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North Carolina Department of Environment Quality

NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Marine Fisheries - 12 2017 NR Archives

Marine Fisheries

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Release: Immediate
Contact: Patricia Smith
Date: Dec. 4, 2017
Phone: 252-726-7021

Peer review workshop for regional
southern flounder stock assessment set

MOREHEAD CITY — Staff with the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries will hold a three-day, in-person workshop Dec. 12-14 with scientists who are peer reviewing a draft assessment of the southeast regional southern flounder stock.

The workshop will be held at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel New Bern Riverfront, 100 Middle St., New Bern.

The discussions begin at 10 a.m. on Dec. 12 and 9 a.m. on Dec. 13 and will be open to the public these two days. The open sessions allow the public to observe the peer review process, but do not include a public comment period.

The Dec. 14 discussions will be in a closed session to allow the peer reviewers to deliberate and complete a draft version of their peer review report, and for the stock assessment workgroup to address any outstanding tasks.

A stock assessment is a scientific analysis that uses information gathered from commercial and recreational fishermen and data from on-the-water scientific sampling and observations to determine the health of a fish population and predict how that population may respond to different management measures.

A peer review is an evaluation of scientific work by independent and unbiased experts. A peer review of a fisheries stock assessment evaluates the validity of the data used, the appropriateness of the assessment model used and the rationale of any assumptions used to determine if the science conducted is adequate for use in fisheries management. Peer review scientists have not been involved in or had input into the development of the stock assessment and have no stake in its outcome.

In the past, the division has not held in-person, public peer review workshops. This new peer review process is meant to improve the communication between the peer reviewers and division stock assessment scientists and to improve public understanding of fisheries stock assessments.


Release: Immediate
Contact: Patricia Smith
Date: Dec. 4, 2017
Phone: 252-726-7021

Marine Fisheries continues red snapper carcass
collection through extended mini-season

MOREHEAD CITY — The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries will continue to collect red snapper carcasses from recreational fishermen through an extension of this year’s mini-season to help federal officials better assess the population and health of red snapper.

The National Marine Fisheries Service announced it will reopen the recreational red snapper season for a third, three-day weekend (Friday, Saturday, Sunday) Dec. 8-11 with a one-fish bag limit and no size limit. The agency originally opened recreational red snapper harvest for two, three-day weekends in November; however, preliminary estimates indicate that the catch limit was not caught, likely due to inclement weather. To read the National Marine Fisheries Service bulletin on the reopening, go here.

The division will maintain freezers at 20 locations along the coast where fishermen can take their carcasses. In return, the angler will receive a citation (certificate) from the N.C. Saltwater Fishing Tournament.

For a map of these locations, go here.

Fishermen should leave the head and tail intact on the fish carcass. Instructions on how to deposit the carcasses are posted on each freezer. Anglers will be asked to give information related to how and when the fish was caught. Fishermen also will be asked for their names and addresses to receive their reward and citation.
 
Division biologists will measure the fish, determine the sex, if possible, and remove the otoliths (ear bones) to determine the fish’s age. The information collected will be provided to the National Marine Fisheries Service for use in future red snapper stock assessments. Stock assessments rely on a variety of information, including biological data, to provide an understanding of a species’ population.

For specific regulations for recreational red snapper harvest, go here. Also, recreational fishermen are encouraged to voluntarily report their landings electronically through the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council’s MyFishCount web portal here.

Regulations for the commercial mini-season, which opened Nov. 2 with a 75-pound gutted weight trip limit, remain unchanged. It will close Dec. 31 or when the commercial quota is met (whichever comes first). Division biologists will obtain data from commercially-caught red snapper at the fish houses. Commercially-caught carcasses should not be left in the freezers listed above.

For more information on the division’s Red Snapper Carcass Collection Program, go here, or contact Carole Willis, division sportfishing specialist, at 252-808-8081 or Carole.Y.Willis@ncdenr.gov.


Release: Immediate
Contact: Patricia Smith
Date: Dec. 1, 2017
Phone: 252-726-7021

Public hearing scheduled on proposed
shellfish leases in Carteret County

MOREHEAD CITY — The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries will hold a public hearing on proposed shellfish leases in Carteret County at 6 p.m. Dec. 20 at N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries’ Central District Office, 5285 Highway 70 West, Morehead City.

Duke Marine Lab (Thomas Schultz, agent) of Beaufort has applied to lease 0.65 acres of shellfish bottom and water column near Tar Landing Bay.

Roysters N.C., LLC. (Roy Emerson, agent) of Greenville has applied to lease 1.67 acres of shellfish bottom and water column near North River.

Mera Brothers Oysters, LLC. (Eduardo Mera, agent) of Raleigh has applied for shellfish bottom and water column leases at two sites near Core Sound/Oyster Creek. One is 1.25 acres and the other 1.67 acres.

Maps of the proposed leases, with corresponding lease numbers, can be found here .

The public may comment on the proposed leases at the meeting or in writing. Written comments will be accepted until 5 p.m. Dec. 19 and should be submitted to the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries, Shellfish Leases, P.O. Box 769, Morehead City, N.C. 28557.

The application file and biologist report for the proposed leases are available for inspection during office hours at the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries’ Headquarters Office at 3441 Arendell St. in Morehead City.

For more information, contact Michael Graven, with the division’s Habitat and Enhancement Section, at 252-808-8061 or Michael.Graven@ncdenr.gov.

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N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries • 3441 Arendell Street • Morehead City, NC 28557 • 252-726-7021 or 800-682-2632

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