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I was talking to an RCMP officer at the Dieppe Flyfishing Forum on Saturday (a guy I grew up with), and he was telling me he heard that DNR is considering opening the striped bass fishing on the east coast this year, limiting it to a two fish limit. Anybody else heard this?
 

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The DFO has given a definite NO to the idea. I dunno what the DNR thinks about it.
Last year for the first time in many decades of fishing Quarryville, one day I caught nothing but stripers all day long. At Quarryville and above there. Never even heard of stripers there in my life.
 

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The DFO has given a definite NO to the idea. I dunno what the DNR thinks about it.
Last year for the first time in many decades of fishing Quarryville, one day I caught nothing but stripers all day long. At Quarryville and above there. Never even heard of stripers there in my life.
Sorry, DFO, not DNR.
 

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i doubt they would allow two when they first open it up. they may have a delay caused by sampleing (pure guess). the reason i say this is the maine dnr put out a notice last nov. that the stripers in maine have between 4 and 20 times the acceptable limit of nasty toxins and mercury - not good news. they say it is from their spawning rivers, and gave a diagram how to cut stripers up so to get the least toxins (basicly only eat the back strap). they recomend eating only 3 stripers a year now. a couple years ago i was eating 3 stripers a week, so maybe i should check to see if i`m glowing in the dark...lol, sort of. this may have a little less effect on bay of fundy stripers because we do get a number of stripers from ns, which is not anywhere near as poluted as chesapeak bay or the hudson river (where almost all the stripers running up the coast come from). meanwhile the east coast striper may be clean as daisies...or just as bad. so some one should test them (hint hint)

i was going through the backroads book looking at rivers, and it is amazing how many rivers on the east coast have populations of stripers. the numbers have just been so low recently until now that people barely noticed them
 

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Good point iPop but I would say that the resurgence of striper in the Miramichi (breeding grounds) is due to the health of the river system so I would bet that the fish there are far less polluted then their cousin from the southern river which you get in the St John.
I would suspect that the possible season would be catch and release, and only once they prove that the striper are harming the salmon pare and trout population will they open the season to one keeper. I also know that the populations of smelt, herring, gaspareau, as well as the mackerel in the bay are far more abundant in numbers and form a greater portion of the striper diet then the other sport fish.

The Tabousintac and Bouctouche have had great populations of striper throughout history. That being said for thousands of years the trout, salmon and striper have lived in harmony in these rivers, so I don't think that there is a negative relationship between the 3, its more a case of having good clean rivers and estuaries for them all to thrive in.
 

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It's not because there aren't enough of them that the fishery is closed there, that's for sure! I tell you what: If they opened it and made it just catch and release, they'd make a ton of money just on tourism alone! Just Americans would pay big bucks for a shot at that!
 

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Your right. A return of the recreational fishery would generate revenue for communities. There are various population in Atlantic Canada with various health status. The St-Lawrence Estuary population is considered extirpated for exemple. The one you are referring here is the Southern Gulf Population. For this stock, timing for a reopening is important. This stock is not considered fully recovered from its low level of the 90s. This is noted from the lack of older fish in the population. This southern Gulf population as only one known spawning ground, the Stawberry Marsh area, and is currently being re-examined by the Committee on the Status of Endengered Wildlife in Canada. In November 2004 it was recommended as Threatened by this independant body http://www.sararegistry.gc.ca/species/speciesDetails_e.cfm?sid=829. Hopefully the next assessment scheduled for November will be better given the current population numbers. However, given the single known spawning location, it may be difficult for COSEWIC to recommend lower than Special Concerns. On the positive side, at this level, it requires a good management plan to ensure sustainability.
 

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The "single known spawning area" is only single as it is the only assessed area. The Bouctouche river has a spawning population which has been known to the locals for centuries, and the Tabusintac does as well. Even in the Miramichi the salmon anglers have noted other spawning areas other then the one spawning area. The trouble with the assessment is just that they only look at that one spawning grounds.
 

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i have removed 90% of my comment here. it was looking like a lecture and i did not intend to stomp on the discussion.

"On the positive side, at this level, it requires a good management plan to ensure sustainability" Gravlax, we are far from positive that we are getting good management for stripers. in fact, that is exactly what we are complaining about. on the east coast, where there are lots of stripers in a booming population, there is no open season for stripers of any size, yet on the st. john the native stripers have been wiped out by the dam, with no stocking being done. no stocking for over 40 years while they think about it. the province says they can`t figure out how to raise and stock stripers, yet i can buy them the complete system on line. this is paralelled by the recent study and test cases of raising salmon on land here, when they have been raising them in tanks for decades, and since we have a large land loch population, there is no doubt it works. we should study the results of fixing what is wrong, not watch to see just how bad it can get.

the st. lawerence is in the middle of a major striper restoration. ...as for waiting for older stripers, how old becomes a question. certainly we don`t have to wait for a few to die of old age. the younger adults are responsible for most of the new fish production, just like teenagers and young adults in humans. it also only takes a few successful spawnings to produce a lot of stripers. since i was catching stripers up to 36" in beldune 2 years ago casting for mackerel from shore, there is no doubt there are mature stripers around. have they been catching them at the salmon barriers? is anybody tracking that?

i will confess i get frustrated ... it sounds like they are waiting for this survey to make the decision, and i bet that was their plan for the last couple years. expecting the fish to live by the scientists schedule is not good management. basing an assesment of stripers on a "single known spawn area" when others are not even looked for is unfortunately typical of how stripers seem to being run.... even a place to report incidental catchs would be a good idea. we don`t want a repeat of the doubling of trout limits on the upper st. john, which according to CRI/UNB was not based on any scientific info (which would have been fine if it said 5 brookies and 5 rainbows, since the rainbows are expanding there. instead it looks like they are trying to wipe out brook trout there)

i know i`ve gone on and on. fish and fishing is my passion. please don`t be put off by this post Gravlax. we need input and up dates like you seem to have access too. correct me if i`m wrong and point out things i should have looked at or misinterpreted. the more info we all have helps both us as fishers and the fish as a species.
 

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If you read more of the literature by Dadswell and Bradford on striped bass of the Bay of Fundy, at least one of them indicates they believe there are spawning populations in the Hammond and Kennebecasis, but obviously didn't have scientific proof. They had seined an area which myself and some others have known to be a spawning area for many years,yet came up empty, but if I remember correctly, the time of year that they had done the work may have been far off from the actual spawn, but I have also seen years where they spawned late and even not spawned there at all and the females are bursting with eggs in July. Water temperature and levels play a huge role in spawning in that particular river as higher water means higher salinity and maybe that will cause them to spawn further upriver or not at all.
 

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oh ya, by the way, the government in partnership with someone had raised striped bass not that long ago as part of study to see if they were a viable species to raise in farms. Some fish died, some got sick and then it was cancelled etc and all fish were destroyed. I believe the broodstock were captured at the dam.

If we can prove to the DFO that striped bass spawn in a Bay of Fundy river, monies will be made available to study or possibly re stock. The fishery will be closed if a spawning population is found, no doubt about it,but anyone that has a problem with that is an ignorant greedy b*****d who only cares about keeping his freezer full of stripers. If the fishery is closed to retention (as it should be now), with stocking and with more control of the striped bass bycatch in the gaspereau/shad fishery, we will have a world class striper fishery in a few short years.

It is an absolute impossibility that there are no spawning striped bass left in the Bay of Fundy rivers (St John River system), due to the fact we can catch them from april until december and I've caught them under 10" long. Once the fishery was opened in the spring, the few that I kept were full of eggs, plus I've seen them spawning in an area that was also confirmed to me by a retired commercial fishermen who used to net that area when they spawned and had the pictures to prove it, with huge stripers. The eel fishermen told me they caught very small striped bass as well.

OPEN THE NORTH, CLOSE THE SOUTH!!!! Stripers should have a tag system just like they do for salmon,instead of 1 a day. Give 8-10 tags out per fishermen, no one who is a sport fishermen needs more than that. Make a slot limit as well. 28"-36" is good as anything larger has tougher flesh and more toxins.
 

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Ya, I don't agree that the IBOF and SJ striper season should be open year round. If anything, it should be closed. I can count on one hand the amount of striped bass I saw get caught in the SJ river system in the last ten years. Not saying there aren't any there, just saying I don't think there's enough of them to be able to legally fish for them year round. On the other hand, I think the east coast should be open, and at least have it C&R if not do the tagging system like somebody posted earlier.
 

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Ipop..In the case of the upper St-Lawrence, reintroduction was considered because the original strain was extirpated. The Quebec government has conducted a reintroduction program since 2002 with the southern Gulf strain. Between 2002 and 2010, close to 6,300 striped bass measuring over 60 mm in length and more than 15 million larvae, 2 to 4 mm long, were stocked in the St. Lawrence between Saint-Pierre-les-Becquets and Rivière-Ouelle. This reintroduction program is already showing encouraging signs; for example larvae from natural reproduction have been captured. I chated with the president of the sport fishermen association in Québec a year ago and he said fish were showing up in the system. About the tagging system, in order to have a tagging system like salmon, a licence in the marine environment would be required and their is currently none. The provincial licence only has freshwater jurisdiction.
 

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IAbout the tagging system, in order to have a tagging system like salmon, a licence in the marine environment would be required and their is currently none. The provincial licence only has freshwater jurisdiction.
Forgive me if I am wrong, but New Brunswick does not have marine fishing licenses. Anybody can fish tidal (salt) waters without a license. However, you are restricted in salt to the same number/size of the game fish as you are in corresponding freshwater regions. There is really no difference between stripers and salmon with regard to the ability to monitor. Heck, add the tags and add them as a category just like salmon and charge a little extra. Most of the extra money raised could go towards studying/restocking. You could have different categories: regular (no salmon or stripers), salmon (regular + salmon), striper (regular + striper), Full (regular + salmon and striper)
 

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I think we're all on to something... hopefully the people who write the regulations sense our brain waves! Normally, I am against any increased licence fees etc, but this would be a positive one. (don't get me started on the ice fishing licence fee!
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Some salmon associations/ proponents are putting pressure on the DFO etc to open up the striped bass fishery in the north, unfortunately using the non-sense approach that stripers are eating all the salmon parr, yet last season was one of the best in recent years for salmon returns. If there are more people who support this as well and make it known to the right people, then maybe the squeeky wheel will get some grease.

I
 

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With the current regulations for this species, you can set the bag limit, the size and the season and that's about it. For tags, you would need a regulatory amendement to either have a licence to put the tags on or a tagging system. Appleman, when you say their is spawning in the Bouctouche and Tabusintac, who found the youngs of the year? Once the young of the year exit the Miramichi they grow out in other rivers but guess what...once they reach maturity, they come back to spawn in the Miramichi. So you may see 2-4 years old fish in those rivers but not the smoking gun...the youngs of the year.
 

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If you frequent the little Bouctouche in the summer month these are very large schools of small striper 4 to 6" swimming like crazy, jumping up out of the water. As I understand a 2 to 4 year old fish is 12 to 20" and not 4 to 6" so that's my first hand evidence as well I have been told by a few box net licence holder for rainbow smell, who regularly have to empty their nets of YOY bass, like small perch size. As well as fat egg filled cows up in the St Marie de Kent area during the gaspareau season. As for the Tabusintac, Cains Point in the summer is polluted with small fish, which could be from the Miramichi system but still not what the are told to do according to the scientist.
I've caught my share of miniature striped bass last summer, and had to just leave the spot cuz it was just YOY at that time.
I have no questions about it all in my mind.
 

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There's definitely no lack of stripers on the east coast, from tons of schoolies that hang around the Richibucto wharf, to the big bohemouths further down river and along the Kouchibouguac, the ones you never see because they strip your reel and take all your line. My neighbour was telling me last summer they were fishing mackerel between the North and South beaches of the Richibucto dunes, and he hooked onto something that they never saw! Took the whole thing! Also, we were sitting on the same dunes enjoying some refreshments, watching them jump in the river. Nope, they weren't salmon! What a sight to see! I never knew they did that, and I still wasn't totally conviced they were stripers until later that week we were sitting in my back yard one night around midnight (on the river), and we could hear something that sounded like somebody was throwing big rocks in the water. I drove my car near the shore and turned on the high beams, and you could see douzens and douzens of nice sized stripers jumping out of the water, attacking baitfish. Now THAT was awesome!
 
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