Striped Bass Managers Vote to Take Action

Changes to striped bass regulations intended to halt overfishing are expected for the 2020 fishing season, but what those changes will be remains to be decided.

At the spring meeting of the Striped Bass Management Board on Tuesday, managers voted to initiate development of an addendum to reduce fishing mortality in 2020 and begin rebuilding the Atlantic striped bass stock. The action was taken in response to the most recent stock assessment, which found that striped bass are overfished.
The approved motion tasked Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) staff with developing options that would include:

** Minimum fish size for the coast and a minimum fish size for the Chesapeake Bay
** Slot limit that would prohibit harvest of fish over 40 inches
** Mandatory use of circle hooks when fishing bait coastwide to reduce discard mortality
** A provision that states could use seasonal closures in conservation equivalency proposals
** Apply needed reductions equally to both commercial and recreation sectors
** Apply needed reductions proportionally based on total removals in 2017 to both commercial and recreational sectors

It is expected that a draft addendum will be reviewed by the Board at their August meeting before being put out for public comment.

78 on “Striped Bass Managers Vote to Take Action

  1. james aiello jr

    I think it’s all great I vote yes you guys do a great job of showing and protecting our fish keep up the good work

    1. kevin marshall

      How do you figure they do a great job of protecting the fish when they run a tournament that not only promotes killing fish, but killing the biggest fish for their monetary gain. They are hypocrites. Will not be renewing my subscription.

      1. vtbasser

        Striper Cup Eliminates Weigh-Ins

        “The next step in the evolution of The Striper Cup is an obvious one. We want to encourage fishermen to release large striped bass, and so we are eliminating weigh-ins. There is not a single prize in the 2019 Striper Cup that requires an angler to keep a striped bass. Instead, with more prizes to give away than ever before, we are going to reward fishermen who submit photos of their catches rather than weigh slips. ”

  2. Tom Goodwine

    I would be more in favor of a slot of 20-26 inches with a trophy of over 40 inches and a 1 per day limit

    1. Jeffrey

      I would agree with this only if you have to pay for a trophy tag. This only reason we are in this mess is because we slaughter all the large females.

      1. Bob

        I don’t think we are really in this mess because we were harvesting fish over 40 inches. We’re in this mess because we were harvesting two fish over 28 inches for so many years. That was the managers fault back in the mid 1990’s. They should have taken a more moderate approach when the stock was declared rebuilt.

      2. Jay

        I have to agree with Bob on this. Going back to a 1 fish per day 36 inch minimum would make actually make a difference. We know this because it was already implemented and worked. More importantly however, would be managing the fishery the way waterfowl are. This fish migrate, therefore the rules should be the same for the entire eastern seaboard. Maybe buying a federal striper stamp. The circle hook idea for bait fishing is an excellent idea.

    2. Alan Dubovsky

      I would be more in favor of having the NY minimum of 28″ along the entire coast. The Virginia limit of 19″ and the Maryland limit of 21″ is ridiculous. I fish in the bays of western L.I. Sound 4-5 days a week and often catch 15-20 fish in the 19″-25″ range but I rarely get more than 6-8 fish over 28″ per season.

    3. ToSar

      I think your all overlooking the elephant in the room. $MONEY$ Striped Bass drive the economy on the Chesapeake! Them good ole’ boys will put up a serious fight. The local government is in their pocket. They’ll continue to exploit the population until it crashes and become as rare as a Weakfish. Remember the 70’s and the days of the Tiderunners?

      1. Riichard Barron

        Finally. Someone with wisdom has spoken the truth! AMEN.

  3. Kevin

    Wow you finally figured out the striped bass are over fished please you have states with different regulations size limits and number of fish allowed and you have commercial fishing where all the breeders are killed shut down the commercial aspect and set up all catch a release and the stocks will rebound

    1. ed renaud

      I agree with you kevin also need to cut down on draggers taking all the menhaden !!!!!!!

      1. Riichard Barron

        Another fisherman with wisdom who speaks the TRUTH. Glory Be To GOD

    2. Brandon

      Facts lol whoever’s keeping fish over 30 pounds is a complete moron.

    3. henry

      why would they do that , that would stop the yearly slaughter of the bigger fish on the cape, lot of the old timers fish all week to make that two day sell

    4. Gabriel Andreson

      Yup. It’s the elephant in the room that no one wants to address. Same for Codfish in Massachusetts. Recreational fishermen don’t decimate a population with a one fish limit per day. The commercial fishermen do. Killing shorts, and taking tons of fish of size are what kills the population. Like it or not, that’s the truth. Shut off commercial fishing for Bass and Cod, keep recreational to one fish per day of reasonable size and both sticks will bounce back pronto.

  4. LOU


  5. Tim

    For recreational folks: I vote to release all fish over 28″ and allow folks to keep 1 fish under 28″.

    1. Doug

      I like that simplicity and the simpler the rules the more likely they will be adhered to. I’d like to see added to your rule: no trebles and mandatory circle hooks on bait, flies and teasers. Overall, I think we need to be tougher on ourselves to save this sport. Barb crushing for C&R is a good practice too.

  6. Ron Floyd

    I would like to see a moratorium on commercial fishing unless it’s hook and line with a circle hook with a reasonable slot size, like 22-28″. The number of small bass I see at seafood counters is unreal. For the rec fishermen, all circle hooks for live or chunk bait fishing. Fisherman can keep two bass per month between 22-30″ along the Eastern Seaboard. Require tags like deer season. Not only does this preserve the large females, but it is also in line with recommended consumption of striped bass due to contaniments. The stock would rebound nicely from this.

  7. Ron Floyd

    I would like to see a requirement for commercial fishing for hook and line with a circle hook with a reasonable slot size, like 22-28″. The number of small bass I see at seafood counters is unreal. For the rec fishermen, all circle hooks for live or chunk bait fishing. Fisherman can keep two bass per month between 22-30″ along the Eastern Seaboard. Require tags like deer season. Not only does this preserve the large females, but it is also in line with recommended consumption of striped bass due to contaniments. The stock would rebound nicely from this.

    1. Tom

      You do realize the small ones you see behind counters are farm raised fresh water hybrids.

  8. Someone01

    I agree with the slot size and tag for the breeders. More money to hire law enforcers to keep the fish regulation in check as a whole. also have lessons on performing catch and release for the average and new anglers.If we keep this motto up the population will definitely increase to be stable.

  9. Shoemaker

    Limit the Charter boats to 1 fish per trip or all catch and release for Striped bass no matter how many people are on the boat. Charter Community cries wolf but kills more striped bass than anyone!

  10. Ronald H Mattson Sr

    No question this will result in too little too late. Way to many special interest groups involved. Managers have data from numerous sources and could act now. Maybe the Young of the Year Survey will save them. If a fish ever needed game fish status this is the one.

  11. Chris

    Pretty sure the report shows that most of the stock is reduced from catch and release mortality.

  12. John

    Yeah, they had this info since 2010ish. Nothing like waiting till the house burns down to call the fire department.


    How about enforcement of regulations. Last year at the Cape Cod Canal I saw one fisherman happily walking away with three Stripers.

    1. Brent L.

      John, There are definitely people that are walking away with undersized fish or over the 1 fish limit. There is also a good chance that person was fishing commercially depending on the day but the EP are always hounding people and checking licenses and fish sizes. That being said Two years ago I was there in the morning and when the fish started to bite I had my mom come down when the fish were biting so she could experience catching a striper at the canal and we walked away with two stripers about 35-38 inches. As we were walking to the car the EP said my mom had not been there long enough and that I caught both of the fish. They took one of my fish and wrote me a ticket for it. Didn’t even bother to check her license and since I told them I helped her land it(stronger current and bigger fish) that it counts as me catching two fish. But I do agree with you that the EP need to step it up on people that are actually breaking the law.

  14. Douglas C Windsor

    A slot limit will help especially for recreational fishers who want to take a catch. Maine use to have a 10-26 and over 40 which was almost correct. The 20-26 targets primarily male stripers and reduces mortality with a 28″ limit when so many below 28″ are killed. Eliminate the above 40″. One fish per person preferably with circle hook for bait. Catch and release is better of course. No question that commercial in Maryland, Mass and others is a major culprit. As well a lot of people recreational fish today.

  15. Brent K Lussier

    they should do it now,and add jail time for poachers, that to me is the biggest problem we have i see it all season long it’s disgusting, EP could step up there game too

  16. Stephen

    Im from florida and fish for snoom and they have slot limit and and no commercial fishing. Im new here but the strippers are similar to the way snook live and spawn. A slot limit is a good idea nothing over 38

  17. Mark R Keple

    Have a 2 fish limit, 1 fish 24” to 28” and one fish up to 32”! Leave the breakers alone!! Catch them and take a picture. For tournaments, give everyone a digital scale to weigh them and then release them. Soon enough you can change the limit to 3& fish within the 2 weight classes that I specified. Is this so hard to figure out??

  18. Jimmy

    A slot limit of 20 to 27 inches no trophy fish and tags for all kept fish.

  19. Mark Walsh

    We all gota do our part ,..start doing abetter job policing ourselfs..always learn to do better when catchn releasing…the words stop the slaughter now or we re all up shits creek without a paddle…slot,shut it done for a month until we all smartn up….i use to love cod fishn,look what happens..

  20. Kevin Proper release guy

    People love to dance around the facts and see things in their own prospective . Recreational fisherman are doing most of the killing. That is what the evidence shows. I can tell you from witnessing the slaughter in the cape cod canal in 2017. People were throwing back 30 pounders to go for a 40 pounders and the bass were floating in the canal. Everyone took a 30-40 pounder all summer long.Tens of thousands-absurd . At 30 pounds each that would be 600,000 pounds plus all the floaters -Thats almost as much as the commercial quota for the year just out of the canal . Increase keeper size to 36 inch let the little fish spawn a few times before they get cut up to sit in freezer until thrown out later. If we set the keeper size to 48 inches we would have billions of 47 inch fish. Its a fact. Tight lines 🙂

  21. Quahog

    I’m a meat fisherman, I fish for the freezer and rarely target stripers. They are ok to eat but with the regs I couldn’t be bothered. The striper crowd to me is a holier than thou uppity bunch but hey to each there own. That said I have serious doubt that guys with a rod and reel alone could do serious damage to the population. It’s the trawlers that are raking the ocean dry. One pull results in more wasted by catch mortality than even if I tried really hard I couldn’t kill in a lifetime. One pull… The factory ships also methodically take entire schools of herring and menhaden. I understand that the above mentioned is a necessary evil but stop blaming the rod and reel guys for everything and open your eyes to the real problem.

    1. thomas bein

      I agree,i also wonder if anyone has taken into consideration of the explosion of the seal population out on the cape? tens of thousands of seals that do.massive destruction of the food chain!!

  22. jason

    What rules apply to one state…should apply to all. All or nothing…quit attacking just the northeast states. This problem starts as far south as the Carolina’s!

  23. Chuck

    Back in 98 I caught tagged fish off coast of ri at which time I sent all info back to American litorial society saying as well that striper size limit should be same up n down eastern seaboard .I can defintly see the decline in bigger fish but I also stare at the nets that are anchored almost within casting distance at several spots not to mention the charter boats and lets not forget the draggers!!! Why not start by pushing them further out One tow from the nets can do more damage than guys at the canal on a smoking day!!!!The amount of bass I catch in a season is stupid but I might keep two or three for the family in same season we all do that things be ok,police each other and don’t be afraid to speak up to someone you don’t know!!!! We all love the sport so let’s keep it……

  24. Shim1

    Can’t we all just fish along?
    Great to see positive feed back and not so much finger pointing!

  25. Eric Adams

    The slot is great idea, what took so long. What about states like NY that net Stripe Bass during g the Spring/ Fall Migration? That needs to STOP!


    simple solution close spring striper fishing. let the breeding stock do its thing

  27. Phil

    I agree to stop commercial fishing. People are taking to many striped bass just to make a buck. I agree to a slot limit but to change it every year so as to not kill all of one group. One year 1 20-26 then the next year or two years 1 28-32 and then 2 years 34-40 then start back on the 20-26. I know a guy that lives in mass and all he does is brag about how many stripers he bags every year. I guess the commercial license lets them bag 15 a day. That’s wrong.

  28. Phil

    How about we limit the Lb test line. I know a guy that uses 65 lb test line. How many fish you gonna loose with that. I use 14 lb line. Lets leave some for our kids kids to catch. I like a striper that’s between 28 and 32″. They make good filets and when you blacken it it’s just like blackened red fish and my kids love it, We need more wardens to enforce the rules and bag the liven crap out of the people that abuse it.

    1. Joe Rice

      Please understand that a fish left with a lure stuck in its mouth and a few feet of 14lb fishing line trailing out likely won’t survive. Use appropriate test line so you don’t break off and crush your barbs to give the fish a sporting chance.

  29. John

    As always recreational fisherman against comm.fisherman look up any stats on who kills more fish .in rod and reel bass fishing it’s always recreational who kills more stop pointing fingers and get together Be careful how much u ask marine fisheries to shut it down it might b shut down like cod fishing. They may never reopen it

    1. Rich

      The only ones allowed to catch cod are the comm guys ? I’ve seen more nets last 2 years then in my 30 years of fishing Jeffrey’s ledge ever . Every hump and bump have nets from June – July . Try to find a haddock over 6 lbs it’s like catching a mermaid now . It’s simple really . Whenever there’s a buck to be made the fish whatever they are suffer quickly. The technology is so good a idiot can find fish . They can’t hide . The days of experience on the water are replaced with a screen showing fish that are easy to scoop up . I haven’t kept a striper in years . I’d rather eat flounder or haddock. But comm guys selling fish get greedy .

  30. Timothy Donnelly

    I think that the regulation should be the same the whole way along the East Coast with size and also the number of fish that you can keep.

  31. David A Showell

    #1 take the price off their heads, No Sale Period. I understand that more stripers are caught and killed by recreational anglers, but there is no reason a very few select part timers should benefit. Yes there is good enforcement in most areas of the coast, but how many stripers go in the back doors of restaurants and seafood shops. The big busts that occur too frequently prove that and how many little deals go down undetected.

    1. henry

      guess u havent been down to the merrimack river lately, see people landing shorties all day long. see them go into boat, but lot never returned,

  32. William Murphy

    I fish party boats often as well as many charters.I use circle hooks no less then size 11/0 with bait and never let fish run except for live bunker. Any good circle hook man knows by lifting the rod high and reel normaly will side hook the mouth about 85% to 90% of the time and making for the best mortality rates on the + side possible and going barbless is even better odds even when useing lures & poppers and easyier to unhook your catch. Now god forbid a meat fisherman come on board with there killer Js and octopus hooks and not uderstanding english and bring the mortality rate down to where i myself have seen 50% and higher of some of these fish are surely dead and or will die when releast its sad to watch. I have voiced my opinion many times and people are just ugly. So i think captains should do a better job to protect there living not all theres some good captains who care greaty but the percentage is low something must be done and soon.

  33. Richard Barber

    One fish a day from 18-28 inches, two tags a year for fish over 28 inches! No Commercial Fishing!

    1. Someone01

      I agree , bigger fish produces more eggs. From an article: one female can lay from 14,000 (3 pounder) to 3,000,000 eggs (10 pounder ).A thirty-pound female is capable of producing as many as five million eggs. Food for thought. Slot is the way to go on top of practices of catch and release.

  34. Ray Cohen

    Open the season later,completely idiotic that the seasons open just as these fish are heading upriver to spawn,and yes tags that you purchase,the money goes to enforcement,the number of tags based on the stock assesment for the prior year,color coded non transferable tags that must be affixed to a slot fish upon kill,no more 1 fish per day,the value of Striped Bass is on the end of the line not the plate…Make it a Gamefish!!

  35. Kenny Godin

    It’s hard to self supervise, but 1 fish a week you keep over 28″, the rest is catch and release.
    The sport is still fun, and how many of the same species can you eat in a week.
    Lets figure this out.

  36. Bob Sprague

    Just close the whole fishery for 5 years, re-evaluate after the 5 then we can talk about keeping a fish again.

  37. Pat from Rhode Island

    Are you serious Alan?
    19 and 21 inch limits in Virginia / Maryland?
    It’s a wonder there’s a shortage of Stripers.
    I sure hope they fix that problem before they start limiting us to a 40 inch fish.

  38. George V

    Stop commercial fishing for 3 years.
    Stop harvesting of Bunker.
    Stop recreational taking of all size fish.

    Tough steps to take, but necessary for the long-term survival of the species.

  39. ticcci

    More rules without considering the little guy. I am sipposed to throw away my hooks that are not circle hooks, that I bought by the box to have a lifetime supply. I already had yo throw away my lead for fresh water and I had a lot to replace. How about i snip every basses gills before letting them go. I only caught 5 keepers last year, yall ready need to fuck off.

  40. Capt Billy b

    Stop commercial stripe bass netting,remove from restaurant menus .menhaden boats to stay out past 3 mile line ..not rocket science..

  41. Paul Gurney

    That’s a statement made by someone who doesn’t catch many big fish. I don’t keep a lot of fish do to the fact that I don’t think it’s a good idea to eat striped Bass. The fish I eat are going to die and I don’t care how you fish. You’re going to kill fish. I’ve had lures inhaled, and circle hooks down deep. First thing to do is to get rid of commercial fishing. I’m not against people making money from fish, but if you can’t control poaching then do away with the market. Second thing is have people use circle hooks when bait fishing. Honest people fishing are not the problem. Even if they take a 30 lb fish. Blanket statements are usually knee jerk reactions and that’s not always the best way to solve the problem.

  42. Capt Billy b

    Stop commercial stripe bass netting,remove from restaurant menus .menhaden boats to stay out past 3 mile line ..not rocket science..

  43. Chuck

    I’m with pat Virginia 19 inch is ridiculous by the time you fillet that maybe take up trout ….one 36 inch fish a day for surf guys up n down whole coast ….keep fish traps n draggers out at least 3mile while migration is on …boats n charter guys one over 40 ..wiping out the smaller fish makes no sense to me when your talking about rebuilding stocks..if I remember correctly for every 10,000 eggs a female lays maybe 2 might make it to maturity ,and I like the statement keep em in the water while I watch video of two beautiful bass showing up for pitcher day…and the bass would be a lot better off if people could keep there hands away from there gillplates when handing them…36 inch fish make rod bend better than 19 inch ……tight lines

  44. Jimmy Swaggart

    Hold up!……. wait a minute!!!!!…… somethan just ain’t right!!!!!! All u googs realize that OTW is the same “conservationists” that put on the striper cup righhhhhhhtttttt? Responsible for the slaughter of millions of fish and tonnage of fillets over the years. Jimmy Joe Blow at the canal and his 1.25 million spin fishing googs just killing everything thing insight. Seriously it’s laughable, and I get it $$ makes the world go round and that ain’t ever changing. Keep talking out both sides of your mouth and I’ll keep basing my fishing days of the migration map and the spot on “intel”

  45. Cam

    If they raise the minimum length for striper the fisherman up here in Maine will haven a ridiculously hard time catching keepers, Maine’s striper laws are strict enough

  46. Armand Rabuttinio

    Until taking the stripers forage fish are restricted and schools built up, it doesn’t matter how the stripers are regulated.

  47. Armand Rabuttinio

    Until they restrict commercial fishing and build up the stripers forage fish populations, striper regulations will have little impact.

  48. b marks

    very simple one fish at 28 inches as we have it now or soon bye bye bait and tackle stores bye bye marine fuel(almost) and one BIG HAPPY EMPTY OCEAN it’s getting silly for sure

  49. Raymond Dziadul

    I saw this problem coming years ago.That is why I was the driving force to make the striped bass NJ state saltwater fish.To draw attention to the fish as a matter of state pride.In addition to overfishing the birth rate has been very low.In my opinion due to polluting.Rutgers is studying the striper.

  50. SDI

    I went fishing the other day and watched as a boater took in several undersized fish. Some things will never end.

  51. Mark Zanger

    Good discussion, may be light on seals and sharks. Any ideas for bringing back bluefish? 60s and 70’s and 80s we had blues all over the bay, great fun, and I prefer them for eating — not everyone did, so we could get a few more at the dock to smoke.

  52. dabnis

    Same guys whineing before moritourim in 80 s as now there s no bass wawa the problem is there not good at catching them

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