Recreational Anglers Want to Provide More Information

Report released on the uses and limitations on data collected from community monitoring programs

As new technologies make it easier than ever for individual anglers to share their catch information, many recreational anglers are interested in providing information about their fishing trips and what they're catching outside of our existing surveys. MRIP and the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC) co-hosted a workshop in February 2012 to look at the uses and limitations of these types of data.

Atlantic Highly Migratory Silky Shark News

The National Marine Fisheries Service announces the implementation of Recommendation 11-08 of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT), which requires fishing vessels operating in ICCAT-managed fisheries to release all silky sharks. This rule will become effective November 5, 2012 and will apply to vessels fishing with pelagic longline gear and vessels that have both a Charter/Headboat and commercial shark permit and have tuna, swordfish and/or billfish onboard. For more information, please see the attached listserv and Federal Register notice or go to the HMS Management Division webpage at:


Visioning and Strategic Planning Working Group Upcoming Meeting

The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) and its Visioning and Strategic Planning Working Group will hold public meetings.

The meetings will be held Monday October 15, 2012 through Thursday, October 18, 2012. See below for specific dates and times.

John Bullard’s Listening Session Highlights

NOAA Fisheries Service’s new Northeast Regional Administrator, John Bullard, has been holding a series of public meetings around the region.  His goal was to learn more from fishermen, scientists, environmentalists, seafood dealers and processors, the aquaculture industry and other members of the interested public about not only the challenges they are facing, but also what success looks like.   Here are some of the key points raised during each discussion.

New York Senator Seeks Capacity-Limit Legislation

In the wake of the Independence Day boating tragedy on Long Island Sound, U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer, N.Y., introduced legislation that would require the posting of capacity limits on boats over 20 feet.

“In light of the Coast Guard’s refusal to act, Schumer introduced the Boating Capacity Standards Act of 2012, which will require the Coast Guard to develop capacity limits for boats over 20 feet in length and require capacity limits to be posted on all new boats to help prevent future tragedies,” Schumer’s office said in a statement.

Clean Water Act: Availability of List Decisions on New York's List of Impaired Waters

This notice announces EPA's decision to identify certain water quality limited waters and the associated pollutant to be listed pursuant to the Clean Water Act on New York's list of impaired waters, and requests public comment. The Act requires that States submit, and EPA approve or disapprove, lists of waters for which existing technology-based pollution controls are not stringent enough to attain or maintain State water quality standards and for which total maximum daily loads (TMDLs) must be prepared.

Visioning and Strategic Planning Working Group Meeting

The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) Staff will hold the second meeting of the Visioning and Strategic Planning Working Group. During this meeting, the group will finalize draft vision and mission statements, perform an abridged analysis of the Council's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, and develop a goal structure for the strategic plan.

The meeting will be held on Friday, September 21, 2012, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Bluefin Tuna Retention Limits

The National Marine Fisheries Service maintains the current General category (commercial) daily retention limit of three large medium or giant Atlantic bluefin tuna  (measuring 73" or greater) per vessel per day/trip for September 1 through December 31, 2012.  This limit applies to vessels permitted in the Atlantic tunas General category, and to vessels permitted in the HMS Charter/Headboat category while fishing commercially.  


Representative Bill Shuster (R-PA) Chief of Staff Leaving

Rep. Bill Shuster (R-PA) chief of staff Rob Simms is leaving, and will be replaced by current deputy chief of staff Stephen Martinko. Kelley Halliwell will be deputy chief of staff, Jamie Boone Biondi will serve as legislative director, and Brittany Psyhogios-Smith will be a staff assistant

Virginia Offers Funding for Boat Ramps and Other Launch Facilities

The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries recently announced the availability of grants for fiscal year (FY) 2013 and are currently seeking applications. Only Virginia localities are eligible. These grants will assist cities, counties and towns in providing public opportunities for boating access facilities and will also support the development, renovation or improvement of existing public boating access facilities.