Facing a striped bass population decline, an Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) panel today voted to begin public comment on the next update to the striped bass fishery management plan, known as Amendment 7, next month.
Adult female striped bass numbers, widely used to gauge the overall health of the population, have fallen approximately 40 percent from 2013 to 2017. As a result, the ASMFC sought to reduce the striped bass harvest along the Atlantic Coast by 18 percent beginning with the 2020 fishing season. Results released last fall from the Maryland striped bass young-of-the-year survey show Maryland numbers remain well below average for the third consecutive year.
Amendment 7 is a larger overhaul of the striped bass fishery management plan that will guide decisions in the coming years. A draft version of Amendment 7 is expected to be released for public comment within several weeks.
Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) Senior Regional Ecosystem Scientist Chris Moore issued the following statement.
“This is another important step in the ASMFC’s work to turn around the decline of an iconic fish in our region. The continued low numbers of both adult and young-of-the-year striped bass underscore the need for decisive action to rebuild the population along the East Coast. During the forthcoming public comment period on the draft Amendment 7 we look forward to working with all stakeholders to advocate for actions that will rebuild the striped bass population to historic levels.”
# # #