For the record I have seen all sizes of dead stripers on the beach. More small ones then big ones but then their are more small ones then big ones. At the last fisheries meeting at the Maritime Acadamy I asked the state biologist what the catch and release mortality factor in the bass population management models was. He said 7%. I was suprised that they use such a low percentage. Using single hook lures I would estimate 10%. Using treble hook plugs my feeling is that figure goes up to 15% if you handle the fish properly. With bait the mortality has to be over 20%. Think about how the average Joe handles a fish. They squeeze it's insides, usually drop it once or twice, then kick it into the water. Seven percent mortality, yeah right. I am against comercial fishing for game fish. However this is where commercial fishing get's a bad rap. More bass are killed by recreational fisherman then commercial fisherman. If you double the governments mortality factor from 7% to 15% you increase th
e recreational impact on the population by about 1/3(this is because of the fish kept and taken home. My point is that a lot more fish are probably being killed then the maagers put into their population models. I fish catch and release. I figure I kill 10% of the fish that I catch. I handle fish more carefully then 99% of the other fisherman and my hands are scarred to prove it. If I use that figure of 10% that means I killed a lot of fish this year. Just food for thought.
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