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Marine Fisheries - News Release Archives - Mar 2013

Marine Fisheries

SOUTHEAST FISHERY BULLETIN (South Atlantic)
Release: Immediate
Date: Mar. 12, 2013
Contact: Rick DeVictor
Phone: 727-824-5305

NOAA Fisheries Seeks Comments on Proposed Actions for
Red Snapper in the South Atlantic

Comment Period Ends May 13, 2013

 

NOAA Fisheries is seeking public comment on proposed actions in Amendment 28 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (Amendment 28). The notice of availability published in the Federal Register on March 12, 2013 (78 FR 15672). Comments must be submitted by May 13, 2013.

The actions in Amendment 28, if implemented, would establish (1) a process to determine if a fishing season will occur each year, which would include specification of the allowable harvest and season lengths for the commercial and recreational sectors; (2) an equation to determine the annual catch limit amount for each sector; and (3) management measures if fishing is allowed. It is important to note that the proposed actions, if they are implemented, only specify a process to determine if a season would occur.

Process to Determine if a Season is to Occur
If NOAA Fisheries determines that the estimated landings and dead discards that occurred in the previous year are equal to or greater than the acceptable biological catch for the current year, no harvest would be allowed and the annual catch limit would remain equal to zero. However, if NOAA Fisheries determines that the previous year's estimated landings and dead discards are less than the acceptable biological catch, then the annual catch limit would be set to the amount of harvest that may be allowed for the current year.  

Equation to Determine the Allowable Harvest
If a season is allowed, NOAA Fisheries would calculate the season length for each sector based on an evaluation of historical harvest levels and fishing effort. The proposed equation is contained in Section 2.0 of the amendment.  

Management Measures
If a red snapper season is allowed, Amendment 28 proposes the following measures for the commercial sector:

  • Opening date of second Monday in July.
  • The season would end when the annual catch limit is projected to be met.
  • Elimination of the current 20 inch minimum size limit during the fishing season.
  • Commercial trip limit of 75 pounds gutted weight.

If a red snapper season is allowed, Amendment 28 proposes the following measures for the recreational sector:

  • Opening date of second Friday in July. The season would only consist of weekends (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday). The end date would be announced at the same time the opening day is announced.
  • Elimination of the current 20 inch minimum size limit during the fishing season.
  • A recreational bag limit of one fish per person per day.

Request for Comments
Comments on Amendment 28 must be received no later than May 13, 2013, to be considered by NOAA Fisheries.  

How to Submit Comments
You may submit comments either electronically or through mail. Comments received through other means may not be considered.

Electronic Submissions:
Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal.
Go to: www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2013-0040
Click on "Comment Now!". Complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.
Attachments to electronic comments (up to 10 MB) will be accepted in Microsoft Word, Excel, WordPerfect, or Adobe PDF file formats only.  

Mail:
Rick DeVictor
NOAA Fisheries, Southeast Regional Office
Sustainable Fisheries Division
263 13th Avenue South
St. Petersburg, FL 33701-5505  

All comments will be part of the public record, and generally posted for public viewing to www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying information (for example, name, address, etc.) voluntarily submitted by the commenter, may be publicly accessible. Do not submit confidential business information or otherwise sensitive or protected information. Anonymous comments will be accepted.  

More information, including Frequently Asked Questions for Amendment 28, can be found online at: http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov/sf/SASnapperGrouperHomepage.htm.  

FB13-020


Release: Immediate
Date: Mar. 12, 2013
Contact: Patricia Smith
Phone: 252-726-7021

Public Meeting Slated on Proposed Smooth Dogfish Regulatory Changes

MOREHEAD CITY — North Carolina fishermen will have opportunity to voice their views on changes to smooth dogfish regulations proposed by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission.

The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries will hold a meeting at 6 p.m. March 21 at the Dare County Administrative Building, Room 168, 954 Marshall Collins Drive, Manteo. The division will accept public comments on behalf of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission regarding Draft Addendum II to the Interstate Fishery Management Plan for Atlantic Coastal Sharks.

The draft addendum proposes measures that allow commercial fishermen to process smooth dogfish at sea so the total weight of smooth dogfish fins landed or found on board a vessel does not exceed 12 percent of the total weight of smooth dogfish carcasses landed or found onboard the vessel.

Also, the draft addendum proposes several options to preserve the historical distribution of smooth dogfish landings prior to the implementation of a federal quota for smooth dogfish and to ensure consistency between the state and federal plans. Options include establishing state shares based on historical landings from 1998 to 2007, or from 1998 to 2010 or on a five-year moving average.

Related issues include whether to allow states quota transfers and quota rollovers and whether to set possession limits.

The full draft addendum is attached.

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission also will accept written comments on the draft addendum until 5 p.m. March 28. Written comments should be sent by regular mail to: Marin Hawk, FMP Coordinator, 1050 N. Highland St., Suite 200 AN, Arlington, Va. 22201. Written comments can also be sent by fax to 703-842-0741 or by email to comments@asmfc.org with the subject line “Smooth Dogfish Draft Addendum II.”

For more information, contact Holly White, with the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries, at 252-473-5734 or Holly.White@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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