Summer Flounder, Scup, Black Sea Bass
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council manages summer flounder, scup, and black sea bass under a single fishery management plan (FMP). The management unit for summer flounder extends from the U.S.-Canadian border to the southern border of North Carolina, while the management units for scup and black sea bass extend from the U.S.- Canadian border to Cape Hatteras, North Carolina.
Because of their presence in, and movement between, state waters (0-3 miles) and federal waters (3-200 miles), the Council manages summer flounder, scup, and black sea bass cooperatively with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission. The two management entities work in conjunction with the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) as the federal implementation and enforcement entity.
For more information about management of these species in state waters, visit the following pages on the ASMFC website:
The Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass FMP uses output controls (catch and landings limits) as the primary management tool, with landings divided between the commercial and recreational fisheries. The FMP also includes minimum fish sizes, bag limits, seasons, gear restrictions, permit requirements, and other provisions to prevent overfishing and ensure sustainability of the fisheries. Recreational bag/size limits and seasons are determined on a state-by-state basis using conservation equivalency. The commercial quota is divided into state-by-state quotas based on historical landings.
Actions Under Development
The Council and the ASMFC are developing a joint framework action and addendum to consider adding the following management options to the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan:
This amendment addresses FMP goals and objectives for summer flounder and commercial management measures and strategies, including federal commercial moratorium permit requalification, commercial allocation, and landings flexibility FMP framework provisions.
Fishery Management Plan and Amendments
Fishery Performance Reports
Fishery Information Documents
The comment period is open through September 9.
The stock assessments for black sea bass, bluefish, monkfish and scup will be peer reviewed on August 5-7, at the Northeast Fisheries Science Center's Woods Hole Laboratory.
At their March 2019 meeting, the Mid-Atlantic Council and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission recommended modifications to the current state-by-state commercial allocations for summer flounder. In addition, the Council and Commission approved revised Fishery Management Plan goals and objectives for summer flounder.
The deadline to submit written comments is October 12, 2018.