Managing Sustainable Fisheries in the Greater Atlantic Region

We manage commercial and recreational fisheries in federal waters from Maine to North Carolina, working with states and regional fishery management councils and commissions.

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Photo credit: Steve Lauermann

We work cooperatively with the New England and Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Councils, the Northeast Fisheries Science Center, and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission to develop, review, and implement fishery management plans in federal waters (from 3 to 200 nautical miles). The division is responsible for federal waters from Maine to North Carolina and works on 14 fishery management plans.

New England and Mid-Atlantic Fisheries

Below are the fisheries that we actively manage in our region, six with the New England Council, five with the Mid-Atlantic Council, and two jointly. On these pages, you will find information about commercial and recreational fishing regulations, as well as about our management plans and the science that supports them.

New England Fishery Management Council Management Plans

Mid-Atlantic Council Management Plans

Joint New England and Mid-Atlantic Management Plans

How are other species in the Greater Atlantic Region managed?

Some species found in the Greater Atlantic Region are managed exclusively by the states under the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission while some species are managed jointly in both state waters (0–3 miles) and federal waters (3–200 miles). 

Species managed jointly in state and federal waters:

Species managed only in state waters:

What about Atlantic tunas, sharks, swordfish, and billfish?

NOAA's Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Management Division manages Atlantic highly migratory species including tunas, sharks, swordfish, and billfish.

Fishing Resources

Regulations and Management Actions


Understanding Fisheries Management in the United States

NOAA Fisheries is responsible for managing marine fisheries within the U.S. exclusive economic zone. Learn more about the sustainable management of our marine fisheries.

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Last updated by Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office on May 27, 2020