NOAA Fisheries announces final 2019 specifications for the Atlantic bluefish fishery (Table 1). These specifications are very similar to 2018, with only minor adjustments to the final commercial quota and recreational harvest limit to account for most recent full year of recreational catch data (2017), and an adjusted sector quota transfer.
Table 1. Summary of 2019 Bluefish Specifications.
|Overfishing Limit||27.97 million lb|
|Acceptable Biological Catch = Annual Catch Limit||21.81 million lb|
|Commercial Annual Catch Target (ACT)||3.71 million lb|
|Recreational ACT||18.11 million lb|
|Commercial Total Allowable Landings (TAL)||3.71 million lb|
|Recreational TAL||15.62 million lb|
|Sector Quota Transfer||4.00 million lb|
|Commercial Quota||7.71 million lb|
|Recreational Harvest Limit||11.62 million lb|
All other management measures, including the recreational possession limit of 15 fish per person, remain unchanged. The commercial state allocations for 2019 are shown on the next page in Table 2. No states exceeded their allocated quota in 2018; therefore, no accountability measures need to be implemented for the 2019 fishing year.
The bluefish stock will undergo an operational assessment in 2019 that is designed to incorporate updated Marine Recreational Information Program (MRIP) information. The 2020 specifications will be developed using this assessment.
Table 2. 2019 Bluefish State Commercial Quota Allocations (lb).
|State||Percent Share||Quota Allocation|