top of page

Current News & Events

 SPOT – COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATIONS – CLOSURE

 

This proclamation closes the commercial spot fishery in North Carolina Coastal and Joint Fishing Waters. The fishery will re-open on Friday, April 5, 2024. The intent of this proclamation is to allow North Carolina to comply with the requirements of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission Addendum III to the Omnibus Amendment to the Interstate Fishery Management Plans for Spanish Mackerel, Spot, and Spotted Seatrout.

SEE PROCLAMATION FOR FULL DETAILS – LINKS PROVIDED BELOW

Proclamation:https://deq.nc.gov/fisheries-management-proclamations

PDF: https://www.deq.nc.gov/marine-fisheries/fisheries-management-proclamations/2023/FF-60-2023/open

 ATLANTIC CROAKER 

COMMERCIAL FISHING OPERATIONS CLOSURE

This proclamation closes the commercial Atlantic croaker fishery in North Carolina Coastal and Joint Fishing Waters. The fishery will re-open on Monday, January 1, 2024. The intent of this proclamation is to allow North Carolina to comply with the requirements of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission Addendum III to Amendment 1 to the Interstate Fishery Management Plan for Atlantic Croaker.

SEE PROCLAMATION FOR FULL DETAILS – LINKS PROVIDED BELOW

Proclamation:https://deq.nc.gov/fisheries-management-proclamations

PDF: https://www.deq.nc.gov/marine-fisheries/fisheries-management-proclamations/2023/FF-59-2023/open

 2023-2024 OYSTER MECHANICAL HARVEST RESTRICTIONS – CLOSING THE PAMLICO SOUND BAYS

This proclamation supersedes Proclamation SF-7-2023 dated November 6, 2023, to close the bays in Pamlico Sound to the commercial harvest of oysters by mechanical methods from public bottom. The Pamlico Sound bays are closed and will re-open in December for the remainder of the season in accordance with the N.C. Oyster Fishery Management Plan Amendment 4.

Proclamation:https://deq.nc.gov/fisheries-management-proclamations

PDF: https://www.deq.nc.gov/marine-fisheries/fisheries-management-proclamations/2023/SF-8-2023/open

MAP PKG: https://www.deq.nc.gov/marine-fisheries/fisheries-management-proclamations/2023/sf-8-2023-map-package/open

MFC Meeting Recap

 

The North Carolina Marine Fisheries Commission (MFC) met last week in Emerald Isle, NC. I am happy to report there was good turnout from fishermen giving comments and talking with commissioners and staff during and after the meeting.

 

As most of you know the striped mullet was the hot item on the agenda. Specifically, looking at reducing striped mullet harvest by setting seasons and trip limits. If you read the Weekly Update last week you know that the Division of Marine Fisheries (DMF) has recommended the maximum harvest reduction percentage of 35.4%.

 

DMF recommends:

 

    -50 pound trip limit Saturdays through Sundays year round

 

    -50 pound trip limit November 16th through January 31st

 

    -500 pound trip limit February 1st through October 15th

 

    -Roe season with no trip limit October 16th through November 15th

 

However, our voices were heard at this meeting. The MFC had concerns and asked a lot of questions about better ways to monitor and assess the striped mullet stock and they seem to be wanting to look at options other than the one recommended above. Staff also made sure to clearly state that all options in this draft are still available to choose from and they want to hear more ideas and suggestions.

 

Although we expressed our concerns at this meeting, it is going to be important for everyone to continue to stay informed as we are still in the early stages of the process. We cannot do anything to change the stock assessment and we are statutorily required to reduce harvest at this point, but we do not have to accept a 35% reduction with these strict seasons and limits!

 

The public comment and scoping period officially begins December 18th and runs through January 17th. Public meetings and other details will be announced later. The most important thing we can all do is come together and figure out a solution that meets the needs of all commercial mullet fishermen in the state. 

 

We need a plan that can achieve at least a 21.3% reduction while maintaining all elements of our commercial mullet fishery from bait to the roe season. For example, one such option that was recommended by the striped mullet advisory committee was a year round no commercial harvest on Saturdays and Sundays. Eliminating harvest on the weekends with no other changes to the current fishery represented a 25.7% reduction in harvest.

 

There are many options and combinations of options that are discussed in the striped mullet decision document. The decision document is on pages 139-149 in the briefing book link below. Let us and the DMF know what options work best to keep you fishing.

 

Complete Briefing Book

 

Contact NCFA or DMF staff with questions, comments, or suggestions and keep reading the Weekly Update for information and links to upcoming striped mullet meetings.

 

Thomas Newman

Fisheries Liaison 

Thomasnewman@ncfish.org

Contact: Patricia Smith

Date: Nov. 7, 2023

Phone: 252-726-7021

 

Marine Fisheries Standard Commercial Fishing License Eligibility Board to meet

 

 

MOREHEAD CITY – The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries Standard Commercial Fishing License Eligibility Board will meet by teleconference at 10 a.m. Nov. 13. The board will consider one license application that was tabled at the Oct. 25 meeting.

The public may listen to the meeting through a conference call line by dialing 919-250-4221. To avoid disrupting the meeting, members of the public are asked to mute themselves and not announce their names when they call.

The public may also listen to the meeting at the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality Wilmington Regional Office, 127 Cardinal Drive Extension, Wilmington.

The board meets two to three times a year to consider license applications. For directions on applying for a commercial fishing license, go to https://deq.nc.gov/scfl-eligibility-pool and click on the Eligibility Pool Application link.

 

For more information on the meeting, contact division License Eligibility Clerk Ann Bordeaux-Nixon at 910-796-7261 or Ann.Bordeaux-Nixon@ncdenr.gov.
 

WHO:

Standard Commercial Fishing License Eligibility Board

WHAT:

Teleconference Meeting to Consider License Applications

WHEN:

Nov. 13 at 10 a.m.

WHERE:

Meeting by Teleconference
Call 919-250-4221or listen at
N.C. Department of Environmental Quality

Wilmington Regional Office,

127 Cardinal Drive Extension, Wilmington

 

_______________________________________________

 

Website: http://www.ncmarinefisheries.net

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NCMarineFisheries
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/NC_DMF
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NC_DMF
P.O. Box 769, 3441 Arendell St., Morehead City N.C. 28577

Release: Immediate

 

Contact: Patricia Smith

Date: Nov. 6, 2023

Phone: 252-726-7021

 

MEDIA ADVISORY: Marine Fisheries Commission to meet

Nov. 15-17 in Emerald Isle

 

MOREHEAD CITY – The N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission will meet in-person Nov. 15-17 at the Islander Hotel and Resort, 102 Islander Dr., Emerald Isle. The meeting will also be livestreamed on YouTube.

The meeting will begin at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 15; at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 16; and at 9 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 17. The commission will hold in-person public comment sessions at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 15, and at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 16.
 

The following information pertains to in-person public comment:

  • Those who wish to speak may sign up at the hotel prior to the public comment period in which they wish to speak.

  • To accommodate as many speakers as possible, the chair will limit each speaker to 3 minutes.

  • Those making comments will be asked to speak only once, either Wednesday night or Thursday morning, but not during both public comment periods.

  • Those who wish to submit handouts to the commission during a public comment period should bring at least 12 copies to the meeting.


The public may also submit written comments via the following methods:

  • An online form accessible through the Marine Fisheries Commission Meetings webpage.

  • Mail to November 2023 Marine Fisheries Commission Meeting Comments, P.O. Box 769, Morehead City, N.C. 28557. 

  • Dropped off at the Division of Marine Fisheries’ Morehead City Headquarters Office at 3441 Arendell St., Morehead City. 

 

The deadline to submit written comments for this meeting is 4 p.m. Monday, Nov. 13.

 

The YouTube link will be posted on the Marine Fisheries Commission Meetings webpage. After the meeting, a recording will be posted online.
 

Agenda items include:

  • Votes on a slate of nominees for the at-large seat for the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council and the at-large seat for the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council.

  • Review of the scoping meetings and approval of the goal and objectives for the Hard Clam Fishery Management Plan Amendment 3 and Eastern Oyster Fishery Management Plan Amendment 5.

  • Approval of the Draft Striped Mullet FMP Amendment 2 for public and advisory committee review.

  • Final approval of proposed rules pertaining to data collection and the prevention of harassment of N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries staff, the Shellfish Relay Program and shellfish leases and franchises, oyster sanctuaries, and shellfish sanitation procedures.
     

The full agenda and briefing book are posted on the Marine Fisheries Commission Meetings webpage

 

WHO: 

N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission

 

WHAT: 

Quarterly Business Meeting

 

WHEN:

Nov. 15 at 6 p.m.

Nov. 16 at 9 a.m.
Nov. 17 at 9 a.m. 

 

WHERE:

Islander Hotel and Resort
102 Islander Dr., Emerald Isle

 

LIVESTREAM:

Click here for link

_______________________________________________

 

Website: http://www.ncmarinefisheries.net

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NCMarineFisheries
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/NC_DMF
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NC_DMF
P.O. Box 769, 3441 Arendell St., Morehead City N.C. 28577

States Schedule Public Hearings on

Atlantic Striped Bass Draft Addendum II

                                                                                                 

Arlington, VA – The Atlantic coastal states of Maine through Virginia have scheduled hearings to gather public input on Draft Addendum II to Amendment 7 to the Interstate Fishery Management Plan for Atlantic Striped Bass, which considers management measures designed to support stock rebuilding by reducing fishing mortality to the target in 2024. Some hearings will be conducted in-person, and some hearings will be conducted via webinar, or in a hybrid format. Additional details on participating in the webinars can be found later in this release.

Click HERE for public hearing Details

Spanish Mackerel Framework Amendment 13 Scoping

 

 

The South Atlantic Fisheries Management Council (SAFMC) staff will be holding two online only webinars for scoping of Framework Amendment 13 to the Spanish mackerel fisheries management plan (FMP). This Amendment will set new catch levels for the Spanish mackerel fisheries with approximately a 33% increase in the allowable biological catch (ABC) that we have right now. 

 

Under our current FMP, the annual catch limit (ACL) for Spanish mackerel equals the ABC. The current ACL for the commercial Northern Zone (NC through NY) is 662,670 pounds, while the new recommended ACL from the latest stock assessment could increase the Northern commercial ACL to 882,640 pounds in the 2025/2026 fishing season.

 

The reason I highlighted could is because the SAFMC is looking at the possibility of setting no buffer, a 5%, or a 10% buffer from the ABC which would lower the new Northern commercial ACL to 838,508 and 794,376 pounds respectively if a buffer is chosen. The Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) recommended no buffer.

 

During these scoping meetings is the time to let the council know which option you prefer!

 

Webinars are Monday, October 30th at 6:00pm and Wednesday, November 1st at 6:00pm.

 

 

 

 

Register and attend webinar:

webinar registration

 

 

Additional documents:

CMP Framework Amendment 13 Scoping Summary

 

 

Comments are due Friday, November 10th at 5:00pm

 

Submit comments online at:

submit public comments

 

 

Or mail comments to:

John Carmichael, Executive Director, SAFMC

4055 Saber Place Drive, Suite 201

N. Charleston, SC 29405

 

Or fax comments to:

843-769-4520

 

 

 

If you have any questions or comments, please let me know.

 

Thomas Newman 

Fisheries Liaison 

Thomasnewman@ncfish.org

2023 4th QUARTER FISHERY MEETINGS (Oct-Nov-Dec)… 

COUNTY, STATE & FEDERAL

 

NC MARINE FISHERIES COMMISSION:

Quarterly Business Meeting:

  • Wed-Fri…November 15-17

Islander Hotel & Resort, 102 Islander Dr, Emerald Isle, NC

Agenda & minutes available at deq.nc.gov … follow home page to MEETINGS

 

ATLANTIC STATES MARINE FISHERIES COMMISSION:

  • Mon-Thurs…October 16-19

Beaufort Hotel, 2440 Lennoxville Rd, Beaufort, NC

81st ANNUAL MEETING

 Agenda & minutes available at asmfc.org … follow home page to MEETINGS

 

MID-ATLANTIC FISHERY MANAGEMENT COUNCIL:

MEETING 1

  • Tues-Fri…October 3-5

The Yotel, 570 10th Ave, New York City, NY

 Agenda & minutes available at mafmc.org … follow home page to MEETINGS

 

MEETING 2

  • Mon-Thurs...December 11-14

 The Notary Hotel, 21 N. Juniper St, Philadelphia, PA

 Agenda & minutes available at mafmc.org … follow home page to MEETINGS

 

SOUTH ATLANTIC FISHERY MANAGEMENT COUNCIL:

  •  Mon-Fri…December 4-8

 Beaufort Hotel, 2440 Lennoxville Rd, Beaufort, NC

 Agenda & minutes available at safmc.net … follow home page to MEETINGS

 

SAFMC – Advisory Panel Mtgs…no scheduled meetings 

 

DARE COUNTY WATERWAYS COMMISSION: …all mtgs @ 7:00-8:00pm

  • Monday – October 10…Fessenden Center Annex, Buxton

  • Monday – November 13…Dare County Admin Bldg, Manteo

  • Monday – December 11… Fessenden Center Annex, Buxton

 

OREGON INLET TASK FORCE: …all meetings @ 9:30-10:30am

  • Tuesday – October 10… Dare County Admin Bldg, Manteo

  • Tuesday – November 14… Dare County Admin Bldg, Manteo

  • Tuesday – December 12… Dare County Admin Bldg, Manteo

bottom of page