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Fishing - New Jersey New Jersey Fishing Reports and Information covering Sandy Hook south to Cape May

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Old 06-11-2014, 07:50 AM
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Default Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

So i think Rob said it in the reports thread that this year has been crap for him....And i gotta say this spring has been the abosolute work catching spring for me as far as bass go....I did get a few decent fish early on in the back but if it wasnt for those fish i would have very few and the few i did get were micros that are normally around the rocks i fish...Something is up if ya ask me!!! Im not sure if the replenishment projects up here that kept the bass away,The bait staying off the beach most days or what...But i really think the fishery is in trouble...I no plenty of good to great surf guys that have been coming up empty ALOT this season...I dont consider myself one of them but even my results with the time that i put in on the water i have not caught a single bass over 22in outfront AT ALL this year...Yes the blues did show up in force this spring and THANK GOD even tho they can be a PIA when looking for bass if it wasnt for them i would have went home skunked many a night...Now im also concerned that even the resident population is down...There are a few different jettys i love and they have always held a few fish from schoolie size to just keeper size..I no dudes thats fish those rocks every day and always pick away at a few fish but not this year seems they just are not there...why?what happened? I dont belive that the effects of Sandy are still a cause..I was catching a week after that storm...I truly think the stocks are down...And now watching some of the boats day in and day out kill all these big fish foe the past 2-3 weeks has me worried...I would think these guys would want to save them if they want to contiune to be in business Just wondering what you guys on here are thinking and how your spring has been this year!
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Old 06-11-2014, 07:55 AM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

...And now watching some of the boats day in and day out kill all these big fish foe the past 2-3 weeks has me worried...
I believe the bait and bass are staying off the beach this year for some reason. Boaters seem to be doing well as stated
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Old 06-11-2014, 08:03 AM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

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Originally Posted by surfkast View Post
...And now watching some of the boats day in and day out kill all these big fish foe the past 2-3 weeks has me worried...
I believe the bait and bass are staying off the beach this year for some reason. Boaters seem to be doing well as stated
Yes thats a true but not to have barley ANY in the surf zone or very few...Its just wierd...Every spring there are always a few days were the bigger fish show up and i have had a few days out there wre the bunbker were thick infront of me and not a single fish on them...Plus the lack of schoolie sized to just keeper sized fish? I dunno i like to a glass half full kind of guy but i dont feel good about this..And not all the boats are doing great most of the party boats gave up on the bass early cause of lack of fish..
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Old 06-11-2014, 08:11 AM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

Last week there were HUGE schools of bunker all around me with nothing on them???? Had a blst with some nice sized blues tho
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Old 06-11-2014, 09:56 AM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

Colin Archer guides up your way, Blaze... here's his brief assessment of the spring:

06.10.14 Last chance Jersey bass before heading to the Vineyard tomorrow.....




Gave it a go early this morning hoping to find a bass on the beach or the rocks.....forget it. Weird, weird, weird spring down here. Lots of big bass on the boats.....not much for the surf casters. Usually there is a nice mix of schoolie to better than schoolie bass around but thats just not the case this spring. That's been my experience...and well as the group of guys that I talk with just about everyday.
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Old 06-11-2014, 10:18 AM
J Barbosa J Barbosa is offline
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

The total number of bass are way down, ESPECIALLY resident fish. Just too much pressure on a slow growing fish.

As for the Jetties they can only sustain so much pressure too. Guys have been beating on the small resident fish in January and February for the past couple of years. I don't know what pleasure guys get out of catching two dozen 12" bass but many of these same guys snuff their nose up at a 10lb bluefish. Its been proven that C & R is not that successful with cold water temps.

Fishing will have to get worse before it gets better. When the masses get tired of getting skunked they will go back to fluke or trout fishing and the fish will get a chance to recover then the cycle of over harvesting happens again because we never learn.

There is fish around you just have to work 10x harder to catch less of them.
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Old 06-11-2014, 10:20 AM
J Barbosa J Barbosa is offline
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

Quote:
Originally Posted by surfkast View Post
...And now watching some of the boats day in and day out kill all these big fish foe the past 2-3 weeks has me worried...
I believe the bait and bass are staying off the beach this year for some reason. Boaters seem to be doing well as stated
Thankfully there is not as many fish around so their is less for them to kill if that makes sense.

What you don't see is the charter boats reporting the UGLY...how many times they went out and couldn't put their customers on those big fish.

The truth is lots and lots of happy bunker schools without any fish to molest them.
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Old 06-11-2014, 12:47 PM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

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Originally Posted by StriperJohnB View Post
The total number of bass are way down, ESPECIALLY resident fish. Just too much pressure on a slow growing fish.

As for the Jetties they can only sustain so much pressure too. Guys have been beating on the small resident fish in January and February for the past couple of years. I don't know what pleasure guys get out of catching two dozen 12" bass but many of these same guys snuff their nose up at a 10lb bluefish. Its been proven that C & R is not that successful with cold water temps.

Fishing will have to get worse before it gets better. When the masses get tired of getting skunked they will go back to fluke or trout fishing and the fish will get a chance to recover then the cycle of over harvesting happens again because we never learn.

There is fish around you just have to work 10x harder to catch less of them.
As for the jettys may not have to worry about them soon with the plans to notch and bury them...which IMHO is a big mistake destroying that eco system...This winter there were very few trying out there. .and the past 2 or 3 when the bite was good they werent all 12in fish alot were in the 20-24in range plus water temps were up those years in the mid 40 to almost 50deg...I caught a bunch then and everyone seemed healthy and swam away with lots of energy. ..Its more a problem with regs than anything else I belive...I dont what they should be but there has to something done about these big breeders being taken...And I think the bonus tag program needs to stop...Its stupid IMHO...This is all just from my experience this season im sure dudes I putting in alot of time and catching some good fish..It just seems off for me from previous years
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:41 PM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

Yes, this has been one of the worst springs. Unfortunately it's gonna get worse before it get better.
There is a surfcaster that writes a fishing blog; C Witek, he recently wrote a 5 or 6 part piece on this very subject. "One Angler's Vision". Google it, makes for a very interesting read on the current state, what to expect and hopefully a way to save the striper.
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Old 06-11-2014, 08:42 PM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

I checked my log for this spring, and i really didn't have to because i knew, i didn't catch any bass at the false hook so far this year Even in the back of the RB wasn't so great for me. I guided some guys to a spot( Rui, Blaze, and Bass) and they caught fish, wait, don't guides get paid for doing that . But, anyway yes this year hasn't been great, the only thing i can look forward to is the flatties, and wait for the fall and hope.
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Old 06-11-2014, 10:14 PM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

HEY FRANK PALONE, It's Time For A Slot To Be Put Into Practice. It's Also Time To start Helping The Fisherman Who You Have Taken Credit For Helping In The Past. Also stop that insane beach replenishment, mother nature will always win no matter how many of our millions of our tax dollars are pissed onto the jetties. I Fish, I Vote
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Old 06-12-2014, 08:59 AM
Jer114 Jer114 is offline
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

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Originally Posted by basstard View Post
HEY FRANK PALONE, It's Time For A Slot To Be Put Into Practice. It's Also Time To start Helping The Fisherman Who You Have Taken Credit For Helping In The Past. Also stop that insane beach replenishment, mother nature will always win no matter how many of our millions of our tax dollars are pissed onto the jetties. I Fish, I Vote
Frank Pallone isn't in charge of beach replenishment and couldn't stop it if he wanted to. The Core of Engineers has the money and the go-ahead and it's happening. You can fight beach replenishment all you want and it's going to ruin jetty fishing, but that's not what is being talked about in this thread. There are a lot fewer stripers along the shore than there were even five years ago.

Second, we sure as hell don't need a slot fish. WHEN THE STOCK OF FISH IS BEING DEPLETED, TAKING MORE FISH IS NOT THE ANSWER! Other than that, your post makes perfect sense.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:32 AM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

Nothing will change until we've gone over the cliff. To me, a picture of a guy holding a big dead bass has become the equivalent of a colonial era photo of a trophy hunter posing next to a dead elephant or lion.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:50 AM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

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Originally Posted by Jer114 View Post
Frank Pallone isn't in charge of beach replenishment and couldn't stop it if he wanted to. The Core of Engineers has the money and the go-ahead and it's happening. You can fight beach replenishment all you want and it's going to ruin jetty fishing, but that's not what is being talked about in this thread. There are a lot fewer stripers along the shore than there were even five years ago.

Second, we sure as hell don't need a slot fish. WHEN THE STOCK OF FISH IS BEING DEPLETED, TAKING MORE FISH IS NOT THE ANSWER! Other than that, your post makes perfect sense.
My first point was that beach replenishment not only destroys the jetties, but decimates the eco system of the seabed along the shoreline. Worms, clams, and other crustaceans are literally displaced onto the beaches and jetties. If the jetties are buried (and this is what is happening) then how are they going to hold fish!. Second, How does a slot fish increase the number of fish being taken? All it does is insures the release of the breeder fish which will produce millions of offspring to feed on the worms, clams and other crustaceans along the coast (oh I forgot , they were or will be destroyed with the beach replenishment) And third, My political rant was just frustation of the entire system in which we live. I've always voted for Mr. Palone and probably will in the future, but that's not what is being talked about on this thread
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Old 06-13-2014, 01:46 PM
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Default Re: Spring bass 2014(or lack of)

Found this on another site...Dont no if its the answer but at least there is an agreement that TO MANY BIG FISH ARE BEING TAKEN...

Changes in striped bass regulations coming in 2015

John Oswald, @oswaldapp 5:11 p.m. EDT June 12, 2014




tom brennan creakside.jpg

(Photo: Courtesy of Creekside Outfitters in Waretown.)




For the last several years anglers from far and wide have enjoyed world-class striper fishing along the New Jersey coast. There have been more trophy fish in greater numbers than anyone can remember. Even I have caught a couple of fish in excess of 35 pounds, and those acquainted with my skills would call that nothing less than miraculous.

But the bountiful catches of big fish have raised a few concerns. While striped bass are not overfished and overfishing is not occurring, there has been a decline in the spawning stock biomass, the total weight of all sexually mature fish in the population. This decline, along with some additional factors, has led fishery managers to develop an addendum to address these concerns.

Initially, the addendum was to have been put out for public comments in May, but since any proposed changes were not going to be implemented until 2015, members of the ASMFC's Striped Bass Board elected to make further refinements to the document before releasing it for public review.

Russ Allen, a fisheries biologist with the N.J. Bureau of Marine Fisheries and a member of the ASMFC's Striped Bass Board said the impetus for the action came from a couple of fronts.

"There was a sense from the general public that something needed to be done as far as striped bass management," Allen said. "When you talk to some of the old timers, they're telling you this reminds them of when the crash happened before."

Allen is referring to the late 1970s and early 80s when striped bass were hard to find for recreational anglers. Prior to that low point, he said, some very big fish were being caught.

Back then, Allen said, fishermen may have been part of the problem, but now they know how it works. Not everyone agrees that history is repeating itself, but there are some questions.

"There are a lot of people who have had exceptional, historic fishing on some very large fish for a number of years," said Capt. Adam Nowalsky, chairman of the New Jersey Chapter of the Recreational Fishing Alliance and a member of the Plan Development Team for the addendum.

"I think anytime people see large landings of anything it raises concerns in their eyes. How much of that is perception and how much is grounded in reallty, well that's what a lot of the debate is about," Nowalsky said.

Nowalsky also said there were concerns about a decline in harvests in the northern ranges of the the species, such as New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Maine and worries about the fish coming out of Chesapeake Bay.

The other push for more striped bass management comes from the technical side. Allen said the Striped Bass Technical Committee convened after the last stock asssessment in 2013 to develop new reference points for the spawning stock biomass.

Using the new reference points in the assessment, which was peer reviewed, the Committee learned that the spawning stock biomass was declining while fishing mortality was on the increase, never a good combination.

Based on those figures, the ASMFC is required by the management plan to implement new management measures.

"We (managers) had to do something and the public thinks we need to do something," Allen said. "They've been around long enough and they see what's going on and they're the best voice of reason because they are out there fishing."

When fishery managers met in May to approve the amendment, they realized there were still some refinements to be made to the document. Some of the issues had to do with the new reference points, the proposed options that will be used to achieve the target reductions, and how to account for the differences in the Chesapeake Bay and coastal striped bass stocks.

"The discussion was such that everybody realized that putting it off another meeting cycle would not impact the overall time of implementation," Nowalsky said. "They wanted to go out with the most reasonable set of options that would elicit the greatest amount of input from the public."

While the possible options have yet to be finalized, the choices may include a decrease in the bag limit from two to one fish, a limit of one smaller fish and a trophy-sized fish, a slot fish or any combination thereof. One option might be a slot fish fo 28 to 33 inches and another fish over 40 inches.

The goal of the amendment, said Allen, will be a reduction in the total harvest from around 32 to 36 percent. "A one-fish limit at 28 inches should get us close," he said.

Another component of the amendment will be the time frame for the proposed harvest reductions. The time frame may be over one year or three years.

It is now expected that the revised amendment, with the newest options, will be available for public comment toward the end of August. It will remain out for public comment through September and part of October, then come back to the Commission for approval in October.

Once approved, the amendment will go through the legislative process and should be ready for implementation in January of 2015.

Allen expects New Jersey will hold two public meetings, one in Cape May and the other in Toms River and he is very interested in what comes out of those meetings.

According to the feedback he's been receiving this spring. there's overwhelming support for taking action. "What I hear the most is that we're taking too many big fish. I'm hoping that's what everyone else is hearing too, but you never know.

"There's going to be some sort of reduction and it may take place in one year or over three years," said Allen. He believes the public will want to do it in one year. And as far as doing something about making some changes to striped bass management, he believes everyone is on the same page.

Whether the action is enough to halt the decline in spawning stock from historic highs is another question.

"They (managers) may want to put an end to the decline but nothing in nature remains static," Nowalsky said. "Nature is constantly changing, constantly fluid. They'd like to maintain the biomass at historic levels but it's simply impossible, impossible for any species."
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