On the morning of Wednesday, July 8, 2020, the Massachusetts Environmental Police responded to a complaint regarding a group of individuals possibly poaching striped bass along the Cape Cod Canal and hiding the catch in a vehicle near the railroad bridge parking area in Buzzards Bay.
Upon arrival to the scene, Officers observed a male carrying a striped bass towards the parking lot. The individual noticed the Officers and ran back towards the Canal, throwing the fish into the water. Officers pursued the individual who was ultimately placed in custody.
A subsequent check of the vehicle revealed three additional striped bass – two of which were over the limit of 35-inches. Furthermore, two of the three fisherman in the group, including the one in custody, did not have a 2020 Saltwater Recreation Fishing permit.
The arrestee was charged with failure to display catch upon demand, possession of over the limit striped bass, and fishing without a saltwater recreation permit. The owner of the vehicle was issued a civil citation for possession of a striped bass larger than 35-inches and fishing without a saltwater recreation permit. Further charges may be pending.
The catch was seized and subsequently donated to the Plymouth Area Coalition.
Striped bass fishermen are reminded that commercial striped bass fishing in the Canal is prohibited. If you are a commercial permit holder fishing recreationally, you are required to also obtain a recreational fishing permit. Persons recreational fishing for striped bass may not retain more than one striped bass and the fish must be a minimum of 28-inches to under 35-inches in length.