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I fish both the Fall run and Spring Run for Stripers. In the spring it's up in the Kingston area on the Hudson River. Where if you catch a Cow bass, everyone say's to release the Cow, so she can spawn and spill her eggs. This way the population of bass stays high in future years! I agree. But in the fall, everyone is out catching or trying to catch these same Cows!! Yes, they bear no eggs yet. But if released they will become laden with eggs in the coming spring!! Yet, there is no out-cry ( as in the River ) to protect these Cows!! It's come to the point that PARTY Boats are in on catching Cows!! There must be a slot limit for the Ocean and Rivers on these fish, so the Cows can spawn!!It seems to me if you can proudly take a Cow in the Ocean, what's the difference if you caught it in the River during the spring run! You have killed the source of striper eggs either way! If you want a trophy for the wall, take a photo of the fish, and they can make an exact copy of the fish with info provided like lenght and girth!! The fun is fighting such a majestic fish, not killing it!! Yes, take a fish to eat, but does it need to be a Cow?? Thanks for listening!
 

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Here's a different perspective:

A 40 pound bass has spawned perhaps 20 times in her life and has contributed more than enough quality offspring to the gene pool. Her days are numbered as are her future spawns and releasing her is going add fewer potential offspring to the population than releasing a 10 pounder. A 10 pounder has 15 or more years in which it can potentially spawn, producing millions more eggs over it's remaining lifetime than would a 40 pounder.

Am I right or wrong? I don't know, but it sure makes a lot of sense. To me killing a fish is killing a fish, regardless of it's size. The law permits you to do so and the population is expanding under current regulations, so I am not going to worry about it.

Gamakatsu
 

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many years ago, i read a book by an icthyologist ( ad konings-i think )that showed a mathematical proof that in any population of fish species in the long run, on average only one offspring per adult survives to reproduce in turn. even a fraction more, would over geologic time result in so many fish that there would be no room for water in the ocean.
obviously,a 40# striper is a successful individual and contains many desirable genes in addition to growth potential. a 40# striper probably has produced a number of successfully reproductive offspring whereas many 29 inch stripers will produce none.
as sportfishers, the question is - why kill a 40# striper if you can avoid doing so? a 29 inch striper tastes a whole lot better and is enough meat for most families' dinner. personally, i would prefer to take one 18 inch striper, as in the good old days, but the law is the law.

set,
opinari
 

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i am new to the bass fishing world and have had alot of success. yes i have kept smaller fish from 28" and up but now that the "wow i got a fish" feeling has passed and the love of the game has set in i find myself releaseing more fish every year. i have release fish large and small for the last 5 years and feel that yes the cows will spawn and the 10 pounders will spawn longer but i always bring a camera with me catch and release with pictures to show the family and friends and im happy and the fish is happy. BUT! heres my gripe. im sick and tired of going out year after year catch and release while i watch the idiot next to me keeping anything that he can land gut hooking even 12" bass so he can have a sick excuse to say " well it going to die anyway" i feel if the state would stop spending so much time worrying about the area where us "good guys" fish releaseing and consintrate on the areas where 12" is legal to the people who can't even read the regulations we all would be a little happier. And if any D.E.P. guys are reading the crossbay bridge in jamaica bay will consistantly produce between 15 and 20 tickets a night all summer long.
 
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