Regulation Watch

Mid-Atlantic Managers Reject Even Fluke Split
A tie vote on the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council meant a rejected petition from the Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA) requesting a 50-50 split of the summer flounder quota between recreational and commercial fishing. The present split was based on landings in the 1980s after offshore draggers had already decimated fluke stocks with intensive trawling on their wintering grounds. For more information, visit www.mafmc.org.

Net Ruling Upheld
Florida's ban on gill and entangling nets was again legally upheld following a ruling by the First District Court of Appeals. Commercial interests attempted to circumvent the maximum allowable two-inch-mesh size by establishing a distinction between illegal gill nets and legal seines by claiming their net was a "hybrid." Two similar lawsuits filed earlier were also rejected after the appellate court ruled that the mesh-size method used to distinguishe seines from gillnets was "historically based, rational and practical." For more information, visit www.floridaconservation.org.

Mississippi Changes Multi-Point Hook rules
The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources (DMR) amended its regulations to allow fishermen the use of treble and multiple-point hooks when fishing with live, dead or cut bait. For more information, visit www.dmr.state.ms.us.