Conn. Agencies Regs. § 26-142a-6 - Commercial fishing gear specifications

Commercial fishing gear shall conform to the following specifications:

(a) The bowl of pounds, trap nets and fykes shall have a mesh of not less than two inches when stretched.
(b) Seines shall have a mesh of not less than two and one-half inches when stretched, except that:
(1) seines used for taking shad shall have a mesh of not less than five inches when stretched;
(2) seines used for taking lamprey eels shall have a mesh of not less than two inches when stretched; and
(3) seines used for taking tomcod also known as "frostfish," shall have a mesh of not less than one and one-half inches when stretched and fifty feet of the center or bunt of such seine shall be not less than one and one-quarter inches when stretched.
(c) Gill nets
(1) In the inland district, gill nets shall have a mesh of not less than five inches when stretched except that nets used for taking white perch, catfish species and yellow perch shall have a mesh of not less than three and one half inches when stretched.
(2) In the marine district gill nets shall have a mesh of not less than three inches when stretched with the following exceptions:
(A) gill nets used for taking American shad shall have a mesh of not less than five inches when stretched;
(B) gill nets used for taking tomcod shall have a mesh of not less than one and one-quarter inches when stretched; and
(C) gill nets used for taking white perch, catfish species and yellow perch shall have a mesh of not less than three and one-half inches when stretched.
(3) The use of gill nets constructed of a single strand or multiple strands of material known as monofilament is prohibited for the taking of American shad from sunrise to sunset. The twine thickness of any such gill net shall be no greater than .28mm diameter (#69).
(4) All gill nets being fished under authority of a personal use gill net license issued under section 26-142a of the Connecticut General Statutes shall be personally attended by the licensee.
(d) Scap nets or scoop nets may have a mesh of any size, except that for the taking of American shad such nets shall have a mesh size of not less than five inches when stretched. Scoop or scap nets for the taking of alewives and river herring means a single hoop attached to a handle with the hoop not more than thirty-six inches across the widest point and a net with a mesh bag not more than thirty-six inches from the hoop to the end of the bag. Such net shall be constructed of flexible mesh material and shall be manually operated by a single individual. The use of any such net constructed of metal mesh or stiff plastic mesh is prohibited.
(e) Minnow seines and traps for the taking of bait species only may have a mesh of any size.
(f) Minnow traps for the taking of bait species only shall have a length of not more than thirty-six inches and a diameter of not more than eighteen inches. Such traps shall be equipped with not more than two funnels and the entrance opening shall not exceed one and one-half inches in diameter. Such traps shall not be equipped with leaders or wings.
(g) Trawl nets in Connecticut Waters
(1) No person shall use any trawl net codend with a mesh size less than 5½ inches (diamond mesh) or six inches (square mesh) on any vessel fishing in Connecticut waters except as provided in subdivisions (3), (4), (6) and (7) of this subsection.
(2) From May 1 to October 31, inclusive, when in possession of more than 100 pounds of summer flounder or from November 1 to April 30, inclusive, when in possession of more than 200 pounds of summer flounder, no person shall use any trawl net with a mesh size in the body, extension or codend less than 5½ inches (diamond mesh) or six inches (square mesh).
(3) From November 1 to April 30 inclusive, if a person on a vessel is in possession of 100 pounds or less of winter flounder or 200 pounds or less of summer flounder, such person may use a fly net with a codend mesh of any size to take Atlantic herring.
(4) From May 1 to October 31 inclusive, no person shall use any trawl net with a mesh size less than 4½ inches (diamond mesh) or five inches (square mesh), except that:
(A) A person may use a trawl net with mesh of any size in the body and wings of the net provided the codend is at least 75 meshes in length and the terminal 75 meshes of the codend have a mesh size of no less than five inches (diamond mesh) or 5½ inches (square mesh).
(B) For the taking of squid from May 15 to July 31 inclusive, a person may use a trawl net with a mesh of any size provided the codend mesh size is no less than 4½ inches (diamond mesh) and no more than 100 pounds of scup or 100 pounds of black sea bass are in such person's possession.
(C) For the taking of butterfish and squid from October 1 to October 31, inclusive, a person may use a trawl net with a mesh of any size provided the codend mesh size is no less than 3 inches (diamond mesh) and no more than 200 pounds of scup or 100 pounds of black sea bass are in such person's possession.
(5) No person shall possess more than 100 pounds of winter flounder while fishing with a trawl net with a codend mesh less than 6½ inches (diamond mesh) or 6½ inches (square mesh).
(6) From May 1 to October 31, inclusive, no person shall possess more than 200 pounds of scup while fishing with a trawl net that does not:
(A) have a mesh size of at least 5 inches (diamond mesh) or 5½ inches (square mesh) throughout the entire net; or
(B) meet the specifications of subdivision (4)(A) of this subsection.
(7) From May 1 to October 31, inclusive, no person shall possess more than 100 pounds of black sea bass while fishing with a trawl net that does not meet the specifications of subdivision (4)(A) of this subsection.
(8) In Connecticut waters, no person shall possess any codend or trawl net with mesh sizes less than specified in subdivisions (2) to (7), inclusive, of this subsection on any vessel having winter flounder, summer flounder, black sea bass or scup on board in excess of the limits specified in subdivisions (2) to (7), inclusive, of this subsection unless the codend is detached from the main body of the net or the entire trawl net is removed and detached from the net reel or is covered on a net reel and is bound securely and unavailable for immediate use.
(9) For the purposes of this subsection, codend is the retaining bag of the net. The minimum mesh size is the maximum opening of any single mesh, measured when wet after use, by the median of eleven consecutive measurements taken at least five meshes from the lacings parallel to the longitudinal axis of the net. The "body of the net" is the main part of the net immediately behind (posterior to) the footrope, excluding the wings. The "extension of the net" is that part of the net between the body and the codend. A "fly net" is an otter trawl constructed of a minimum of 5½-inch stretch mesh webbing in the wings and forward body (belly) section extending at least twelve meshes or 5½ feet along the longitudinal axis of the net.
(10) The use of any means, device or material including but not limited to ropes, lines, liners, net strengtheners, or double nets which obstructs or diminishes the size of the meshes in the top of the codend or of that part of the net which does not contact the seabed during normal fishing activity, is prohibited. All netting in trawl nets not made on a braiding machine, whether of braided or twisted twine, whether machine or hand made, shall have only one knot, which shall be the weavers knot or sheet bend. The ends of the twine, called bars, that exit the knot shall be constructed so that their lay does not cross or twist.
(11) Any person who takes winter flounder or summer flounder while fishing pursuant to the provisions of subdivisions (2), (3) or (5) of this subsection, and any person who takes scup or black sea bass while fishing pursuant to the provisions of subdivisions (4), (6) or (7) of this subsection shall separate these fish by species and keep these fish apart from the main catch. All possession limits specified in subdivisions (2) to (7), inclusive, of this subsection shall apply to the aggregate of all persons onboard the vessel.
(12) No bottom trawl net shall be equipped with rollers or cookies (hard rubber disks on the sweep of the net) in excess of six inches in diameter.
(h) Fish pots and fish traps
(1) No person shall use fish pots or fish traps except for the taking of finfish. This subsection shall not apply to pound nets, trap nets, or lobster pots. Subdivision (3) of this subsection shall not apply to pots or traps used to take American eel and minnow traps used to take the bait species listed in section 26-142a-12(b) of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies.
(2) Fish pots or fish traps shall be not more than 72 inches in length, width, or height.
(3) No person shall use any fish pots or fish traps unless such pot or trap has on any side of the catch chamber but not the bottom, a circular escape vent with an unobstructed opening not less than 3.1 inches (78.7 millimeters) in diameter or a square escape vent with an unobstructed opening not less than 2.25 inches (57.2 millimeters) on each side. Each fish pot or fish trap shall also have an escapement panel on any side of the catch chamber but not the bottom which, when open, will provide an unobstructed opening not less than seven and three quarters inches by seven and three quarters inches (197 millimeters by 197 millimeters) or which shall be comprised of the entire side, or end, of a square or rectangular pot or trap. Such escapement panels shall be held in the closed position with ungalvanized, uncoated iron wire, the stock of which shall not be more than 0.094 inch (2.39 millimeters) diameter, or magnesium alloy, timed float releases (pop up devices) or similar magnesium alloy fasteners, or with untreated natural fiber such as cotton, hemp, or jute string of 3/16 inch (0.188 inch, or 4.8 millimeters) diameter or smaller.
(4) No person shall use any fish pots or fish traps and the buoys thereof unless such pot, trap, and buoy is affixed with the commercial fishing license plate number of the owner in numbers not less than three-quarters of an inch in height.
(i) Whelk pots
(1) No person shall use whelk pots except for the taking of whelk.
(2) No person shall use in the waters of this state a whelk pot, trap or similar device with a volume larger than 22,950 cubic inches.
(3) Whelk pots shall have an unobstructed opening on the top side of no less than 140 square inches, and each side of the opening shall be at least 10 inches in length.
(4) No person shall use any whelk pot and the buoys thereof unless such whelk pot is marked legibly with the commercial fishing license plate number and the buoy is so marked with numbers not less than three-quarters of an inch in height.
(5) All whelk pot buoys used by any person in the waters of this state shall be of uniform color or uniform pattern of coloration, such color or pattern to be determined by such person. Any person engaged in whelk fishing shall maintain one of such person's whelk pot buoys on such person's vessel in a position visible from all directions.
(6) No person shall set, tend or assist in setting or tending any whelk pot, trap or similar device for the catching of whelk on any leased shellfish bed without the permission of the lease holder.
(7) All bait used in whelk pots, traps or similar devices shall be wholly contained within a mesh bag.
(8) No person shall from one-half hour after sunset to one-half hour before sunrise, set, tend or assist in setting or tending any whelk pot, trap or similar device for the catching of whelk or any live car or other device in which whelks are kept in the water after having been removed from the pots, traps or trawls in which they were caught.

Notes

Conn. Agencies Regs. § 26-142a-6
Effective July 26, 1996; Amended June 27, 1997; Amended June 26, 1998; Amended October 30, 1998; Amended July 21, 1999; Amended July 1, 2002; Amended August 26, 2005; Amended December 27, 2006; Amended December 22, 2008; amended 5/11/2022

State regulations are updated quarterly; we currently have two versions available. Below is a comparison between our most recent version and the prior quarterly release. More comparison features will be added as we have more versions to compare.


No prior version found.