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Commercial black sea bass fishery harvest period, limits set

North Carolina Marine Fisheries Proclamation FF-5-2021 opened the Atlantic Ocean commercial black sea bass fishery north of Cape Hatteras at 12:01 a.m., Friday, Jan. 1, 2021, and sets the harvest period and offload limits. Vessels employing trawls can possess landing limits for other states, but it is unlawful to offload those fish in North Carolina.

The fishery will close by proclamation once the annual North Carolina quota is reached or at 6 p.m., Friday, Feb. 19, 2021, whichever occurs first.

Size limit: It is unlawful to possess black sea bass less than 11 inches total length (excluding the caudal fin filament) north of Cape Hatteras, states the proclamation.

Harvest Period and Limits:

– It is unlawful for a commercial fishing operation employing fish pots, traps and/or hook and line gear, regardless of the number of people involved, to possess or land more than 2,000 pounds of black sea bass per week. For the purpose of this proclamation, a week shall be from 12:01 a.m. Sunday to midnight the following Saturday.

– It is unlawful for a commercial fishing operation employing trawls, regardless of the number of people involved, to offload more than 4,000 pounds of black sea bass during the harvest period.

– It is unlawful for a commercial fishing operation employing any other gear not listed above, regardless of the number of people involved, to possess or land more than 100 pounds of black sea bass per trip.

– Vessels employing trawls can possess landing limits for other states, but it is unlawful to offload those fish in North Carolina.

READ MORE IN OUR ON THE WATER SECTION HERE.

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