Wednesday, December 10, 2008

by Robin

I haven't had time to sit down and write this out before today but it is big news. Fishermen up & down the S,E. Atlantic coast have been doing battle over the holidays to keep the American Red Snapper fisheries open all year-round. The SAFMC (S. Atlantic Fisheries Mgmt Council, I think) had decided to propose closing Snapper fishing January 1st for 4 months, in the Atlantic ocean. If they had gotten this control, then they'd be able to close the entire fishery for 180 days. There are protected species like the Goliath and Nassau groupers but many of us feel like the Snapper stock numbers are not down. This is not necessary. We're already regulated to take only fish over 20" and only 2 per person. That's not many compared to what we throw back each trip.

We are members of a private fishing forum which asked us to please write to the SAFMC about our opinions on their proposal. Between the forum, CFOA and FSFA fishing clubs, we were able to make a big difference. Infact, we have a temporary VICTORY!!!!

The council has decided to let things lie the way they are and revisit the topic again in March. We need your comments!!

Ø What can you do? Go to and tell the SAFMC and your elected officials what you think. It will take less than 5 minutes.

Ø Does it really matter? Public comments regarding this closure were key to the SAFMC tabling this closure at the last meeting. If access to this fishery is important to you, then it really does matter.

Ø Is this really going to happen? Below is the text directly from the SAFMC web site, you read and decide. You can find more information on Red Snapper and the SAFMC at

The Council’s intent is to have the interim rule effective by January 1, 2009”.

Even though these links are older, we still need support for the upcoming March meeting.

Btw, my opinion is also that the Goliath fishery closing should be revisited. I do believe that those numbers are up again and could use some thinning out, possibily seasonally.

Please take a moment to fill out the form.
Happy Fishing!

No comments: