DEEP: Notice to Party & Charter Black Sea Bass Fishermen

Notice to Party & Charter Black Sea Bass Fishermen

May 28, 2013

Black Sea Bass Fishery Monitoring Program

On April 17, 2013 the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission revised slightly the recreational fishery harvest target for black sea bass for 2013. This revision in the target (+8%) makes approximately 9,000 more black sea bass available for harvest in Connecticut. This small change occurred too late in the season to include in the 2013 Anglerís Guide which is essential for effectively communicating recreational fishing regulations to more than 140,000 private marine anglers fishing in Connecticut.

At the same time, it has become apparent that Connecticut party/charter vessel participation in the black sea bass fishery and consequent harvest of black sea bass is not being adequately captured in the federal Marine Recreational Information Program. In 2012, while the private angler harvest was estimated to be more than 110,000 fish, the party and charter mode harvest estimate was just 154 fish.

To better account for the party/charter black sea bass fishery the department has developed a voluntary program for party/charter vessels that includes daily record keeping of black sea bass trips. The program provides for an 8 fish per paying passenger creel limit from June 15 through November 30 and is for 2013 only. Passengers on non-participating party/charter vessels will be bound by the creel limit and open season as published in the 2013 Anglerís Guide.

Party/charter vessel owners interested in enrolling in the program must complete an application Ė which will be mailed to current party/charter vessel registrants this week. Participants will be required to report daily black sea bass fishing activity from June through November in monthly logbooks. Logbooks must be submitted by the 10th of each month following the reporting month to remain eligible for this program.

For further information, contact the DEEP Marine Fisheries Division by email at deep.marine.fisheries@ct.gov, by mail at P.O. Box 719, Old Lyme, CT 06371 or by telephone at 860-434-6043 between the hours of 8:30 AM and 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday.

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer that is committed to complying with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Please contact us at 860-418-5910 or deep.accommodations@ct.gov if you: have a disability and need a communication aid or service; have limited proficiency in English and may need information in another language; or if you wish to file an ADA or Title VI discrimination complaint.

(N13-09)