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Kelp Bass Studies
The State Finfish Management Project was created in July 2006. In 2011 the Project was re-organized and the Southern California Fisheries Research & Management Project assumed all work for kelp bass and other basses. Bass project staff are based in Los Alamitos. The fishery data collected include length-at-age, catch per unit-of-effort, seasonal maturity, fishing gear effects on undersized fish, and relative species composition within habitats. These data are collected in order to manage fisheries with the best available information and ensure their long term resource sustainability for economic and recreational benefits.
Historical Length and Catch Data
Marine Recreational Fisheries Statistics Survey (MRFSS) and California Recreational Fisheries Survey (CRFS) kelp bass length and catch data from 2000 to 2008 were analyzed by project staff to determine trends in length and angler catch (or bag) frequencies. All data analyzed were obtained from anglers interviewed by MRFSS and CRFS field technicians. These data will be used to assist in future kelp bass population evaluations. Summaries of data are provided below.
Length frequency data
The total length (TL) data summarize the total number of kelp bass measured from interviewed anglers each year. The TL data were grouped into four length intervals: less than 12 inches (sub-legal), 12 to 12.99 inches, 13 to 17 inches, and greater than 17 inches to provide a better understanding of length distribution. Average percentages were calculated for the 9-year period and results indicated that almost 86% of all kelp bass measured were from the 12- to 17- inch TL interval.
2000-2008 Kelp Bass Length Frequency Data by Year
|Year||Number of Fish & Percentage||Total Length of Kelp Bass (in inches)|
|<12||12 to 12.99||13 to 17||>17|
|2000||Number of Fish||34||234||704||120|
|2001||Number of Fish||41||227||514||55|
|2002||Number of Fish||83||503||896||133|
|2003||Number of Fish||91||814||1431||233|
|2004||Number of Fish||152||1071||3306||566|
|2005||Number of Fish||134||828||2473||589|
|2006||Number of Fish||146||1103||4214||878|
|2007||Number of Fish||107||722||2615||544|
|2008||Number of Fish||184||1045||2933||450|
|Combined 2000-2008||Total Number of Fish||972||6547||19086||3568|
Note: MRFSS and CRFS kelp bass length measurements were collected as fork length in millimeters.
All fork lengths presented here were converted to total length in inches as California regulations are written in this manner.
Catch frequency data
The kelp bass catch frequency data summarize the number of fish caught (also called daily bag and possession) per individual interviewed angler from 2000 to 2008. The table below provides annual summaries of total fish caught, total number of anglers sampled, and the average number of fish per angler. Data summarized include all angler trips that targeted kelp bass, which means that bags over the legal 10-fish limit and bags with zero fish caught were included. The average annual catch of kelp bass per angler for the 9-year period was 0.8 fish. If bags with zero fish were eliminated from the summary, the average annual catch of kelp bass per angler for the 9-year period would be 2.1 fish.
2000-2008 Kelp Bass Average Angler Catch (or Bag) by Year
|Number of Fish||1496||1077||1842||3394||9834||4547||6253||5075||4837||38355|
|Number of Anglers||1474||1269||2253||3669||8944||6393||7666||7907||7650||47225|
|Average Fish per Angler||1.01||0.85||0.82||0.93||1.10||0.71||0.82||0.64||0.63||0.81|