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North Carolina Department of Environment Quality

NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Marine Fisheries - Proclamation FF-51-2016

Marine Fisheries

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XIII. Blueline Tilefish
It is unlawful to possess blueline tilefish except from May 1 through August 31 each year, subject to the bag limits in XVI.B.

XIV. Gray Triggerfish

A. It is unlawful to possess gray triggerfish less than 12 inches fork length.

B. The gray triggerfish recreational season opens January 1, 2016 and is subject to the bag limits in XVI.C.

XV. Wreckfish

A. It is unlawful to possess more than one wreckfish per vessel per day.

B. It is unlawful to possess wreckfish except from July 1 through August 31 of each year.

XVI. Combined Bag Limits

A. It is unlawful to possess more than five (5) vermilion snapper and ten (10) of the following species of snappers in the aggregate per person per day when the recreational season for each species is open: silk snapper, blackfin snapper, yellowtail snapper, cubera snapper, queen snapper, gray snapper, mutton snapper and lane snapper. 

B. It is unlawful to possess more than three (3) of the following species of groupers or tilefish in the aggregate per person per day when the recreational season for each species is open: gag grouper, black grouper, snowy grouper, misty grouper, red grouper, scamp, yellowedge grouper, yellowfin grouper, yellowmouth grouper; blueline tilefish, golden tilefish, and sand tilefish with the following restrictions:
1. No more than one may be a gag or black grouper (individually or in combination) per person per day;
2. No more than one golden tilefish per person per day.
3. No more than one snowy grouper per vessel per day.
C. It is unlawful to possess more than twenty (20) of the following species of fish in the aggregate per person per day when the recreational season for each species is open: whitebone porgy, jolthead porgy, knobbed porgy, saucereye porgy, scup (south of Cape Hatteras, 35° 15.0321’ N. Latitude), gray triggerfish, bar jack, almaco jack, banded rudderfish, lesser amberjack, white grunt, margate, sailor’s choice and spadefish.

XVII. Harvest Restrictions

A. It is unlawful to fail to use dehooking tools in the snapper grouper fisheries when the fish is to be released.

B. It is unlawful to fail to use non-stainless steel circle hooks when fishing for snapper grouper species using natural baits.

C. It is unlawful to possess any species of the snapper grouper complex without heads and fins intact as specified in 50 CFR Part §622.186.

Snapper Grouper Complex Species

Snappers Groupers   Triggerfish Grunts Sea Basses
Blackfin snapper Black grouper Wreckfish Gray triggerfish Cottonwick** Bank sea bass**
Cubera snapper Coney Yellowedge grouper Ocean triggerfish** Margate Black sea bass
Gray snapper Gag Yellowfin grouper   Sailors choice Rock sea bass
Lane snapper Goliath grouper* Yellowmouth grouper Jacks Tomtate  
Mutton snapper Graysby   Almaco jack White grunt  
Queen snapper Misty grouper Porgys Banded rudderfish    
Red snapper* Nassau grouper* Jolthead porgy Bar jack Spadefishes  
Silk snapper Red grouper Knobbed porgy Greater amberjack Spadefish  
Vermilion snapper Red hind Longspine porgy** Lesser amberjack    
Yellowtail snapper Rock hind Red porgy   Wrasses  
  Scamp Saucereye porgy Tilefishes Hogfish  
  Speckled hind* Scup Blueline tilefish    
  Snowy grouper Whitebone porgy Golden tilefish    
  Warsaw grouper*   Sand tilefish    
*Harvest prohibited;
**Ecosystem component species (not subject to annual catch limits or management measures)


XVIII. 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, 03M .0506 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. The intent of this proclamation is to maintain North Carolina’s compliance with the requirements of amendments to the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region. Effective October 1, 2008, the provisions found in this proclamation were eliminated from N.C. Fisheries Commission Rule 15A NCAC 03M .0506 in order to allow the Fisheries Director the latitude to comply with changes that occur in the requirements without suspending portions of the rule.

D. Provisions for multiple day trip possessions for vessels without a valid Federal South Atlantic Snapper-Grouper Permit are found in 50 CFR Part §622.187(c). This federal rule states in part that a person aboard a charter vessel or headboat on a trip that spans more than 24 hours may possess no more than two daily bag limits of species other than red porgy. A person aboard a headboat on a trip that spans more than 48 hours and who can document that fishing was conducted on at least three days may possess no more than three bag limits of species other than red porgy. Privately-operated vessels are allowed only one bag limit.

E. Effective January 27, 2014, federal rules are amended to allow captains and crew of for-hire vessels with valid Federal South Atlantic Charter/Headboat Snapper-Grouper Permits to retain bag limit quantities of all snapper-grouper species during the open recreational season.

F. Vessels fishing in or harvesting fish from the EEZ are required to carry the appropriate federal permit when operating as a for-hire vessel. See 50 CFR Part §622.170(b).

G. In accordance with N.C. General Statute 113-221.1(c) all persons who may be affected by proclamations issued by the Fisheries Director are under a duty to keep themselves informed of current proclamations.

H. Contact the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries, P.O. Box 769, Morehead City, NC 28557, phone 252-726-7021 or 800-682-2632 for more information, or visit the division website at http://www.ncmarinefisheries.net. For a quick guide to snapper grouper regulations, please see http://safmc.net/regulations/regulation-fact-sheetsother-resources/

I. This proclamation supersedes proclamation FF-40-2016, dated August 31, 2016. It closes recreational harvest of greater amberjack and hogfish (hog snapper) due to the recreational annual catch limits for each species being met. Please see the following NOAA Fishery Bulletins for more information: http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov/fishery_bulletins/2016/080/index.html and http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov/fishery_bulletins/2016/079/index.html.

Braxton signature

 

 

Braxton C. Davis, Director
DIVISION OF MARINE FISHERIES

November 28, 2016
2:00 P.M.
FF-51-2016

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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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