Skip to Content

Rule

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

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

Published Document

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 March 25, 2003. Vessels issued a Federal permit to harvest Loligo squid may not possess or land more than 2,500 lb (1.13 mt) of Loligo squid per calendar day for the remainder of the quarter (through March 31, 2003). This action is necessary to prevent the fishery from exceeding its Quarter I quota and allow for effective management of this stock.

DATES:

Effective 0001 hours, March 25, 2003, through 2400 hours, March 31, 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.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

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 setting the annual initial specifications are described in § 648.21.

The 2003 specification of DAH for Loligo squid was set at 16,872.5 mt (68 FR 57, January 2, 2003). This amount is allocated by quarter, as shown below.

Table. 1 Loligo Squid Quarterly Allocations.

QuarterPercentMetric Tons1Research Set-aside
I (Jan-Mar)33.235,606.7N/A
II(Apr-Jun)17.612,971.3N/A
III(Jul-Sep)17.32,918.9N/A
IV (Oct-Dec)31.865,375.6N/A
Total10016,872.5127.5
1 Quarterly allocations after 127.5 mt research set-aside deduction.

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 80 percent of the DAH for Loligo squid in Quarter I will be harvested. Therefore, effective 0001 hours, March 25, 2003, the directed fishery for Loligo squid is closed and vessels issued Federal permits for Loligo squid may not possess 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, April 1, 2003, when the Quarter II quota becomes available.

Classification

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

Start Authority

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

End Authority Start Signature

Dated: March 20, 2003.

Richard W. Surdi,

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

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 03-7242 Filed 3-21-03; 2:37 pm]

BILLING CODE 3510-22-S