Pacific Halibut Fisheries; Catch Sharing Plan; Correcting Amendment
This action corrects the text of a final rule published on March 15, 2013, that implemented annual management measures governing the Pacific halibut fishery. This final rule established season dates off of Alaska, Washington, Oregon and California. This action is necessary to correct an error in the days of the week listed for the fishing season in the area from Leadbetter Point, WA to Cape Falcon, OR.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Fisheries
NMFS is adjusting the Atlantic bluefin tuna (BFT) General category daily retention limit to three large medium or giant BFT for June 1 through August 31, 2013. This action is based on consideration of the regulatory determination criteria regarding inseason adjustments, and applies to Atlantic tunas General category (commercial) permitted vessels and Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Charter/Headboat category permitted vessels when fishing commercially for BFT.
Taking of Threatened or Endangered Marine Mammals Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Issuance of Permit
NMFS plans to issue a permit for a period of three years to authorize the incidental, but not intentional, taking of three stocks of marine mammals listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) by the California (CA) thresher shark/ swordfish drift gillnet (DGN) fishery (>=14 inch mesh) and the Washington/Oregon/California (WA/OR/CA) sablefish pot fishery. In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS has made a preliminary determination that incidental taking from commercial fishing will have a negligible impact on the endangered fin whale, CA/ OR/WA stock; humpback whale, CA/OR/WA stock; and sperm whale, CA/OR/WA stock. Recovery plans have been completed for these endangered species. This authorization is based on a determination that this incidental take will have a negligible impact on the affected marine mammal stocks. NMFS must issue this permit provided that we can make the determinations that: the incidental take will have a negligible impact on the affected marine mammal stocks; a recovery plan for all affected stocks of threatened or endangered marine mammals has been developed or is being developed; and as required by the MMPA, a take reduction plan and monitoring program have been implemented and vessels in the CA thresher shark/swordfish DGN fishery (>=14 inch mesh) and WA/OR/CA sablefish pot fishery are registered. NMFS solicits public comments on the draft negligible impact determination and on the proposal to issue a permit to these fisheries for the taking of affected threatened or endangered stocks of marine mammals.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Snapper-Grouper Fishery Off the Southern Atlantic States; Regulatory Amendment 18
NMFS proposes regulations to implement Regulatory Amendment 18 (Regulatory Amendment 18) to the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (FMP), as prepared and submitted by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council). If implemented, this rule would update the annual catch limits (ACLs) for vermilion snapper and red porgy, modify the vermilion snapper commercial trip limit, and remove the recreational 5-month seasonal closure for vermilion snapper. The purpose of this rule is to help achieve optimum yield (OY) for snapper-grouper resources in accordance with the requirements of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act).