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Sustainable Fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico

Gulf of Mexico fisheries contribute millions of dollars to the economy through commercial and recreational fishing. Tourists and residents alike enjoy access to Gulf of Mexico seafood year round.


The Gulf of Mexico Branch (Gulf Branch) works with the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council  (Gulf Council) to manage fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico. The Gulf Council develops management measures through fishery management plans (FMPs) for key marine species. The Gulf Branch puts in place the resulting regulations. Gulf Branch staff provide guidance on fisheries management; assess environmental impacts of management measures; educate the public on fishery management issues; coordinate public review and comments during regulations development; and issue fishing closures to prevent overfishing.  

The Gulf of Mexico ecosystem spans from the Yucatan peninsula to the straits of Florida. Commercial fishing in the Gulf contributes millions of dollars to the economy from this ecosystem. Its seabed also produces more than half the U.S. domestic supply of oil and natural gas. Successfully managing marine fisheries in today's busy ocean requires understanding the entire ecosystem. Watch the Gulf of Mexico Ecosystem video to learn more

Fishery Management Plans (FMP)

Report Fishing Resources

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.


Last updated by Southeast Regional Office on May 02, 2024