DFG Arrests 14 Suspects in Targeted Raids on Striped Bass Poaching Operations

Department of Fish and Game (DFG) wardens today arrested 14 suspects during targeted raids on illegal striped bass poaching operations in the Bay-Delta region. Concluding a two-month poaching investigation, wardens served four search warrants in Sacramento and Elk Grove to make the arrests, interviewed 35 other people and seized five sport-fishing vessels. “These cases represent […]

Offshore Marine Waters to Remain Closed to Striped Bass Fishing

After carefully examining a proposal to re-open offshore marine waters in the Atlantic Ocean for striped bass fishing, NOAA has announced it will maintain the 1990 federal closure. NOAA closed marine areas between three and 200 miles offshore to recreational and commercial striped bass fisheries to complement a rebuilding plan instituted in 1981 by the […]

Virginia Governor takes first steps towards bringing Virginia into compliance with ASMFC mandate

The following is a statement from Coastal Conservation Association Virginia – made up of recreational anglers dedicated to the conservation, protection and restoration of our marine resources in our coastal waters and the Chesapeake Bay – regarding Governor Tim Kaine’s action to seek compliance with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission decision to limit the […]

The Rockfish-Menhaden Dilemma

The Chesapeake Bay’s vaunted rockfish, also called Atlantic striped bass, seem to be in even more trouble than we knew. In a recent front-page article, the Washington Post reported that an epidemic of mycobacterial infection has spread to almost three-quarters of the rockfish in the Chesapeake, the fish’s primary spawning habitat. It’s a chronic “wasting […]

It’s time once again to grieve the commercial menhaden season

The commercial menhaden season in the Chesapeake Bay got underway for 2006 just this week. Recreational fishermen everywhere ought to be wearing a black arm band. At one time around here, the menhaden fishery was a gargantuan business with processing plants dotting the East Coast. Today, there is but one company left, but they’re doing […]

The oily politics of an oily fish

Last week, Omega Protein could legally return its boats to the Chesapeake Bay, to again start mining Virginia’s waters for menhaden. If there’s any sense left in Washington and Richmond, this will be the last season that Omega gets unfettered access to the state’s beleaguered Bay. In August, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission voted […]

If only menhaden wrote campaign checks

Campaign contributions can have a corrosive power in politics. Money often “encourages” (if it did more, it’d be a bribe) politicians to do things that otherwise would be impossible to justify. Take the little silvery fish with the big problem, better known as menhaden. Humans don’t eat menhaden, but other fish do. They live in […]

Healthy Skepticism, Sickening Signs

Anybody remember Pfiesteria hysteria? It was a raging crisis in the Chesapeake in 1997, when schools of menhaden pocked with sores went belly up in the Pocomoke River. The toxic dinoflagellate Pfiesteria piscicida was suspected of killing them, and of making people sick, too. Scientists and health officials swarmed in, concerned the affliction would spread. […]

Chesapeake’s Rockfish Overrun by Disease

Epidemic Hits Species Hailed for Revival, Then Weakened by Polluted Waters A wasting disease that kills rockfish and can cause a severe skin infection in humans has spread to nearly three-quarters of the rockfish in the Chesapeake Bay, cradle of the mid-Atlantic’s most popular game fish. The mycobacteriosis epidemic could carry profound implications for the […]