September 1 Lobster Gear Marking Requirements

Following is a summary of lobster gear marking regulations, which take effect September 1, 2020. A link to the regulation is available here .

A hard copy of this summary with an illustration that shows examples of marking requirements is available as a link at the bottom of this notice.

TRAP GEAR FISHED WITHIN WATERS INSIDE THE EXEMPTION LINE:

  • THREE PURPLE MARKS- 36" purple mark within top two fathoms, 12" purple mark midway, 12" purple mark at bottom of the buoy line. (No green marks allowed inside the exemption line).

  • OPTIONAL FOR BUOY LINES LESS THAN 100 FT: TWO PURPLE MARKS- 36" purple mark within top two fathoms and 12" purple mark at bottom of the buoy line. (No green marks allowed inside the exemption line).

TRAP GEAR FISHED WITHIN WATERS OF THE SLIVER AREA (between exemption line and 3nm line) and WITHIN FEDERAL WATERS OUTSIDE THE 3nm LINE):

  • FOUR PURPLE MARKS and ONE GREEN MARK- 36" purple mark and 6" green mark within top two fathoms, 12" purple mark at top of buoy line, 12" purple mark midway, 12" purple mark at bottom of the buoy line.

  • OPTIONAL FOR BUOY LINES LESS THAN 100 FT: TWO PURPLE MARKS and ONE GREEN MARK- 36" purple mark and 6" green mark within top two fathoms, and 12" purple mark at bottom of the buoy line.

ADDITIONAL GUIDANCE ON THE 2020 TRAP GEAR MARKING REGULATIONS

  • Existing red mark requirements for trap gear remain legally acceptable until September 1, 2020.

  • By September 1, 2020 all gear must be marked with the purple and green marks referenced above. Efforts should be made to remove or eliminate red markings once purple and green markings have been implemented.

  • A 36" purple mark and a 6" green mark must be contained within the top two fathom of a buoy that is ALWAYS on the surface. The harvester may choose any buoy that is always on the surface from which to mark their gear.

  • All end lines must be marked (i.e. both ends of a trawl must be marked).

  • As it relates to the order, the top 12" purple mark can be above or below the 36" purple and 6" green mark, as long as the 36" and 6" marks are in the top two fathom from the buoy.

  • Purple rope must be marked with a purple gear mark. Purple rope of a required length (i.e. 36" or 12") can be added to an endline of a different color to serve as a purple mark. An endline made entirely of purple rope does not count as a gear mark.

  • If a purple rope is performing a function other than a mark (i.e. a purple line to a toggle), then it isn't a mark.

  • Buoy lines of less than 100 feet may be fished with only two purple marks; one 36" inch purple mark in the top two fathom of the line and one 12" inch purple mark at the bottom of the line; the 6" green mark is still required within the Sliver waters and Federal waters.

For additional information regarding marking and buoy configuration questions, please contact Marine Patrol.