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Commercial - Recreational - Conservation Issues An open forum for the exchange of ideas and positions on current and proposed regulations in saltwater fishing and conservation.

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  #1  
Old 02-28-2007, 04:06 PM
River Rat River Rat is offline
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Unhappy Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

Posted by the Asbury Park Press on 02/27/07

Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs
BY JOHN GEISER
CORRESPONDENT

Anglers and scuba divers intent on getting commercial gear off artificial reefs built with recreational fishermen's money are stepping up their campaign.

Capt. Pete Grimbilas, a charter boat owner who has been in the forefront of the movement, said a meeting of the primary activists will be held at 6:30 p.m. today in Brick.

Grimbilas said the campaign has been named "Reef Rescue" and the meeting will cover dates of public meetings, mailings and posters, establishment of a Web site, meetings with officials, funding and more.

Assemblyman Sean T. Kean, R-Monmouth, introduced legislation in the state Assembly Feb. 8, to prohibit the use of certain commercial fishing gear on artificial reefs in state waters.

"I want to ensure that recreational fishermen have the opportunity to avail themselves of New Jersey's artificial reefs," he said. "These reefs are key sites for fishing, and in some cases commercial fishermen are misusing the reefs that were constructed for anglers and scuba divers to enjoy."

"Commercial fishermen can dominate an artificial reef and leave very little fish for the other fishermen," he pointed out.

Some fishermen, concerned about slumping blackfish stocks, link the blackfish pots on the reefs to the problem.

Raymond D. Bogan, legal counsel for the United Boatmen of New Jersey and New York, cautions that the foremost problem is the scope of the fishery.

The commercial quota for blackfish is 103,000 pounds, and, according to reports these fishermen file with the state Division of Fish and Wildlife, the quota has never been filled. In fact, landings usually are somewhere around 20,000 to 25,000 pounds annually.

"Unfortunately, the division, as far as I know, has no true idea as to how many pots there are now, and has not taken action to ascertain how many there are," he said.

"All of us are sure that the number of pots has grown exponentially, but can only prove it anecdotally," he added.

"I don't believe the number of pots has grown because of reefs, although I understand that is where the efforts to control this mess are starting," he said. "It has grown because of the live market, which is very lucrative.

"Because pots are so efficient and productive, and the money is so good, the fishery has expanded," he emphasized. "An IUU (illegal, undocumented, unreported) fishery has developed."

Bogan reminded that because of the lucrative nature of the live blackfish fishery, fishermen, if displaced from the reefs, will seek opportunity elsewhere on rough bottom where traditional potters have always targeted lobsters and sea bass.

"I have asked that the pots be counted, and transport containers marked, for the last six or seven years," he said. "But the proposal hasn't had any support from the division."

Bogan said that, if the real numbers - pots and blackfish landed - were known, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission would have to address the fishery, which apparently is greatly exceeding the 10 percent share recognized under the management plan.

The curious thing about the ASMFC is its readiness to further restrict the recreational sector in a fishery, such as winter flounder, without good data, but it refuses to put meaningful curbs on the commercial harvest when hard landings data are present.

Fisheries management officials are famous for making projections and extrapolations affecting the recreational sector by using flimsy data from the Marine Recreational Fishery Statistics Survey, but reject much more reliable data in the commercial blackfish fishery.

An example might be the blackfish holding pens in the Shark and Manasquan rivers in season. It is legal for these blackfish to be held in this manner until sold, and counting them would not only provide an exact number, but provide a solid foundation for projections of total landings in the fishery.
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  #2  
Old 02-28-2007, 04:39 PM
pogyman pogyman is offline
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

This ones just for RAT
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  #3  
Old 02-28-2007, 05:03 PM
River Rat River Rat is offline
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

R U a potter Pogy?
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  #4  
Old 02-28-2007, 05:16 PM
pogyman pogyman is offline
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

Nope- but I do help my friend conch potting some times.

I had a scup potting permit- I sold it years ago

at only 400# trip limit I can catch those by fishin pole.

Why?
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  #5  
Old 02-28-2007, 08:46 PM
BENTROD BENTROD is offline
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

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Originally Posted by River Rat View Post
"Commercial fishermen can dominate an artificial reef and leave very little fish for the other fishermen," he pointed out.

Some fishermen, concerned about slumping blackfish stocks, link the blackfish pots on the reefs to the problem.

.
thats a CLASSIC example of RECREATIONAL IGNORANCE...........pots on a reef wipes out the stocks but a BILLION FISH HOOKS has nothing to do with it........
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  #6  
Old 03-02-2007, 06:27 AM
pogyman pogyman is offline
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

" Some fishermen, concerned about slumping blackfish stocks, link the blackfish pots on the reefs to the problem."

It's got nothing to do with the bridge to Philly?
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  #7  
Old 03-02-2007, 01:59 PM
LIVETOFISH LIVETOFISH is offline
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Exclamation Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

The Reef Rescue Group, of which I have been attending meetings myself, is about access and funding, not numbers of fish and not comm vs. recs. The proposed Special Management Zones that we are pushing for are not set up on a rec or comm limitation, but are done by gear type. The regulation would limit gear on reef sites to hook and line, gig, and spear fishermen. It doesn't matter whether the fish are going home or to market. Commercial hook and line fishing would be completely legal, it's just pots that limit the fishing opportunities of all who would be forced to move out.

Some points to consider,
pot lines limit the ability of other fishermen to anchor or drift fish these reefs.

The number of pots on the reefs has increased exponentially in recent history and with regard to south jersey, looks to get far worse in the coming season.

The reefs are funding in majority by private funds and are designated for use by the public and for the best overall interest of the public.

The artifical reef plan actually designates the goal to porvide hook and line, gig, and spearfishing opportunities.

The pots have also interfered with the construction of reef sites as they have been located on planned dump sites even after adequate public notice of the additions have been posted.

One study showed 23.000 feet of trap lines on one reef, that is a problem for construction and use of the structures.

FWIW, this is not a question of the pots catching too many fish, ghost pots killing fish or any other rec/comm issue. Frankly any of these ideas would open the door nice and wide for the environmentalists to come in and close down large areas as marine sanctuaries.

The blackfish issue and the illegal trade is a different issue entirely. Yes, that bridge to PA is as much a problem as anything else. one point to note is that NJ's blackfish landings have decreased by 84% in recent years where other states have seen massive increases. The NJ Marine Fisheries Council announced in thier council reports that NJ is pushing for an exemption from the 28% mortality reduction since the higher rates of fishing seem to be located in other areas.
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  #8  
Old 03-02-2007, 04:11 PM
pogyman pogyman is offline
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

Quote:
Originally Posted by LIVETOFISH View Post
The Reef Rescue Group, of which I have been attending meetings myself, is about access and funding, not numbers of fish and not comm vs. recs. The proposed Special Management Zones that we are pushing for are not set up on a rec or comm limitation, but are done by gear type. The regulation would limit gear on reef sites to hook and line, gig, and spear fishermen. It doesn't matter whether the fish are going home or to market. Commercial hook and line fishing would be completely legal, it's just pots that limit the fishing opportunities of all who would be forced to move out.

Some points to consider,
pot lines limit the ability of other fishermen to anchor or drift fish these reefs.

The number of pots on the reefs has increased exponentially in recent history and with regard to south jersey, looks to get far worse in the coming season.

The reefs are funding in majority by private funds and are designated for use by the public and for the best overall interest of the public.

The artifical reef plan actually designates the goal to porvide hook and line, gig, and spearfishing opportunities.

The pots have also interfered with the construction of reef sites as they have been located on planned dump sites even after adequate public notice of the additions have been posted.

One study showed 23.000 feet of trap lines on one reef, that is a problem for construction and use of the structures.

FWIW, this is not a question of the pots catching too many fish, ghost pots killing fish or any other rec/comm issue. Frankly any of these ideas would open the door nice and wide for the environmentalists to come in and close down large areas as marine sanctuaries.

The blackfish issue and the illegal trade is a different issue entirely. Yes, that bridge to PA is as much a problem as anything else. one point to note is that NJ's blackfish landings have decreased by 84% in recent years where other states have seen massive increases. The NJ Marine Fisheries Council announced in thier council reports that NJ is pushing for an exemption from the 28% mortality reduction since the higher rates of fishing seem to be located in other areas.

What gear was primarily responsible for the landings that NJ's quota is based on?
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  #9  
Old 03-02-2007, 04:44 PM
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Fish Picker Fish Picker is offline
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

Quote:
Originally Posted by LIVETOFISH View Post
The Reef Rescue Group, of which I have been attending meetings myself, is about access and funding, not numbers of fish and not comm vs. recs. The proposed Special Management Zones that we are pushing for are not set up on a rec or comm limitation, but are done by gear type. The regulation would limit gear on reef sites to hook and line, gig, and spear fishermen. It doesn't matter whether the fish are going home or to market. Commercial hook and line fishing would be completely legal, it's just pots that limit the fishing opportunities of all who would be forced to move out.

Some points to consider,
pot lines limit the ability of other fishermen to anchor or drift fish these reefs.

The number of pots on the reefs has increased exponentially in recent history and with regard to south jersey, looks to get far worse in the coming season.

The reefs are funding in majority by private funds and are designated for use by the public and for the best overall interest of the public.

The artifical reef plan actually designates the goal to porvide hook and line, gig, and spearfishing opportunities.

The pots have also interfered with the construction of reef sites as they have been located on planned dump sites even after adequate public notice of the additions have been posted.

One study showed 23.000 feet of trap lines on one reef, that is a problem for construction and use of the structures.

FWIW, this is not a question of the pots catching too many fish, ghost pots killing fish or any other rec/comm issue. Frankly any of these ideas would open the door nice and wide for the environmentalists to come in and close down large areas as marine sanctuaries.

The blackfish issue and the illegal trade is a different issue entirely. Yes, that bridge to PA is as much a problem as anything else. one point to note is that NJ's blackfish landings have decreased by 84% in recent years where other states have seen massive increases. The NJ Marine Fisheries Council announced in thier council reports that NJ is pushing for an exemption from the 28% mortality reduction since the higher rates of fishing seem to be located in other areas.


What group are you part of ?????

How much of the funds come from Rec anglers donations ????

How long does it take for a " Ghost Pot " to become another part of the reef ?????

Public Notice do you read the state and in some cases Federal registry daily ?????

Are you sure that the reef plan doesn't clearly state "" For all user groups "" ???????

So your drifting a reef , the objects that you are drifting over wouldn't cause you to lose your rigs ???????


Please think hard about the questions listed above. By all means research them for yourself I have and will be quoting public documents.

If you want to talk " TOG " mainly live please start another thread.
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Old 03-02-2007, 11:00 PM
LIVETOFISH LIVETOFISH is offline
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

Quote:
Originally Posted by pogyman View Post
What gear was primarily responsible for the landings that NJ's quota is based on?
That's the point, this has nothing to do with landings
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  #11  
Old 03-02-2007, 11:21 PM
LIVETOFISH LIVETOFISH is offline
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

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Originally Posted by Fish Picker View Post
What group are you part of ?????
The group I'm referring to is the same one as noted in the article. We have just started meeting and planning so I'm sure you will be hearing much more in the future.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fish Picker View Post
How much of the funds come from Rec anglers donations ????
The reefs are built with private donations to the reef program. I don't have an exact figure, but public funds aren't used for anything that I'm aware of other than the reef oversight through the DEP.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fish Picker View Post
How long does it take for a " Ghost Pot " to become another part of the reef ?????
Ghost pots are not part of the issue, as i stated above, the problem is with access. It would be redundant to restate all of the access problems as stated in my first post. As far as lost gear, hook and line anglers lose gear as well as potters, as much as niether is particularly good, it's not part of whats being discussed within this issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fish Picker View Post
Public Notice do you read the state and in some cases Federal registry daily ?????
No I don't, but the notices were also printed in media sources to best publicize the reef additions as well as on the DEP website and as I'm sure you've seen, many fishing websites. The information is out there in a lot more places than the fed or state registries.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fish Picker View Post
Are you sure that the reef plan doesn't clearly state "" For all user groups "" ???????
I'll have to look at the reef document on monday, it's in my office, to quote chapter and verse, but it is in there that the reefs were built for hook and line, spear, and gig fishermen. It does clearly state that it doesn't limit user groups, commercial hook and line fishermen, or those using the designated gear are more than welcome to fish the reefs. It's unattended pots that are there full time that cause access problems for all users. Realize that other commercial gear types go home at day's end, pots are there at all times and cover large areas, as stated before, one study showed 23,000 feet of trawls. This is where it becomes an access issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fish Picker View Post
So your drifting a reef , the objects that you are drifting over wouldn't cause you to lose your rigs ???????
Some reef areas are built and meant for drift fishing. In most of these cases the areas have more spread out structure, in more of an open bottom configuration. Throw a trawl or two across it and anything that drifts past is hooked into a pot or line. The fact that pot trawls are currently made with floating line only makes the snagging problem worse. Also where drifting isn't an issue, the loss of ground tackle due to entanglement is another problem.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Fish Picker View Post
Please think hard about the questions listed above. By all means research them for yourself I have and will be quoting public documents.

If you want to talk " TOG " mainly live please start another thread.
By all means, bring out some quotes, I do feel though that all of the documentation I've seen supports our case. There are many issues that keep getting brought up that seem to be irrelevant so please try and keep a few things in mind. This is an access issue, it's not a comm vs. rec. issue, it's not about pots catching more fish or ghost pots on the bottom, it's about access for the numbers of public for whom these reefs were built and who have borne the burden of paying for thier construction. It's a gear type limitation, and would as stated allow certain commercial gear types to fish them.

As for tog, i was just simply clarifying that though there are issues there, they aren't part of this discussion.

It was good to finally meet you the other night, I definatelty want to get down there and get out with you some time, I think it could be a good thing in the end.
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Old 03-03-2007, 04:22 PM
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

LTF I only asked you to back up the Claims that your Group is making. Everyone of those questions stems from claims that your Group has made.

This is one place in the world that the public can not and will not be mis lead , Now please come back with some Facts !!!!

Start off with, what is the percentage of the reef fund the has come from rec angler / private donations ????? Very simple question Remember stick to the facts.
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Old 03-03-2007, 04:27 PM
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

"" The group I'm referring to is the same one as noted in the article. We have just started meeting and planning so I'm sure you will be hearing much more in the future. """"


Please invsetagate who and what your working with. When peoples livelyhood are at stake , ya better think twice and act once.
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Old 03-03-2007, 04:33 PM
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

"""Ghost pots are not part of the issue, as i stated above, the problem is with access. It would be redundant to restate all of the access problems as stated in my first post. As far as lost gear, hook and line anglers lose gear as well as potters, as much as niether is particularly good, it's not part of whats being discussed within this issue."""


Ah you know your first post mentioned ghost pots. How about if the pots where on open bottom and Hooks and snikers were lost what would happen then.

If ya think that anglers don't look for High flyers to fish around then your nuts. Flags are sought out all the time and there is even more hooks and sinkers on the gear that is in open bottom.
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Old 03-03-2007, 04:37 PM
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Default Re: Commercial fishermen misusing recreational reefs

""" No I don't, but the notices were also printed in media sources to best publicize the reef additions as well as on the DEP website and as I'm sure you've seen, many fishing websites. The information is out there in a lot more places than the fed or state registries.""""


Ya best do some more homework on that the state just hired the person that is responsible for the Reefs and the press releases pertaining to the reef a little over a year ago.
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