Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
Regulations under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act require publication of this notification to provide interested parties the opportunity to comment on applications for proposed EFPs.
* Mail: Patricia A. Kurkul, Regional Administrator, NMFS, NE Regional Office, 55 Great Republic Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930. Mark the outside of the envelope "Comments on the GMRI monkfish tagging EFP, DA9-229."
* Fax: (978) 281-9135.
The Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI), in response to a NMFS notice published in the
This EFP would allow up to 29 vessels to conduct tagging research in the Southern Fishery Management Area (SFMA) in conjunction with normal commercial fishing operations, using standard commercial gillnets. The goal of the project is to investigate large-scale movements of monkfish and to compare inferences about movement and habitat use from conventional and acrchival tags and otolith trace element analysis. Conventional tagging efforts would be conducted by trained captains or crew while under normal commercial fishing operations. Up to 25-50 monkfish per trip would be tagged, over the course of 51 fishing days. Data storage tags, up to 10 per trip, would only be deployed when GMRI staff is onboard.
This EFP would exempt the participating vessels from the monkfish DAS requirements found at 50 CFR 648.92(b)(1)(i) for a total of 51 DAS. A DAS exemption would reduce the cost to participating vessels, by not requiring them to expend their DAS allocation to conduct the research. This EFP would also exempt participating vessels from the monkfish minimum size restrictions at § 648.93 for the purpose of tagging monkfish during research activities. No fish below the minimum size would be landed for sale. Aside from these exemptions, fishing activities would be conducted under normal commercial practices.
The applicant may request minor modifications and extensions to the EFP throughout the year. EFP modifications and extensions may be granted without further notice if they are deemed essential to facilitate completion of the proposed research and have minimal impacts that do not change the scope or impact of the initially approved EFP request. Any fishing activity conducted outside the scope of the exempted fishing activity would be prohibited.
16 U.S.C. 1801