Guy Harvey Magazine

SPR 2017

Guy Harvey Magazine is focused on fishing, boating, scuba diving, and marine conservation. Portfolios from the world's best fishing photographers, articles on gear, travel, tournaments, apparel, lifestyle, seafood recipes, sustainable fisheries.

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Page 58 of 83

attached to the fishing industry. Case in point, a three-fish bag limit at a 19- in. minimum for summer flounder could devastate fishing tourism during the summer for the Jersey Shore and N.Y. bight areas. And summer is when many in these seaside communities make the bulk of their income for the year. Understand that the majority of summer flounder caught in this area are in the 12- to 18-in. range. The cost/reward ratio created by a 19-in. minimum is likely to be a business killer. For example, a fisherman or tourist drives 45 minutes to fish a head boat. Gas $30, food $15 and fare $55. One person is already spending $100 to fish. And then to come home with perhaps one fish to keep? That person is much less likely to come back. The flounder fishery is really the only daytime operation available to those head boats, so the effect will be severe, not to mention the impact on tackle shops and other businesses. Now, if the same angler had a chance at catching a four-fish bag with fish between 15 and 18 in., plus one over 18 in., it's a completely different story. And it's one that still allows the flounder fishery to improve. It's truly a fine line we walk when implementing regulations, as the repercussions can be monumental both to fish populations and to local economies. However, until we have solid data to justify more stringent regulations, somewhere, a happy medium needs to exist to protect not only the fish stocks, but also the business of recreational fishing. I believe slot limits can help ensure both the fish and the fishermen survive. | 59 The RipCharts mobile app allows you to download satellite imagery to your device and navigate offshore. The author shows off a fat summer flounder, a fish facing tighter regulations in the Northeast.

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