Download File

This rule implements on a permanent basis several measures originally imposed by a temporary emergency rule, with some modifications and additions:

A yearround closure of redefined Closed Area I, the Nantucket Lightship Closed Area, and Closed Area II; a small mesh prohibition (with exception criteria) and a prohibition on possession of regulated species while fishing with small mesh; mesh restrictions in the Gulf of Maine juvenile protection areas; an increase in the minimum mesh size in southern New England; a prohibition on scallop dredge vessels from retaining regulated species when they are not fishing under the scallop days-at-sea (DAS) program, and a requirement that the small mesh bycatch provisions apply; and a winter flounder fishing exemption for vessels fishing with small mesh when in state waters, under certain conditions.

Final Rule