Black Bass Study
Mark Scott, a biologist with The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, says the research may create changes in the fishing regulations. "We've been tagging bass on the New for 4-5 years and one of the important things we've found is fish move out of the catch and release section. That's why we're thinking about having a sit down with biologists and maybe change the regulations, which could be any number of different things. We'll probably have some public meetings, I'm sure we will, and get public input."
One thing the fishing public will agree on is the fishing is good on the New, but that's not the only river in the state biologists are monitoring the black bass population.
"We've been tagging bass on the South Branch and the New. We've also looked at the Greenbrier when we can get on it. On the smaller rivers, it's hard to get the big oat on. We've handled between 250-500 bass. In a year, I'll handle close to 1,000 bass on the New each year." says Scott.
And like anglers on this stretch of catch and release, every one of those bass went straight back into the New River so they're there to be caught. But just because they get put back in one spot doesn't mean that's where they'll be caught.
"We've got a 12 mile catch and release section, and we had a bass tagged here at Sandstone Falls last Spring, and it was caught 2 months later about 20 miles downstream, maybe more. It's surprising how far they travel." says Scott.
So grab your pole, your bait and your appetite for a good time and hit the New for some awesome black bass fishing.
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