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Request for Comments: Proposed Rule to Modify Recreational Greater Amberjack Fishing Year and Seasonal Closure

January 26, 2018

FB18-008 Gulf of Mexico Fishery Bulletin; For More Information, Contact: Kelli O'Donnell, (727) 824-5305, Kelli.Odonnell@noaa.gov

Key Message:

NOAA Fisheries requests your comments on a proposed rule for recreational greater amberjack management measures in the Gulf of Mexico.  Comments are due by February 10, 2018.


Summary of Proposed Changes:

  • The proposed rule modifies the greater amberjack recreational fishing year from January 1 – December 31 to August 1 – July 31.
  • This proposed rule would change the greater amberjack recreational seasonal closure to November 1 – April 30 and June 1 – July 31. 


Proposed Fishing Year and Fixed Closed Seasons

August - October November - April


June - July

Open Closed





How to Comment on the Proposed Rule:

The comment period is open now through February 10, 2018.  You may submit comments by electronic submission or by postal mail.  Comments sent by any other method (such as e-mail), to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, may not be considered by NOAA Fisheries.


FORMAL FEDERAL REGISTER NAME/NUMBER: 83 FR 3670, published January 26, 2017


Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. 

  1. Go to https://www.regulations.gov 
  2. Click the "Comment Now!" icon, complete the required fields.
  3. Enter or attach your comments.

Mail: Submit written comments to Kelli O’Donnell, Southeast Regional Office, NMFS, 263 13th Avenue South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Why is the recreational fishing year changing?

  • The change in fishing year is expected to improve recreational fishermen’s access to greater amberjack.
  • It would provide an opportunity to harvest this species when other targeted reef fish species are prohibited from harvest (fall opening).
  • A fishing year beginning August 1 would also reduce the likelihood of an in-season quota closure.

Why is the recreational fixed closed season changing?

  • The current recreational fixed closed season is January 1 – June 30.
  • The intent of the January 1 – June 30 closure was to provide the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council more time to consider the most appropriate recreational closed season.
  • The new fixed closed season of November 1 - April 30 and June 1 - July 31 would protect the greater amberjack population during peak spawning and still allow for a spring and fall recreational harvest.

Where can I find more information on the Greater Amberjack Fishing Year and Recreational Fixed Closed Season Framework?

  • Contact NOAA Fisheries, Southeast Regional Office

 By Mail: Kelli O’Donnell
                NOAA Fisheries, Southeast Regional Office
                Sustainable Fisheries Division
                263 13th Avenue South
                St. Petersburg, Florida 33701-5505

By FAX: (727) 824-5308

By Phone: (727) 824-5305


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

Other contacts:
Media: Kim Amendola, 727-551-5707
           Allison Garrett, 727-551-5750 



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Last updated by Southeast Regional Office on March 13, 2019