Amendments to the Reef Fish, Spiny Lobster, and Corals and Reef Associated Plants and Invertebrates Fishery Management Plans of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands
NMFS proposes to implement measures described in Amendment 8 to the Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for the Reef Fish Fishery of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) (Reef Fish FMP), Amendment 7 to the FMP for the Spiny Lobster Fishery of Puerto Rico and the USVI (Spiny Lobster FMP), and Amendment 6 to the FMP for Corals and Reef Associated Plants and Invertebrates of Puerto Rico and the USVI (Coral FMP), as prepared and submitted by the Caribbean Fishery Management Council (Council). This proposed rule refers to these amendments, in combination, as the Accountability Measure (AM) Timing Amendment. This proposed rule to implement the AM Timing Amendment would modify the date for the implementation of AM-based closures for all species and species groups managed by the Council under the subject FMPs. The purpose of the AM Timing Amendment and this proposed rule is to minimize, to the extent practicable, the adverse socio- economic impacts of AM-based closures, while constraining catch levels to the applicable annual catch limits (ACLs) and preventing overfishing.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Yellowtail Snapper Management Measures
NMFS issues regulations to implement management measures described in a framework action to the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico (FMP), as prepared by the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) Fishery Management Council (Gulf Council). This final rule revises the yellowtail snapper commercial and recreational fishing year and removes the requirement to use circle hooks for the commercial harvest of yellowtail snapper in the Gulf exclusive economic zone (EEZ) south of Cape Sable, Florida. The purpose of this final rule is to increase the operational efficiency of the yellowtail snapper component of the commercial sector of the Gulf reef fish fishery, achieve optimum yield, and decrease the regulatory burden of compliance with differing regulations established by separate regulatory agencies across the adjacent Gulf and South Atlantic jurisdictions.
Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Rehabilitation of the Jetty System at the Mouth of the Columbia River: Jetty A, North Jetty, and South Jetty, in Washington and Oregon
NMFS, upon request of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps), hereby issues a regulation to govern the unintentional taking of marine mammals incidental to the rehabilitation of the Jetty System at the Mouth of the Columbia River (MCR), over the course of five years. This regulation, which allows for the issuance of a Letter of Authorization (LOA) for the incidental take of marine mammals during the described activities and specified timeframes, prescribes the permissible methods of taking and other means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact on marine mammal species or stocks and their habitat, as well as requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of such taking.