DEEP: Commercial Fishery Possession Limits

Commercial Fishery Possession Limits
October 31, 2016


Effective 0001 hours Tuesday November 1, 2016, the Scup commercial fishery will reopen at a possession limit of 18,000 pounds. November 1st marks the beginning of the Winter 2 period when quota management reverts to coastwide measures. The initial 12,000 pound possession limit planned for Winter 2 (Nov 1 Dec 31) was increased by NOAA Fisheries in response to the quota underage that occurred during Winter 1 (Jan 1 Apr 30). Note that a Connecticut Quota Managed Species license endorsement for scup is NOT required during Winter 1 or Winter 2, meaning the 18,000 pound possession limit is also available to all holders of the Restricted Commercial Fishing License and license holders fishing lobster pots.
Effective 0001 hours Sunday November 6 2016, the Summer Flounder commercial fishery will reopen at a possession limit of 100 pounds. Approximately 12,500 pounds or seven percent of the annual quota remains. In keeping with the summer flounder quota management strategy developed with fishermen for 2016, this remaining quota was held back for the winter 2 period to be utilized under an initial 100 pound possession limit. 


All commercial fishery possession limits apply to the aggregate of all persons on board the vessel per trip or per day whichever is the longer period of time. Transfer of these species between vessels at sea is prohibited. When any person on a vessel is commercial fishing, the commercial possession limit applies to the entire vessel and no person on that vessel may also possess fish under a recreational creel limit.

Black Sea Bass: Closed

Tautog: Open October 8 December 24
 10 fish Under a Limited Access License (Principal Commercial Fishing or General Commercial Fishing Licenses);
 4 fish Under either a Restricted Commercial Fishing License, or Restricted Commercial Lobster Pot Fishing License.

American lobster: Closed
The closed season for lobster is September 8 through November 28, inclusive. This closure applies to all gears, recreational and commercial in Lobster Management Area 6 (Long Island Sound).

Atlantic menhaden: 6,000 pounds

Bluefish: 1,000 pounds

Smooth dogfish: Closed

Spiny dogfish: 5,000 pounds

Weakfish: 100 pounds

Winter flounder: 50 pounds or 38 fish unless the fish were taken in federal waters under a federal groundfish permit.

Jonah crab: Effective January 15, 2016 in the commercial fishery no Jonah crab less than 4.75 inches carapace width may be possessed or sold. Possession of egg bearing Jonah crabs or crabs from which the eggs have been removed is prohibited. Jonah crabs must also be landed whole. Landing claws only is prohibited. Possession of more than two loose claws per body is prohibited. The possession limit in non-trap fisheries is 200 crabs per day or 500 crabs per trip. There is no possession limit in the lobster pot fishery. (Connecticut licensing statutes do not allow crabs to be taken by pots other than lobster pots.) Please note the non-trap limit was revisited by the ASFMC Lobster Board (which oversees Jonah crab management) in Addendum I this spring. Through that Addendum, the non-trap possession limit will increase to 1,000 crabs effective January 2017.

For current commercial fishery trip limits and quota status:
Call 860-434-6374 24/7 for a recorded message of current possession limits, or see:

The Department monitors landings and adjusts trip limits according to Department regulations in an attempt to provide fishing opportunity throughout the year for all participants in the commercial fishery. In addition, the Department strives to provide advance notification of trip limit changes, although this may not always be possible due to rapidly escalating or unanticipated landings. In such circumstances, only a short notification period may be possible.

The information provided in this notice is a summary of possession limits only. For complete information on commercial fishing regulations please see:, or contact the DEEP Marine Fisheries Division by email at, by mail at PO 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 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.