The Division of Marine Fisheries (MarineFisheries) is projecting the 9,796 pound spring commercial tautog allocation (adjusted for Spring 2012 overage) will be taken by Sunday, May 5, 2013. Consequently, pursuant to 322 CMR 6.40(1)(d), the spring commercial tautog fishery will close effective 0001 hours on Monday, May 6, 2013. The commercial tautog fishery will re-open on September 1, 2013 and will remain open until the 2013 Massachusetts commercial tautog quota is caught.
During May 6, 2013 through August 31, 2013 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 2013 commercial tautog quota is 58,063 lbs.
For further information contact MarineFisheries staff at 617-626-1520 or please visit our website at www.mass.gov/marinefisheries.