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2007 Summer Flounder Recreational Fishery Management Options

NOTE: The survey of summer flounder management options has ended. Below is information on the proposed management options, but the Division is no longer accepting survey responses. Responses submitted prior to noon on Thursday, March 1 have been tabulated and were presented at the Marine Fisheries Council meeting. Thank you for your interest in New Jersey's recreational summer flounder fishery management.

On February 20, 2007, the New Jersey Marine Fisheries Council Summer Flounder Committee met with recreational summer flounder advisors to discuss management options for the 2007 fishery. Meeting participants reviewed 13 options that covered a range of size limits, bag limits, and seasons necessary to meet New Jersey's required 39.5% harvest reduction.

Discussion focused on how the different options might affect the New Jersey summer flounder fishery this year and in future years. Based on these discussions, meeting participants selected four management options to present to the Marine Fisheries Council and the public. These options include three options preferred by the organizations represented by the advisors, as well as one option at 16.5" for comparison to recent years' regulations.

The four options are presented in the table below to allow the public an opportunity to review them and provide feedback to the Marine Fisheries Council.

Option #
Size limit
Bag limit
July 1 to September 3
May 26 to September 10
June 9 to September 18
April 7 to October 21

Each of these options has an eight fish bag limit, and meeting participants discussed the possibility of reducing the bag limit in order to allow a longer season or lower size limit. However, because most trips that harvest summer flounder in New Jersey do not "limit out," it would require a substantial decrease in bag limit to have an affect on the size or season. For example, an option of three fish at 17" allows the same season as eight fish at 17". It would be necessary to drop to two fish at 17" in order to extend the season. For this reason, meeting participants decided to maintain the eight fish bag limit.

A survey to provide input on these options was available until noon on March 1. In addition, a limited time for public comment at the Marine Fisheries was scheduled for the Council meeting on Thursday, March 1, 2007 (4:00pm-6:30pm at the Atlantic County Library, Jim Leeds Road, Galloway, NJ. The Council was to consider all the public input and make a final decision regarding the 2007 summer flounder recreational management measures at the March 1 meeting.

Thank you for your interest in New Jersey's marine resources and their management.

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Department of Environmental Protection
P. O. Box 402
Trenton, NJ 08625-0402

Last Updated: March 2, 2007