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NOAA Fisheries Announces Changes to Groundfish Common Pool Trip Limits

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
December 22, 2016

NOAA Fisheries is doubling the common pool possession and trip limits for Southern New England/Mid-Atlantic yellowtail flounder for the remainder of the fishing year, through April 30, 2017, effective December 22 at 4:15 pm.

Days-at-sea limits increase from 250 pounds to 500 pounds.

Trip limits increase from 500 pounds to 1,000 pounds.

Because the common pool fishery has caught less than 5 percent of its annual quota of Southern New England/Mid Atlantic (SNE/MA) yellowtail flounder, we are increasing possession and trip limits for this stock to provide additional fishing opportunities for the common pool fishery to catch its quota.

For Georges Bank cod, we are maintaining the reduced catch limits currently in place for the remainder of the fishing year (through April 30, 2017). Because the common pool fishery has already caught 76 percent of its annual quota, we are maintaining the reduced catch limits put in place on November 15 to prevent a quota overage and stock area closure before the end of the fishing year. 

We are also applying a 25-pound-per-trip Georges Bank cod limit to small vessel category permitted common pool vessels
Common pool possession limits for Georges Bank cod will remain 25 pounds per day, up to 50 pounds per trip. The trip limit for Handgear A vessels remains 25 lb per trip. The trip limit for Handgear B vessels remains 25 pounds per trip.

Read the rule as filed today in the Federal Register, and the permit holder bulletin on our website.

Questions? Contact Kyle Molton at kyle.molton@noaa.gov.