The South Atlantic Fishery Mismanagement Council will be holding public hearings in January on several subjects. The main issues will be regarding the management of the dolphin and wahoo fisheries. While their own statistics show that the fisheries are more than healthy they want to begin the process of taking away our ability to fish for these fish. They also want to take away more fish from the recreational anglers and give them to the commercial side.
Attendance and speaking at these hearings is very important as this is the only chance we have to stop the process of taking away our fish.
Public hearings will be held from 4 – 7 pm at the following locations:
January 28 - Jacksonville Marriott
4670 Salisbury Road
Jacksonville, FL 32256
January 29 - Doubletree by Hilton Cocoa Beach
2080 North Atlantic Avenue
Cocoa Beach, FL 32931
January 30 - Holiday Inn Key Largo
99701 Overseas Highway
Key Largo, FL 33037
Here are some suggested comments for the hearings:
Comments for Dolphin Wahoo public hearings
Action 1: Revise ABC, ACL (including sector ACLs), sector allocations, and recreational ACT for dolphin and wahoo based on MRIP estimates.
We support Alternative 1. No action. (Do not revise ABC, ACLs, allocations, and ACTs for dolphin and wahoo. Data will not be updated with data from Marine Recreational Information Program (MRIP), commercial, and for-hire landings.)
The present status of the dolphinfish is very stable based on the statistics from NMFS quarterly updates. Dolphinfish are not listed as overfished, undergoing overfishing, have a FSSI score of 4 (the maximum) and have maintained a Biomass to Biomass max sustainable yield ratio of 1.56 for every year since 2008. This conclusively proves that the fishery is strong and not in need of any additional regulations.
Action 2: Revise the accountability measures for dolphin and wahoo
We support Alternative 1. No action.
There is no need for any changes in the regulations for the reasons set forth above.
Action 3: Modify the dolphin sector allocations
Alternative 1. No action. Do not modify the current sector allocations for dolphin. The recreational sector allocation for dolphin is 92.7%
NOTE: The advisory panel recommended changing the allocation to 87% recreational/13% commercial
Action 4: Revise the framework procedure in the Dolphin Wahoo FMP
We support Alternative 1. No action. Do not modify the framework procedure established in the Dolphin Wahoo FMP (SAFMC 2003)