Announcement of Change in Hearing Date Regarding Proposed Waiver and Regulations Governing the Taking of Marine Mammals
The hearing date previously announced in the Federal Register for a proposed waiver under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) and proposed regulations governing the hunting of eastern North Pacific (ENP) gray whales by the Makah Indian Tribe in northwest Washington State, and the related deadlines for submission of testimony and motions, is being changed as noted below.
Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fisheries Off West Coast States; Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery; 2019-2020 Biennial Specifications and Management Measures; Inseason Adjustments
This final rule announces routine inseason adjustments to management measures in commercial groundfish fisheries. This action is intended to allow commercial fishing vessels to access more abundant groundfish stocks while protecting overfished and depleted stocks.
Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan Modifications To Reduce Serious Injury and Mortality of Large Whales in Commercial Trap/Pot Fisheries Along the U.S. East Coast
The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) intends to begin a rulemaking process that will amend the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan (Plan) to reduce the risk of serious injuries and mortalities to North Atlantic right whales (Eubalaena glacialis) and other large whales caused by entanglement in commercial trap/pot fisheries along the U.S. East Coast. An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) will be prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) to analyze the impacts to the environment of alternatives to amend the Plan. This notice informs the public of upcoming scoping meetings to solicit public comments on ways to reduce the risk of entanglement in trap and pot fisheries for right, humpback, and finback whales. NMFS requests comments on management options for this action, particularly including information about operational challenges, time, and costs required to modify gear by changing configurations such as traps per trawl to reduce endline numbers, installing new line or sleeves, and by expanding gear marking requirements. Team recommendations and additional risk reduction measures identified during Team discussions and during this scoping period will form the basis of the alternatives that will be analyzed through the EIS process.
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to the South Quay Wall Recapitalization Project, Mayport, Florida
In accordance with the regulations implementing the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) as amended, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to the Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southeast and Naval Facilities Engineering Command Atlantic (the Navy) to incidentally harass, by Level B harassment only, marine mammals during construction activities associated with the South Quay Wall Recapitalization Project at Naval Station Mayport (NAVSTA), Jacksonville, Florida.
Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish Fisheries; Specifications
NMFS revises Illex squid specifications and maintains previously approved longfin squid and butterfish specifications for the 2019 fishing year. This action is necessary to specify catch levels for the Illex squid fishery based on updated information on allowable catch levels and to provide notice that NMFS is maintaining the previously approved longfin squid and butterfish specifications. These specifications are intended to promote the sustainable utilization and conservation of the squid and butterfish resources.
Endangered and Threatened Species; Take of Anadromous Fish
Notice is hereby given that NMFS has received 11 scientific research permit application requests relating to Pacific salmon and steelhead, rockfish, and eulachon. The proposed research is intended to increase knowledge of species listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and to help guide management and conservation efforts. The applications may be viewed online at: https://apps.nmfs.noaa.gov/ preview/preview_open_for_comment.cfm.