NOAA Fisheries Southeast Regional Office is located in St. Petersburg, Florida. The Southeast Region covers nearly 20,000 miles of tidal coastline throughout the South Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean. This includes the eight coastal states of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas; the inland watershed states of Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Tennessee; and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
What We Do
NOAA Fisheries Southeast relies on scientists and fishery managers working together to ensure sustainable fishing opportunities, protection for endangered species and marine mammals and the conservation of the habitat needed to support marine life. Our region includes the South Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean.
We work to maintain healthy fish stocks important to commercial, recreational, and subsistence fisheries with the goal to increase long-term economic and social benefits to our region.
We work with three regional fishery management councils (Caribbean, Gulf, and South Atlantic) to conserve and manage marine fishery resources in federal waters from North Carolina through Texas, including Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
With our partners, we manage more than 160 species and 17 fishery management plans.
We also manage the largest recreational fisheries in the country. There are more than 5.7 million recreational anglers in the Southeast. And, about 26 percent of the Southeast harvest is caught by recreational anglers.
(Marine Mammals, Turtles, Corals and More)
We are responsible for the conservation, protection, and recovery of marine mammals and endangered and threatened species including: The endangered North Atlantic right whale with the only known calving area in Northeast Florida and Georgia.
The endangered smalltooth sawfish with the only known pupping and nursery areas in the shallow bays and estuaries of Southwest Florida.
Sea turtles for which we regulate the use of turtle excluder devices as a technological solution that dramatically reduces incidental catch and drowning of sea turtles in trawl nets.
Corals for which we work with partners to protect and restore the unique coral reef system of the Florida Keys, which is the third largest in the world and includes the only living coral barrier reef in the continental United States, and seven species of corals on the Endangered Species List.
We protect, restore, and create habitats vital to healthy marine life. Our region contains the largest wetland acreage and the largest coral reef track in the contiguous United States, yet it also suffers the largest annual loss of wetlands.
We work with partners to stem this loss through efforts such as the Pelican Island project in Louisiana, which restored 2.7 miles of barrier island and created or protected 640 acres of coastal and essential fish habitat.
We consult on numerous projects that have the potential to impact essential fish habitat.
Located in what is now being called the Innovation District in St. Petersburg, Florida, NOAA Fisheries began leasing their current location in 2005. The brick building with large mirrored windows and the visible remnants of what used to be a smokestack (now an elevator) is nestled in the heart of the marine science corridor, sharing Bayboro Harbor with USF St. Pete and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. In all, the three facilities host office space to more than 1,500 scientists.