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North Carolina Department of Environment Quality

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

Marine Fisheries

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Contact: Patricia Smith
Phone: 252-726-7021
Release: Immediate
Date: Oct. 10, 2012

Pamlico Sound, Core Sound Reopen to Flounder Gill Nets Monday

MOREHEAD CITY — The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries will reopen certain shallow water areas of Pamlico Sound to flounder gill net fishing Monday with additional time restrictions.

The division will also reopen Core Sound, Back Sound, The Straits and North River to the use of large-mesh gill nets Monday with a maximum 1,000-yard gill net length restriction.

Large-mesh gill nets are generally used to target southern flounder.

The Pamlico Sound Gill Net Restricted Area closed to large-mesh gill net sets Sept. 26 after the division documented four interactions with sea turtles in one week. This was in contrast to last year’s fishing season, when no turtle interactions were observed.

The division has consulted with the National Marine Fisheries Service and determined that it can now reopen these waters and still remain within conditions of an incidental take permit. The division will limit fishing to overnight soaks Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights, due to the continued presence of sea turtles in these waters and in an attempt to prolong the fishing season.

By federal rule, Pamlico Sound closes to large-mesh gill net fishing from Sept. 1 through Nov. 30 each year. However, since 2000, the National Marine Fisheries Service has allowed a highly-monitored, large-mesh gill net fishery during the closure in limited areas of the sound under a series of incidental take permits.

The division is bound by the conditions of this permit and will be required to close the waters again if interactions continue.

Core Sound, Back Sound, The Straits and North River closed to large-mesh gill nets May 13 due to increased interactions with sea turtles. The Marine Fisheries Commission voted to extend this closure for the rest of the summer and early fall after the division had determined that these waters accounted for the majority of the sea turtle interactions the state had documented since implementing a statewide large-mesh gill net observer program in 2010.

The commission voted at its August meeting to reopen southern Core Sound, Back Sound, The Straits and North River to the use of large-mesh gill nets Oct. 15-May 7. However, due to the continued presence of sea turtles in these waters, and in an attempt to prolong fishing in these waters, the division will limit the maximum gill net yardage to 1,000 yards.

The division is bound by the conditions of a sea turtle lawsuit settlement agreement and will be required to close the waters again if interactions with sea turtles continue.

Proclamations implementing these openings were issued today. For the specific regulations, go to http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/proclamations and click on M-51-2012for the Pamlico Sound Gill Net Restricted Area and M-52-2012 for Core Sound, Back Sound, The Straits and North River.

For more information, contact the division’s Protected Resources Section chief Chris Batsavage at 252-808-8009 or Chris.Batsavage@ncdenr.gov.

nr-42-2012


Contact: Karla Gore
Phone: 727-824-5305; FAX 727-824-5308
Email: Karla.Gore@noaa.gov
Release: Immediate
Date: Oct. 3, 2012

NOAA Fisheries Announces New Regulations for Golden Tilefish
in the South Atlantic

Regulatory Amendment 12 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery
of the South Atlantic Region


NOAA Fisheries will publish a final rule on October 9, 2012, which increases annual catch limits and modifies recreational accountability measures for golden tilefish in the South Atlantic. 

A new assessment indicates the golden tilefish stock is healthy and annual catch limits can be increased. The rule sets the annual catch limit at 541,295 pounds gutted weight for the commercial sector, and 3,019 fish for the recreational sector.

Commercial harvest of golden tilefish will re-open on October 9, 2012, and will close if the annual catch limit of 541,295 pounds gutted weight is met or projected to be met before December 31, 2012. The commercial trip limit will be 300 pounds gutted weight. The recreational season will not re-open in fishing year 2012 because the annual catch limit was met earlier in the year.

The final rule modifies the accountability measures for the golden tilefish recreational sector. The recreational sector would close when the annual catch limit is projected to be met, and recreational landings would be monitored in the year following an overage. If high landings persist, the fishing season would be shortened as necessary. More information, including Frequently Asked Questions, can be found online at: http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov.

This summary is not a substitute for the actual regulations. We encourage you to read the full text of the regulations, available at http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov.

FB12-74

 

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