On January 19, 2021, NOAA Fisheries published an interim final rule (86 FR 5033) to implement management measures for tropical tuna in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO) for 2021. This final rule implemented Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) Resolutions C-20-05 (pdf) and C-20-06 (pdf). The provisions contained in those resolutions are identical in content to the provisions contained in the previous IATTC Resolution (C-17-02; Multiannual Program for the Conservation of Tuna in the Eastern Pacific Ocean During 2018-2020) on tropical tuna management that were in place from 2018-2020. The provisions include an annual catch limit of bigeye tuna caught in the EPO for longline vessels greater than 24 m in overall length (large longline vessels) and catch limit transfer requirements for bigeye tuna caught by large longline vessels in the EPO.
The bigeye tuna annual limit that may be caught and landed by large longline vessels in the IATTC Convention Area (defined as waters bounded by the coast of the Americas, the 50° N. and 50° S. parallels, and the 150° W. meridian) is 750 metric tons. NOAA Fisheries monitors the retained catches of bigeye tuna using both logbook data submitted by vessel captains and other available information. The U.S. bigeye tuna harvest estimates by large longline vessels can be found at the NOAA Fisheries’ Pacific Islands Regional Office Annual Catch Limits website.
Currently, the bigeye tuna fishery is open in the EPO for 2021. NOAA Fisheries will publish an announcement in the Federal Register when this fishery is expected to close, which will also be reflected on this website.
For more information, please contact William Stahnke at firstname.lastname@example.org or (562) 980-4088.