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Mahi will be next to need management

Old 08-31-2020, 03:19 AM
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Default Mahi will be next to need management

Like you, I've seen a lot of marine resources either not managed or mismanaged in my lifetime. I fish primarily off southern NJ, and based on recent observations it seems to me that mahi will be next. On two separate occasions in the past week, I witnessed a cleaning table stacked with 30+ fish that ranged from maybe 10" to 18" while the captain and clients or captain and buddies proudly posed with their catch.
Now, it doesn't take much talent to get to a pot holding mahi and then methodically wipe it clean, but what the heck? Does the fact that mahi are currently have no size limit in NJ mean common sense can't apply?
I say this knowing well how fast mahi multiply and grow; you can't read an article about mahi without them being referred to as the perfect game fish because they reproduce and grow so rapidly. Time will tell.
Old 08-31-2020, 06:30 AM
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Welcome to what the clowns in the SE US have been doing for decades...it's dumb. When asked why they kept those half sandwich sized fish, they tend to get all huffy and puffy.
Old 08-31-2020, 07:10 AM
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I'm sorry but nope. Mahi mahi stocks haven't declined since recorded management. If you look at the lifecycle of them, it's remarkable. Their lifecycle is 2 years at best. A 2 year old mahi mahi at that point is probably a bull weighing 50 lbs or more. I don't know the specific growth numbers but by the end of year one, they are pushing 15 lbs. They literally are a completely sustainable fishery. One female spawns a ridiculous amount of offspring. They also reproduce at like 6 months of age.

This doesn't mean people should be pigs about it. However, we pulled 8 off a pot Friday in NJ for our guests. The meat yield on them is amazing.
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Old 08-31-2020, 07:40 AM
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Why didn't you call FWC?
Old 08-31-2020, 07:44 AM
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I think the growth rate is actually greater than what you are describing - mahi grow approx. an inch a week and a one year old can weigh around 40lbs.
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Old 08-31-2020, 07:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Fesster View Post
I think the growth rate is actually greater than what you are describing - mahi grow approx. an inch a week and a one year old can weigh around 40lbs.
You're correct. It's even above and beyond what I had mentioned.
Old 08-31-2020, 07:59 AM
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Originally Posted by mgd View Post
Why didn't you call FWC?
There's nothing to call about. It's not a violation. There is no minimum size or bag limit. Granted, it's not right they had 30+ fish IF they don't intend to eat them all. Having said that, we picked 8 off a pot on Friday and I had the guests text me over the weekend telling me they ate them all.

Husband, wife and 2 kids x 2 = all gone.

Having said that, imagine that a charter of 6 guys has the same situation. It's easy to consume all that.
Old 08-31-2020, 07:59 AM
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hmmmm....just another reminder that I suck at fishing.....lol
Old 08-31-2020, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by HookMeUpII View Post
There's nothing to call about. It's not a violation. There is no minimum size or bag limit. Granted, it's not right they had 30+ fish IF they don't intend to eat them all. Having said that, we picked 8 off a pot on Friday and I had the guests text me over the weekend telling me they ate them all.

Husband, wife and 2 kids x 2 = all gone.

Having said that, imagine that a charter of 6 guys has the same situation. It's easy to consume all that.
Sorry, Didn't see a location. Atlantic/keys its 20", which is still small
Old 08-31-2020, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by mgd View Post
Sorry, Didn't see a location. Atlantic/keys its 20", which is still small
No minimum size in NJ. Honestly, I don't see a reason why someone shouldn't keep a 20" mahi mahi. Just need to be respectful of the stocks. That's all.
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Old 08-31-2020, 08:15 AM
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Just to be clear...not ALL southeast US...mainly those Fla boys...I am aghast at the small fish I see...

r
Old 08-31-2020, 08:18 AM
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Who wants to clean small fish, ugh. Now I'm hungry...
Old 08-31-2020, 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by HookMeUpII View Post
No minimum size in NJ. Honestly, I don't see a reason why someone shouldn't keep a 20" mahi mahi. Just need to be respectful of the stocks. That's all.
Growth rates vary and many of the extreme rates were recorded by fish in captivity. The sample size for wild fish is fairly small in the grand scheme

They are a difficult fish to manager because they are highly migratory Pelagic.

Keeping a fish that grows that fast of those tiny sizes is why you don't see the numbers of 20 lb fish as years ago. It really doesn't take a PHD to understand not one of those 12 inch fish taken is ever going to get to a 40 lb fish. Just look at the trends of many of the tournaments. Winning fish are getting smaller and smaller for the most part.

Plenty of boats catching and keeping a boat load of fish that are barely 20 inches long. The number of boats doing it is growing in leaps and bounds.

Probably the reason mandatory accounting is being put in place for the charter boats in the south Atlantic. Permit requirements already exist in the for hire sector and more monitoring is coming.

Without reasonable regulation they will end up like many fish that are harvested both commercially and recreational.

I suspect more regulation is coming for the specie.
Old 08-31-2020, 08:40 AM
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there is a bag limit in NJ its 10 a person not to exceed 60 a vessel.
Old 08-31-2020, 09:05 AM
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The tiny ones don’t eat real great either. Need to get to 7-8 pounds before they really make good table fare.
Old 08-31-2020, 09:28 AM
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Originally Posted by tidewaterhunter View Post
there is a bag limit in NJ its 10 a person not to exceed 60 a vessel.
I looked everywhere and couldn't find that. I agree with that bag limit or less. There is no reason to boat more than 10 per person and even that's a lot.
Old 08-31-2020, 10:58 AM
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Want make a meaningful contribution to increasing the size and number of DOLPHIN ??? Ban drift FAD / purse seine fishing practices.
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Old 08-31-2020, 11:01 AM
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Only an idiot keeps a 10 inch mahi, but without size limits, there are plenty of idiots up here in the north. I'm all for a size limit even though I don't think mahi stocks are particularly challenged. Still, the small ones should be returned and allowed to spawn. Despite the superfast growth rates of mahi, we rarely see huge mahi of 40 pounds and up. So the mortality of this species is quite high. Given how pelagic they are, I doubt that mortality comes from fishing pressure. I think it mostly comes from predation. As tasty as we think the mahi are, so do the big sharks, tuna, and marlin.
Old 08-31-2020, 11:23 AM
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I agree with OP. I'd like to see the size limit at least changed. For those of you who target dolphin, 20 yrs ago there we a ton more bigger fish. I miss those days.
Old 08-31-2020, 12:02 PM
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Originally Posted by mgd View Post
Why didn't you call FWC?
Lack of reading comprehension in appalling.

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