Friday, November 07, 2008: Waves: rapidly dropping form 4-5 feet. Water clarity: fair to good.
The weather is about to cut us a big break. This weekend should see highly fishable conditions that will highlight a good to very good showing of post-storm blues and (more so) bass. Look for the first influx of schoolie stripers along the beach -- enough to make it a tad tougher to get a trophy striper. The up side is the way the first schools of schoolies are larger fish, making it very easy to find a 28-incher. Smaller bass are already packed in and around Barnegat Inlet. Little Egg Inlet also has small bass but is a bit more primed for cows. The beachfront is still the best bet for a really big bass. If a 50 is out there, now is the time for it to surface.
Two more rogue bass have gone Classic. Big congrats to Mark Jordan for a hefty 37-12 taken mid-Island on bunker. An equal well-done to Fred Imhof, Jr,. for his 31-3 on bunker, B.L. Once more, these daily winners in the Classic were each day’s one mega-bass, with everything else a goodly distance down the size ladder. It’s getting uncanny how the rogue thing is playing out this tourney. Again, it makes everyone in the event a prime contender, especially with the rogue bass showing up just about anywhere. I don’t want to slight the bluefish folks, like Nick Sabatino and his 13/10 chopper taken on bunker in B.L. It’s nice of the big blues to hang around so deep into the tourney.
The entry numbers are a bit down in the Classic and I’m certain this is an economy thing. Still, the event will likely top 900 players, a very fine showing, all things considered. As noted in prior blogs, the Classic bass count is way up this year over last year. If you’re wondering about signing up for the final 2-week segment, I assure you both bluefish and bass categories are up for grabs.
Off the wires:
SEAFOOD.COM NEWS [Copyright 2008 The Washington Times LLC] By Gene Mueller - November 7, 2008 - Stripers Forever, the sport fishing and conservation organization, doesn't mince words.
It's doing all it can to stop the commercial netting and selling of wild striped bass (rockfish) to Marylanders and Virginians. The organization says the resource should be managed for the 3 million-plus recreational striper fans from Maine to North Carolina.
If the states are worried about loss of income, taxes and other fees, they should relax. It has been proved time and again that sport anglers provide far more jobs, profits and taxes - for the state and private businesses - than commercial fish netters.
Even though the striped bass management board of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission says Atlantic striped bass are not being overfished, Maryland - one of the most important states when it comes to providing annual spawning grounds for the rockfish - says the Young of the Year (YOY) index is 3.2. That's well below the long-term average of 11.7.
The index is an annual measurement of the number of juvenile striped bass taken in haul seines over a broad area in the Maryland portion of the Chesapeake Bay. This year was one of the lowest since 1990.
'Striped bass born in the Chesapeake Bay make up a very high percentage of all the stripers that migrate up the Atlantic Coast every year,' says Brad Burns, president of Stripers Forever. 'So the fact that this year's YOY came in at 3.2, compared to the long-term average of 11.7, indicates that the coastal striped bass population is not as 'fully recovered' as some fishery biologists would have us believe.
'The problem is that the current catch levels and quotas are based on a theoretical abundance of fish that most fishermen simply aren't finding. Despite the clear downtrend in striped bass population numbers and the low replacement rate, the fishery managers are still not pushing for reductions in catch quotas.'