RE: RED DRUM-COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATONS
Dr. Louis B. Daniel III, Director, Division of Marine Fisheries, hereby announces that effective at 12:01 A.M. Thursday, May 23, 2013, the following restrictions apply to the red drum fishery for commercial purposes:
I. HARVEST LIMIT
A. The May through August harvest limit is 100,000 pounds. During the September through April period, the harvest limit is 150,000 pounds.
B. It is unlawful to possess more than ten (10) red drum per day taken in a commercial fishing operation, regardless of the number of individuals or vessels involved.
C. Subject to I. B. above, it is unlawful to possess more than one red drum per day in a commercial fishing operation unless the weight of the combined catch of other finfish species (except menhaden) exceeds the weight of the red drum retained.
II. TRANSFER AND SALE
A. It is unlawful to transfer red drum from one vessel to another.
B. All red drum that are sold shall be sold to a licensed North Carolina fish dealer and the red drum shall be sold prior to the sale of the other finfish species component of the landed catch.
C. All legally-possessed finfish species taken in a commercial operation also taking red drum shall remain in the possession of the harvester and be transported together up to the point of sale.
III. GENERAL INFORMATION
A. This proclamation is issued under the authority of N.C.G.S. 170.4; 113-170.5; 113-182; 113-221.1; 143B-289.52; and N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rules 15A NCAC 03H .0103, 03M .0501 and 03M .0512.
B. It is unlawful to violate the provisions of any proclamation issued by the Fisheries Director under his delegated authority pursuant to N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rule 15A NCAC 03H .0103.
C. This action is being taken to open the May through September harvest period as allowed in the N.C. Red Drum Fishery Management Plan. The annual harvest limit for the fishing year September through August remains 250,000 pounds. It is unlawful to possess red drum less than 18 inches total length or greater than 27 inches total length.
D. This proclamation supersedes Proclamation FF-47-2010 issued April 26, 2010 and is only an update of that proclamation. No changes have been made to commercial red drum harvest restrictions.
May 21, 2013