Home Living Outdoors Fishing Report Proposed state law could impose serious restrictions on local fishermen

Fishing Report
Proposed state law could impose serious restrictions on local fishermen

Bob’s charter limited out on the Brooklyn Girl. Courtesy photo: Ken Holmes

Bass fishing, both black sea and striped, are the story this week. Though not for reasons you may be thinking.

First is a bill that came to the attention of fishermen this week. State Senator Ken Lavalle has introduced a bill (S7977) that would create a marine mammal and sea turtle protection area around Plum Island, Great Gull Island and Little Gull Island. The bill creates a mammal/turtle protection zone 1,500 feet seaward from mean high tide, on each island. These borders gobble up most of Plum Gut, the Sluiceway and part of the Race.

The bill also grants broad powers to the DEC. Clause three reads, “to promulgate regulations to prevent the harassment and for the protection of marine mammals and sea turtles within the marine mammal and sea turtle protection zone.”

Does this mean they can stop fishing on these storied grounds if it is deemed to “harass” a turtle or mammal? S7977 addresses this in clause S2, “This act is not intended to impose new fishing restrictions.”

Wow, the devil is in the details here. The intention is to not impose new regs, but the DEC may deem it necessary, at some point. The wording here is not specific enough. If S2 read, “This act shall not impose new fishing regulations or restrictions.” I wouldn’t even be writing this. As written, this bill is a danger to the whole whole North Fork fishing fleet, both recreational and charter, and the economy they support. The devil is in the details, Senator.

More regulatory awesomeness came down from the DEC today. New black see bass regs are as follows:
– 15″ minimum size and three fish per day from June 27 to August 31
– September/October a bag limit increase to eight fish
– November/December another bag limit increase to 10 fish

In a statement, DEC Acting Commissioner Basil Seggos said, “The federal government must fundamentally change its management of the popular and economically important sea bass fishery. In spite of abundant populations, DEC is being forced to alter the commercial and recreational fishing seasons in order to meet federal quotas.”

A new stock assessment is scheduled to be completed in late 2016 and may improve 2017’s sea bass limits. If Basil Seggos continues breaking things down like that, the only acting he will be doing is on the unemployment line! Very refreshing to see someone in a position like that calling it the way he sees it.

Now, for the actual fishing!

Fishy Business limited-out charter. Courtesy photo: Phil Kess
Fishy Business limited-out charter. Courtesy photo: Phil Kess

The Brooklyn Girl was out in the Race all week. Most trips had easy limits, except for a Sunday a.m trip. Bucktails in red and white were doing the trick on fish, to just shy of thirty pounds.

The Fishy Business was out in the rips bucktailing as well, with similar reports of generally easy limits of fish in the 25-pound class, with white and green bucktails being the favorite colors. Phil says porgies are moving out of the bays and fluke are there, but require a little more work.

Tight Lines!

Local high tides:
Mattituck Inlet
Saturday June 11 4:56 A.M and 5:29 P.M
Sunday June 12 5:50 A.M and 6:21 P.M

Saturday June 11 4:24 A.M and 5:15 P.M
Sunday June 12 5:26 A.M and 6:08 P.M


First Quarter with a half moon on the 12th


Brian Nigro is a lifelong avid fisherman and former charter boat captain. He’s fished from Alaska to Mexico and lots of places in between, but his favorite place to fish is right here on the East End.
Questions, comments, tips and boasts? Write to Brian:

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