RE: SHRIMP TRAWLING
Dr. Louis B. Daniel III, Director, Division of Marine Fisheries, hereby announces that effective at 12:01 A.M. Friday, June 1, 2012 the following restrictions apply to shrimp trawls (otter and skimmer trawls):
I. GEAR RESTRICTIONS:
No person may use a shrimp trawl in coastal fishing waters without an operational North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries (NCDMF) Bycatch Reduction Device(s) (BRD) properly installed in the tailbag of the net as outlined below.Operational NCDMF BRDs include:
A. Florida Fish Excluders (FFEs) [see Figure 1]:
1. The FFE must be installed on the outside of the trawl. The webbing of the trawl attached to the FFE cannot cover more than 50% of the FFE.
2. The escapement opening of the FFE must be diamond or oval in shape and must remain unobstructed at all times. Diamond shaped FFEs must measure at least 5 1/2" x 6 1/2" or 6" x 6", inside diameter.Oval shaped FFEs must measure at least 9" x 5", inside diameter (see Figure 1).
3. The apex (narrow end) of the FFE must face the headrope of the trawl.
4. FFEs shall have at least three (3) legs and no more than four (4) legs and measure at least 12 inches in length.
5. The opening of the FFE shall be installed on the outside of the tailbag of the trawl no further forward than 65% of the functional tailbag length from the tailbag tie-off, (Table 1).
6. At least one FFE shall be installed in each tailbag.
7. The center of the FFE escapement opening must be installed no more than 19 meshes from the top centerline of the tailbag.
8. FFEs must be constructed from aluminum, steel, or stainless steel round bar or tubing.
B. Eight inch (8") PVC "Sea Eagle" Fish Excluder:
1. The apex (narrow end) of the "Sea Eagle" must face the tailbag of the trawl.
2. The opening of the "Sea Eagle" shall be installed in the tailbag of the trawl no further forward than 38% of the functional tailbag length from the tailbag tie-off (Table 2).
3. At least one "Sea Eagle" shall be installed in each tailbag.
4. The center of the "Sea Eagle" escapement opening must be installed on either side of the tailbag between 0 and 15 meshes from the top centerline of the tailbag.
5. The escapement opening of the "Sea Eagle" must be unobstructed (the escapement flap must be free to move and a fish retention grate must not be present).
C. Large Mesh and Extended Funnel BRDs [LMEFE (see Figures 2 through 6; m=mesh, mm=millimeter)]:
These devices consist of a funnel of small mesh netting within a cylinder of large mesh netting, held open by one semi-rigid hoop, and are installed in the trawl net behind a National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) certified Turtle Excluder Device (TED).One side of the funnel is extended vertically to provide passage for shrimp to the tailbag and to create an area of reduced water flow to allow for fish escapement through the larger mesh outer netting.