New regulations lower commercial bass limits

The Massachusetts Marine Fisheries Advisory Commission announced on Monday it has approved new regulations affecting the commercial striped bass fishery, which are expected to be implemented prior to the start of the season. Usually, most of the space in this column is reserved for recreational fishing, however the new sweeping changes are big news and many recreational saltwater fishermen get their commercial licenses to be able to sell the striped bass they catch.

Opening day of the season has long been a bone of contention among Southeastern Mass. anglers as it typically opens after the first week of July, when most of the migrating fish have left Buzzards Bay and are off Cape Cod. Local anglers will be happy to hear that the new opening date is June 23, with the fishery to remain open until MarineFisheries projects that the quota — approximately 1.15 million pounds for 2014 — has been landed.

The new open fishing days are Mondays and Thursdays only. It is illegal to harvest striped bass for commercial purposes on all other days of the week.

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