Posted by bubba on November 11, 2019 at 23:40:42:
Extended Implications of Hartwell “Big Striper” Die Offs
Note: Refer to ASC data at the bottom of this post
As everyone who has fished for Stripers on Lake Hartwell well know, there have been multiple fish die offs over the past few years. It is a documented fact (Ga DNR and ASC Tournament data) that these die offs have primarily affected the large Stripers and while we are still catching Stripers, they are relatively small.
To me the major intrigue to fishing for Stripers, an Ocean fish transferred to a local lake, is the possibility of hooking into a 20+ pound fish, doing battle to get it into the boat, and finally to hopefully release it alive for another fisherperson’s day. This intrigue has been significantly diminished by the large Striper die offs and has also directly diminished the participation in the activities of the Appalachian Striper Club.
ASC Membership is trending down, meeting attendance is trending down (at October and November meetings only 5 members at each), Teams entering Tournaments is trending Down, and Tournament Payouts are trending down. Finally, the Club portion of Tournament entry fees ($2.50/team) has a net ZERO position this year (through November)and, with the decreasing meeting attendance numbers, the “split the pot raffle” fundraiser is very weak in supporting documented club activities. My conclusion is that all of these together seem to indicate to me that the club is in a “death spiral”.
The December 9,2019 meeting is a critical checkpoint for the ASC. According to club bylaws we must, for 2020, nominate and vote on officers (4 people), members of the Tournament Committee (7 people), members of the Wildlife Committee (5 people), and vote on 2020 Tournament Schedule and tournament Rules. In addition, we must begin the 2020 membership registration process (memberships must be paid before a tournament can be fished- Jan-Feb “grace period” eliminated). If the membership level and meeting attendance is not adequate to support 2020 activities then our options become few and probably harsh.
There are still fish to be caught and fellowship to be enjoyed. Let's not let those opportunities disappear!
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