New England council sponsoring two-day Feb. 22-23 inshore scallop workshop in RI

GLOUCESTER, MA – Due to concerns raised about the potential impacts of increased effort on the nearshore scallop fishery over the past few years, the New England Fishery Management Council has set up a two-day inshore scallop workshop to be held Feb. 22-23 in Warwick, RI.

The fishery is comprised of two fleets:

•  About 340 active, limited access (LA) permits on vessels that are typically larger, fish further offshore and spend more time at sea per trip to harvest scallops.  These permit holders are managed by non-transferrable days at sea (DAS) and poundage from special access areas that may be traded.

•  Then there are about 100 active limited access general category (LAGC) permits, typically on smaller vessels that fish primarily nearshore on trips of shorter duration.  The LAGC permit holders work under a transferrable individual fishing quota (IFQ) management system.

And there is overlap between the two, with some vessels having permits for both.

At issue is the nearshore scallop resource, which both LA and LAGC permit holders fish.

Although the LAGC has access to the special access areas such as the Mid-Atlantic Access Area (MAAA), they are restricted by a total fleetwide catch limit or maximim number of trips they can take into those areas and a possession limit of 600 pounds.

Although the resource is not overfished and overfishing is not occurring, concerns have been raised by the LAGC fleet that the overall management of nearshore areas could be improved to provide a continued strong harvest and healthy resource inshore.

A whitepaper presented at the June 2015 council meeting listed nearly a dozen potential ways to address the problem.

Among those were:

CFN-2_16-coverTo get the rest of this story and the February issue of Commercial Fisheries News –
please choose from the following options:  

BUY a Single PRINT edition of CFN that is delivered by MAIL.
Click Here for PRINT EDITION

Quickly enjoy ONLINE access with our feature packed flip-book.

(Read online flip-book immediately with access key and download a copy for yourself.  Not sure? SAMPLE HERE)