Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Fish Report 7/5/16

Fish Report 7/5/16 
Buy Two Get One Free Tickets On Sunday, 7/17/16
Cbass w/a Few Flounder 
..and an occasional tuna! 
MRIP's Choke-Hold On Scientific Integrity 

First Time Special (only time?) Sunday, July 17th, Buy two tickets - get a spot free. This is NOT an offer for any other day - just the 17th. I was trying to think of how regulars could invite a friend or bring a child/grand-child. Let's see how this plays. In summer it's especially important new anglers are aware of motion sickness preventatives. Being sick all day is no fun at all.. (see section below)

Also: Opening August to sea bass/flounder reservations. 

Sailing Daily For Sea Bass & nicking a few flounder too - Weather Permitting - Saturday's 6:30 to 3:30 - $125.00 – Otherwise 7 to 3 at $110.00.. July & August Sundays For Research Except The 17th..

I anticipate a lot more flounder soon. There's no way to know whether fluke or sea bass will bite better on any day. I absolutely couldn't guess ..but I do know my crew & I will be trying our best to make everyday a success. 

Reservations Required at 410 520 2076 - LEAVE YOUR BEST POSSIBLE CONTACT NUMBER - Weather Cancelations Are Common - I Make Every Attempt To Let Clients Sleep In If The Weather's Not Going Our Way..  

Be a half hour early! We always leave early! 

..except when someone shows up right on time. 

Clients arriving late will see the west end of an east bound boat. With a limited number of reserved spots, I do not refund because you over-slept or had a flat..

Dramamine Is Cheap Insurance! (Meclizine's Better!) Crystalized Ginger Works Great Too. It's Simple To Prevent Motion Sickness, Difficult To Cure.

If You Suffer Mal-de-Mer In A Car You Should Experiment On Shorter Half-Day Trips First! (Wockenfuss Candies sells crystalized ginger locally - We usually have some aboard - Better is Nuts.Com.. Chewable Meclizine is a good pharmaceutical, there's also a "less drowsy" meclizine pill that a lot of clients like; Scopolamine Patches are the gold standard. I see Dramamine is also selling ginger in a pill now. I bet it works!)

Honestly - If you get to go on the ocean once month, once a year, or even less; why risk chumming all day? Similarly, if you howl at the moon all night, chances are good you'll howl into a bucket all day.  

Bring A Cooler With Ice For Your Fish – A 48 Quart Is Fine For A Few People. 

No Galley! BYO Sandwiches & Soft Drinks. A few beers in cans is fine. (bottles break at bad times)

If You Won't Measure & Count Your Fish, The State Will Provide A Man With A Gun To Do It For You. We Measure & Count — ALWAYS — No Exceptions! 

13,242 Reef Blocks Deployed at numerous sites: Doug Ake's Reef 2,491 - St. Ann's 1,495 - Al Giles Barge 833 - Eagle Scout Reef 840 - Sue's Block Drop 72 - Nichols' Concrete 590 - Capt. Bob's Block Drop 48 - Benelli Reef 108

Blocks Provided By Potomac Valley Brick - Thank You!

Support the Ocean City Reef Foundation! http://www.ocreefs.org  (lots of reef pics here..) We're Nowhere Near Reef Building's True Potential. Thank You! 

Greetings All, 
Have had all manner of fishing lately. Days when we could barely scratch dinner, and great days when everyone had a big mess. Even had a client limit-out on sea bass last Saturday.. 
Have not had any more limits of flounder, but I think it's about to bust loose. Guys up nearer DE Bay have had them a while. They're always before us. It's time.

In my last report I speculated we'd soon see bluefin tuna inshore - caught three the next day. Try as I might, we've only had one more since. It's not as though we can spend a day trolling. We just throw lures out going & coming; sometimes turn a circle or two. It's fun when it works. Though only one angler (or two, or three if they get exhausted..) can reel a fish in; on my boat we split tuna equally among those willing to pay the fish cleaner. 
That's not the case with sea bass & flounder though ..you have to hook 'em to cook 'em.

On July 6th, 2016, a special meeting will occur to discuss the new 'overage' in recreational sea bass. Yup. .Guv estimates (from MRIP) say we took too many again. 
My business is in grave danger because of these estimates.

We're still 100% forced to accept whatever catch estimate MRIP's recreational catch estimates suffers upon us. The 'new & improved' Marine Recreational Information Program - MRIP (& not, so I'm told, "MRFSS Rest In Peace" MRIP) - these recreational catch estimates have scientific integrity in a choke-hold. 

While management has no eye whatever for things biological: habitat & spawning age production aren't at issue. They do use catch estimates, however. Use them "As Is." 

Here's one. And this time it's not Private Boats. 
New York - Charter Boats Only (not Party Boats). What an amazing increase. 
Estimate StatusYearWaveCommon NameTotal Harvest (A+B1)PSEHarvest (A+B1) Total
Weight (lb)
PSELandings (no.) without
Size Information
FINAL2006JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS34,70675.944,09475.50
FINAL2008JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS8,15741.810,12146.90
FINAL2009JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS9,36555.713,13859.20
FINAL2010JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS15,36425.522,65920.50
FINAL2012JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS54,31446.878,66544.30
FINAL2013JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS9,78934.027,44820.80
FINAL2014JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS35,21055.472,55956.40
FINAL2015JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS481,14927.9711,44426.80

Here's All Mid-Atlantic & North Atlantic Party & Charter (all For-Hire from Hatteras north..) 
Estimate StatusYearWaveCommon NameTotal Harvest (A+B1)PSEHarvest (A+B1) Total
Weight (lb)
PSELandings (no.) without
Size Information
FINAL2005JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS71,56921.691,95623.70
FINAL2006JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS70,71538.484,01140.50
FINAL2007JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS198,25814.3287,47615.50
FINAL2008JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS80,20618.0110,94719.10
FINAL2009JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS153,97422.2189,89923.60
FINAL2010JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS139,81318.0197,16918.50
FINAL2011JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS84,77625.6110,33929.20
FINAL2012JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS185,13419.3266,56818.50
FINAL2013JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS61,23812.597,87910.90
FINAL2014JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS241,28618.7349,76518.70
FINAL2015JULY/AUGUSTBLACK SEA BASS633,62121.9911,55221.30

If we subtract NY's absolutely AMAZING new summer catch of last year, from the Hatteras north For-Hire catch-estimate, we're left with 200,000 pounds. (which would be 'normal' in the data)
Hmm.. NY charter skippers, with their newly relaxed fluke regulations that they'd fought for so long ..couldn't resist taking 80% of the whole coast's summer sea bass? 
How strange. 

And then, from an obscure management document sent by a NY reader, we see NY's reported sea bass catch from VTRs (Vessel Trip Reports are forms required daily or NOAA will pull a boat's permits)..  
NY's charter skippers reported 8,100 sea bass in the summer of 2014. That's remarkably lower than 633,000...
Those who hold "we know all" claim we either under-report or over-report, depending on what would favor our outcome -- that we somehow know what's coming. Who in the heck could guess that far in advance? Sometimes showing catch helps, sometimes it doesn't. 

Spikes in MRIP/MRFSS data are fairly consistent though. 
MRIP's consistent errors have just about perfectly destroyed the recreational sea bass fishery. 

You see, perhaps the last straw, now NY Charter's 3/4 of a million pounds of summer sea bass threatens the entire region from Cape Cod to Cape Hatteras. 
Sea bass could be closed in federal waters come mid-Sept because of this estimate. Season would not reopen until NOAA concludes our overfishing has been paid back. June 2017? Maybe?

We witnessed exponential population growth during pre management & early management. We caught sea bass every single year before there was ever any management. Despite the harshest real overfishing conditions prior to any regulation ever, sea bass were still able to replenish themselves. 
When just a little regulation was added, the population climbed for the sky. 

Now the outrageous arrogance of a federal bureaucracy willing to hang recreational fishers & related commerce by the neck until dead, using catch estimates no one should believe; NOAA will have soon destroyed a fishery that thrived even in the last of the unregulated era. 

What a terrible result.
And now a normal result from among reef fisheries where errors in fish population assessment by trawl are compounded by fantastic spikes in MRIP's assertions of catch. 

Regulating the death of our fisheries with bad data.. 
While our corals, & methods of increasing spawning production, have yet to receive any consideration. 

If you'd like to comment to the National Academy of Sciences about MRIP's catch estimates, please see my 3/23/16 Fish Report (among others) for contact info. 
If you'd like to tell your DC Reps what you think of regulating recreational fisheries into oblivion with bad data - please do. 
I tell you, the whole concept of "Accountability Measures" (where we have to 'pay back' catch overages)  hinged on better, truly accurate even, recreational catch data. 
Instead, catch data became far worse. 
MRIP: what a miserable failure. 


Capt. Monty Hawkins 
Partyboat Morning Star
Ocean City, MD

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