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Rule

Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish Fisheries; Closure of Fishery for Loligo

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

Start Preamble

AGENCY:

National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

ACTION:

Closure.

SUMMARY:

NMFS announces that the directed fishery for Loligo squid in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) will be closed effective November 2, 2002. Vessels issued a Federal permit to harvest Loligo squid may not retain or land more than 2,500 lb (1.13 mt) of Loligo squid per trip for the remainder of the year. This action is necessary to prevent the fishery from exceeding its 2002 quota and allow for effective management of this stock.

DATES:

Effective 0001 hours, November 2, 2002, through 0001 hours, January 1, 2003.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Paul H. Jones, Fishery Policy Analyst, 978-281-9273, fax 978-281-9135, e-mail paul.h.jones@noaa.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Regulations governing the Loligo squid fishery are found at 50 CFR part 648. The regulations require specifications for maximum sustainable yield, initial optimum yield, allowable biological catch, domestic annual harvest (DAH), domestic annual processing, joint venture processing and total allowable levels of foreign fishing for the species managed under the Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish Fishery Management Plan. The procedures for Start Printed Page 66073setting the annual initial specifications are described in § 648.21.

The 2002 specification of DAH for Loligo squid was set at 16,898 mt (67 FR 3623, January 25, 2002). This amount is allocated by quarter, as shown below.

Table 1.—Loligo Quarterly Allocations.

QuarterPercentMetric Tons
I (Jan-Mar)33.235,615
II (Apr-Jun)17.612,976
III (Jul-Sep)17.302,923
IV (Oct-Dec)31.865,384
Total100.0016,898
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Section 648.22 requires NMFS to close the directed Loligo squid fishery in the EEZ when 80 percent of the quarterly allocation is harvested in Quarters I, II and III, and when 95 percent of the total annual DAH has been harvested. NMFS is further required to notify, in advance of the closure, the Executive Directors of the Mid-Atlantic, New England, and South Atlantic Fishery Management Councils; mail notification of the closure to all holders of Loligo squid permits at least 72 hours before the effective date of the closure; provide adequate notice of the closure to recreational participants in the fishery; and publish notification of the closure in the Federal Register. The Administrator, Northeast Region, NMFS, based on dealer reports and other available information, has determined that 95 percent of the total DAH for Loligo squid has been harvested. Therefore, effective 0001 hours, November 2, 2002, the directed fishery for Loligo squid is closed and vessels issued Federal permits for Loligo squid may not retain or land more than 2,500 lb (1.13 mt) of Loligo. Such vessels may not land more than 2,500 lb (1.13 mt) of Loligo during a calendar day. The directed fishery will reopen effective 0001 hours, January 1, 2003, when the 2003 quota becomes available.

Classification

This action is required by 50 CFR part 648 and is exempt from review under E.O. 12866.

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Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

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Dated: October 24, 2002.

Bruce C. Morehead,

Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.

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[FR Doc. 02-27607 Filed 10-25-02; 4:05 pm]

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