Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Site Characterization Surveys of Lease Areas
In accordance with the regulations implementing the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) as amended, notification is hereby given that we have issued an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to [Oslash]rsted Wind Power LLC ([Oslash]rsted) to take small numbers of marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to high-resolution geophysical (HRG) survey investigations associated with marine site characterization activities off the coast of Massachusetts and Rhode Island in the areas of Commercial Lease of Submerged Lands for Renewable Energy Development on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). These areas are currently being leased by the Applicant's affiliates, Deepwater Wind New England, LLC and Bay State Wind LLC respectively, and are identified as OCS-A 0486, OCS-A 0487, and OCS-A 0500 (collectively referred to as the Lease Areas). [Oslash]rsted is also planning to conduct marine site characterization surveys along one or more export cable route corridors (ECRs) originating from the Lease Areas and landing along the shoreline at locations from New York to Massachusetts, between Raritan Bay (part of the New York Bight) to Falmouth, Massachusetts.
Subsistence Taking of Northern Fur Seals on the Pribilof Islands
NMFS is modifying the subsistence use regulations for the Eastern Pacific stock of northern fur seals (Callorhinus ursinus) in response to a petition from the Aleut Community of St. Paul Island, Tribal Government (ACSPI). This rule simplifies the regulations and authorizes Pribilovians who reside on St. Paul Island, Alaska, to kill for subsistence uses each year up to 2,000 male fur seals less than seven years old (defined as juvenile males), including young of the year (also called pups). This rule authorizes up to 20 mortalities of female fur seals per year (and any female mortality will be included in the 2,000 fur seals authorized for subsistence use per year). This rule allows the taking of fur seals on St. Paul Island over two subsistence use seasons annually: One season from January 1 through May 31 using firearms to hunt, and the second season from June 23 through December 31 without using firearms for the harvest. In addition, the rule authorizes Pribilovians who reside on St. George Island, Alaska, to kill each year up to 500 male fur seals during harvests for subsistence use, including authorization of up to three female mortalities each year (and any female mortality will be included in the 500 fur seals authorized for subsistence use per year). Finally, the rule streamlines and simplifies the regulations by eliminating several duplicative and unnecessary regulations governing Pribilovians on St. Paul and St. George Islands.
Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Rockfish Management in the Groundfish Fisheries of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands and the Gulf of Alaska
NMFS proposes regulations to implement Amendment 119 to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (BSAI FMP) and Amendment 107 to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA FMP). This proposed rule would require that the operator of a federally permitted catcher vessel using hook-and-line, pot, or jig gear in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands and Gulf of Alaska retain and land all rockfish (Sebastes and Sebastolobus species) caught while fishing for groundfish or Pacific halibut. This action is necessary to improve identification of rockfish species catch by vessels using electronic monitoring, provide more precise estimates of rockfish catch, reduce waste and incentives to discard rockfish, reduce overall enforcement burden, and promote more consistent management between State and Federal fisheries. This proposed rule is intended to promote the goals and objectives of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the BSAI FMP, the GOA FMP, and other applicable laws.
Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Amendments 50A-F
NMFS proposes to implement management measures described in Amendments 50A, 50B, 50C, 50D, 50E, and 50F to the Fishery Management Plan for Reef Fish Resources in the Gulf of Mexico (FMP), as prepared by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council)(Amendments 50A-F). This proposed rule would delegate authority to Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, and Texas (Gulf states), to establish specific management measures for the harvest of red snapper in Federal waters in the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) by the private angling component of the recreational sector. The purposes of this proposed rule and Amendments 50A-F are to increase fishing opportunities and economic benefits by allowing each Gulf state to establish specific management measures for the recreational harvest of red snapper in Federal waters by private anglers landing in that state.