Fish Report 8/11/12
Questions For MRIP
Saturday Trip Cancelled For Weather: Fishing Sunday 8/12/12 - Ten Hour Trip - 6 to 4 - Cbass/Flounder - $125.00 - Forecast SW Winds at 5 to 10 - Reservations Required at 410 520 2076 - Plenty Of Spots Available
Opening September/October To Reservations - Saturdays Long, Sundays & Weekdays Regular (Fish Sundays in Fall) -- Will Include 12 Hour Trips In Future Emails
Sea Bass & Flounder Fishing 7 to 3 Everyday - Longer on Saturdays - Keeping Most Sundays Open In Summer For Research & Different Trips - Plenty Of Spots Open - Always Try To Leave Early & Stay Late - Reservations Required @ 410 520 2076 - We Obey Regulations Whether We Agree With Them Or Not - Bring Food & Beverage Plus A Cooler & Ice For Your Party's Fish - Cheap Styrofoam Coolers Rarely Survive A Day - A 48 QT Igloo Works Great - Dramamine The Night Before Is Cheap Insurance - Be Early, We Like To Leave Early; Rarely In On Time..
1,845 Oyster Castle Reef Blocks By The Rail.
Bottom fishing's been more difficult this week. More rewarding too as we've had our biggest flounders.
Clients who work their lines are only rewarded with dinner, not a million & a half dollars like the White Marlin Open winner.
We do have a fish pool and a reef-raffle everyday - winners will smile. The 50/50 Reef Raffle is up considerably from several years ago, but I keep spending it on mooring line & anchors for the Reef Foundation's barge--the poly-ball markers we set at Jimmy's Reef for instance, plus truckloads of concrete oyster castle blocks..
Right now our 20 x 40 barge is loaded with Parkside High School's welding class units. Biazzio Giordano's students have made a lot of good --hurricane proof-- structure over the years.
Skates, our not-so-welcome long tail flounder, have invaded some reef habitats. Everyone far prefers a flounder shaking its head to a skate flapping its wings.
Did have a fellow from Minnesota take his picture with one..
Keeper cbass, few throwbacks; flounder double almost everyday, pool winners north of 5lb.
Fishing's not bad for the heart of August.
I hear reefs made of Woodrow Wilson Bridge debris in the Chesapeake during the mid-2000s have naturally-spat oysters growing on elevated structure; yet hatchery-raised oysters scattered in those same locations--but on bottom--have all died.
Dive Down - Look Up.
Been using shell for "Oyster Restoration" for over a century; dredges well. Doesn't seem to be worth a dern for actual oyster reef restoration though.
To restore biological function we need to use boulder; need to splash bargeloads of ROCK -- Make raised vertical surfaces that don't silt over..
MRFSS = old recreational catch estimating system; Marine Recreational Fishing Statistics Survey. (we say Murfs - they say MurFis)
MRIP = new system mandated by congress, Marine Recreational Information Program. (not Murfs Rest In Peace)
Acquaintances at NOAA are deeply involved with the transition of our region's recreational fishery data from MuRFSS to MRIP -- MRIP being the "new & improved" data.
I bought a jug (used to be a can) of Maxwell House coffee last week; its label emblazoned with, "New! Flavor Lock Pack."
Yup, it was 'new' alright; smaller package for the same price.
So far as I'm concerned that's where we're at with MRIP's recreational catch estimates..
NOAA claims to be on-path to fulfilling its Congressional requirement to improve recreational fishery data by 2009.
If you're really into this stuff --and I wouldn't be if it didn't occasionally clean-out my retirement account by causing closed fishing seasons with scientifically impoverished catch estimates, and completely waylay biological fact from the fishery management process with fabulous tales of incredible catch-- here's the MRIP team's latest video: http://www.countmyfish.noaa.gov/mrip_tv/MRIPTV-Re-Estimate/estimate.html
MRIP is now "Statistically Rigorous" they say..
"They" are, almost every one, people I know & trust.
Perhaps these academics don't like my comparing Uncle MuRFSS to a drunken crackhead who only offers sober observation in random interval. Perhaps my attacks on data used to close recreational fisheries are unwelcome; But MRIP Outreach Coordinator, Forbes Darby, keeps asking the public for questions ---- I keep getting ignored....
He's a good guy. You could sit down & have a beer with him easily enough. I just need readers to help me get a few questions about this "New & Improved" product answered -- I need readers to write Forbes and ask these same questions.
Dear Forbes, Forbes.Darby@noaa.gov
I have many questions about the validity of MRIP's newly revised catch estimates.
The old MuRFSS estimate for March and April 2010 for New Jersey's shore-bound tautog fishermen, for instance, was 71,000 tog boxed-up and taken home in those two cold-water months. This value, fantastically above the mean for New Jersey's shore fishery, represents more jetty & pier fish than all US for-hire party/charter boats caught from 2004 to present in all waters during the same cold-water wave period.
Its a very unlikely estimate; but an estimate that contributed to new, tighter regulations nonetheless.
The new MRIP model now has these same fellows fishing along New Jersey's jetties & piers; Jim, George and John who brought his grandson along one day: These same fishers who never-ever caught what NJ's For-Hire boats alone will catch, nevermind what ALL US party/charter boats landed -- these fishers are now said to have caught 173,092 under MRIP. That's One Hundred Thousand more tautog in March & April, 2010 than even MuRFSS gigantic error.
So, Under The New & Improved MRIP Model NOAA's Catch Assertion Now Reads Thusly: New Jersey Jetty Fishers Caught More Tautog In Late Winter/Early Spring 2010 Than ALL For-Hire Party/Charter Fishers Put Together In March/April PLUS What All US Commercial Effort Landed All Year -- BY A WIDE MARGIN!
Statistical Validity Indeed..
March/April 2010 - NJ Shore via MRIP - 483,198 pounds of tautog taken.
All US Party/Charter in March/April 2010 - 16,956 Pounds.
All US Party/Charter in March/April from 2004 to 2011 - 265,107 Pounds.
All US Commercial Trap, Trawl & Hook and Line in all of 2010 is 242,087 pounds.
Jim, George plus John and his grandson caught 224,155 MORE pounds of tautog than commercial & party/charter boats -- This "Real" Overfishing Creates Greater Regulatory Burden.
Catch estimates used to close sea bass by emergency regulation a few years back have grown worse too under MRIP and can be portrayed in similar light: Jim & Nancy going out with the kids in their Grady-White or Boston Whaler caught almost twice the sea bass US Party/Charter & Commercial caught combined.
Summer Flounder mis-estimates have grown worse as well; Or are we are to believe Maryland shore fishers really caught 38,000 more keeper flounder than all MD Party & Charter in Sept/Oct 2007...
These Estimates Are Where "Recreational Overfishing" Comes From: We Are Falsely Accused; Needlessly Suffer Regulatory Hardship.
In the new system there was supposed to be a head-count. That's why we have a "Federal Registry" looming ax-like over any State that does not create a fishing license --Its not for revenue to invigorate fishery restoration, its to get a head count to improve catch estimate data.
It appears there have been no logical stops applied to MRIP's statistical values.
MRIP, like MRFSS before, can assert any amount of catch and turn it into Recreational Overfishing ..with always-subsequent greater catch restriction.
MRIP Team: Where's the head-count? Where are the statistical stops to prevent wild flyers in the data?
Please don't tell us you actually believe NJ shore fishers caught incredibly more tautog in two months than all our commercial fishers caught all year..
Forbes Darby keeps asking if anyone has questions -- that's mine. Forbes.Darby@noaa.gov
If you're curious as well, email him.
Because management MUST react to catch estimates as though they were infallible; Real Fishery Restoration --a balanced process of habitat improvement and fishery management-- remains mired in a feedback-loop of bad data leading to bad regulation.
Right now MRIP is simply making the problem worse.
That Needs Fixing.