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Should inshore netting be banned

  • Yes

    Votes: 65 76.5%
  • No

    Votes: 9 10.6%
  • Yes in creeks no on sound, Neuse and Pamlico rivers

    Votes: 7 8.2%
  • No opinon

    Votes: 4 4.7%
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Great topic Duke! I am personally against gill nets because of the potential waste that I could see through bycatch. Is that scientifically proven? I'd have to do some more research to feel certain. I will initially vote yes to ban them, but I do hesitate to ban anything because of the long range ramifications of restricting the freedom of access to our waters by anyone. The management of the fisheries and specifically the fish stocks should be the primary goal, not the management of fishermen. I am a fresh water fisherman who wants to learn the joy of fishing on the coast. I'd be interested in the insights and opinions of folks that have been fishing the sounds for most or all of their lives. So, after weighing their input I may have to change my vote. A lot of issues tied up in this one. It will be interesting to see some of the discussion we can get going on this topic.

BTW, here is a posting of the NC Division of Marine Fisheries proclamation regarding commercial and recreational gill nets in the Albemarle Sound in December of 2004:
http://www.ncfisheries.net/procs/procs2k4/M-11-2004.htm
 

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Gill nets

My "honey hole" for puppy drum, which produced regularly and dependably for me all last summer, and from which I never kept one pup, ended up with a gill net around it in September, after which I never even had another bite. I hope this is merely coincidental. Also, I recognize that this is anecdotal, and doesn't prove anything, but it certainly is a "typical" story of what frustrates us recreational anglers and the potential for gill nets to wipe out the fish (those nets ain't selective about what they harvest, folks) in a given area.
 

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Re: Gill nets

litetakl said:
My "honey hole" for puppy drum, which produced regularly and dependably for me all last summer, and from which I never kept one pup, ended up with a gill net around it in September, after which I never even had another bite. I hope this is merely coincidental. Also, I recognize that this is anecdotal, and doesn't prove anything, but it certainly is a "typical" story of what frustrates us recreational anglers and the potential for gill nets to wipe out the fish (those nets ain't selective about what they harvest, folks) in a given area.
litetakl,
I for one do not consider it as coincidental as I too have witnessed the same happen to my holes. Living on the lower Neuse River and running a guide service I understand the frustrations the recreational fisherman has when it comes to inshore gill nets and feel the pain every time I pull up to one of my favorite spots only to have it loaded up with nets. How North Carolina can continue to let this destructive gear be used in our inland waters makes no sense to me, but as long as we have the commercial sector so deeply entrenched in the political process it will continue. Even though we had a freeze two years ago that took some trout I partially blame the lack of legal sized trout and puppy drum in my area this past year on the stepped up inshore creek netting by fishermen that have relocated here after a net ban was imposed in their state. I have recently observed creeks that I have fished during winters past completely sealed in by nets for days until the wintering population is cleaned out. If all the fish were killed in the freeze then why were they netting them so heavy Answer: because they weren’t. I often wonder how many fish searching for warmer water up these little creeks are caught in the gauntlet; I guess this is where the term “like shooting fish in a barrel” comes from. If the tributaries of the Pamlico Sound were closed to commercial fishing we would have a fisherman’s paradise on our hands, and the income it would generate for the local economy through tourism would far out weigh what the commercial interests make. Its time that our political officials learn a lesson from the other states that now enjoy excellent inshore fishing and a booming tourist base that relies on it and apply them here. Unfortunately most of the new regulations drafted tend to target the recreational not commercial sector, which makes me question if the resource is being allocated properly in the first place. Hopefully the establishment of the Saltwater fishing license will allow the recreational sector to be counted, but this remains to be seen.
Captain Mark
 

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I absolutely agree with everything Captain Mark (Duke O Fluke) said in his response; I couldn't have said it better (or more forcefully) myself. I'm sure we've all read some of Joel Arrington's comments in NC Sportsman magazine(I think that's the right publication), as he is a similar critic of gill netting. I we recreational anglers don't carry any clout probably because we're not an organized voting bloc like the commercial industry. Frankly, I've been disappointed by organizations who say they represent us--the recreational angler--but who don't do a good job (in my opinion) of actually organizing us. I suspect the first time an organized, cohesive voting bloc of recreational anglers took actions which resulted in the defeat of a politician, we'd suddenly get more notice and be taken more seriously. As of now, that hasn't happened and doesn't look likely in the immediate future, I guess. Anyway, Captain Mark has certainly struck the proverbial nail squarely on the head!! Great job!
 

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I would be very gratified if this website became not only a repository of great fishing information, but a catalyst for organizing and representing the interests of recreational fishermen across our state. Thanks guys for starting to make that happen. Keep up the discussion and ideas!
 

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Netting Ban?

The issue of a netting ban is more complicated that just saying "Let's ban net fishing". Gill nets, pound nets, or trawl nets,which do we ban, all or none? We also have to keep in mind that there are a lot of people that depend on net fishing for a living. I know that the fish are a natural resource that belongs to everyone, but doesn't that include the net fisherman? There are a lot of people that net fish for recreation also. This segment could possibly be discontinued without a lot of flak, but would it make a difference? For the rod & reel fisherman, a net ban would definately improve the quality of fishing, but can we say it's the right thing to do?

Do we shut down the inshore shrimping industry to satisfy our own selfish desires of a better catch. There are people that might say that the shrimping industry would be exempt. Why? The trawl and/or the skimmer kills tons and tons of small fish of all types. There is a good side to all of the fish that are killed by the shrimper; the crabs eat these fish, there by improving the crab fishery. Is it worth it? The big boat shrimpers are on the side of the Rod & Reelers because, if there is a ban on inshore shrimping, they will be able to catch the shrimp when they leave the rivers and creeks to go to sea.

It was not the gill netters inshore that almost ruined our gray trout population, it was the deep sink netters that found where the big breeders wintered off shore and they almost wiped them out.

The end result is that this is a complicated issue that goed beyond inshore gill netting and deserves a lot of thought. I offer no solutions, just thoughts about what is fair.
 

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Re: Netting Ban?

I feel everyone brings in valid points. Everyone is entitled to the resource......but what is the cost????

Oh yeah...quick digress on my part. Everyone thinks that the commercials have this strong lobby, they have a very effective one this is true considering that alot of those in power are from the counties that commercial fishing makes up a majority of the residents. Tholugh to my point was, the NCFA has half or less of the commercial fisherman in this state as members. (this was the last I knew...anyhoo)......Okay back to this dead horse, that continues to revive itself every couple of months, but the fall seems to be the worst.

So as Mr. Parsons pointed out, which types of nets are going to be banned inshore. Gill nets that if properly attended would create little if any by-catch, pound nets, those that do harvest probably 80% or more of the commercial southern flounder, yet have almost zero bycatch, shrimp trawlers.....I know the super draggers want this to happen as they would get almost all the shrimp, in larger size all too them selves. Though don't even worry about the shrimpers, cause right now in there FMP they have already shot themselves in one foot and by the time it is over, I feel that certain legislators will introduce net ban bills and they will pass cause the recreational community will stand together and ensure this. The only ones to blame will be the ones who do it and are being stubborn. Long hauls......heck yeah take them out.

Recreational netting.........well I gotta say that it needs to go, but the commercials wanta keep them cause they see that as one of the dominoes in removing all of them.

As for the recs taking the biggest hits on management.....I don't see that at all. If you use the Southern Flounder as an example, well...........having an 8/day limit at 14" isn't taking any money out of my pocket. hey atleast there is a limit now for them, yes that's right it includes giggers also. The commercials are losing thousands of dollars from their wallets on this plan. Can only use 3000yds of 5 1/2"min now. have a closure.....etc. The MFC and DMF had new data on the stocks and found that a 18-19% reduction would meet the FRA97 mandates of 10 years or less.

And for the problem of recreational anglers in our great state not being organized.....well they are to a degree. The problem is that everyone has different feelings on how they should be managed. There is atleast 1 milllion rec anglers, while there is less than half that commercially. Don't worry something soon will gett all the recs together and it won't be the license and having an actual count of who they are.
 

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Thank you guys for presenting your viewpoints on these subjects. I certainly don't have all the answers and am looking to folks that know a lot more than I, for input. The one thing I do know....I want this resource to be here for my kids and their kids and their kids kids to enjoy, respect and and stand in awe of God from. He has given us an unbelievable creation to enjoy and to be manage responsibly.

Keep the discussion coming and feel free to start new threads with new topics.

BTW Crazy Horse....I uploaded a bunch of animated avatars yesterday. I wondered who would be the first to get the one you picked. I like it! :D
 

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YES. Ban all nets inshore and at least one mile from shore. I've read where there is more miles of nets than miles of NC waterfront including sounds and ocean. Nets are killing machines. If nets were banned, can you imagine how many fish there would be to harvest both for rec and commerical fishermen. We need to take lessons from FL and Ga.Capt Randy
 

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We need to do something about the volume of nets in the Neuse River! It is heart breaking to find gill nets stretched across every area you recently caught puppy drum in. We need to protect red drum juvenials as well as adults to insure a long lasting and excellent redfishery in our waters. It would be great to get a stronger voice to shout at DMF.
Captain Gary
 

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Hi Capt. Gary. Is there a member on our site who could do some research to see if there is another state where banning nets from an estuary has made an impact? Any scientific, empirical data to support the need for this would be a plus. I would be happy to post an article on the site if we can put one together. That would be a start. It would be great to get a marine biologist involved. Any other ideas guys?

captgary said:
We need to do something about the volume of nets in the Neuse River! It is heart breaking to find gill nets stretched across every area you recently caught puppy drum in. We need to protect red drum juvenials as well as adults to insure a long lasting and excellent redfishery in our waters. It would be great to get a stronger voice to shout at DMF.
Captain Gary
 

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I don't think we need to get a marine biologist to get involved. In places like Texas and Florida were nets bannes are in place specks are becoming a nuisance fish. I had a recent client tell me "it was hard to get redfish near Pine Island, FL because all you did was catch a 2 pound trout every other cast." I can also tell you from my own experience this spring, in areas were nets are not permitted or were not present the puppy drum fishing was excellent. In the creeks that were heavily netted the puppy drum fishing went to non-exsistent. They're also the creeks were I reported 20 to 30 dead puppy drum floating down the creek on several occassions. But lets look at figures.
How are these for numbers? The recent DMF figures for 2004 show commercial harvest 134,094,431 pounds; recreational 24,905,130 pounds, recreational commercial gear 640,704 pounds. Total commercial finfish value $38,883,373. Number of anglers recreationally fishing NC 2,073,237 for a total of 7,083,841 trips. If $100 was spent in NC for every trip made fishing thats over $700,000,000....lets see $700,000,000 or $38,000,000. Or say it cost 2,000,000 anglers $10 to buy a NC saltwater license.....that's more than half the total value of the 2004 finfish commercial harvest in license fees alone! Is there a reason why commercial fisherman have more right to finfish than recreational?
Here's stats from a article from the Fla. Keys. "Silver Dollar Ghosts" From research conducted by University of Miami/Dr. Jerald Ault found bonefish valued at $3,255 each in the Florida Keys National Matine Santuary and that the whole bonefish industry generates $1 billon annually to the Keyes economy.
I think the time to do another study and research the fact that recreational fishing contributes more to the economy than commercial is long past. We have a great fishery here in North Carolina, but we are being left behind in a remarkable recreational gold mine. If we don't correct the problem, SC, GA, FL, TX and LA will be happy to take our dollars.
Captain Gary Dubiel
 

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Lets make sure the recreational license gets implemented. Email, call or write your state congressmen and senators and let them know the law was passed...lets get it in place. When the numbers and the money rool in it gives us a stronger voice with DMF. Also let them know your positon on net bans or attendence and mention the revnue involved. Let your CCA chapter know what you think and have them get on the ball. According to DMF were at least 2 million stronge....sticking together and making things right for our fishery will help us, our childern, our economy and even the commercial fisherman.
 
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:mad: I DONT APPRECIATE NET FISHERMEN. I know this thread was started a while ago, but I just wanted to let you guys know, that when I lived in Washington, I seen some stuff that got me throwin beer bottles at boaters. These guys cast a net on my trout fishin hole in the middle of the night, they not only took a large amount of fish, they also got away with my pole! Net fishermen get a iiIii from me. Keep it in the ocean at least, not inland....no way, no how. :mad:
 

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I live close to the coast and fish reguilarily on the Neuse River. I believe that it's past time to ban all gill nets in the rivers and creeks. There are regulations that state that a recreational gill net must be under constant view of the user snd be checked every two hours. Right this is going to happen. Shrimpers be banned from the creeks and put limitations on the size of nets that trawlers can use in the rivers or sounds or ban them too.
 

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I think it needs to be narrowed down to a VERY few types of nets. Otter trawls need to go. Flounder nets that float need to go. RCGL nets need to go. I think the resource can be viable with extremely strict guidelines. Guidelines that are obviously not in place now.
Very complicated. I also think that in combination with strict guidelines and the elimination of some types of nets that have been shown to have hi bycatch that we desperatley need more data on the aggregate impact of recreational fisherman hunting top of the food chain species. Sorry that was a little off topic but a balance of all user groups is needed and as tight of resrictions as required to keep my kids fishing also.
 
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