On Jan. 15th the North Carolina, ocean commercial striped bass season opened. In this trawl fishery, individual boats can keep the 50 largest fish that they catch in a day. This practice allows and encourages the culling or high grading of the catch. This means that the boat will keep the 50 largest fish in possession but may continue trawling all day and may replace these fish with larger ones caught later. Replacing means they will throw the dead or dying fish over the side, substituting them with the freshly caught larger bass. It is nearly beyond belief that such a system could be in place, but it is.
Here is the link http://www.examiner.com/fish-and-wildlife-policy-in-charlotte/commercial-trawlers-slaughtering-thousands-of-striped-bass-off-the-outer-banks to a newspaper story about the debacle. The story itself contains a link to a YouTube video that shows pictures of the dead floating stripers. The trawlers committing this atrocity tow their nets right through fleets of recreational and charter boats that are fishing on the schools. Is it any wonder this resource is becoming scarcer every year?
SF has sent a letter to Louis Daniels Ph.D. the Director of Marine Fisheries in NC. We hope that you will send the note below or something like it in your own words to Dr. Daniels and let him know that this is a barbaric and unacceptable practice. Here is an e-mail link to his office email@example.com. Email NC Governor Beverly Perdue, firstname.lastname@example.org
Louis Daniels PhD
3441 Arendell Street
PO BOX 769
Morehead City, NC 28557-0769
Dear Dr. Daniels:
The world is now aware of the terrible misuse of the striped bass resource caused by the commercial ocean trawl fishery off the North Carolina Outer Banks. These fish are worth considerably more per pound if allocated to the recreational fishery in North Carolina than when taken by commercial harvest. But if the practice of commercial fishing for striped bass must continue in NC, certainly the participants should never be allowed to cull and high grade these fish. It is already too late to save the thousands of large striped bass wasted by this fishery during the 2011 winter season, but we hope that you will use the power of your office to keep this from happening in the future.
Your name here