Is "no take" considered catch and release? Or just no fishing at all?
That is a great question, and an interesting one to me, because I mostly like to catch fish, and only rarely keep one to eat.
Here is a quote from the DFG website on the lover's cove marine conservation area:
"Take of all living marine resources is prohibited, except for recreational take by hook-and-line from the Cabrillo Mole or take pursuant to maintenance of artificial structures inside the conservation area per any required federal, state and local permits, or as otherwise authorized by the department."
I thought that might mean that one could catch and release fish. If that were true, MLPAs could become a C&R fishermen's dream. So I just called Steve Wertz at DFG and asked him. He was very nice and helpful and informative. Steve explained that if you are in a "no take" marine zone then you cannot have lines in the water, not even for C&R fishing. They define "take" as pursuing fish, so C&R is pursuing fish. Thus C&R is not allowed where "take" is not allowed. If you are in a zone where fishing for some species is allowed (e.g. bonito) but others are not allowed (e.g. WSB), and you catch a WSB which you promptly release, you are not in violation. If you caught a WSB in a legal area, and then need to cross a MLPA where WSB is not allowed, you may only transit. Do not fish or stop in that MLPA with a WSB in posession.