Reef Fish Amendment 43 – Hogfish Stock Definition, Status Determination Criteria, Annual catch Limits, and Size Limit
This Amendment revises the Gulf hogfish fishery management unit to include all hogfish found in the Gulf of Mexico Federal Waters north of the line extending due west from 25°09′ North latitude off the west coast of Florida, and sets annual catch limits for 2017 and 2018 at 219,000 pounds whole weight. The annual catch limit will increase to 159,300 pounds for 2019 and subsequent years. This amendment also increases the commercial and recreational minimum size limit to 14 inches fork length and prohibits the use of powerheads for harvesting hogfish in the Gulf stressed area. Finally, this amendment corrects a charter vessel definition so it’s consistent with the headboat definition.
This final rule is effective August 24, 2017