International Fisheries; Pacific Tuna Fisheries; 2013 Bigeye Tuna Longline Fishery Closure in the Eastern Pacific Ocean
NMFS is closing the U.S. pelagic longline fishery for bigeye tuna in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO) as a result of the fishery reaching the 2013 catch limit of 500 metric tons. This action is intended to limit fishing mortality on bigeye tuna caused by longline fishing in the EPO, and contribute to the long-term conservation of bigeye tuna at levels that support healthy fisheries.
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC); Public Meeting
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council's (Council) Summer Flounder Monitoring Committee, Scup Monitoring Committee, and Black Sea Bass Monitoring Committee will hold a public meeting.
Caribbean Fishery Management Council; Scoping Meeting
The Caribbean Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a scoping meeting to obtain input from fishers, the general public, and the local agencies representatives on the development of compatible regulations for three seasonally closed areas off Puerto Rico. The Council is considering modifying the seasonal closures of Abrir La Sierra, Bajo de Sico, and Tourmaline Bank. The goal of modifying the closures is to protect the red hind spawning aggregations and large individuals of snappers and groupers from directed fishing pressure to achieve a more natural sex ratio, age, and size structure, while minimizing adverse social and economic effects. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Monkfish Fisheries Management Plan; Reallocation of 2013 Monkfish Research Set-Aside Days-at-Sea
This notice announces the reallocation of 2013 Monkfish Research Set-Aside days-at-sea. These days are being reallocated because they were not awarded through the 2013 Monkfish Research Set- Aside Program grant process. The reallocated days-at-sea are available to conduct monkfish research activities during fishing year 2013 (May 1, 2013-April 30, 2014).
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Multispecies Fishery; Trip Limit Adjustments for the Common Pool Fishery
This temporary rule increases the possession limits for Gulf of Maine cod, Cape Cod/Gulf of Maine yellowtail flounder, Gulf of Maine winter flounder, white hake, and pollock for Northeast multispecies common pool vessels for the remainder of the 2013 fishing year. This action is being taken because catch rates of these stocks are low. Increasing these possession limits is intended to provide additional fishing opportunities and help allow the common pool fishery to catch more of its quota for these stocks.
Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Marine Recreational Fishing Expenditure Survey
The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.
Proposed Designation of Marine Critical Habitat for the Loggerhead Sea Turtle, Caretta caretta, Under the Endangered Species Act; Public Hearing
We, NMFS, will hold a public hearing related to our Proposed Designation of Marine Critical Habitat for the Loggerhead Sea Turtle, Caretta caretta, under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Advisory Panel for Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review Workshops
NMFS solicits nominations for the Advisory Panel (AP) for Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR) Workshops (this AP is also called the ``SEDAR Pool''). The SEDAR Pool is comprised of a group of individuals who may be selected to consider data and advise NMFS regarding scientific information, including but not limited to data and models, used in stock assessments for oceanic sharks in the Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean Sea. Nominations are being sought for a 3-year appointment (2014-2016). Individuals with definable interests in the recreational and commercial fishing and related industries, environmental community, academia, or non-governmental organizations will be considered for membership on the SEDAR Pool.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Delisting of the Eastern Distinct Population Segment of Steller Sea Lion Under the Endangered Species Act; Amendment to Special Protection Measures for Endangered Marine Mammals
Under the authority of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA), we, NMFS, issue this final rule to remove the eastern distinct population segment (DPS) of Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) from the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. After receiving two petitions to delist this DPS, we completed a review of the status of the eastern DPS of Steller Sea Lion. Based on the information presented in the Status Review, the factors for delisting in section 4(a)(1) of the ESA, the recovery criteria in the 2008 Recovery Plan, the continuing efforts to protect the species, and information received during public comment and peer review, we have determined that this DPS has recovered and no longer meets the definition of an endangered or threatened species under the ESA: It is not in danger of extinction or likely to become so within the foreseeable future throughout all or a significant portion of its range. Thus, we find that the delisting of the DPS is warranted. This rule also makes technical changes that recodify existing regulatory provisions to remove special protections for the eastern DPS and clarify that existing regulatory protections for the western DPS of Steller sea lions continue to apply.