A recent action by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) has authorized the Division of Marine Fisheries (MarineFisheries)to increase the 2013 black sea bass recreational bag limit from the previously announced three fish to four fish. Consequently, MarineFisheries is in the process of implementing the following (revised) recreational black sea bass regulations:

ModeSeasonBag LimitMinimum Size
Private AnglerMay 11 - October 314 fish14 inches
For-HireMay 11 - October 314 fish14 inches
For-Hire vessels choosing
Closed Season Option*
May 11 - June 1410 fish14 inches
July 1 - August 1120 fish14 inches
September 1 - October 1020 fish14 inches

* To participate in the Closed Season For-Hire Black Sea Bass Fishery, permit holders must apply for a Letter of Authorization (LOA) from MarineFisheries by no later than May 1, 2013. Click this link pdf format of Black Sea Bass For-Hire 2013 LOA Application to see the conditions that will apply and to request an LOA.

Due to the late timing of federal and interstate management decisions affecting the Commonwealth’s recreational measures for black sea bass (as well as scup and fluke), MarineFisheries is implementing the 2013 regulations for these species by emergency action. Final action is pending. A subsequent public hearing and comment period will be announced at a later date.

For further information, review the ASMFC press release here links to PDF file, or visit our website: www.mass.gov/marinefisheries.