Division of Marine Fisheries: 2015 commercial striped bass fishery closed

Striped bass quota reached, fishery closed on August 21
Last week, the state Division of Marine Fisheries closed the 2015 commercial striped bass fishery. Walter Brooks photo of the Chatham Fish Pier.

The Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries (DMF) announced last week that the 2015 commercial striped bass fishery is closed for the season. The closure went into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Friday. At that time DMF anticipated that the season quota of 869,813 pounds will have been taken.

Now through the opening of the 2016 commercial striped bass fishery, fishermen are prohibited from possessing more than one striped bass at least 28 inches in length, a DMF release said. Fishermen are also prohibited from selling or attempting to sell any striped bass in Massachusetts.

In addition to the ban on the taking of striped bass, seafood dealers in Massachusetts are also prohibited from purchasing or receiving striped bass from fishermen until the 2016 season opens. During this period, dealers may possess and sell imported striped bass, according to the release. Imported bass must have been legally caught in another state and be tagged with the state of origin. If resold whole, the tag must remain attached to the fish, DMF said. If the fish is processed after it is imported, fillet containers must bear appropriate tags and the original tag from the whole fish must be kept by the dealer.

Through Tuesday, August 25, all striped bass in the possession of dealers, caught locally or otherwise, must be a minimum of 34 inches in length. Beginning Wednesday, August 26, dealers may import "sub-legal" sized fish as approved by the state of origin. 

The two other commercial fisheries that are currently closed are scup (Winter I) and tautog. All other fisheries, including black sea bass, bluefish and dogfish remain open.

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