BASS believes that the 2011 Environment Agency’s ‘Fish Monitoring in Solent & South Downs, 2011’ report (see below) provides further evidence of the poor recruitment of bass in the Solent due to the recent cold winters (high mortality of young bass) plus poor spawning in cooler summers. It is fair to assume that the same effects are being felt in all other parts of the bass’s northern european range.
It is well documented that there is tremendous pressure on the species from pair-trawling and a farcically low Minimum Landing Size (36cm). The latter means the bass is being ‘cropped’ before it has had a chance to reproduce itself, which cannot be a sensible course of action. As if commercial fishing were not causing enough damage to adult bass stocks this report confirms our representations that those larvae that do hatch to become juveniles are being hit by our cold winters. The graphs also seem to show that cooler summer weather adversely affects spawning success.
Link to excerpt (PDF) from full report: Transitional and coastal water monitoring 2011
Link to PDF of full report: Fish Monitoring in Solent & South Downs, 2011