RE: SCUP - COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATIONS - ATLANTIC OCEAN- NORTH OF CAPE HATTERAS
Dr. Louis B. Daniel III, Director, Division of Marine Fisheries, hereby announces that effective at 12:01 A.M., Friday, January 1, 2016, the following restrictions will apply to the commercial scup fishery in the Atlantic Ocean north of Cape Hatteras (35° 15.3’ N. Latitude):
I. SIZE AND HARVEST LIMITS
A. It is unlawful to take, possess, buy, sell or offer for sale scup less than 9 inches total length.
B. It is unlawful to possess, sell or offer for sale more than 50,000 pounds of scup per trip during the Winter I commercial harvest period, ending at 6:00 P.M., Saturday, April 30, 2016.
II. TRAWL MESH REQUIREMENTS
It is unlawful to use a trawl to take scup unless the stretched mesh length of the meshes within 75 meshes of the end of the codend is at least five inches.
III. 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 Fisheries Director under his delegated authority pursuant to N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rule 15A NCAC 03H .0103.
C. In accordance with N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rule 15A NCAC 03I .0101(5)(e) fish shall be considered landed when the fish reach the shore or structure connected to the shore.
D. In accordance with N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rule 15A NCAC 03I .0113 it is unlawful for any license under Chapter 113, Subchapter IV of the N.C. General Statutes to refuse to allow the Fisheries Director or his agents to obtain biological data, harvest information, or other statistical data necessary or useful to the conservation and management of marine and estuarine resources from fish in the licensee's possession.
E. This proclamation is issued pursuant to action taken by the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission establishing trip limits for the commercial scup fishery in the Winter I harvest period of 2016. The intent of this proclamation is to maintain North Carolina’s compliance with the requirements of the joint Mid-Atlantic Fisheries Management Council-Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission Summer Flounder, Scup and Black Sea Bass Fisheries Management Plan.
F. 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.
G. Contact N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries, P.O. Box 769, Morehead City, NC 28557
252-726-7021 or 800-682-2632 for more information or visit the division website at http://ncmarinefisheries.net
H. This proclamation sets the harvest period and limits for the commercial scup Winter I harvest period. This commercial harvest period will close at 6:00 P.M. April 30, 2016 or when the quota is reached, whichever occurs first.
December 16, 2015