50 CFR § 622.187 - Bag and possession limits.

§ 622.187 Bag and possession limits.

(a) Additional applicability provisions for South Atlantic snapper-grouper. Section 622.11(a) provides the general applicability for bag and possession limits. However, § 622.11(a) notwithstanding:

(1) The bag and other limits specified in § 622.182(b) apply for South Atlantic snapper-grouper in or from the EEZ to a person aboard a vessel for which a commercial permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued that has on board a longline in the longline closed area.

(2) A person aboard a vessel for which a commercial permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued must comply with the bag limits specified in paragraph (b)(1) of this section for South Atlantic snapper-grouper taken with a powerhead, regardless of where taken, when such snapper-grouper are possessed in an SMZ specified in § 622.182(a)(1)(xii) through (a)(1)(xviii) or (a)(1)(xl) through (a)(1)(li).

(3) In the South Atlantic EEZ, a vessel that lawfully harvests snapper-grouper in Bahamian waters, as per § 622.186 (b), must comply with the bag and possession limits specified in this section. For determining how many snapper-grouper are on board a vessel in fillet form when harvested lawfully in Bahamian waters, two fillets of snapper-grouper, regardless of the length of each fillet, is equivalent to one snapper-grouper. The skin must remain intact on the entire fillet of any snapper-grouper carcass.

(b) Bag limits -

(1) Greater amberjack - 1.

(2) Grouper and tilefish, combined - 3. Within the 3-fish aggregate bag limit:

(i) No more than one fish may be gag or black grouper, combined;

(ii) No more than one fish per vessel may be a snowy grouper;

(iii) No more than one fish may be a golden tilefish; and

(iv) [Reserved]

(v) No goliath grouper or Nassau grouper may be retained.

(3) Hogfish.

(i) In the South Atlantic EEZ off Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina - 2.

(ii) In the South Atlantic EEZ off the Florida Keys and east coast of Florida, and in the Gulf EEZ south of 25°09′ N. lat. off the west coast of Florida - 1.

(4) Snappers, combined - 10.

(i) Within the 10-fish bag limit, no more than 5 fish may be mutton snapper.

(ii) Excluded from this 10-fish bag limit are cubera snapper, measuring 30 inches (76.2 cm), TL, or larger, in the South Atlantic off Florida, and red snapper and vermilion snapper. (See § 622.181(b)(2) for the prohibitions on harvest or possession of red snapper, except during a limited recreational fishing season, and § 622.181(c)(1) for limitations on cubera snapper measuring 30 inches (76.2 cm), TL, or larger, in or from the South Atlantic EEZ off Florida.)

(5) Vermilion snapper - 5.

(6) Red porgy - 3.

(7) Black sea bass - 7.

(8) South Atlantic snapper-grouper (whitebone porgy, jolthead porgy, knobbed porgy, saucereye porgy, scup, almaco jack, banded rudderfish, lesser amberjack, white grunt, margate, sailor's choice, Atlantic spadefish, gray triggerfish, bar jack), combined - 20. However, excluded from this 20-fish bag limit are tomtate, South Atlantic snapper-grouper ecosystem component species (specified in table 4 of appendix A to part 622), and those specified in paragraphs (b)(1) through (7) and paragraphs (b)(9) and (10) of this section. Within the 20-fish bag limit, no more than 10 fish can be of any one of these single snapper-grouper species.

(9) Red snapper - 1.

(10) No more than one fish per vessel may be a wreckfish.

(11) Longline bag limits. Other provisions of this paragraph (b) notwithstanding, a person on a trip aboard a vessel for which the bag limits apply that has a longline on board is limited on that trip to the bag limit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper for which a bag limit is specified in this paragraph (b), and to zero for all other South Atlantic snapper-grouper. For the purposes of this paragraph (b)(11), a vessel is considered to have a longline on board when a power-operated longline hauler, a cable or monofilament of diameter and length suitable for use in the longline fishery, and gangions are on board. Removal of any one of these elements constitutes removal of a longline.

(c) Possession limits.

(1) Provided each passenger is issued and has in possession a receipt issued on behalf of the vessel that verifies the duration of the trip -

(i) A person aboard a charter vessel or headboat on a trip that spans more than 24 hours may possess no more than two daily bag limits of species other than red porgy.

(ii) A person aboard a headboat on a trip that spans more than 48 hours and who can document that fishing was conducted on at least 3 days may possess no more than three daily bag limits of species other than red porgy.

(2) A person aboard a vessel may not possess red porgy in or from the EEZ in excess of three per day or three per trip, whichever is more restrictive.

[78 FR 22952, Apr. 17, 2013, as amended at 78 FR 44465, July 24, 2013; 78 FR 78775, Dec. 27, 2013; 80 FR 16587, Mar. 30, 2015; 80 FR 80688, Dec. 28, 2015; 81 FR 45248, July 13, 2016; 82 FR 34594, July 25, 2017; 83 FR 1309, Jan. 11, 2018; 83 FR 35435, July 26, 2018; 85 FR 11309, Feb. 27, 2020]

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