Changes to striped bass regs, anyone have an inside scoop as to what's going to be discussed on Thursday and what outcomes are expected?

MAArcher

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Beyond what's outlined here? https://www.mass.gov/doc/january-28-2021-mfac-business-meeting-materials210122/download Which is a lot to absorb. It would be nice to see changes that increase prices the fishermen get. From what I gather there's been quite a disparity between what the dealers give compared to retail prices. Does anyone know what the average sales price was last year? I can't seem to find anything on line but just a few years ago it seems like it was under $3 a pound but retail was still over $20.
 

John Hobby

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I do not, but I will tell you the Mass Dept. of Fish want to phase this license out for rod and reel commercial guys by yield per permit. What I mean is if you have a permit, and don't do shit with it, you will be phased out. yet, if you are an active fisherman, you will maintain your permit. Planned to do away with the fishery.
 

MAArcher

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I do not, but I will tell you the Mass Dept. of Fish want to phase this license out for rod and reel commercial guys by yield per permit. What I mean is if you have a permit, and don't do shit with it, you will be phased out. yet, if you are an active fisherman, you will maintain your permit. Planned to do away with the fishery.
Ya, when you apply for a striper permit there’s an affidavit you have to sign with it that acknowledges that you can be treated differently than historical permit holders. Not a fan of that approach.
 

novivin

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There are only so many fish, and lots of people that want to kill them.
What do you do?
The permits are still open, anyone can get one.
When the stock crashes, and cuts to quota are necessary, those that don’t rely on the income due to the income being very small (they didn’t sell a lot or hold the permit for many years) get the permit denied first.
The ones that made more money and put time in keep theirs longer, hopefully for good.
What other way is fair? What would you like to see done differently? When conditions support increased fishing effort, permits should be sold again for the fishery in question. Sadly, there are not many examples of that since there are shitloads of us and more being born all the time.
 

MAArcher

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There are only so many fish, and lots of people that want to kill them.
What do you do?
The permits are still open, anyone can get one.
When the stock crashes, and cuts to quota are necessary, those that don’t rely on the income due to the income being very small (they didn’t sell a lot or hold the permit for many years) get the permit denied first.
The ones that made more money and put time in keep theirs longer, hopefully for good.
What other way is fair? What would you like to see done differently? When conditions support increased fishing effort, permits should be sold again for the fishery in question. Sadly, there are not many examples of that since there are shitloads of us and more being born all the time.
I think one of us doesn't understand. (it could be me, I'm new at this). But based on the affidavit I had to sign, I could be denied a permit or reduced quota in the future based on the date I first got a permit rather than how much I utilized it. It would be pretty annoying to think if I put a bunch of time and money into developing a commercial enterprise over the next couple years only too lose my permit in hard times to someone who may not even have caught any fish in recent years, just because he's been buying permits prior to 09/08/13. How's that fair?
 

Dogfishing

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I think one of us doesn't understand. (it could be me, I'm new at this). But based on the affidavit I had to sign, I could be denied a permit or reduced quota in the future based on the date I first got a permit rather than how much I utilized it. It would be pretty annoying to think if I put a bunch of time and money into developing a commercial enterprise over the next couple years only too lose my permit in hard times to someone who may not even have caught any fish in recent years, just because he's been buying permits prior to 09/08/13. How's that fair?
To be honest, getting history on your licences is part of the game. But, every year, the fed Gov takes back quota from small boats. EVERY YEAR! I'm a scallop/lobster/inshore dragger guy. We had 30000 pounds a few years ago as far as allocation goes, now we are down to 20. Then, you have to lease quota to make up the difference. This year, our permit is worth shit. Prob let us have #15000. All my friends who have permits keep them because of history, and good documentation. All the pirates have and/or are selling their permits due to the fact they dont fish every day. In my opinion, this makes permits a commodity, but in a stupid, backward way. This happens to all fisheries. Pretty soon, you wont be able to harvest fish w/o a corporate affiliation. I know people who work on the fleet boats out of new bedford, and the pay is not going up...
 

Old Mud

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I think one of us doesn't understand. (it could be me, I'm new at this). But based on the affidavit I had to sign, I could be denied a permit or reduced quota in the future based on the date I first got a permit rather than how much I utilized it. It would be pretty annoying to think if I put a bunch of time and money into developing a commercial enterprise over the next couple years only too lose my permit in hard times to someone who may not even have caught any fish in recent years, just because he's been buying permits prior to 09/08/13. How's that fair?
It’s called a control date and it’s happened in many fisheries. Just a way to thin the permits. If your already complaining about the difference in boat price vs retail, comm fishing may not be for you lol
 

toolmaker

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Beyond what's outlined here? https://www.mass.gov/doc/january-28-2021-mfac-business-meeting-materials210122/download Which is a lot to absorb. It would be nice to see changes that increase prices the fishermen get. From what I gather there's been quite a disparity between what the dealers give compared to retail prices. Does anyone know what the average sales price was last year? I can't seem to find anything on line but just a few years ago it seems like it was under $3 a pound but retail was still over $20.


thx guys-ALL this striped bass chatter has me hungry for some. I am a wire line catch and release guy and when jigged correctly the mortality rate is very low. Over the decades 95% + of my fish were lip caught and released in the water--boat side. However if a very aggressive fish or if my anglers aren't paying attention then unfortunately that fish falls into my 5% category. If he or she came over the jig and is in a bad way then that would be the fish I would keep for the grill. I am in Arizona for the winter and you guys have me drooling for a bass steak cooked on the grill but first a big bowl of bass chowder with crackers and tomorrow night chowder again served with bass salad sandwich on a hard roll with nice fresh native lettuce. Maybe we should get a cooking and recipe thread going here and now I am thinking of stuffed 2 pound lobster on the grill, yup on the grill stuffed with scallops, clams and shrimp with just enough breading or a 2 inch thick full body profile swordfish steak on the grill. Capt Jay
 

MAArcher

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thx guys-ALL this striped bass chatter has me hungry for some. I am a wire line catch and release guy and when jigged correctly the mortality rate is very low. Over the decades 95% + of my fish were lip caught and released in the water--boat side. However if a very aggressive fish or if my anglers aren't paying attention then unfortunately that fish falls into my 5% category. If he or she came over the jig and is in a bad way then that would be the fish I would keep for the grill. I am in Arizona for the winter and you guys have me drooling for a bass steak cooked on the grill but first a big bowl of bass chowder with crackers and tomorrow night chowder again served with bass salad sandwich on a hard roll with nice fresh native lettuce. Maybe we should get a cooking and recipe thread going here and now I am thinking of stuffed 2 pound lobster on the grill, yup on the grill stuffed with scallops, clams and shrimp with just enough breading or a 2 inch thick full body profile swordfish steak on the grill. Capt Jay

I've been dying to find a good fish chowder recipe. I can never seem to get it quite right. Please share yours if its good.
 

toolmaker

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I've been dying to find a good fish chowder recipe. I can never seem to get it quite right. Please share yours if its good.


Ok here's mine.
I start with a two pounds of fresh striped bass chunks/cubes about two inch by two inch as they will shrink down. I pouch them for 5 minutes and stir very gently a few times in a gallon of Poland Springs water with a few sprinkles of Sea Salt. I then remove the bass very gently and chill while completing the stock so they stay intact. Very important, be sure you skim off the top of the pan. Dice up the largest Vidalia onion you can find, two pounds of diced potatoes and one cup of finely chopped celery. Bring the pan back to a boil and in goes the potatoes for 10 min, then the celery and in another 5 min the onions. I let all this cook up together for a 1/2 hour and season with black pepper to the taste. After the 30 min "boil" while it is cooling down I insert a whole stick of salted butter and let it melt in. I put the butter in while the stock is cooling as not create a greasy slick. I then very gently dump in the chilled bass and let it all simmer for a min of a 1 hour. At this point you can serve as a clear broth chowder or add evaporated milk or cream or both with a few spoons of corn starch to make a thicker stew. Don't forget the chowder crackers and with the creamy option I sprinkle a bit of parsley on the top. Enjoy--Capt Jay
 

John Hobby

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Capt. Jay, you make it and I will bring the cold cans! Nothing beats a fish chowder, nothing!
 

novivin

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I think one of us doesn't understand. (it could be me, I'm new at this). But based on the affidavit I had to sign, I could be denied a permit or reduced quota in the future based on the date I first got a permit rather than how much I utilized it. It would be pretty annoying to think if I put a bunch of time and money into developing a commercial enterprise over the next couple years only too lose my permit in hard times to someone who may not even have caught any fish in recent years, just because he's been buying permits prior to 09/08/13. How's that fair?
That guy with no landings but bought a permit would most likely loose his ability to fish, just buying the permit does not get you skin in the game usually. Buying the permit yearly, fishing it and landing to sell catch give you the seniority you desire. Usually an average history of the previous five years or something like that is taken. The best bet you have is fish hard and catch, then sell it and get it all documented. If you care about fairness don’t miss each MA DMF Marine Fisheries Commission meeting. Also, get to know and speak to, your commission members, who are appointed by the governor. They have the deciding vote on all regulations.
 

novivin

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@MAArcher - I was not trying to rile you up, rather explain the possible outcomes.
I would suggest you get dealer permits or at least the permits needed to sell retail off the boat. Then, put a little social media effort in and tie off at a frequented waterfront spot and sell your catch retail price on your own. Get a hell of a better price. Or- farmers market your catch. Guys that do this make better profit, and don’t deal with the buyers.
 

MAArcher

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@MAArcher - I was not trying to rile you up, rather explain the possible outcomes.
I would suggest you get dealer permits or at least the permits needed to sell retail off the boat. Then, put a little social media effort in and tie off at a frequented waterfront spot and sell your catch retail price on your own. Get a hell of a better price. Or- farmers market your catch. Guys that do this make better profit, and don’t deal with the buyers.
No worries, I’m just trying to learn. I did apply for the boat retail permit. And got the name of some dealers from DMF. I had some questions they helped clear up. I think getting people to buy off the boat could be hard but who knows.
 

steveinak

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No worries, I’m just trying to learn. I did apply for the boat retail permit. And got the name of some dealers from DMF. I had some questions they helped clear up. I think getting people to buy off the boat could be hard but who knows.
you sell one fish retail or you sell 3 fish wholesale to dealer= same money ! i know what i would do for a low volume fishery like that.
 

MAArcher

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I thought I had it figured out. I’d get the license that lets you sell from the boat and then since I trailer my boat I’d just stop by customers (friends and any restaurants I could get interested) on the way home. But as it turns out the boat has to be in the water to sell from it.
 

leaky

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I'll tell you what, I'm really tired of hearing about limited access in rod & reel fisheries where basically all it serves to do is get us mucked up with red tape, or transfer 100% of the fish to the boats who already catch 90% of them.

We already went through this "threat" in the striped bass fishery just 5 years ago or so - the justification? We should have tags and it will be to hard to distribute tags to 4000 permit holders. You'd think we were talking about 1 million permit holders or something, whatever happened basically there wasn't support last time and it was canned. Why do we need tags? Because they are so worried someone might somehow sell a fish that they caught at the wrong time. Laws to try and keep people from breaking existing laws. MA bullshit thinking. Hopefully they are not really moving on it again.

I'm no heavy hitter but I've been maintaining 2 striper permits, one is on my Holland now that obviously didn't get used last year, the other has small but consistent catches. The $700 check just cleared, sucks that we have to do stupid shit like this - drop $320 on a permit to keep it active on a year you know you won't use it.

The fact that we don't have a NH commercial striper fishery bites, MA keeps making things a giant pain in the balls like they do with everything else - latest bunch of changes has been to make sure there is just no way we can catch a "recreational" fish on a non commercial day then sell it on a commercial day, when the recreational limit is only 1 freakin fish - not exactly a major problem. For that reason we got the slot limit where recreational boats get the smaller fish, commercial boats get the bigger fish, and a recreational boat can't even keep a freakin 50+ inch fish or something - all because of this theoretical idea that someone will catch a 55 inch fish on a Sunday then go sell it Monday.

They split the commercial days apart so we can't fish an actual whole night (ie day starts at midnight so you can't start say at 8:00 PM and fish until 5:00 AM), then they bust balls where we drop the fish off if they take a fish when commercial fishing isn't allowed - which is being done because the commercial day ends at midnight and nobody who takes fish is freakin open at midnight.,.. Fish are caught legally, we just can't sell them because nobody is open - I ended up having to dump a few 40 lb fish last year because I missed the cutoff (folks at the ramp were really confused as I just tossed these massive dead stripers into the current :) ).. Again why this ridiculous stuff? Laws to try to prevent people from breaking existing laws.

Been getting my blood pressure up lately over limited access BS for the Charter boat fleet, looks promising that it goes away given 70% of the public response regarding it (last time we were asked) was negative, and a lot of it from those in the business today, but some people still won't just let it go.. Their justification? - it's hard to make $$ in the business, so lets limit competition. I feel for the guys - especially folks with the big boats getting screwed by covid nazi's (who are not neccesarily even the ones pushing this type of shit) but some relative new comers with the 6 pack boats manage to cleanup, others just can't book many trips who once did really well in the business. To me what I see is basically it's a business, it's war, and you compete and adapt or you die, sometimes the world just changes, but the problem isn't some kid who wants to start a new business.

Oh and prices were generally great last year highest 6-ish, lowest about 2 but very brief and back to 4 again, year before, year before too - has been awhile since we saw it tank to $1.00/lb or something and stay there. Basically the performance of the fishery is pretty slow, keeps demand up.
 

PatriciaLynn

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No worries, I’m just trying to learn. I did apply for the boat retail permit. And got the name of some dealers from DMF. I had some questions they helped clear up. I think getting people to buy off the boat could be hard but who knows.
Not hard. This past spring when restaurants were closing left and right I had around 10,000 oysters I needed to move. Started putting up instagram and facebook posts about me, oysters, boats, etc and pretty soon was doing 1000/week direct. It is more work to sort oysters into 24ct bags than 200ct bags but each oyster magically doubles in value!
 

fordy

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You can't sell bass dockside. That and tuna are excluded from the license
 
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