50 CFR § 622.75 - Harvest limitations.

§ 622.75 Harvest limitations.

(a) Aquacultured live rock. In the Gulf EEZ:

(1) Aquacultured live rock may be harvested only under a permit, as required under § 622.70(a)(2), and aquacultured live rock on a site may be harvested only by the person, or his or her employee, contractor, or agent, who has been issued the aquacultured live rock permit for the site. A person harvesting aquacultured live rock is exempt from the prohibition on taking prohibited coral for such prohibited coral as attaches to aquacultured live rock.

(2) The following restrictions apply to individual aquaculture activities:

(i) No aquaculture site may exceed 1 acre (0.4 ha) in size.

(ii) Material deposited on the aquaculture site -

(A) May not be placed over naturally occurring reef outcrops, limestone ledges, coral reefs, or vegetated areas.

(B) Must be free of contaminants.

(C) Must be nontoxic.

(D) Must be placed on the site by hand or lowered completely to the bottom under restraint, that is, not allowed to fall freely.

(E) Must be placed from a vessel that is anchored.

(F) Must be distinguishable, geologically or otherwise (for example, be indelibly marked or tagged), from the naturally occurring substrate.

(iii) A minimum setback of at least 50 ft (15.2 m) must be maintained from natural vegetated or hard bottom habitats.

(3) Mechanically dredging or drilling, or otherwise disturbing, aquacultured live rock is prohibited, and aquacultured live rock may be harvested only by hand.

(4) Not less than 24 hours prior to harvest of aquacultured live rock, the owner or operator of the harvesting vessel must provide the following information to the NMFS Office for Law Enforcement, Southeast Region, St. Petersburg, FL, by telephone (727-824-5344):

(i) Permit number of site to be harvested and date of harvest.

(ii) Name and official number of the vessel to be used in harvesting.

(iii) Date, port, and facility at which aquacultured live rock will be landed.

(b) [Reserved]