Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Sablefish in the West Yakutat District of the Gulf of Alaska
NMFS is prohibiting retention of sablefish by vessels using trawl gear in the West Yakutat District of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary because the 2015 total allowable catch of sablefish allocated to vessels using trawl gear in the West Yakutat District of the GOA will be reached.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Fisheries
NMFS is transferring 35 metric tons (mt) of Atlantic bluefin tuna (BFT) quota from the Harpoon category and 65 mt from the Reserve category to the General category for the remainder of the 2015 fishing year. This transfer results in adjusted quotas of 566.7 mt, 43.6 mt and 82.1 mt for the General, Harpoon, and Reserve categories, respectively. 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.
Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Exempted Fishing, Scientific Research, Display, Shark Research Fishery, and Chartering Permits; Letters of Acknowledgment
NMFS announces its intent to issue Exempted Fishing Permits (EFPs), Scientific Research Permits (SRPs), Display Permits, Letters of Acknowledgment (LOAs), Shark Research Fishery Permits, and Chartering Permits for Atlantic highly migratory species (HMS) in 2016. Exempted fishing permits and related permits would authorize collection of a limited number of tunas, swordfish, billfishes, and sharks (collectively known as HMS) from Federal waters in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, and Gulf of Mexico for the purposes of scientific data collection, bycatch research, and public display. Chartering permits allow the collection of HMS on the high seas or in the Exclusive Economic Zone of other nations under certain conditions. Generally, EFPs and related permits will be valid from the date of issuance through December 31, 2016, unless otherwise specified, subject to the terms and conditions of individual permits.