Striped bass are now at an incredibly important juncture that will impact the future of how the fishery is managed. If you care about striper fishing, please speak up!
The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) is developing an amendment to revise the management plan for Atlantic striped bass.
This is your opportunity to inform managers about changes you’ve observed in the fishery, actions you feel should or should not be taken in terms of management, regulation, enforcement, and research, and any other concerns you have about striped bass, as well as the reasons for your concerns.
Why is the ASMFC revising the striped bass management plan?
The last time a new plan amendment to the FMP was adopted was in 2003 (Amendment 6). Since then, the status and understanding of the striped bass stock and fishery has changed considerably, which raises concern that the current management program no longer reflects current fishery needs and priorities.
In particular, the 2018 Benchmark Stock Assessment, which described striped bass as overfished, led managers to discuss a number of significant issues facing striped bass management.
How can striped bass fishermen make their voices heard?
As the first step in the amendment process, The ASMFC recently released a management document that aims to gather input from the public on a variety of topics impacting striped bass management.
This Public Information Document (PID) seeks input from those interested in striped bass about changes observed in the fishery/resource and potential management measures. At this stage, they are asking the public to provide input on a range of specific management issues. You can attend a virtual public hearing, or submit comments via email. Schedule of virtual public hearings and instructions for how to comment.
What should I say in my comments?
Recognizing the importance of this management action, and the complexity and technical nature of this document, Keep America Fishing established a striped bass guidance page and a guide to help fishermen participate in the striped bass management process.
You can also check out guidance provided by the American Saltwater Guides Association (ASGA) on their Amendment 7 landing page, which includes links to their reference document and Guide Podcast discussing the PID.
We encourage all anglers interested in this fishery to participate in the management process by attending a hearing or submitting comment. Don’t be overwhelmed by the amount of technical information! If nothing else, this is your opportunity let managers hear, in your own words, about changes you’ve observed in the fishery how you would like to see striped bass managed.
Deadline for comment is 5pm on April 9, 2021!