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-   -   NOAA doubles Gulf of Maine winter flounder catch limits (http://www.reel-time.com/forum/showthread.php?t=75438)

Onshore 02-21-2012 12:09 PM

NOAA doubles Gulf of Maine winter flounder catch limits
 
NOAA doubles Gulf of Maine winter flounder catch limits
February 8, 2012
Gulf of Maine winter flounder.
(Credit: NOAA)
NOAA announced today that it is doubling the amount of Gulf of Maine winter flounder commercial fishermen can catch from almost 510,000 pounds to more than 1.1 million pounds for the current fishing season, which ends April 30. New scientific information shows that overfishing is no longer occurring on this important fish stock.

This past year, NOAA scientists completed a new Gulf of Maine winter flounder stock assessment using three years of additional catch data and a more sophisticated stock assessment model. The assessment shows that fishing effort was well within the sustainable level, allowing catch limits to be increased.

“Raising catch limits for Gulf of Maine winter flounder is good news for fishermen and fishing communities,” said Sam Rauch, acting assistant NOAA administrator for NOAA’s Fisheries Service. “Increased catch levels will provide important economic benefits at a time when there is significant concern about the status of the Gulf of Maine cod stock.”

The potential revenue increase from the new catch limit using recent average prices from fishing years 2007-2010 could be as high as $1.2 million if the entire catch limit is actually landed by fishing vessels. Also, since fishermen are no longer constrained by the currently low Gulf of Maine winter flounder catch limit, they can target other groundfish stocks which may lead to another source of increased revenues.

Catch limits for this fishing season had been set by the New England Fishery Management Council based on the 2008 Gulf of Maine winter flounder stock assessment, which contained catch and survey information compiled through 2007.

In June 2011, NOAA scientists completed a new assessment of the Gulf of Maine winter flounder stock. With three years of additional catch data, which enabled the use of a more sophisticated stock assessment model, NOAA was able to determine that fishing effort was well below what can sustainably be taken from this fish stock, so the catch limit increases are warranted.

NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage our coastal and marine resources. Join us on Facebook, Twitter and our other social media channels.
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So, the commercial catch limits are now been doubled but, NO MENTION OF INCREASING THE RECREATIONAL LIMITS ?

Bill H

Frankie G 02-21-2012 01:07 PM

Seems like a huge upside move...I will say that the last three seasons I have had the best flounder fishing in the springtime since I was a young boy fishing with my dad. I take my boys out now and we were releasing most fish that were not 14" plus and I think they are one of the tastiest fish in the sea...and a fun fight to boot! Just a simple fishery.

Frank


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