General

Over 800 Striped Bass Fishing Violations

A total of over 800 citations have been enforced this year by the Maryland Natural Resources Police to recreational anglers this season. Citing anglers with over 800 violations of the new striped bass rules passed this year.

“While the vast majority of Maryland’s fishing community is law-abiding and understands the need for our regulations, there, unfortunately, are those who break the rules,” Maryland Natural Resources Police Col. Adrian Baker said. “Our conservation laws are designed for the protection and sustainability of our resources, and we will stay vigilant to see they are enforced.”

Boats for Hire Beware

On a tip from local anglers they started an investigation that resulted in 6 charter boat captains being written numerous violations.

Just look at this list of charges as we can all expect the same scrutiny here in NY.

Those charged in the investigation are:

Brian Councell, Chestertown, operator of vessel Sea Dux:

– Failure to use non-offset circle hooks while live-lining or chumming for striped bass (6 counts)

James Harris, North Beach, operator of vessel Compensation:

– Possessing croaker less than 9 inches total length.

– Failure to comply with the condition of pilot program permit (two counts)

– Possessing more than 15 pounds of fish whose size cannot be determined

– Failure to use non-offset circle hooks while live-lining or chumming for striped bass (6 counts)

– Failure to retain carcasses of filleted striped bass until arriving dockside

– Possessing striped bass less than 19 inches total length.

– Mutilation of striped bass carcass to the extent that the total length or species cannot be determined

John Reynolds Sr., Marydel, operator of vessel Retirement Fun:

– Possessing striped bass less than 19 inches total length

– Using more than 2 hooks per line while using active line fishing gear (6 counts)

John Motovidlak Sr., Wittman, operator of vessel Dawn Marie:

– Possessing more than 15 pounds of fish whose size cannot be determined

– Exceeding the summer-fall striped bass possession limit

– Failure to use non-offset circle hooks while live-lining or chumming for striped bass (3 counts)

– Failure to retain carcasses of filleted striped bass until arriving dockside

– Mutilation of striped bass carcass to the extent that the total length or species cannot be determined

William Eason, Oxford, operator of vessel Dana-Kat:

– Failure to use non-offset circle hooks while live-lining or chumming for striped bass (8 counts)

Jesse Bolton, Dunkirk, operator of vessel Wild Goose:

– Failure to use non-offset circle hooks while live-lining or chumming for striped bass (6 counts)

– Exchanging a striped bass in possession to possess another striped bass (1 count)

If convicted of these offenses, first-time offenders face a maximum fine of $1,000, and second-time offenders face $2,000. Those charged also face the potential suspension or revocation of fishing privileges and removal from the pilot program.

Hello Anglers! I started in the sportfishing business, with Nor'east Saltwater, a free weekly magazine, with the hottest fishing report found anywher...
OK, I'm going to bite and play devils, advocate, here. I agree that there are many violations and that there should be consequences. At the same time, there are a few facts that scare the hell out of me.

Let's take a look at the last two vessels cited.

William Eason, Oxford, operator of vessel Dana-Kat:

- Failure to use non-offset circle hooks while live-lining or chumming for striped bass (8 counts)

They put an undercover officer on a boat, and put this Capt through hell because he wasn't using circle hooks! The fact is that ASMFC has zero data and zero science that backs up the claim that they reduce mortality. Common sense tells us it does. But as a full-time charter captain, he's probably getting very few gut hookups with his current tackle. I personally have fished clam chum using sandworms as bait before I ever heard of a circle hook and there were very few gut hooks.

So this poor bastard is facing a potential huge monetary fine in the middle of a pandemic that probably almost put him out of business and now this? I'm sorry I simply can't agree with it.

Jesse Bolton, Dunkirk, operator of vessel Wild Goose:

- Failure to use non-offset circle hooks while live-lining or chumming for striped bass (6 counts)

- Exchanging a striped bass in possession to possess another striped bass (1 count)


The same thing here. I agree that captains that keep short fish and over the limit counts should pay dearly, but to ruin this guys business over these two is a crime.

By the way I'm thinking that many of you break that second law without even realizing it. For argument sake how many of you stop fishing when you have reached your personal limit but not the boat limit? That's what this law is all about and it's BS. They don't want you to be able to catch a fish and give it to a friend even though it's within the possession limit. When you think about it this rule just prolongs the number of times anglers are fishing. Is that better for the fishery?

I'm all for stiffer fines and penalties for anyone that is actually keeping shorts fish or too many fish. Those are the few they need to be concerned with.
I should have been more clear - i'm definitely focused on the keeping small bass, or keeping too many bass. Also, this one seems bad to me:

- Exchanging a striped bass in possession to possess another striped bass (1 count)

That sounds like "culling". As in he had a dead bass in the box, but threw it overboard so he could keep a bigger one. If he was keeping it live in the live well, i could probably excuse it. But I doubt that's the case.

I agree with you on the circle hook thing. should get fined, but not lose a license. But keeping small fish, keeping too many fish, throwing back dead fish to keep more bigger fish - that's straight up POACHING. Poachers should not be charter captains.

It sounds like culling and I am totally opposed to that. But I believe that could also mean that an angler caught a 2nd keeper and gave it to someone else on the charter that didn't catch one.

But if it was culling then he's gotten what he deserves.
Somehow George, I don't think we're talking about potential Saints here so no need for a Devil's Advocate.

As part of this process a person called a “devil’s advocate” raises questions and objections to the candidate’s sainthood to make sure all aspects of the person's life is examined.

A law is a law and if you want to ignore it, then you do so at your own peril...

I think you have to be a Saint to put up with some of their customers :)

I agree that they broke the law and they will pay a price for it.
G