Bass, Black Sea – U.S. Atlantic, Bottom Trawl
Black Sea Bass are found along the U.S. East Coast from Cape Cod, Massachusetts to Cape Canaveral, Florida, and in the Gulf of Mexico. They prefer structural habitats such as shipwrecks, artificial reefs, and oyster or mussel beds. They begin life as females and become males by the time they are five years old.
There are two populations of Black Sea Bass in the U.S. Atlantic: Mid-Atlantic and South Atlantic, with the dividing line at Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. Currently, both populations are healthy and fishing mortality rates are sustainable. The U.S. Atlantic Black Sea Bass fisheries are well managed.
However, fishing with bottom trawls causes extensive damage to important ocean habitat and catches large numbers of unintended species, including loggerhead sea turtles.