DEEP: Notice to Lobster Fishermen

Notice to Lobster Fishermen

August 6, 2013

SEASON CLOSURE

This notice serves as a reminder of the upcoming fall season closure required under Addendum XVII to the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commissionís (Commission) American Lobster Fishery Management Plan which was approved in November 2011. The season closure applies to all Long Island Sound waters (LMA 6), extends from September 8 through November 28, inclusive, and applies to both recreational and commercial fisheries and all gears. Between those dates possession of lobsters taken from LMA 6 or from traps with LMA 6 trap tags is prohibited.

All lobster gear must be removed from the water during the closure, except that the plan allows fishermen two weeks at the beginning of the closure period (September 8 through September 21) to remove gear and two weeks prior to the late fall reopening (November 15 through November 28) to redeploy the gear. Traps cannot be baited until one week prior to reopening (November 22). An exception to the gear removal requirement is provided for fishermen who hold a conch (whelk) license for those lobster pots being actively fished for whelk. The take and landing of lobsters during these exception periods is prohibited.

The objective of Addendum XVIIís season closure is to reduce exploitation (the percentage of animals fishing takes from the population annually) by 10% starting January 1, 2013 to help rebuild the broad Southern New England lobster stock, including the local Long Island Sound component. The Commission took this action in response to the low level of abundance and persistent low production of young lobsters seen over the past decade across the entire New England stock complex (southern Massachusetts to Virginia, including offshore waters).

For further information, contact the DEEP Marine Fisheries Division by email at deep.marine.fisheries@ct.gov, by mail at P.O. Box 719, Old Lyme, CT 06371 or by telephone at 860.434.6043 between the hours of 8:30 AM and 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday.

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer that is committed to complying with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Please contact us at (860) 418-5910 or deep.accommodations@ct.gov if you: have a disability and need a communication aid or service; have limited proficiency in English and may need information in another language; or if you wish to file an ADA or Title VI discrimination complaint.

(N13-14)