NOAA Fisheries is implementing Framework Adjustment 8 to the Northeast Skate Complex Fishery Management Plan. Framework Adjustment 8 increases quotas and seasonal possession limits for both the wing and bait skate fisheries for fishing years 2020 and 2021. The acceptable biological catch is increasing 4 percent to 32,715 mt, and the skate fishery overall total allowable landings (TAL) is increasing 13 percent to 17,864 mt. The final bait fishery TAL will be 5,984 mt, and the wing fishery TAL will be 11,879 mt. A summary of the revised measures for both fisheries is provided below in Tables 1 and 2.
Table 1. Seasonal Allocations of TAL for the 2020-2021 Skate Wing and Bait Fisheries.
|Total Allowable Landings (TAL)||metric tons|
|Wing Fishery||Season 1 (May 1 – August 31)||6,771|
|Season 2 (September 1 – April 30)+||5,108|
|Bait Fishery||Season 1 (May 1 – July 31)||1,843|
|Season 2 (August 1 – October 31)||2,220|
|Season 3 (November 1 – April 30)+||1,921|
+Unused TAL from previous seasons is available in the last season of the fishing year.
Table 2. 2020-2021 Skate Fishery Possession Limits**, in pounds.
|Trip Type||Season||Wing Weight||Whole Weight||Barndoor* Wing Weight||Barndoor* Whole Weight|
|Northeast (NE) Multispecies, Scallop, or Monkfish Day-At-Sea (DAS)||Season 1||3,000||6,810||750||1,703|
|NE Multispecies B DAS||All Year||220||500||0||0|
|Skate Bait under Letter of Authorization||All Year||0||25,000||0||0|
*Barndoor skate possession limits are within the overall skate possession limit for each trip, not in addition to it.
**Possession limits may be modified in-season in order to prevent catch from exceeding quotas.