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FALL TOG UPDATES

With cooling waters, New England anglers begin to turn their sights to fall blackfishing.
By Toby Lapinski  |  September 4, 2018
FALL TOG UPDATES
It's time to start thinking about fall blackfishing, but keep in mind that regulations may have changed in your home waters so verify the regs before sailing! (Photo courtesy of Booked Off Charters)

The days are getting the shorter, the nights are getting cooler, and fall fishing is underway cross Southern New England. It seems like with the flipping of the calendar to the 9th month that fishermen come back out of their summer hiding places, looking for the next hot bite. While many anglers set their sights on the fall classics of striped bass and bluefish, it’s not too early to start thinking about tautog. And with this being one of eight eligible species in The Fisherman Magazine’s annual Dream Boat Challenge, they just might the key species in winning you that brand new Steiger Craft boat!

Keep in mind this fall that 2018 saw several bag and possession limit changes enacted, so be sure that you know the regulations BEFORE you hook that first tog! Connecticut does not open its fall season until October 10 (after closing its summer season on August 31), but we’ll get to them in a minute. In both Rhode Island and Massachusetts, the early-fall limits are as follows.

Massachusetts: August 1 – October 13, 3-fish bag limit, 16-inch minimum length. Maximum per-vessel bag limit is 10 fish for a private boat REGARDLESS of the number of anglers onboard.

Rhode Island: August 1 – October 14, 3-fish bag limit, 16-inch minimum length. Maximum per-vessel bag limit is 10 fish for a private boat REGARDLESS of the number of anglers onboard.

Connecticut: As noted, Connecticut does not open its fall season until October 10, but there is still something that you can do, right now, if you live in the Nutmeg State through the Long Island Sound Tautog Fishing Study. This Thursday, September 6, 2018 in Old Lyme, Connecticut at the Marine Fisheries Headquarters and Boating Division building, a multidisciplinary team of UConn scientists led by Pengfei Liu of the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Steven Swallow of the same department and Eric Schultz of the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology will investigate how fishermen’s behavior changes in response to new regulations on size limits, season length and numbers of fish that can be caught. The researchers will engage focus groups and survey anglers to learn how fishermen respond to restrictions on tautog (blackfish). Ultimately, they hope to determine the effectiveness of different management strategies intended to rebuild depleted fish populations.

Participation in the study allows you to express your opinion on the current recreational fishing in the state of Connecticut. Please contact eric.schultz@uconn.edu to participate in the study.

LONG ISLAND SOUND TAUTOG FISHING STUDY
Location:
Marine Fisheries Headquarters and Boating Division
333 Ferry Road
Old Lyme, CT
Time:
September 6, 2018
7:00 PM – 9:00 PM

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