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The Striped Bass Bonus Program

 
The 2016 Striped Bass Bonus Program (SBBP) is open until December 31, 2016.
Permits issued for 2015 are not valid in 2016.

Applications for the 2016 SBBP are no longer available.
The application deadline was October 31, 2016
.
Applications postmarked after the deadline will not be processed.
Due to the high volume of applications received near the October 31 deadline, please allow 2-4 weeks for processing.

Updated and new information about the SBBP is posted on this webpage and sent to Marine Fisheries e-mail list subscribers and media outlets when available.

Effective September 1, 2016, the SBBP regulations are as follows:

  • One fish 24" to less than 28"
  • September 1, 2016 - December 31, 2016
Please note that the order of fish harvested does not matter.

Bonus harvest reporting is mandatory and must be reported within 24 hours of harvest via online or by calling 609-748-2074.

New Jersey recreational striped bass regulations in all state waters are as follows:

  • One fish 28" to less than 43" AND one fish 43" or greater

PROGRAM BACKGROUND

New Jersey is allocated a commercial harvest quota of striped bass under the Striped Bass Interstate Fisheries Management Plan as administered by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC). Since New Jersey does not allow netting or sale of striped bass, this quota was transferred to the recreational fishing sector resulting in the origin of the SBBP.

The current allocation from ASMFC is 215,912 pounds to be distributed between individual anglers and party/charter boats. Should NJ overshoot this quota in 2016, any overage would be subtracted from the 2017 quota. Although this program does allow for the harvest of an additional striped bass for New Jersey anglers, the Division encourages catch and release whenever possible so this species can prosper for future generations.

The Division of Fish and Wildlife initiated the program in 1990 to allow the harvest of an additional striped bass for New Jersey recreational anglers. Although the program has been modified throughout the years, the main goal of the SBBP is to allow anglers to participate in the management process while enjoying their favorite recreational pastime. It is a popular program and provides valuable data for assessing stock status and fishing trends, making it an integral part of New Jersey's striped bass management.

Angler with legal size bonus striped bass
Jeff Schmidt with his bonus fish caught on the Hunter. Regulations allow one bonus fish 24" to less than 28".
Click to enlarge
REGULATIONS

New Jersey recreational striped bass regulations are as follows in all state waters:

  • One fish 28" to less than 43" AND one fish 43" or greater

With a bonus permit, anglers can keep one fish 24 inches to less than 28 inches from September 1 to December 31, 2016. Reporting bonus harvest within 24 hours is mandatory. Please note the order of fish harvested does not matter (Bonus fish can be the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd fish). Visit the Marine section of the Regulations page to check current Federal and State possession and season regulations for striped bass fishing in your area.

SBBP participants can receive immediate notification of regulation updates, emergency closures, special notices, etc., by subscribing to the free NJ Marine Fishing E-mail List. For details, visit the E-mail List Subscription page.

INDIVIDUALS

Application Process

Applications for the 2016 SBBP are no longer available.

If you require additional information concerning this program or any other striped bass issue, please contact the Division's Nacote Creek office at 609-748-2020 or sbbp@dep.nj.gov.

Harvest Reporting

The SBBP Permit must be securely attached to fish through the mouth and gill immediately upon capture and prior to transportation. Harvest reporting is mandatory within 24 hours of harvest and must be reported online or by leaving a message at 609-748-2074. Required reporting information includes name, permit #, phone number, date of harvest, and fish length.

Detailed information on procedures for completing and submitting fishing logs are below and will be provided with each Bonus Permit issued.
Submit a Harvest Report
SBBP Reporting Instructions (pdf, 45kb)

Striped Bass Fishing Log

Complete the daily log and mail or submit online by January 31, 2017.

Detailed information on procedures for completing and submitting fishing logs will be provided with each Bonus Permit issued.

If you require additional information concerning this program or any other striped bass issue, please contact the Division's Nacote Creek office at 609-748-2020 or sbbp@dep.nj.gov.
SBBP Reporting Instructions (pdf, 45kb)

PARTY/CHARTER BOATS

Applications for the 2016 SBBP are no longer available.

The Party/Charter Boat (PCBT) facet of the SBBP reopened on September 1, 2016. Data collected from this program has proved invaluable for managing striped bass. Qualified PCBTs will be issued a limited number of permits allowing customers to keep one Bonus Fish from 24" to less than 28". Only one permit may be issued to a customer per day.

PCBTs will be required to submit mandatory daily logbooks of their striped bass catch and will also be required to provide mandatory weekly reports of striped bass bonus harvest in order to ensure the quota is not exceeded. Complete instructions are below and will be provided with permits.

If you require additional information concerning this program or any other striped bass issue, please contact the Division's Nacote Creek office at 609-748-2020 or sbbp@dep.nj.gov.
SBBP Party/Charter Boat Reporting Instructions (pdf, 45kb)

NEW FOR 2016

Division of Fish and Wildlife staff are now responsible for conducting field interviews for the Access-Point Angler Intercept Survey (pdf, 600kb). As a participant of the Striped Bass Bonus Program, your cooperation with Division staff is expected and appreciated. Please be aware that Division staff may request a short interview upon arrival at the dock, ramp, or marina.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

arrow Striped Bass Party Boat and Tournament Sampling Summary
arrow Striped Bass Sampling on the F/V Queen Mary
arrow Striped Bass Tagging Program/Reporting (Am. Littoral Society)
arrow Rewards for Striped Bass Tags
arrow Striped Bass Temperature Study Tagging Project Information (pdf, 12kb)
arrow Saltwater Fishing Information
arrow Saltwater Fishing Regulations

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Department of Environmental Protection
P.O. Box 402
Trenton, NJ 08625-0402

Last Updated: November 1, 2016