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N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources

NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Marine Fisheries - News Release Archives - Dec. 2012

Marine Fisheries

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News Release Archives - December 2012


Release: Immediate
Date: Dec. 20, 2012
Contact: Patricia Smith
Phone: 252-726-7021

Changes to Harvest of American Shad to Take Place Beginning in 2013

MOREHEAD CITY — Fishermen should be aware that changes in the American shad recreational creel limits and commercial seasons will go into effect Jan. 1.

The daily bag limit for American shad will go down to one fish per person in the Albemarle Sound/Roanoke River system and the Neuse River system. This one fish would count toward the combined daily creel limit of 10 American and hickory shad per person.

In the Cape Fear River system, the daily bag limit for American shad will go down to five fish per person within the combined daily creel limit of 10 American and hickory shad per person.

There will be no bag limit changes in the Tar River/Pamlico River system.

Commercial harvest of American shad will only be allowed from Feb. 15 through April 14 in the Albemarle Sound and Roanoke, Tar, Pamlico and Neuse river systems.

Commercial harvest of American shad will begin Feb. 20 and run through April 11 in the Cape Fear River system.

Commercial harvest of hickory shad in all systems will begin as usual on Jan. 1 and run through April 14.

The changes apply to joint and coastal waters, which are managed by the N.C. Marine Fisheries commission. For specifics on these regulations see proclamation FF-70-2012 at http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/proclamations.

The changes in regulations are a requirement of an American Shad Sustainable Fishery Plan, approved by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission Dec. 13. The plan includes biological thresholds for each system. If these thresholds are reached, additional changes in management may be required.

The ASMFC required all states to adopt such a plan by Jan. 1, 2013 in order to continue the American shad fishery.  

North Carolina’s draft plan was presented to the Marine Fisheries’ Commission advisory committees for public input and comment in September. The results of public comment were presented to the Commission during their November 7-9 business meeting in Morehead City.

For more information, contact Michelle Duval with the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries at 252-808-8011 or Michelle.Duval@ncdenr.gov or Kathy Rawls at 252-264-3911 or Kathy.Rawls@ncdenr.gov.

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Release: Immediate
Date: Dec. 20, 2012
Contact: Patricia Smith
Phone: 252-726-7021

Short Recreational Black Sea Bass Season Opens Jan. 1
North of Cape Hatteras

MOREHEAD CITY — A two-month recreational black sea bass fishing season will open Jan. 1 in both federal and North Carolina waters north of Cape Hatteras.

During this open season, the minimum size limit will remain at 12.5 inches, but the bag limit will decrease from 25 fish to 15 fish per person, per day.

The season will close Feb. 28, and regulations for the remainder of 2013 will be determined by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission at a later date.

A scheduled Nov. 1 through Dec. 31 season was cancelled this year after landings estimates indicated that the recreational harvest limit had been exceeded.

This closure prompted concerns about the black sea bass stock assessment and current accountability measures that could result in a recreational fishery closure in 2014.

The recreational black sea bass fishery south of Cape Hatteras is managed by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council and will remain closed until June 1.

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