Flounder season open in Atlantic Ocean
Published 11:05 am Saturday, October 22, 2022
North Carolina Marine Fisheries Proclamation FF-53-2022 opened the Atlantic Ocean commercial flounder season at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022 and establishes a 50,000-pound offload limit per trip. Properly licensed vessel captains 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. on Saturday, December 31, 2022, whichever occurs first.
“The intent of this proclamation is to establish harvest periods and limits for the taking of flounder from the Atlantic Ocean to assure that the quota allocated to North Carolina in the joint Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council/Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission Summer Flounder, Scup and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan is not exceeded. The summer flounder commercial fishery and management unit range is from Maine to North Carolina.”
Proclamation FF-54-2022 established another flounder-related rule for internal coastal waters and Atlantic Ocean waters. Effective at 6 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 21, 2022, the proclamation closed the Pound Net Central Management Area; flounder pound nets in the Central Management Area must be rendered inoperable and will not re-open this year.
The proclamation maintained the opening of the commercial flounder season for the Mobile Gear Northern Management Area to gigs and hook and line only with a 50-fish per person per day limit and maintained the closure to all other mobile gears.
The proclamation maintained the closure of the Mobile Gear Southern Management Area and the Pound Net Northern and Southern Management Areas; flounder pound nets must be rendered inoperable.
This action is being taken to comply with the requirements of Amendment 3 to the N.C. Southern Flounder Fishery Management Plan and maintain harvest within the total allowable landings.