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DMF seeks public input for new Southern flounder amendment

The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries is seeking input from the public on potential management strategies for an upcoming amendment to the Southern Flounder Fishery Management Plan.

 

Fishermen and other stakeholders are encouraged to provide input by either attending one of three scoping meetings or providing written comments.

 

The scoping meetings schedule and locations are listed in our Upcoming Events Section at the end of this newsletter.

 

The scoping meetings will include a presentation from division staff, followed by a public comment period. Individuals will be allotted three minutes each for comment on a first-come-first-served basis. The meetings will end at 8 p.m., as scheduled.

 

The public may submit written comments through an online form that can be accessed through the Southern Flounder Information Page or submit comments by mail to:

 

Southern Flounder Amendment 3 Scoping Comments

P.O. Box 769

Morehead City, N.C. 28557

 

Comments should be posted online or postmarked by 5 p.m. Dec. 18. The division will not accept comments submitted by email.

 

The division is seeking comments on potential management strategies in the southern flounder fishery that have already been identified for development in Amendment 3. The issues are:

  • Sustainable Harvest – management measures such as quotas, slot limits, size limit changes, gear changes, and fishing days (other management strategies may also be examined and are outlined in the scoping document);
  • Species Specific Management – separating management of southern flounder, summer flounder, and Gulf flounder for the recreational fishery; and
  • Inlet Corridors – designating no fishing areas to protect mature female southern flounder. 

A scoping document further outlining the potential management strategies can be found on the Southern Flounder Information Page.

 

The division is proceeding with Amendment 3 based on the 2019 coast-wide stock assessment update (containing data through 2017) that indicated the stock is overfished and overfishing is occurring.

 

Scoping is the first stage of the amendment process. Additional opportunities to comment on the draft amendment will be announced as the fishery management plan process proceeds.

CCA NC is developing its comments on preferred management strategies and will share those with our members and supporters. As part of this policy development, we are interested in receiving input from our members and all members of the recreational and conservation communities. We encourage you to respond to this email with your own thoughts and suggestions on the future of Southern flounder management.



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