The Division of Marine Fisheries (MarineFisheries) is projecting the 17,130 pound spring commercial tautog allocation will be taken by Monday, April 30, 2012. Consequently, pursuant to 322 CMR 6.40(1)(d), the spring commercial tautog fishery will close effective 0001 hours on Tuesday, May 1, 2012. The commercial tautog fishery will re-open on September 1, 2012 and will remain open until the 2012 Massachusetts tautog quota is caught.
May 1, 2012 through August 31, 2012 it shall be illegal for any persons to catch, land or possess tautog in a manner that does not comply with the recreational fishery limits of 3-fish per angler at a minimum of 16 inches, as specified at 322 CMR 8.06(3).
In addition, dealers are reminded that pursuant to 322 CMR 7.07(5)(b) it is unlawful to purchase tautog from a Massachusetts commercial fisherman when the fishery is closed.
In an ongoing effort to conserve and rebuild local tautog populations, MarineFisheries, with the approval of the Marine Fisheries Advisory Commission established the commercial quota in 2007, with 28% allocated to the spring fishery and the remaining 72% allocated to the fall fishery. The overall 2012 commercial tautog quota is 61,180 lbs.
For further information contact MarineFisheries staff at 617-626-1520 or please visit our website at www.mass.gov/marinefisheries .