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New Turtle Excluder Device Requirements for all Skimmer Trawl Vessels 40 Feet and Greater in Length Take Effect on August 1, 2021

July 15, 2021

FB21-046: Southeast Fishery Bulletin; For more information, contact: Michael Barnette, 727-551-5794,

Key Message:

  • On August 1, 2021, a final rule goes into effect amending the definition of tow time and requiring the use of turtle excluder devices (TEDs) designed to exclude small sea turtles in the nets of skimmer trawlers 40 feet and greater in length in the Southeastern U.S. shrimp fisheries.
  • For the purposes of this rule, vessel length is the length specified on the vessel’s state registration or the U.S. Coast Guard vessel documentation required to be onboard the vessel while fishing; if there is a difference in documented vessel length, the lesser length will be used.
  • Beginning August 1, 2021, skimmer trawl vessels 40 feet and greater in length must have TEDs installed in any net that is rigged for fishing.
  • NOAA Fisheries will continue our outreach strategy to help fishermen comply with these requirements and to fish with TEDs effectively. Our outreach efforts include targeted virtual meetings and social media messages, dockside workshops, instructional videos, and the establishment of an email account ( to respond to submitted questions.


Additional Information:



NOAA’s Text Message Alert Program allows you to receive important fishery related alerts via text message. Standard message and 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 Join us every other Friday on NOAA Fish Instagram for Rec Fish Friday!


Other contacts:

Media: Kim Amendola, 727-551-5707

            Allison Garrett, 727-551-5750

Last updated by Southeast Regional Office on July 15, 2021