think about planting a garden and start raising some chickens…and while we’re on the topic of what’s in your blood eating that much fish can really raise the mercury levels in your body and can cause cognitive issues which you might be showing signs of based your grammar.

      1. Vince

        I say the same thing about coal miners. Instead of contributing to environmental issues, they should raise some chickens to feed their family.

  6. Tim Silva

    The commercial fishermen only fish 2 days a week while the rec fishermen n charters fish 24/7. how about closing a day like Friday so everyone sacrifices

  7. Dan

    Its time to cut back on striper fishing! At this rate it will be like codfish instinct!! I go every weekend to go striper fishing to catch couple schoolies! No big fish any more! What ever happened to catch and release for all fish?

  8. Rob

    Seriously.If you have a one fish recreational limit should that same fish be commercially harvested also?Stoopid!

  9. Jeffrey

    People always think of commercial striped bass being separate from recreational. Fact is a majority of them used to recs before they found out they could make a $100 on a 20pd fish. Consider that a average boat costs 20,000 dollars and you only get to use it 4 to 5 months of the year. The average person can’t afford that without additional income. Aka commercial stripedbass fishery. It’s hard to say no for that kind of money. 300 dollars for a boat permit and 150 for a shore permit. Any average fisherman could make that back in a day or 2.

    Then you have charter boats as mentioned earlier. That take a ridiculous amout of fish daily. It’s been said for years they should have there own classification or be considered commercial as well. They are excepting money from paying customers. That’s the definition of commercial buisness.

  10. MSL

    And in Maine we have a one fish limit. Commercial fishing in your neighborhood (Massachusetts) and one fish can be kept in our neighborhood, and these fish live in both neighborhoods in their annual migration. Doesn’t feel right or fair. Oh, and the species is on the brink of collapse. Does commercial fishing really make sense? We have ten charter boats working out of my harbor and they are all booked daily. I think the recreational side should have leverage in this debate. Customers are not disappointed if I ask them to release a legal fish. I really don’t understand why striped bass are still commercially fished on the east coast?

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