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NOAA Announces New Online IFQ Species Identification Guide

March 22, 2017

FB17-019 Gulf of Mexico Fishery Bulletin; For More Information, Contact: Catch Share Customer Support, (866) 425-7627 (option 2, 8am – 4:30pm EST), nmfs.ser.catchshare@noaa.gov


  • NOAA Fisheries currently manages red snapper, ten grouper and three tilefish species under the Gulf of Mexico Red Snapper and Grouper-Tilefish Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) programs.  An online IFQ species identification guide is now available under the Additional Information tab on the Catch Shares Homepage at:  portal.southeast.fisheries.noaa.gov/cs



Certain species are very similar in appearance and could be confused when captured or landed after a trip.  Some common examples are:

  1. Gag Grouper vs. Black Grouper
  2. Black Grouper vs. Yellowfin Grouper
  3. Scamp Grouper vs. Yellowmouth Grouper
  4. Golden Tilefish vs. Goldface Tilefish
  5. Blueline Tilefish vs. Goldface Tilefish


Correctly identifying and reporting all species is important because these data inform both stock assessments and fisheries management. 


  • This guide aims to assist in correctly identifying and reporting species.  Some examples from the guide are given below.

NOAA Fisheries Southeast is pleased to announce the introduction of our Text Message Alert Program.  The program will allow you to sign up to receive important fishery related alerts via text message. Text alerts you may receive include immediate fishery openings and closures, and any significant changes to fishing regulations that happen quickly.

How to opt-in

Sign up for related alerts for one or more of the following groups. Standard message & data rates may apply. You may opt-out at any time.

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

Last updated by Southeast Regional Office on March 19, 2019