Mass is going to do an updated striper mortality study

stumpstalker

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It only makes sense for such a study to be done.

After the inconvenience of adapting to circle hook-only bait fishing, the object of which was to reduce mortality, the effects should be quantified.

And those numbers should eventually be a factor in determining biologically permissible catch quotas.

There should be some gain for the pain.
 

MAArcher

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If it again shows that catch and release kills far more fish than commercial take, I’m hoping it will shut some recreational groups up. Right now there’s a lot of people who think just because a fish swam off it didn’t die. It’s super important to get that 9% estimate accurate.
 

Sonoma

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If it again shows that catch and release kills far more fish than commercial take, I’m hoping it will shut some recreational groups up. Right now there’s a lot of people who think just because a fish swam off it didn’t die. It’s super important to get that 9% estimate accurate.
woah woah woah, you mean battling a 40# striper on 10# test for an hour is bad for them??? just cause they sink like a rock when they let them go doesn't mean they're dead, they're just resting
 

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MAArcher

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woah woah woah, you mean battling a 40# striper on 10# test for an hour is bad for them??? just cause they sink like a rock when they let them go doesn't mean they're dead, they're just resting

They don't even have to sink like a rock. I was reading that just a less than 2% rapid change in salinity can cause irreversible gill damage that can cause death a good while after the fish is released. So there's a good chance that a lot of bass caught in popular fishing places like river mouths and estuaries, where the bass could be down deep in more salinized water, and when they get ripped up to the surface, where the water is warmer and less salinized, they could be a lot of catch and release death that we've never really seen. Hopefully with the telemetry equipment the study will use we'll see how big a concern it is.

The biggest problem I'm finding out is that the most vocal catch and release advocates aren't very good at math and you just can't explain to them that even if their release mortality rate is just 4% instead of the 9% we currently estimate, its still means there's almost a million fish a year that are wasted as crab food, that's 4x more than the commercial mortality which is about 250 thousand fish, which end up on dinner plates. Yet there's a large number of catch and release advocated that point the finger at commercial fishing and say there's the root of our problems, a bunch of evil bastards who just want to kill all the fish for money.
 

MAArcher

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So...rec striper fishermen is the exclusive group that releases fish after being caught??
No, its just that there are so many rec fishermen and some rec guys don't fish to catch a keeper, so they are catching and releasing at a high rate. This chart shows the current estimates for mortality, you can see how small the commercial portion is over all and their release mortality is miniscule, because they target big fish and keep them.

1627160387070.png

Hopefully with the new study we'll get accurate figures that everyone can have confidence in. Circle hooks should bring the release mortality down some too.

I think the chart shows the big flaw with slot and size restrictions too. If someone just wants to catch a fish and go home and cook it up, they may have to fish, catching and releasing, for much longer than they normally would have if they were able to just take home one of the first fish they caught. To back that up you can see that only a tiny percentage of commercial mortality is "discards" while almost half of recreational mortality are wasted fish. At least I call it waste, since its not eaten, but many catch and release advocates don't see it that way, they'd rather have the striper get gamefish status with no fish allowed to be kept so that they don't have to give up their recreation. Saying "Fish are food first, fun second" makes me unpopular in certain circles.
 

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