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Squid technician
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I am not for or against commercial fishing, just realize it is another way of making a living, but this is truly a case in my <U>opinion</U> where the commercial guys have taken away recreational anglers privileges. Have you ever seen commercial shark boats come in and see how many large coastal and pelagic sharks they kill. I realize rec. anglers do catch a good bit too but nowhere in the vicinity of longliners. Looking forward to a great catch and release shark season.
 

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Your mom's a
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I haven't been able to find anything on this on NOAA or Gulf Council Web sites.

I don't doubt it's true, but before I throw out my plans to fish the Mega Shark, I want to be sure.:banghead
 

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Squid technician
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I wonder if they will be able to have the mega shark tourney this year. If this is true it would have to be catch and release and rely on a point system. I was hoping to fish it this year but...guess not.
 

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I don't fish for them much and normally release them when I do. But it still sucks to hear this I hope it's just BS and not true.
 

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For one, if it is true, it is Federal, so stat waters wouldnt be affected.

Also, the poster didn't quote any sourse, so I think its not true, no one else has ever heard anything, plus a new set of Florida fishing regulations comes out next week, right?

I fish for shark, and eat every last bit of it!
 

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From all I can gather on this is that it's BS. I just got more tags from the NMFS for sharks. I don't think they'd have sent them to me if they were going to close the fishery. I will continue to catch and release untill I see something more offical on the subject. SHARK ON DUDES!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I did find this<P class=bigbluehead align=center>BRING BACK THE BIG FISH!<P align=center><SPAN class=bold>Action Item<SPAN class=bigbluehead><SPAN class=bluehead>

<SPAN class=bigbluehead>Comment Period Extended
on Proposed Fishing Regulations for Atlantic Sharks
<P class=redhead align=left>**Public comment period extended to December 17, 2007.**<P align=left><SPAN class=italic>11/27/07 NOAA Fisheries (NMFS) is now considering measures to minimize impacts to commercial fishermen that will be brought about if tough, new restrictions on shark fishing are enacted. These restrictions are desperately needed to protect large coastal sharks in the Atlantic -- most notably, sandbars, duskies and porbeagles -- whose populations are severely depleted from overfishing and bycatch. The extension of the comment period indicates that NOAA may consider weakening the proposed restrictions that are currently identified as "preferred alternatives" under Draft Amendment 2 to the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan. <SPAN class=redhead>If you have not done so already, write to NOAA Fisheries today in support of Alternative Suite 4.

The agency is seeking public comment on a set of alternatives for managing sharks in the Atlantic. Alternative suite #4 would impose much needed restrictions on fisheries for overfished sharks; however, other alternatives being considered range from maintaining the ?status quo? to imposing only a modest reduction in commercial shark harvest for at-risk shark species. Sharks are highly vulnerable to overexploitation followed by population collapse because they grow slowly, mature late in life and give birth to only a few young.

In November of 2006, new stock assessments revealed the dire condition of several species of Atlantic sharks. Sandbar, porbeagle and dusky shark populations had been severely overfished and rebuilding timeframes are projected at 66, 100 and 400 years respectively. In response, NOAA Fisheries hosted a series of public scoping meetings to discuss management options to end overfishing of Atlantic sharks and restore depleted stocks. Feedback from the hearings resulted in five alternative management measures, which were published in July as Draft Amendment 2 to the Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan. After considering public comment on the five alternatives, NOAA Fisheries will make a final decision as to what measures to implement.

The National Coalition for Marine Conservation (NCMC) supports Alternative Suite #4, with modifications to the list of authorized species for recreational fishing. <SPAN class=bold>Alternative Suite #4 would:<UL><LI>Reduce the landings of sandbar sharks by 80 percent, to 116 tons (dressed weight). <SPAN class=italic>(Dusky sharks have been a prohibited species since 2000, but many are still killed as bycatch in fisheries targeting sandbars.)

<LI>Limit fishing for sandbars to a ?research fishery? consisting of only 5-10 vessels (out of 139 vessels with active shark permits), with 100% onboard observer coverage.

<LI>Prohibit vessels without a research permit from possessing or landing sandbar sharks, but would allow up to 22 non-sandbar large coastal sharks per vessel per trip under a fishery-wide quota of 491 tons.

<LI>To prevent quota overages, close all shark fisheries (research and non-research alike) for the year when 80% of the sandbar or the non-sandbar shark quota is landed.

<LI>Prohibit retention of porbeagle sharks.

<LI>Limit recreational fishing to the following, easily-identifiable species: bonnethead, nurse, tiger, hammerheads, lemon, Atlantic sharpnose, shortfin mako, common thresher, oceanic whitetip and blue sharks. <SPAN class=bold>(Based on testimony from fishermen and shark scientists, NCMC supports adding blacktip, bull and spinner ? all non-ridgeback sharks and thus easily discernible from sandbar and dusky - to this list</LI>[/list]
 
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