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Commercials are taking all the flounder ? period!

28188 Views 84 Replies 44 Participants Last post by  strip
I have read a lot recently on the condition and fate of winter flounder in our waters, and I agree with most of it. But no one will ever convince me that this is a recreational problem or that we should be the ones to take the brunt of severe measures to bring them back. Especially when you consider that we are currently fishing at about 26.5% of what we were back in 1990, while the commercial are about 50% over what they were the same year.

In 1990 recreational anglers in NY State took, 1,106,590 ? pounds of winter flounder while at the same time the commercial fishery took just 640,445 ? pounds, basically giving us about 65% of the catch. It is actually higher than that if you average from 1980-1990, but I didn?t want to go back too far and make this seem like ancient history.

Then just 10-years later in the year 2000 things made quite a turnaround! Commercials took 960,122 ? pounds while recreational anglers took a mere 293,472 pounds! That?s right we?re fishing at 26.5% of what we were in 1990 and the commercials are fishing at 150% of what they had in 1990. And people want to know where all the flounder are going? It?s not the cormorants or the seals or the bass, it?s the inshore and offshore draggers. They?ve gotten so good at what they do that they are now catching the flounder we use to catch before they even get in the bay. And those that they miss, they get them when the flounder head out to sea in the fall.

The numbers don?t lye and they speak for themselves, the problem with this fishery is the commercials and unless we do something to address it they will be the only ones catching them. I?d be the first one to say close it down for everybody, but the fact is we aren?t putting a nick in this fishery.

The series of events that led to this commercialization of the winter flounder have been played out over and over again. We need a commercial moratorium, just like we did when we needed to bring back the bass, but the truth is we will never see one. Do you know why? It?s simple, because the commercials are catching more today than they were before, so to them there really isn?t a problem.

Think about it, ? in those ten years we took recreational anglers from no-bag limit and no season ? I can still remember fishing on some January and February days for flounder ? to what is now essentially a 4- month season with minimum sizes and bag limits. While at the same time doing nothing to curtail the commercial catch.

So please folk?s don?t let anyone fool you, if you took every single recreational angler out of this fishery it would do nothing more than allow for more fish to be caught in the commercial fishery. Just as it has over the past decade.

Hook and Line Only!
George R. Scocca
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I gotta say I just don't get some of you guys.
Do you think the commercial guys are sitting around taking the blame off us and putting it on themselves?.**** no!
They would throw us under a bus and keep right on fishing till the last flounder is caught.
I hate it when I hear recreational guys saying things like"Seals" "Stripers" "fishermen keeping shorts" or "I'm happy with a handful of fish" or whatever.
Wake up boys George is right on the commercials own the flounder right now.
They also have to much sway with NMFS.
Let's not help there cause o.k.....................Bucktailer and the other guy attacking George over his mathematical error.
If we really are gonna get things straightened out we'd better stick to eachother like glue and fight hard!
Two populations of Flounder????!!!!

Yea!..........The "offshore" fish that are being scooped up by the draggers. And the few of them that make it inside.

Give me a break!
Here is a MAJOR reason why the flounder are gone.
Recreational fisherman. That's right......the recreational fisherman has to take a major part of the blame.

Not because they over fish them or keep shorts or anything like that. The recreational fisherman could never have the impact on any species that the nets can.

But the recreational fisherman is still largely to blame because he mainly only fishes. sure he talks and gripes about the decline in fish stocks. He rightly blames the commercial sector for decimating the populatiuons of fish.

it is what the recreational fisherman doesn't do that hurts the fish so badly.

He doesn't get involved( I can see those minds and ears closing right about now)

You see.......for us it is a passtime....we are playing.

Sure it is a passion for most of us....but it all boils down to the fact that we do it for fun not for a living.

You see if we did it for a living then we would surely show up at HEARINGS for instance. You know the HEARINGS they have on Stripers for instance. They do that to get the public's input.

The commercials do it for a living therefore they show up at these things............Heck they even take off of work to go. It is critical for them.
They lobby hard for there living. Maybe they even grease a few palms down the line.

but the recreational guy doesn't quite have the same sense of urgency. You see his LIVING isn't on the line. His boss isn't "in on it". He works hard and when he is not working he has precious little time to do what he loves to

This is natural of course. It is ALMOST hard to blame the recreational guy. The commercials just have more at stake and therefore have to be doing everything they can as a group to protect their interests. And hey we rec guys do get involved ........we have formed organizations to make our voices heard. Some of us even put in alot of time lobbying for the cause. God bless those who recognize that it takes WORK.

But most of us simply can't get motivated enough to really get out there and get involved because in the end it is only our hobby not our livelihood.

Oh well.................there is always GOLF.
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