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Individual Bluefin Quota Program Reminder: 3rd Quarter Accountability

September 25, 2018

For the period ending September 30, 2018.


For a vessel’s first pelagic longline trip in the fourth quarter (October through December), a vessel may not fish if it has quota debt and must have the minimum amount of Individual Bluefin Quota which is 276lb of Individual Bluefin Quota in the Atlantic and 551lb of Individual Bluefin Quota in the Gulf of Mexico.  

If a vessel accrued quota debt prior to October 1, the vessel must first resolve the quota debt and have the minimum amount of Individual Bluefin Quota in order to fish.

Resolving Quota Debt

If a vessel account has quota debt (and insufficient IBQ allocation in their shareholder and/or vessel account to cover it), the permit holder must:

(1) lease a sufficient amount of allocation from a permitted longline vessel or a purse seine fishery participant, and transfer it into their vessel account; and then

(2) resolve the quota debt transaction(s) in the Individual Bluefin Quota system online.  

Specifically, Atlantic pelagic longline quota debt can be resolved using Atlantic allocation, Gulf of Mexico pelagic longline allocation, or purse seine allocation. Gulf of Mexico quota debt can only be resolved using Gulf of Mexico allocation. An Individual Bluefin Quota shareholder can log into their shareholder account to resolve quota debt in their vessel account(s). From the main menu, go to Catches then Resolve Quota Debt Mid Year.  Please consult page 31 of the “Individual Bluefin Quota Troubleshooting Guide” available through the online Individual Bluefin Quota system (see “Contact Information” at the bottom of this letter). For additional assistance you may call Individual Bluefin Quota Customer Service at (301) 427-8591 (8:00am to 5:00pm, Monday through Friday, excluding federal holidays).

Vessel Monitoring System Reporting Requirements: You are reminded that vessels must submit through Vessel Monitoring System a “Highly Migratory Species Bluefin Tuna Catch Report,” for each set. Specifically, such vessels must report the number of all bluefin discarded dead or retained (by standardized size ranges) within 12 hours of completion of each set (including reporting of zero bluefin on a set).

For More Information Contact

Individual Bluefin Quota Program

Electronic Monitoring

  • Technical Questions about Camera System: Saltwater, Inc. (800) 770-3241
  • Hard Drive Mailing Procedures: Earth Resources Technology, Inc. (240) 393-4213

Pelagic Observer Program: (800) 858-0624

General Information about Pelagic Longline Regulations

Last updated by Office of Sustainable Fisheries on February 07, 2022