Good News about Striped Bass
On April 26, 2013, the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans announced the re-opening of a limited recreational striped bass fishery in the Southern Gulf of St. Lawrence for the 2013 season. However, the re-opening was limited to the Maritimes. Therefore, from May 1 to 15, anglers were able to catch and retain a maximum of one striped bass in this area. A mandatory catch-and-release fishery has since been in force.
But what about Quebec? In June, the Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement, de la Faune et des Parcs announced the re-opening of the recreational striped bass fishery with a mandatory catch-and-release policy in the southern part of the Gaspésie from the waters downstream of the Campbellton Bridge, including Chaleur Bay and the Gulf of St. Lawrence, to Cap-Gaspé (Area 21) from June 15 to September 30, 2013.
Pêche au bar rayé avec remise à l'eau obligatoire au sud de la Gaspésie (in French only)
Press release from Quebec government with the map of the area – June 10, 2013
However, the re-opening of the fishery in Quebec affects the Southern Gulf population only. Fishing striped bass in the St. Lawrence River and Estuary is still prohibited to allow for the recovery of this population, listed as endangered and protected under the Species at Risk Act. Anyone who catches a striped bass in the St. Lawrence Estuary or River must immediately release it back into the water to maximize its chances of survival.
Jacinthe Beauchamp and Marthe Bérubé