DEC: Party boat anglers caught dumping illegal fish in Montauk Harbor

State marine enforcement officers issued eight tickets and 22 warnings last month after people aboard a party boat were spotted throwing “hundreds of pounds” of illegal fish overboard in Montauk Harbor, authorities said.

The boat was later found to have hundreds more undersized and over-the-limit fish — a combined 1,000 fish in all, authorities said last week.

The Department of Environmental Conservation, in an email, said a marine enforcement unit was patrolling Montauk Harbor Aug. 31 when officers confronted fishermen on the boat, Fin Chaser, who were tossing fish overboard. Anglers ignored orders to stop, the DEC said

Once at the Star Island Yacht Club dock in Montauk, officers discovered 500 fish in 17 coolers. They issued tickets and warnings for possession of undersized black sea bass and fluke, excess possession of sea bass and scup, failure to stop dumping on command and an incomplete vessel trip report.

DEC rules for the day allowed each fisherman to possess up to three black sea bass and three fluke, and 30 porgies. More than 500 fish were also estimated to have been thrown overboard in the harbor, DEC spokesman Benning DeLaMater said.

The agency, he said, “has received a number of complaints from the fishing community concerning over-the-limit sea bass fishing of late,” but he noted the action was spotted during a “routine patrol.”

The agency said 46 people were fishing aboard the Fin Chaser, which can carry more than 50 passengers. Anglers pay $90 for inshore fishing for…

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