Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Multispecies Fishery; Georges Bank Cod Trimester Total Allowable Catch Area Closure for the Common Pool Fishery
This action closes the Georges Bank (GB) Cod Trimester Total Allowable Catch Area to Northeast multispecies common pool vessels fishing with trawl gear, sink gillnet gear, and longline/hook gear for the remainder of Trimester 1, through August 31, 2017. The closure is required by regulation because the common pool fishery is projected to have caught 90 percent of its Trimester 1 quota for GB cod. This closure is intended to prevent an overage of the common pool's quota for this stock.
Fisheries Off West Coast States; Coastal Pelagic Species Fisheries; Amendment to Regulations Implementing the Coastal Pelagic Species Fishery Management Plan; Change to Pacific Mackerel Management Cycle From Annual to Biennial
The Coastal Pelagic Species (CPS) Fishery Management Plan (FMP) states that each year the Secretary will publish in the Federal Register the final specifications for all stocks in the actively managed stock category, which includes Pacific mackerel. NMFS is changing the management framework for Pacific mackerel so specifications will be set biennially instead of on an annual basis. The purpose of this change is to reduce the costs, while providing frequent enough reevaluation and adjustment in the specifications to manage and conserve Pacific mackerel.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Coastal Migratory Pelagic Resources in the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Region; Framework Amendment 5
NMFS issues this final rule to implement management measures described in Framework Amendment 5 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Coastal Migratory Pelagic Resources of the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Region (FMP), as prepared and submitted jointly by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council and South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Councils). This final rule removes the restriction on fishing for, or retaining the recreational bag and possession limits of, king and Spanish mackerel on a vessel with a Federal commercial permit for king or Spanish mackerel when commercial harvest of king or Spanish mackerel in a zone or region is closed. With implementation of this rule, persons aboard commercial vessels may fish for and retain the recreational bag and possession limits of king or Spanish mackerel during the open recreational season, even if commercial fishing for those species is closed. The purpose of this final rule is to remove Federal permit restrictions unique to commercially permitted king and Spanish mackerel vessels and to standardize vessel permit restrictions applicable after a commercial quota closure of king or Spanish mackerel in accordance with restrictions in other fisheries.
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Groundfish Fishery; Framework Adjustment 56
This action partially approves and implements Framework Adjustment 56 to the Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan. This rule sets catch limits for 4 of the 20 groundfish stocks, adjusts several allocations and accountability measures for groundfish catch in groundfish and non-groundfish fisheries, and makes other administrative changes to groundfish management measures. This action is necessary to respond to updated scientific information and achieve the goals and objectives of the Fishery Management Plan. The final measures are intended to help prevent overfishing, rebuild overfished stocks, achieve optimum yield, and ensure that management measures are based on the best scientific information available.