Crabbing at safe levels, additional management protections for females planned
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources today released the 2014 Blue Crab Winter Dredge Survey results, which showed the abundance of spawning-age females was 69 million, declining just below the minimum safe level of 70 million.
While the crabbing harvest remained at a safe level for the sixth consecutive year, and juvenile crabs increased 78 percent from 2013’s record low, the total abundance of crabs — which include juveniles, and adult males and females ─ has returned to pre-2008 levels of approximately 300 million. Read more
Radar system, helicopter patrols deter poaching, protecting keystone species
Governor Martin O’Malley today thanked the Maryland Natural Resources Police for its enforcement efforts during the six-month oyster season, which ended March 31.
“When we began this large-scale oyster restoration initiative nearly four years ago, we promised to turn things around and do everything within our power to protect this vital species,” said Governor O’Malley. “I want to thank our NRP officers ─ the men and women who continuously put their hearts into protecting our State’s natural resources ─ for their hard work and dedication not only this past oyster season but every single day.” Read more
DNR seeks fishing observations from anglers statewide
Two anglers won $100 Bass Pro Shop gift cards for providing fishing trip information to the Maryland Volunteer Angler Survey last year. Taking home the prizes were Alisha Duquin of Hagerstown for reporting her observations to the multispecies freshwater portion, and Matt Stahl of Essex for supplying Yellow Perch information from his outing. The Maryland Department of Natural Resources relies on such anglers to provide data to help with fishery monitoring and management efforts. Read more
The hunt is on! The Diamond Jim component of the 2013 Maryland Fishing Challenge kicked off when Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) biologists and teams of young anglers caught, tagged and released 200 striped bass into the Chesapeake Bay. One of the tagged fish is the official Diamond Jim worth $10,000 to the angler who catches him before midnight on June 30. The other tagged “imposter” rockfish are worth at least $500 each if caught and registered before midnight on Labor Day, September 2, 2013. Read more
Maryland’s online Volunteer Angler Survey now has a new look, an added fish species and great prizes! The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) developed the new and improved survey to be more user-friendly, gather additional information and offer incentives to those who participate. Read more
Three anglers won nearly $300 in prizes for catching and killing snakehead fish in the Maryland Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) 2012 Snakehead Contest. Through the contest, 256 anglers removed nearly 600 fish from the Potomac River system. To enter, participants shared their experiences on the Department’s Angler’s Log, reporting how they caught the invasive fish, where they found them, some even sharing delicious ways to prepare them. Read more
As the days grow longer, yellow perch fishing will start to heat up in the Upper Bay, some of its tributaries and salt ponds.
“Maryland hosts an excellent yellow perch fishery, which provides delicious fare for Maryland tables and fine outings for families, especially those with young anglers in need of a break from cabin fever,” said Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Fisheries Service Director Tom O’Connell. Read more
Maryland Watermen’s Association founder celebrates 40 years of service
Governor Martin O’Malley has designated Larry Simns Admiral of the Chesapeake for his work as the chief advocate for Maryland’s watermen and their communities, and for his role in promoting changes to better ensure the sustainability of commercial fishing in the State. Maryland Department of Natural Resources Secretary John Griffin presented the award to Simns’ family, on January 18 at the 39th East Coast Commercial Fishermen’s and Aquaculture Trade Exposition in Ocean City. Read more
Biologists attribute the drop to weather conditions
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced that the 2012 striped bass juvenile index – a measure of striped bass spawning success in Chesapeake Bay – is below the long-term average this year.
“While we expect large variation in striped bass reproduction from year to year and do not view this low value as an imminent problem, we will be carefully monitoring the results of future surveys,” said DNR Fisheries Director Tom O’Connell. “Three consecutive years of poor reproduction would be necessary to trigger mandatory conservation measures.” Read more
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Fisheries Service is forecasting an early October start for the annual fall trout stocking program.
“Stocking dates and locations are dependent on water flow, temperatures and ground conditions at the delivery sites,” said DNR Inland Fisheries Chief Don Cosden. “Based on current conditions, we expect to begin stocking fish into popular ponds, creeks and rivers as early as the second week of October.”