Paperwork Reduction Act Request for Comments: Sea turtles in Virginia pound nets data collection

NMFS published a notice in the Federal Register on April 16, 2018 (83 FR 16329) requesting comments on a renewal for collection of information requirements under the Paperwork Reduction Act. This collection of information involves the requirement for Virginia pound net fishermen to report interactions with endangered and threatened sea turtles, found both live and dead, in their pound net operations to NMFS and if necessary, the appropriate rehabilitation and stranding network. The comment period closes June 15, 2018. For additional information please contact Carrie Upite at (978) 282-8475 or email at  

Click here to read the full notice in the federal register.

NOAA Fisheries Seeks Comments on Proposed 2018 Recreational Rules for Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass

NOAA Fisheries seeks comments on proposed recreational fishery management measures for the 2018 summer flounder, scup, and black sea bass fisheries. 

NOAA Fisheries Announces the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council Acceptable Biological Catch Omnibus Framework Adjustment

April 10, 2018 – The following was released by NOAA Fisheries Greater Atlantic Regional Office:

NOAA Fisheries announces three administrative changes to the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council’s processes in setting catch limits though the Acceptable Biological Catch Omnibus Framework Adjustment:

  1. The Council may now recommend multi-year Acceptable Biological Catch (ABC) limits for Mid-Atlantic fisheries, which may bring greater stability and predictability to the fishing industry;
  2. The Atlantic Bluefish, Tilefish, and Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish Fishery Management Plans will now automatically incorporate the best available scientific information in calculating ABCs (as all other Mid-Atlantic management plans do) rather than requiring a separate management action to adopt them; and
  3. New language clarifies the process for setting ABCs for each of the four types of ABC control rules.

To get all the details on these management changes, read the final rule as filed in the Federal Register today. 


  • Fishing Industry Contact: Erin Wilkinson, Headquarters Office, 301-427-8561
  • Media: Jennifer Goebel, Regional Office, 978-281-9175

National Fish Habitat Partnership Releases "Our Story" Video Reflecting on 10 Years of Habitat Protection

The National Fish Habitat Action Plan was established in 2006 and has supported 679 projects benefiting fish habitat in all 50 states. The partnership leverages federal, state, tribal, and private funding resources to achieve the greatest impact on fish populations meeting the priorities of our 20 regionally-based Fish Habitat Partnerships.

BOEM to Hold Open House During April Council Meeting in Montauk, NY

BOEM’s Office of Renewable Energy Programs will hold an open house on April 10 and 11 during the April Council Meeting in Montauk, NY to gather feedback on recently proposed commercial offshore renewable energy projects and other related topics. 

Scientific and Statistical Committee to Meet March 13-14, 2018

The Council’s SSC will meet March 13-14, 2018 in Baltimore, Maryland. Topics to be discussed include blueline and golden tilefish specifications, NEFSC clam dredge survey redesign, NEFSC State of the Ecosystem Report, and a discussion paper on coefficients of variation for estimates of the overfishing limit. 

Reminder: Electronic Reporting Requirements for Party/Charter Vessels with Mid-Atlantic Permits

Beginning Monday, March 12, 2018, all charter and party vessel operators holding a federal permit for species managed by the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council will be required to electronically submit Vessel Trip Reports for all trips carrying passengers for hire.

NOAA Fisheries Announces Reduction to Mackerel Possession Limit for Rest of Fishing Year Effective February 27

As of 00:01 local time on February 27, 2018, vessels issued Federal Atlantic mackerel permits may not fish for, possess, transfer, receive, land, or sell more than 20,000 lb of mackerel per trip or calendar day through December 31, 2018. 

NOAA Chesapeake Bay Office Accepting Fisheries Science Proposals Through April 26

The funding opportunity focuses on links between habitat in the Chesapeake Bay and offshore to the health of black sea bass and summer flounder.

Council Meeting in Raleigh, North Carolina: February 13-15, 2018

The public is invited to attend the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council's February 2018 meeting to be held February 13-15, 2018 in Raleigh, NC. The meeting will be held at the Hilton Garden Inn Raleigh/Crabtree Valley, 3912 Arrow Drive, Raleigh, NC 27612, Telephone 919-703-2525.