Saltwater Fish Report for 11-24-2020
New Sport Crab Regulation
by GSSA Staff
We are asking members to write letters to the Fish and Game Commission by November 29, 2020 to ask for more time to work on changes to sport crab regulations.. I am also including a sample letter that Frank Rescino wrote. You can email your letter to FGC@fgc.ca.gov
Proposed Regulatory Changes for 2021-2022 Season:
The Fish and Game Commission is considering several changes to the recreational crab fishing regulations to minimize the risk of marine life entanglement and gather essential fishery information. If these changes are adopted, they would not be in place until the 2021-2022 Dungeness crab season. To learn more, please visit the Fish and Game Commission website.
The proposed regulation changes would include the following elements:
• Enhanced Gear Marking - would require fishers to mark their crab traps with a specific size buoy and marker buoy.
• Service Interval - would require a 9-day service interval for checking traps.
• Trap Limit – would establish an individual trap limit of 10 crab traps.
• Director Authority – would provide authority to the Director of CDFW to take in- season action to reduce marine life entanglement risk.
• Trap validation program - would establish a program to determine participation levels and/or fishing practices.
I am writing to request a postponement by at least 12 months on the CPFV rules which are scheduled to be modified during the December Commission meeting .Due to restrictions and isolation that COVID-19 has presented, we need more time to involve other Captains and vessel owners in this discussion for their valuable input and concerns regarding the proposed regulations. We feel additional studies and discussions are needed prior to making any changes.
The following are some items for review:
1. California Department of Fish and Wildlife presently has regulations regarding CPFV’s separate from recreational. We would like to see these regulations continue regarding CPFV operations and crabbing in the future because we are registered as commercial passenger vessels and want to maintain this status.
2. Alternative ways to mark our buoys rather than placing additional markers on them.
3. Changes to trap limits need to be reviewed.
4. The necessity of checking crab gear at least once every nine days.
5. Not in favor of $2.50 Recreation Crab Trap Validation for passengers.
Basically more time is needed to discuss all of these issues, I cannot emphasize this enough. Because of the pandemic we are unable to testify in person, we propose that no decisions be made until next year.
Please consider this before we rush to any new regulations.
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