skip to main content | skip to footer
North Carolina Department of Environment Quality

NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Marine Fisheries - 03 Striped Bass ASMA RRMA SSR 2014

Marine Fisheries

Striped bass

Striped Bass - 2014

Albemarle Sound Management Area (ASMA) and Roanoke River Management Area (RRMA) stock (A/R stock)

Stock Status – Concern – The 2010 Albemarle/Roanoke (A/R) striped bass stock assessment (data through 2008) indicates the resource is not experiencing overfishing and is producing a sustainable harvest. Although the stock is not overfished, landings in all sectors have steadily declined from the peak harvest in 2004. Average landings from 2000-2006 were 416,541 lbs. while average landings from 2007-2013 were 217,225 lbs. Striped bass experienced a period of unusually strong recruitment (number of age-1 fish entering the population) from 1994-2001, followed by a period of lower recruitment from 2002-2013, thus causing the recent decline in landings. A draft 2014 A/R striped bass stock assessment that incorporates data through 2012 is scheduled to be approved in August 2014. Proposed changes in management strategy are likely to be considered by both the N.C. Wildlife Commission and the N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission based on the 2014 A/R striped bass stock assessment.

Average Commercial Landings and Value 2004–2013 – ASMA – 155,529 lbs./$338,449 (quota managed)

2013 Commercial Landings and Value – ASMA – 68,169 lbs./$218,1472 (quota managed)

Average Recreational Landings 2004–2013 – ASMA – 43,250 lbs. (quota managed) RRMA – 70,411 lbs. (quota managed)

2013 Recreational Landings – ASMA – 14,897 lbs. (quota managed) RRMA – 25,197 lbs. (quota managed)

Average Number of Award Citations* (35 lbs. /45 inches^) 2004–2013*– 264 (76 releases), 2013* – 0 (0 releases)

Status of Fishery Management Plan (FMP) – Albemarle/Roanoke striped bass are included in the Interjurisdictional FMP and also N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission has adopted a state FMP for striped bass. The ASMFC management measures are required to be adopted by North Carolina as the minimum standard for that fishery, except under the N.C. Estuarine Striped Bass FMP more restrictive measures may also be specified. The final plan and rules for Amendment 1 to the N.C. Estuarine Striped Bass FMP were approved by the N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission in February of 2013 and by the N. C. Wildlife Resources Commission in May 2013. The rules became effective for the respective Commissions June 1 and August 1, 2013. There were no major changes to the current commercial and recreational striped bass management measures.

Research and Data Needs – Release mortality estimates for various gears, tag reporting information, and improved age–1 abundance estimates. The previous research need of an updated maturation schedule for the A/R stock was completed in 2012.

2013 Regulations – ASMA Commercial: 18 inches TL minimum size limit and daily landing limit set by proclamation. Annual commercial quota set at 275,000 lbs. ASMA Recreational: 18 inches total length (TL) minimum size limit in coastal, joint and inland waters, three fish daily creel limit. RRMA Recreational: 18 inches TL minimum size limit and no striped bass between 22 and 27 inches in Roanoke River. Two fish daily creel limit and only one fish in the daily creel may be greater than 27 inches TL recreational. RRMA is closed to commercial harvest.

Harvest Season – ASMA Recreational: Spring (January 1 – April 30); Fall (October 1 – December 31). ASMA Commercial: Spring (January 1 – April 30); Fall (October 1 – November 30). RRMA: March 1 – April 30

Size and Age at Maturity – Males: 12-18 inches/2-3 years; Females: 18-24 inches/3-6 years

Historical and Current Maximum Age – 29 years/17 years

Juvenile Abundance Index 2004-2013 – 8.1, 2013 – 0.4

Habits and Habitats – Albemarle/Roanoke (A/R) striped bass are anadromous, spending the majority of their adult life in the waters of the estuaries and nearshore ocean, migrating to fresh water to spawn in the spring. The major spawning grounds for the A/R striped bass stock are located on the Roanoke River in the vicinity of Weldon, NC. Striped bass require flowing, fresh water habitats in order to spawn successfully, allowing the eggs to remain suspended until they hatch, and to transport larvae to the nursery areas. Spawning takes place during late April until early June. North Carolina is host to several different stocks of striped bass. One is the Atlantic migratory stock that over-winters off southeastern Virginia and northeastern North Carolina. In some years, they may not migrate all the way down into North Carolina waters, or they may be more than 3 miles offshore and unavailable to harvest, as was the case in 2012 and 2013. The Atlantic migratory stock of striped bass originates principally from the Chesapeake Bay, followed by the Delaware and Hudson river systems, with minimal contribution from the A/R stock. They remain in their natal systems from two to three years then begin migrating along the Atlantic coast, northward in the summer and southward during the winter. Females are more migratory than males. The Albemarle Sound-Roanoke River area supports the largest spawning population in North Carolina. Other populations are found in the Tar/Pamlico, Neuse, and Cape Fear rivers, and are considered estuarine (non-anadromous).

*Includes ASMA, CSMA, and the Atlantic Ocean. The majority of citations come from the Atlantic Ocean
^Citation release length requirement increased from 35 inches to 45 inches in 2008.

For more information, contact Charlton Godwin at Charlton.Godwin@ncdenr.gov or 800-338–7805 or 252-264–3911.

N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries • 3441 Arendell Street • Morehead City, NC 28557 • 252-726-7021 or 800-682-2632

NCDMF logo

Print
38337 FEEDBACK

Your input is valuable to us. Please send us your feedback.

What type of feedback would you like to send?*

Ask a Question Report a Problem Have a Concern Make a Comment

(If you would like us to respond please include your phone or e-mail.)

Your Question has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

Your Problem has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

Your Concern has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

Your Comment has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

*If you are a DENR employee with an I.T. issue, please submit a DOTS ticket.