CCA CAL partners with the Hubbs Sea World Research Institute (HSWRI) by providing insurance for the hatchery grow out pens for the white seabass hatchery program. CCA CAL is working with the Dick Laub Fisheries Replenishment Program, HSWRI, CDFW, as well as the marine science community and recreational anglers on getting the next species authorized forrelease, and is conducting a survey of coastal recreational anglers on what species are important to them.
Grow Out Pens
There are currently 13 grow-out pens that are operating up and down the Southern California Coast, from Santa Barbara to San Diego, including 2 facilities on Catalina Island. These facilities are designed, constructed, and operated by volunteers associated with angler groups and non-profit organizations like CCA CAL and HSWRI. These hatchery fish are transferred to these pens at around the age of 3 to 4 months, and will usually remain there until they grow to about 9 inches in length or larger, depending on conditions. And they cannot be released until they are cleared by the CDFW fish pathologist for release. This photo is from CDFW.
A Little History…
The first experimental release of more than 2,000 juvenile white seabass took place in October of 1986 in Mission Bay. Since then, the program has released over one million juvenile white seabass into embayments and near-shore coastal areas in Southern California. In October of 1995, the Leon Raymond Hubbard, Jr. Marine Fish Hatchery in Carlsbad, CA became operational with the hatchery capable of producing more than 350,000 juvenile white seabass annually.
Each fish is tagged internally in the cheek with a small, stainless steel coded wire tag. The purpose of this tag is to identify hatchery-reared fish from wild individuals and is not visible externally on the fish and can only be located by a specialized detection device. Some of the information obtained from tagged individuals includes their movement, diet, growth, and most importantly, survival rate. To date, we have received limited information, especially from legal-sized (≥28″) individuals.
We Need Your Help!
We would appreciate your help in saving and freezing heads of adult white seabass with the stones/ear bines intact. We will scan these heads for tags, and collect the appropriate age and genetic stock information. To facilitate data interpretation, heads should be bagged and labeled with your name, phone number, date and location of capture. Heads can be dropped off at one of the many freezer locations throughout Southern California. We will be checking and removing the heads from the freezers on a regular basis. If we do find a tagged fish, we will notify you promptly.
We are always looking for volunteers to help out with each one of our grow out pens. If you are interested in helping out and volunteering with us, please fill out our volunteer form below!