NEW Striped Bass Economic Study [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: NEW Striped Bass Economic Study

Doug Jowett
04-14-2005, 05:35 AM
Stripers Forever has released their long awaited Southwick Study on Striped Bass economic values. The numbers are amazing - check below for their synopsis and see their web site listed below for the full report.

Sent on behalf of Stripers Forever for your information.

Southwick Release
Managing wild striped bass on the Atlantic Coast as game fish for recreational/personal-use fishing and replacing the commercial harvest in the marketplace with fish raised through aquaculture would boost the U.S. economy by $1.78 billion and support more than 14,400 new jobs, according to a study commissioned by Stripers Forever and prepared by Southwick Associates, Inc.

Focused on the year 2003, the latest for which the best data were available, the Southwick Study shows that the recreational fishery for wild striped bass includes 3,018,361 anglers from Maine to South Carolina and has a direct retail sales value of $2.41 billion spent on fishing tackle, boats and motors, guides/charters, travel and food. The total economic activity generated – including 63,278 full-time equivalent jobs – was more than 26 times greater than that produced by the commercial harvest of wild fish.

The Southwick Study also explains that in 2003, the sales in pounds of “hybrid” striped bass raised through aquaculture were 61.6 percent higher than the reported harvest of wild stripers sold by commercial fishermen, and that fish farmers could easily provide enough product on a year-round basis to replace all wild bass sold seasonally in the marketplace – and at basically the same retail price.

Stripers Forever, a non-profit, internet-based membership organization (, advocates eliminating all market fishing for wild striped bass, reducing overall mortality, and managing the expanded resource for recreational/personal use fishing. Southwick Associates, Inc., based in Fernandina Beach, FL., specializes in collecting and analyzing socio-economic information on fishing and hunting for state fish and wildlife agencies and for leading manufacturers of sport fishing and hunting/shooting equipment.

“The wild striped bass is far and away the most popular and valuable sport fish on America’s East Coast,” says Brad Burns, president of Stripers Forever. “Game fish status has already allowed two popular inshore marine species -- the redfish and the Florida snook -- to flourish in southern waters and attract growing numbers of anglers whose impact on local economies is significant.

“So the precedent for game fish status is there and it is working,” says Burns. “And as the Southwick Report shows, the targeted recreational striper fishery -- estimated at more than 11 million angler trips per year -- is already about 160 percent larger than the targeted fisheries for redfish and snook combined.”

Stripers Forever supports legislation at the state or federal level similar to HR 1286, a bill proposed by U.S. Congressman Frank Pallone (D,NJ), which would eliminate all commercial fishing for wild striped bass. Stripers Forever is also in favor of using funds raised through the sale of a dedicated recreational striped bass stamp to buy out those licensed commercial harvesters who can document that a significant portion of their income is derived from historical landings of wild stripers.

To access the “road map” which summarizes the findings of the Southwick Study, or the full study itself, please log onto For further information, contact Brad Burns through the Stripers Forever website.

04-14-2005, 07:03 AM
Thanks for sharing this info. I've just sighned on to receive SFE emails for mmass. and Maine and have found the information very interesting.

Ted Williams had a very good article discussing the state of the resourse and in the Jan/Feb issue of Fly Rod & Reel.