In response to Billie "Bubba" Cochrane's guest column ("Why local fishermen support the Magnuson-Stevens Act," The Daily News, Oct. 25): Cochrane’s discourse advocating status quo for red snapper management is expected; he is a commercial fisherman.

For years each commercial fisherman has been allotted, by the federal government, many thousands of pounds of snapper that they can fish for every day. Because they fetch about $7 a pound off the boat it is a very lucrative business.

Conversely, recreational fishermen were initially allowed just three consecutive days of fishing with a limit of two fish each day for 2017. Due to inclement weather during that period many were unable to fish from their small boats.

It is long past time that management of red snapper is given to each state bordering the Gulf of Mexico as each represents a unique ecosystem. And it has been clearly demonstrated that their fish and game departments have done outstanding jobs managing other animal populations.

Fortunately, they have strongly declared interests in assuming the task. Thus, it is expected that recreational fishermen would get a more equitable share of this common resource if the states were so involved.

In response to the longtime gross unequal allocations, recreational fishermen, state governments and congressmen are currently working on a resolution.

Merrill Overturf

Tiki Island

Locations

(7) comments

Gary Miller

When I fished commercaly the common idea among commercial fishermen was the last few members of a species were more valuable the scarcer they became. Catching the last one was OK as long as it was legal.

Bill Cochrane

It appears by your confession that you are the problem. To say it was a "common idea", is absurd. My family has been commercial fishing for decades, and we have never heard such nonsense.

Gary Miller

Claiming "local fishermen support the Magnusim law" is liberal trick phrase. Commercial fishermen are "local' of course. Sport fishermen, also local, mostly do not support it.

Mark Aaron

Gary: [Sport fishermen, also local, mostly do not support it.]

Why not?

Bill Cochrane

You are asking a question like that to a guy that admits he tried to deplete a fish species to drive the price up?

Mark Aaron

Bill: [You are asking a question like that to a guy that admits he tried to deplete a fish species to drive the price up?]

Just trying to get some facts on the table. You aren't against that are you Bill?

Bill Cochrane

Mr. Overturf, In your response to my son’s column you did get one, and only one thing right. Yes, he is a commercial fisherman. As far as everything else, you are either dead wrong, or, lope-sided to say the least. For example, you say “For years each commercial fisherman has been allotted, by the federal government, many thousands of pounds of snapper that they can fish for every day.” What you fail to mention is that red snapper are divided equally between commercial and recreational. The commercials can catch their allocation, but must stop when that amount is caught. By the way, you also failed to note that recreational can fish for snapper 365 days a year with a four fish daily limit in state waters. Commercial cannot fish in state waters. Never. You say “Because they fetch about $7 a pound off the boat it is a very lucrative business.” That is simply not even close. Again, you say a three day season, when in fact the state waters are open 365 days? You fail to mention that the short seasons for recreational in federal waters is because of overfishing? To state the reason the states should take over management because “it has been clearly demonstrated that their fish and game departments have done outstanding jobs managing other animal populations” is very telling. That statement may be true about “animals” but not offshore fish. The feds manage federal fish, and it should remain that way.

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