Unsupported Browser Detected

Internet Explorer lacks support for the features of this website. For the best experience, please use a modern browser such as Chrome, Firefox, or Edge.

Commercial Closure for Gag in South Atlantic Federal Waters on June 30, 2024

June 25, 2024

FB24-044: South Atlantic Fishery Bulletin: For more information, contact: Mary Vara, mary.vara@noaa.gov, (727) 824-5305


The 2024 commercial harvest of gag in federal waters of the South Atlantic will close at 12:01 a.m., (local time), on June 30, 2024.


Why This Closure Is Happening:

  • The final rule for Amendment 53 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region, which revised and reduced the commercial and recreational catch limits for gag, became effective on October 23, 2023.
  • Due to the gag accountability measures, the 2024 commercial catch limit for gag was reduced from 128,096 pounds gutted weight to 62,922 pounds gutted weight. Reports indicate that commercial landings have reached the 2024 revised commercial catch limit.  The accountability measure requires commercial harvest to close when the commercial catch limit has been reached.  This closure is necessary to protect the gag population.


During The Closure:

  • Recreational harvest for gag also closed on June 15, 2024.  Therefore, all harvest and possession, and sale or purchase of gag is prohibited in South Atlantic Federal waters beginning on June 30, 2024.
  • The prohibition on sale or purchase does not apply to gag that were harvested, landed ashore, and sold before 12:01 a.m., (local time) June 30, 2024, and were held in cold storage by a dealer or processor.
  • The restrictions on the bag and possession limits for gag and the prohibition on sale or purchase apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters.
  • Commercial harvest for the 2025 fishing year in South Atlantic federal waters will open at 12:01 a.m., (local time,) on May 1, 2025, unless otherwise specified.
  • This bulletin provides only a summary of the existing regulations.  Full regulations can be found in the Code of Federal Regulations at 50 CFR part 622 or at https://www.ecfr.gov/current/title-50/chapter-VI/part-622/subpart-I/. 


Sign Up for Text Message Alerts – Find Out About Immediate Openings and Closures

NOAA's Text Message Alert Program allows you to receive important fishery-related alerts via text message (SMS).  Standard message & data rates may apply.  You may opt out at any time.

Text alerts you may receive include:

  • Immediate fishery openings and closures
  • Any significant changes to fishing regulations that happen quickly

Sign up for one or more of the following groups:

  • Gulf of Mexico Recreational Fisheries Related Alerts
    • Text GULFRECFISH to 888777
  • Gulf of Mexico Commercial Fisheries Related Alerts
    • Text GULFCOMMFISH to 888777
  • South Atlantic Recreational Fisheries Related Alerts
    • Text SATLRECFISH to 888777
  • South Atlantic Commercial Fisheries Related Alerts
    • Text SATLCOMMFISH to 888777
  • Caribbean Fisheries Related Alerts
    • Text CARIBFISH to 888777


Quick Glance Contact List for the NOAA Fisheries Southeast Regional Office

Permits Mailbox: The Permits Office in St. Petersburg, Florida, now has a Permits mailbox in the front lobby (263 13th Ave. South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701).  You can now drop off original permits for permit transfers.  Envelopes with information labels will be provided so that your documents can be attached to the correct application.  The mailbox will be checked daily.  For more information, contact the Permits Office at 877-376-4877.

Media Contact: Allison Garrett, 727-551-5750 

Recreational Fishing Coordinator: Sean Meehan, 727-385-5202

Last updated by Southeast Regional Office on June 25, 2024