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The Red Snapper Conservation Association (RSCA) was founded in May of 1998 over concerns of the future of the Red Snapper fishery. It appears that the regulations over the fishery are being changed spontaneously and the basis for the changes are not understood. It is hoped that by providing a framework for users of the fishery to provide input and feedback that useful data will develop to help the regulatory agencies better perform their functions. It is also hoped that the regulatory agencies will use this site to explain the basis behind their regulations. The utlimate goal of all persons is the efficient use and replenishment of this valuable resource.

This site was developed by Mark Primo Miller, acting as volunteer chairman of a committee formed by Mississippi Gulf Fishing Banks, Inc. (MGFB). While all the other Gulf States have State agencies that build their offshore reefs, Mississippi's reefs are built by this non-profit organization. MGFB is very concerned over recent developments that dropped bag limits on red snapper and talks about closure of the fishery at the end of August dependent upon the shrimping industries effective use of By-catch Reduction Devices (BRDs). This all transpired shortly after expressing that there would be no changes in the regulations this year. Mississippi will suffer severe economic impact from closure of this valuable fishery. Mississippi relies heavily upon the red snapper species for its charter boat industry since Groupers and other reef species are much rarer than other States enjoy. Presently the resource is regulated Gulf wide even though the impact on each State will be different. This site will strive to separate the input by State to help determine the effect in each Gulf region.

One of the concerns of the RSCA is the approach of the regulatory agencies to replenish the Red Snapper fishery. Apparently a great deal of weight is put on how effective the BRDs will perform for the shrimping industry and if they don't perform well, the red snapper fishery will pay the price instead of the shrimping industry. If the shrimpers are causing such an impact on the red snapper fishery, it makes more sense to close shrimping in certain areas during certain times of the year to minimize their destruction of that fishery. It also makes more sense to concentrate on replenshment of the resource through construction of reefs, particularly smaller scatter fields that have shown to provide a nursery area for young red snapper. Mississippi and Alabama are very active in construction of reefs and all the local fisherman know the fishing is much much better today than 5 years ago. This brings up another situation. As the fishermen catch more fish, the response by the regulatory agencies is not that the fishery is making a come back, but that the user groups are putting even more pressure on the resource requiring further restrictions. How is the status of the red snapper population being evaluated? How sound is the data and what is the standard deviation of this data. This site hopes to clear up these questions as it matures.



For problems or questions regarding this web contact Mark@primocomputers.com
Last updated: December 15, 1998.