NOAA Fisheries does not expect recreational anglers to exceed quotas for Gulf of Maine haddock or cod and will allow the fall and spring fishing schedules to occur as originally planned.

According to the Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan, Regional Administrator Michael Pentony, in consultation with the New England Fishery Management Council, has the ability to make in-season adjustments to recreational management measures to ensure annual quotas are not exceeded.

"We project that current measures for GOM cod and haddock should help achieve, but not exceed the recreational fishery’s quotas," NOAA Fisheries said in a prepared statement. "After consultation with the council, Gulf of Maine cod and haddock management measures set in 2020 will remain in place for 2021." 

The regulations include a two-week fall season for GOM cod for private recreational anglers, and a four-week season for GOM cod for anglers on for-hire vessels.

The regulations also will retain the two-week open season for the two GOM species in the spring of 2022, near the end of the current fishing season.

For GOM haddock, the current open season, which opened in May, runs to Feb. 28, 2022. The spring open season is set for April 1 to 30, 2022. The bag limit is 15 fish per angler per day and the minimum size is 17 inches.

For private recreational anglers, the fall open season for GOM cod will run Sept. 15 to 30 and the spring open season is set for April 1 to 14. The bag limit is one cod per angler per day and the minimum size is 21 inches.

For recreational anglers fishing aboard for-hire vessels, the fall open season for cod will run Sept. 8 to Oct. 7 and the spring open season is set for April 1 to 14. The bag limit is one cod per angler per day and the minimum size is 21 inches.

Contact Sean Horgan at 978-675-2714, or shorgan@gloucestertimes.com. Follow him on Twitter at @SeanGDT

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