Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands; 2017 and 2018 Harvest Specifications for Groundfish
NMFS proposes 2017 and 2018 harvest specifications, apportionments, and prohibited species catch allowances for the groundfish fisheries of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands (BSAI) management area. This action is necessary to establish harvest limits for groundfish during the 2017 and 2018 fishing years, and to accomplish the goals and objectives of the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area. The intended effect of this action is to conserve and manage the groundfish resources in the BSAI in accordance with the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Gulf of Alaska; 2017 and 2018 Harvest Specifications for Groundfish
NMFS proposes 2017 and 2018 harvest specifications, apportionments, and Pacific halibut prohibited species catch limits for the groundfish fishery of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to establish harvest limits for groundfish during the 2017 and 2018 fishing years and to accomplish the goals and objectives of the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska. The intended effect of this action is to conserve and manage the groundfish resources in the GOA in accordance with the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Bluefish Fishery; Commercial Quota Harvested for the State of New York
NMFS announces that the 2016 commercial Atlantic bluefish quota allocated to the State of New York has been harvested. Vessels issued a commercial Federal permit for this fishery may not land bluefish in New York for the remainder of calendar year 2016, unless additional quota becomes available through a transfer from another state. Regulations governing these fisheries require publication of this notice to advise New York that the quota has been harvested, and to advise Federal vessel and dealer permit holders that no Federal commercial quota is available to land bluefish in New York.
Fisheries Off West Coast States; Modifications of the West Coast Commercial and Recreational Salmon Fisheries; Inseason Actions #6 Through #21
NMFS announces 16 inseason actions in the ocean salmon fisheries. These inseason actions modified the commercial and recreational salmon fisheries in the area from the U.S./Canada border to the U.S./Mexico border.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish
NMFS has evaluated ten Hatchery and Genetics Management Plans (HGMPs) submitted to NMFS pursuant to the limitation on take prohibitions for actions conducted under Limit 6 of the 4(d) Rule for salmon and steelhead promulgated under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The HGMPs specify the propagation of Chinook, coho, pink, and fall chum salmon and steelhead in the Hood Canal watershed of Washington State. This document serves to notify the public that NMFS, by delegated authority from the Secretary of Commerce, has determined pursuant to Limit 6 of the ESA 4(d) Rule for salmon and steelhead that implementing and enforcing the plans will not appreciably reduce the likelihood of survival and recovery of Puget Sound Chinook salmon, Hood Canal summer chum, and Puget Sound steelhead.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish
This notice advises the public that six direct take permits have been issued pursuant to section 10(a)(1)(A) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA) for continued operation, monitoring, and evaluation of hatchery program rearing and releasing salmon in Northeast Oregon and Southeast Washington portions of the Snake River basin, and associated decision documents. The permits were issued to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
International Fisheries; Tuna and Tuna-Like Species in the Eastern Pacific Ocean; Silky Shark Fishing Restrictions and Fish Aggregating Device Data Collection and Identification
NMFS is issuing regulations under the Tuna Conventions Act to implement certain provisions of two Resolutions adopted by the Inter- American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) in 2016: Resolution C-16-01 (Collection and Analyses of Data On Fish-Aggregating Devices) and Resolution C-16-06 (Conservation Measures for Shark Species, with Special Emphasis on the Silky Shark (Carcharhinus Falciformis) for the Years 2017, 2018, and 2019). Per Resolution C-16-01, these regulations require the owner or operator of a U.S. purse seine vessel to ensure characters of a unique code be marked indelibly on each fish aggregating device (FAD) deployed or modified on or after January 1, 2017, in the IATTC Convention Area. The vessel owner or operator must record and submit information about the FAD, as described in Annex I of Resolution C-16-01. Per Resolution C-16-06, these regulations prohibit the owner or operator of a U.S. purse seine vessel from retaining on board, transshipping, landing, or storing, in part or whole, carcasses of silky sharks caught by purse-seine vessels in the IATTC Convention Area. These regulations also provide limits on the retained catch of silky sharks caught in the IATTC Convention Area. This rule is necessary for the United States to satisfy its obligations as a member of the IATTC.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Re-Opening of Recreational Sector for the South Atlantic Other Jacks Complex
NMFS announces the re-opening of the recreational sector for the other jacks complex (lesser amberjack, almaco jack, and banded rudderfish) in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the South Atlantic through this temporary rule. The most recent recreational landings of the other jacks complex indicate that the recreational annual catch limit (ACL) for 2016 fishing year has not yet been reached. Therefore, NMFS re-opens the recreational sector for the other jacks complex in the South Atlantic EEZ through the end of the 2016 fishing year or until the ACL is reached, whichever happens first, to allow the recreational ACL to be caught, while minimizing the risk of the recreational ACL being exceeded.
Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
The Pacific Fishery Management Council (Pacific Council) will host a webinar meeting of the Area 2A Pacific halibut governmental management entities, which will be open to the public.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Red Snapper Management Measures
NMFS issues regulations to implement management measures described in Amendment 45 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico (FMP), as prepared by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) (Amendment 45). This final rule extends the 3-year sunset provision for the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) red snapper recreational sector separation measures for an additional 5 years. Additionally, this rule corrects an error in the Gulf red snapper recreational accountability measures (AMs). The purpose of this final rule is to extend the sector separation measures to allow the Council more time to consider and possibly develop alternative management strategies within the Gulf red snapper recreational sector.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; 2016 Commercial Accountability Measures and Closure for Atlantic Migratory Group Cobia
NMFS implements accountability measures (AMs) for Atlantic migratory group cobia that are sold (commercial) and harvested from the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the Atlantic. NMFS projects that commercial landings of Atlantic migratory group cobia have reached the commercial quota. Therefore, NMFS closes the commercial sector for Atlantic migratory group cobia on December 6, 2016, and it will remain closed until the start of the next fishing year on January 1, 2017. This closure is necessary to protect the resource of Atlantic migratory group cobia.
Fishing Capacity Reduction Program for the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands (BSAI) King and Tanner Crab Fisheries
NMFS issues this notice to inform interested parties that the Aleutian Island Golden (Brown) King crab (a/k/a WAG and EAG) sub-loan in the fishing capacity reduction program for the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands (BSAI) King and Tanner Crab Fisheries has been repaid. Therefore, buyback fee collections on Aleutian Island Golden (Brown) King crab will cease for all landings after October 31, 2016.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Deep-Sea Red Crab Fishery; 2017-2019 Atlantic Deep-Sea Red Crab Specifications
We are proposing specifications for the 2017Atlantic deep-sea red crab fishery, including an annual catch limit and total allowable landings limit. We are also proposing projected quotas for 2018-2019. This action is necessary to establish allowable red crab harvest levels that will prevent overfishing and allow harvesting of optimum yield. The proposed action is intended to establish the allowable 2017 harvest levels, consistent with the Atlantic Deep-Sea Red Crab Fishery Management Plan.