NOAA Fisheries

June 2020 Council Update

hooks on a basket

The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council met virtually June 15 – 18, 2020.  The following is a brief overview of what was accomplished. Fishing Access and Possession Allowances in Madison-Swanson and Steamboat Lumps Marine Protected Areas The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council took final action on a document…

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Final Rule to Replace Historical Captain Permit

This final rule allows eligible historical captains the opportunity to replace their historical captain permits with standard federal charter/headboat for-hire permits for the reef fish and coastal migratory pelagic fisheries.  An eligible captain is one that had a valid, non-expired, or renewable historical captain permit as of October 25, 2018,…

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Modifications to the Commercial Greater Amberjack Trip Limit and Boundary for Reef Fish Management

greater amberjack

NOAA Fisheries announces a final rule modifying the greater amberjack commercial trip limit in the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) and adjusting the state/federal boundary of several areas for reef fish management. WHEN THIS RULE WILL TAKE EFFECT: Regulations will be effective May 14, 2020. WHAT THIS MEANS: The greater amberjack…

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Commercial Fishing For Aggregated Large Coastal And Hammerhead Sharks To Close

bull shark illustration

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) announced today that effective March 14 at 11:30p.m., commercial fishing for large coastal sharks in the aggregated large coastal and hammerhead groups (great hammerhead, scalloped hammerhead, smooth hammerhead, nurse shark, bull shark, lemon shark, sandbar shark, silky shark, spinner shark, and tiger…

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Final Rule to Increase the Annual Catch Target for the Red Snapper For-hire Component

Thu Bui holding caught red snapper

KEY MESSAGE: NOAA Fisheries announces a final rule to maintain a reduced buffer between the recreational for hire component annual catch limit (ACL) and recreational annual catch target (ACT) for Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) red snapper.  The reduced buffer would result in an increased ACT, which determines the length of…

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NOAA Fisheries Announces Changes to Allowable Fishing Effort in the Gulf of Mexico Shrimp Fishery

fishing boat at sea

KEY MESSAGE: • NOAA Fisheries announces an increase in the allowable amount of commercial shrimp trawl fishing effort in certain federal waters of the northern Gulf of Mexico. • The increased allowable effort represents a relative maximum increase in Gulf-wide shrimp fishing effort of 21 percent. However, there is no…

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NOAA: Turtle Excluder Device Required for all Skimmer Trawl Vessels 40 Feet and Greater

turtle excluder device with turtle escaping

In an effort to strengthen sea turtle conservation efforts, NOAA Fisheries published a final rule to require all skimmer trawl vessels 40 feet and greater in length to use turtle excluder devices (TEDs) in their nets.  A TED is a device that allows sea turtles to escape from trawl nets. …

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Fishing For Lane Snapper In Louisiana and Federal Waters To Close Dec. 13

fishing rods on a boat

The recreational and commercial seasons for lane snapper in Louisiana waters will close at 12:01 a.m. on December 13, 2019, and will remain closed until January 1, 2019. The decision was made by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Secretary Jack Montoucet, following notification by NOAA Fisheries that the Federal…

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Reminder Regarding the Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) Programs

red snapper

KEY MESSAGE: NOAA Fisheries is sending an end-of-year reminder to ensure IFQ participants are informed about end of year restrictions as well as subsequent start of year information. We are also providing additional information on the IFQ system functions and requirements to ensure participants clearly understand how to participate in…

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Commercial Harvest of King Mackerel in EEZ Western Zone Closes November 21

king mackerel swimming

Commercial harvest of king mackerel in federal waters of the Western Zone will close at 12:00 pm, central time, on November 21, 2019.  Commercial harvest will reopen at 12:01 am, central time, on July 1, 2020. WHY THIS CLOSURE IS HAPPENING: The 2019/2020 commercial Western Zone quota is 1,096,000 pounds.  Updated…

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