Written by Jessica Hathaway
A multi-state fisheries commission will consider whether the Gulf of Maine shrimp fishery should continue to be open to anyone who asks for a license.
The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission restricts the impact of fishing on northern shrimp in the Gulf of Maine by setting a cap on the total amount of shrimp that can be harvested by licensed fishermen from the three gulf states — Maine, Massachusetts and New Hampshire. This past winter, there was no shrimp fishing in the gulf because regulators determined that the stock of shrimp in the gulf was so low that the total allowable catch should be zero.
The commission indicated last week that it may amend its fishery management plan to establish a limited entry program for the fishery, which would set a cap on the number of shrimp licenses in the three states. Marin Hawk, the commission's management coordinator for the species, indicated Wednesday in an email that developing and implementing such a program could take between six months and two years.
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