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Old 05-06-2000, 10:29 AM
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RE:Addressing Hook Mortality IS Important

Text below from 'Al_d' Bruce,

>My immediate reaction to your claims was, "this is bogus data." I was under the impression that mortality rates for released fish was somewhere in the neighborhood of 8%. If it's really more like 50%, then there is a compelling reason to persuade us to do something about it.
Actually, a Mass Marine Fisheries study showed that post-release mortality of striped bass (in the absence of predators!) ranged from around 5% to as high as 30 percent. For unknown reasons (my guess political) the FMP uses 8% for CandR mortality. If for no other reason than to error on the side of caution (and the history of striped bass on the Atlantic Coast BEGS for a cautionary approach), we should be using the 30% figure.

>I'm VERY wary of stats thrown around with no documented proof of origin. Any bozo can come up with a study that finds this or that. The proof is in the procedure. A lot of bad science goes on for the sake of politics, and everybody has an angle to play.
And any half-bozo can question the validity of data. In my experience, the bilogists who are conducting the research are very qualified, and produce valid data. How the data are applied, or even if those data are incorporated into the FMP is beyond the control of the biologists. They conduct the studies and make recommendations via their reports. I think you may be confusing the biological and political parts of the process.

>In short, I'm hesitant to blindly follow whomsoever raises the flag of protest. I think you'll find many of us on this board are of like mind. We care about conservation and will
do anything to preserve the sport we love. But we are inpendent minded and like to make intelligent, informed decisions.
Blindly following only at your own convenience. It would not take a lot of time for anyone interested in this to find out more. Go to the library and conduct a literature search on catch and release mortality, on striped bass life history, and on fisheries management. You will find plenty of information with which to make an informed decision. Get and read the most recent FMP, and even past FMPs to get an idea of the history of the problem.
The talk one generally hears in the fishing shops and on the beaches is often opinion and little of it informed. Conservation is easy until it hits home.

The pendulum swings both ways - it wasn't long ago that the commercial fishery was the easy scapegoat. It's not a long shot to see the finger point at the recreational fishery soon.
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