(RICHMOND, VA)—Today the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC) voted to give final approval to changes to regulations for Virginia's striped bass fisheries first adopted at the VMRC's August meeting. The changes include lowering the daily limit for the fall recreational season from two fish to one fish, as well as implementing requirements on net mesh size for commercial fisheries.
Chesapeake Bay Foundation Senior Regional Ecosystem Scientist Chris Moore released the following statement.
"With the reduced numbers of striped bass found by the recent coastwide stock assessment, Virginia should be commended for taking decisive action at this time. Strong conservation-minded decisions such as these are needed all along the East Coast to bring back a thriving population of this iconic fish. The VMRC's proactive measures to help improve the striped bass population is another positive sign that Virginia is serious about ensuring a healthier fishery in the future."
"Having taken decisive action on striped bass, Virginia now must ensure this recovering population has enough to eat by fully implementing all provisions of the fishery management plan for Atlantic menhaden. We cannot expect a healthy ecosystem when the largest harvester of menhaden, Canadian-owned Omega Protein, unilaterally decides to flout the harvest limits in the Chesapeake Bay, where approximately 70% of the coastwide population of striped bass spawn."