Regarding the Dec. 28 news story “Waters still rough after new flounder limits”: I take exception to your premise that reducing harvest of southern flounder is “good for recreational fishing enthusiasts and conservationists” but “bad” for commercial fishermen.
While it is true that most recreational anglers share conservationists’ goal of sustainable fisheries, they gladly participate in achieving that goal by reducing their harvest. What anglers may seem happy about is that the commercial industry is finally being made to end over-harvest. Reducing harvest and allowing southern flounder to recover from years of overfishing is required by law and will benefit all user groups. Ending overfishing of a marine resource is good for everyone.
Although you make an issue of the commercial industry’s having to reduce its landings, you do not mention that recreational anglers will also share in the rebuilding by reducing their harvest by the same percentage. Recreational anglers, however, are not threatening to sue the state or lining up legislators to try and overturn the actions of the Marine Fisheries Commission – the body designated by statute to manage our marine resources.
It has been eight years since the MFC recognized a problem with the southern flounder stock. This fall, the MFC has finally acted to address that problem. We should all be enthusiastic about that.
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