On Sunday, October 26, the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) hosted a policy discussion and reception at Mohegan Sun, in Uncasville, CT. The event was held concurrent with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) Annual Meeting. ASMFC commissioners, members of the Connecticut Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus, and staff from the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection joined CSF staff to discuss the needed changes to the Magnuson-Stevens Act (MSA) during its reauthorization process that will benefit recreational anglers.
MSA is the overarching law that guides federal fishery management and was topical because of the recent approval by the Gulf of Mexico Fisheries Management Council for “sector separation.” Attendees were particularly interested on how the broader MSA discussion related back to striped bass management, which is held up as a prime example of how successful a state-managed fishery can be.
On September 30, CSF submitted comments to the ASMFC on the future of striped bass management as guided by the Atlantic Striped Bass Interstate Fishery Management Plan. Specifically, CSF supported reducing fishing mortality by 25 percent in 2015, and further recommended the reduction be applied to both the commercial and recreational sectors, and that the ASMFC continues to afford states, through the flexibility to manage their fisheries that use the best available data, meet the needs of their commercial and recreational sectors and ensure the necessary harvest reduction is achieved.
CSF would like to thank Mohegan Sun, the Connecticut Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus, and JC Larkin Company, LLC, for their generous support.
Studies conducted at both the state and federal level have found that the number of hunters and trappers have been on a generally declining trend over the past several decades. To increase recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) of hunters and trappers, which initiative do you think would have the greatest impact?