Commission to Receive Public Comment on Striped Bass in February

Media Contacts:
Jordan Traverso, DFG Communications, (916) 654-9937

The California Fish and Game Commission (Commission) decided today to consider proposed striped bass regulations at their February meeting in Sacramento. Consideration of the proposed regulations was originally scheduled to take place at the Commission meeting in San Diego in December. This decision came after Department of Fish and Game (DFG) Director Charlton H. Bonham requested the change in order to allow interested members of the public residing near the Delta the opportunity to voice their opinions to the Commission.

“After the DFG public meeting in the Delta last week, we learned there are many passionate anglers who would like the opportunity to share their views on the draft proposal,” Bonham said. “I think it’s important to hear these views. The discussion is welcome. Moving the public discussion to Sacramento from San Diego will allow these constituents to attend the meeting. It’s the right thing to do.” [Slide Presentation from Public Meeting (PDF)]

The proposed draft changes regulations related to anadromous striped bass. The draft language (PDF) would authorize additional harvest of striped bass.

The basic proposed changes are as follows:

  • Raising the daily bag limit for striped bass from two to six fish.
  • Raising the possession limit for striped bass from two to 12 fish.
  • Lowering the minimum size for striped bass from 18 to 12 inches.
  • Establishing a “hot spot” for striped bass fishing at Clifton Court Forebay and specified adjacent waterways at which the daily bag limit will be 20 fish, the possession limit will be 40 fish and there will be no size limit. Anglers fishing at the hot spot would be required to fill out a report card and deposit it in an iron ranger or similar receptacle.
  • Changes to the sport fishing regulations for the Carmel, Pajaro and Salinas Rivers to allow harvest of striped bass when the fishery would otherwise be closed.

DFG is also recommending an adaptive management plan that will help assess how the new regulations influence the fishery.

The Commissioners will decide whether to pursue the proposed regulations at their February meeting in Sacramento. If they choose to pursue the proposal it begins a process that includes at least three public hearings and the completion of an environmental document. A final decision is not expected until later in 2012.