FISHERY BULLETIN ISSUE DATE: April 2, 2018
CONTACT: Kelli O’Donnell, (727) 824-5305, Kelli.Odonnell@noaa.gov
Commercial harvest of greater amberjack in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) will not reopen June 1, 2018. Commercial harvest will reopen at 12:01 a.m. (local time) on January 1, 2019.
WHY THIS CLOSURE IS HAPPENING:
- The latest report for greater amberjack landings through March 15, 2018, indicates 106.4% of the 277,651 lb quota was harvested.
- As a result, commercial harvest will not reopen in federal waters of the Gulf on June 1, 2018.
- This closure is necessary to protect the greater amberjack population. This population is currently considered overfished (the population size is too low) and undergoing overfishing (too many fish being harvested).
DURING THE CLOSURE:
- Any person aboard a vessel for which a federal commercial vessel permit for Gulf reef fish has been issued must comply with the closure regardless of where the fish are harvested.
- No greater amberjack caught in Gulf federal waters after the seasonal closure start of March 1, 2018, may be purchased, bartered, traded, or sold.
- The prohibition of sale does not apply to trade in greater amberjack that were harvested, landed ashore and bartered, traded, or sold before the seasonal closure start of March 1, 2018, and held in cold storage by a dealer or processor.