“We really don’t know if the stock is rebuilt,” Roy Crabtree of the National Marine Fisheries Service – Goliath grouper could be placed back on the hook

The possible future of South Florida fishing rules, including the latest information on Goliath grouper populations, goes before combined panels of federal and state fishery experts convening Jan. 7-9 in Key Largo. “This is really interesting stuff,” said Robert Mahood, executive director of the federal South Atlantic Fishery Management Council. Read [email protected]”  01:15

  • Here is the first story I read this morning, and we have supposed experts in fishery management making a public statement,

    “We really don’t know if the stock is rebuilt,”

    Well that begs the question, “how many millions of tax payer dollars has been spent by NMFS on stock assessments since 1990, and we get an answer like this?”

    Yet NMFS has been managing fish stock using the inflexibility of MSA II in choking off many fisheries within the fishing industry, causing a continued loss in fishing jobs and destabilizing the economic viability of businesses that rely on fishing and fishing related activities….that, WE DO KNOW.

    Enough of the “same old – same old”…If your in a management and regulatory role within government, have some answers and show us that your working towards a solution instead of saying “we don’t know.”

    For a moment, imagine if the top executives at Apple or Google gave that answer to the movers and shakers on Wall Street or their stock holders?

  • I was informed by a Florida Keys fishermen that the Goliath Grouper seems to have a following, and possibly an advocay group:

    Grouper Luna – Sexy Groupers United – http://grouperluna.wordpress.com/

    “Sexy Groupers”….never thought of seafood we consume in that way.

    Now there is an article in the Miami Herald:

    Ban on harvesting Goliath grouper is revisited: http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/12/25/3837358/ban-on-harvesting-goliath-grouper.html

    Then you see where the war drums are beating on opening up this fishery. To wit:

    “However, many biologists worry that allowing even a limited harvest of the slow-growing, territorial fish that can grow to more than 700 pounds could quickly reverse decades of gains.”

    Lets stop to think about that for a moment…. “even a limited harvest of a slow growing territorial fish – COULD quickly reverse decades of gains.”

    This goes back to thrust of the talking point in this article by Roy Crabtree, which the Herald expanded upon:
    ============================
    “We really don’t know if the [Goliath grouper] stock is rebuilt,” Roy Crabtree of the National Marine Fisheries Service said at a Keys meeting last summer.

    “It’s probably close but we don’t know…. A lot of people feel if we open the bag limit, people will fish it right back down.”
    ============================
    This is the “labeling” being thrown about to the public, and used to prevent the harvest of a number of species which have their own advocacy group. Fish are no longer seen as a valuable food source to feed the public, but are more valuable as ornaments which literally can severely limit or prevent the harvest of a particular species.

    Goliath Grouper over the past decade and a half have been seen at a minimum as amusing pests, but more so on the ecological side, 24 hour a day eating machines which can devastate the population of various reef fish on the piece of bottom (natural or man made) where they sit and wait for their next meal. It has literally created Goliath Grouper “honey holes” even along bridge abutments since you rarely catch anything else on a piece of bottom structure when they are around.

    No doubt, this will be another interesting, and I bet, long drawn out regulatory process as there will be forces out there which will unite who will try as best to prevent even a limited harvest fishery to open up on Goliath Grouper….so much for the word ‘sustainable” being used in fishery management.