Fisheries Off West Coast States; Coastal Pelagic Species Fisheries; Amendment 17 to the Coastal Pelagic Species Fishery Management Plan
NMFS announces that the Pacific Fishery Management Council has submitted Amendment 17 to the Coastal Pelagic Species Fishery Management Plan for review by the Secretary of Commerce. Amendment 17 would remove the pre-specified incidental landing limit that would become effective for live bait were a stock managed under the Fishery Management Plan to become overfished. Currently, if a coastal pelagic species stock were to become overfished, and even prior to adoption of a rebuilding plan, the Fishery Management Plan would automatically limit retention of live bait of that stock to incidentally caught fish with no more than 15 percent of any load being live bait from the overfished stock. The intent of Amendment 17 is to allow the Council flexibility in recommending restrictions on the live bait portion of the fishery when a stock is overfished. NMFS will consider public comments in deciding whether to approve, disapprove, or partially approve Amendment 17.
Marine Mammals and Endangered Species
Notice is hereby given that permits or permit amendments have been issued to the following entities under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) and the Endangered Species Act (ESA), as applicable.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Multispecies Fishery; Adjustment of Georges Bank and Southern New England/Mid-Atlantic Yellowtail Flounder Annual Catch Limits
This action transfers unused quota of Georges Bank and Southern New England/Mid-Atlantic yellowtail flounder from the Atlantic scallop fishery to the Northeast multispecies fishery for the remainder of the 2018 fishing year. This quota transfer is authorized when the scallop fishery is not expected to catch its entire allocations of yellowtail flounder. The quota transfer is intended to provide additional fishing opportunities for groundfish vessels to help achieve the optimum yield for these stocks while ensuring sufficient amounts of yellowtail flounder remain available for the scallop fishery.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Jonah Crab Fishery; Interstate Fishery Management Plan for Jonah Crab
Based on Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission recommendations, we, the National Marine Fisheries Service, are proposing to implement regulations for the Jonah crab fishery in Federal waters. This action is necessary to enact measures that provide stock protections to a previously unmanaged fishery. The action is intended to ensure compatibility between state and Federal Jonah crab management measures, consistent with the Commission's Interstate Fishery Management Plan for Jonah Crab and the intent of the Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act.