Maine proposes black sea bass rules

Maine fishery officials Friday proposed regulations to manage black sea bass, a species that is increasing in abundance in the state’s waters.

The regulations would govern recreational and commercial fishing of the species, said Maine Department of Marine Resources Commissioner Patrick Keliher, who called black sea bass a “new commercially viable species” for the state.

Commercial fishermen would face a quota of 10,850 pounds of black sea bass in 2014. The proposed regulations also include a daily catch limit of 10 fish for recreational fishermen. The method of fishing for recreational and commercial is to be hook-and-line.

Scientists say black sea bass are increasing in Maine’s waters because of accelerated water temperature increase over the past 10 years. Water temperature in the Gulf of Maine has increased about a half degree per year since 2004, according to scientists at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute.

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