Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) found more than 10 tons of illegally caught striped bass in the Chesapeake Bay near Bloody Point and Eastern Bay. This is the largest bust in nearly 30 years and according to the NRP the end doesn’t seem to be in sight.
“The Maryland Saltwater Sportfishermen’s Association is disheartened and outraged over the 10 tons of illegally caught rockfish in our own Chesapeake Bay”, MSSA’s President Vince Ringgold said. “We find this flagrant disregard for the law and our public resource deplorable. These illegal actions must stop”, Ringgold added.
Additional illegal nets have been found in the mouth of the Choptank but have revealed very few fish as they were captured not too long after being set. The NRP is investigating all leads and will continue its efforts to find these illegal nets and the people responsible.
The Chesapeake Bay is thought to be the spawning ground and nursery for around 75 percent of the Atlantic Coast migratory striped bass stock.. Maryland is under from the other Atlantic states to protect the spawning grounds of striped bass and to ensure a sustainable fishery.