RE: SPINY DOGFISH-COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATIONS
Dr. Louis B. Daniel III, Director, Division of Marine Fisheries, hereby announces that effective at 12:01 P.M. Friday, February 28, 2014 the following restrictions will apply to the harvest of spiny dogfish in the waters of North Carolina.
I. HARVEST LIMITS, AREAS AND TRIP LIMITS
During the period beginning at 6:01 P.M., Friday, February 28, 2014 and ending at 6:00 P.M., Wednesday, April 30, 2014, the following trip limits apply:
BROWNS INLET - NORTH – No commercial fishing operation, regardless of the number of people involved, may possess more than 10,000 pounds of spiny dogfish per day east and north of a line beginning at a point 34° 37.0000’N – 77° 15.000’W; running southeasterly to a point 34° 32.0000’N – 77° 10.0000’W.
The spiny dogfish fishery will close immediately after the Director issues a public notice that the quota of spiny dogfish has been landed, or at 6:00 P.M., April 30, 2014, whichever occurs first.
II. GENERAL INFORMATION
A. This proclamation is issued under the authority of N.C.G.S. 113-170.4; 113-170.5; 113-182; 113-221.1; 143B-289.52; and N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rules 15A NCAC 03H .0103 and 03M.0512.
B. It is unlawful to violate the provisions of any proclamation issued by the Director under his delegated authority pursuant to N.C. Fisheries Commission Rule 15A NCAC 03H .0103.
C. The NMFS Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan prohibits the use of gill nets greater that 5 inches or less than 7 inches stretched mesh at night from November 1 through April 30 in all Atlantic Ocean state waters.
D. The NMFS Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan prohibits the use of gill nets, greater than or equal to 7 inch stretched mesh, at night from December 16 through April 14, unless tie downs are used in Atlantic Ocean state waters from the NC/VA border (36° 33’ N) to Cape Lookout (34° 35.4’N). Tie downs shall be spaced not more than 15 feet apart along the float line, not more than 48 inches in length from the point where it connects to the float line to the point where it connects to the lead line. Night is any time one hour after sunset and one hour prior to sunrise.
E. The intent of this proclamation is to allow North Carolina to comply with the requirements of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission Spiny Dogfish Fisheries Management Plan (FMP) and to manage the commercial spiny dogfish fishery under the state quota system established by the FMP. North Carolina is operating under a state quota and the trip limit and harvest periods are intended to constrain the harvest to the quota.
F. The different harvest limits for Browns Inlet-south and north are intended to allow a portion of the quota to be harvested for research and educational purposes. Finfish dealers are required to possess a valid Spiny Dogfish Dealer Permit and adhere to the daily reporting requirements in Proclamation FF-65-2013, dated December 10, 2013.
February 27, 2014