Atlantic Menhaden Management
Atlantic Menhaden is a quota monitored species managed by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC). Some of the links below are PDF files, and may require Adobe Reader software (download here free) to view or print. For more information, contact Matt Cieri or Melissa Smith at DMR, or your local Marine Patrol office or officer.
Management for 2018 and 2019
Atlantic menhaden are currently managed under Amendment 3 to the Interstate Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for Atlantic Menhaden (PDF file, 111 pages). Approved in November 2017, the Amendment maintains the management program’s suite of commercial management measures including allocation, quota transfers, quota rollovers, incidental catch, the episodic events set aside program, and the Chesapeake Bay reduction fishery cap. The Atlantic Menhaden Board set the total allowable catch for the 2018 and 2019 fishing seasons at 216,000 metric tons.
Maine's allocation of Atlantic menhaden quota is 0.52% of the available 216,000 metric tons, or 2,438,677 pounds. Maine is also able to participate in the Episodic Events Fishery Set Aside program; the set aside quota is 1% of the total allowable catch and is approximately 4.7 million pounds for the 2018 and 2019 fishing years.
Maine DMR Menhaden Regulations
In order to manage the Atlantic menhaden harvest in Maine's territorial waters, three fishery programs have been established and described in Maine DMR Regulation Chapter 41: State Allocation, Episodic Event, and Small Scale
- State Allocation Fishery is executed to harvest the allotted 2,438,677 pounds of state quota. As described in Chapter 41.30(2), effort restrictions include days of the week fishing can occur as well as daily and weekly landings limits. Daily reporting is required to monitor harvest levels to avoid an overage.
- Episodic Events Fishery is executed once the state quota is exhausted and ASMFC grants approval to participate in the Episodic Events Fishery Set Aside. As with the State Allocation Fishery, effort restrictions for the Episodic Event Fishery include days of the week fishing can occur in addition to daily and weekly landings limits. Daily reporting is also required to monitor harvest levels to avoid an overage. Any overage that may occur in this program will be subtracted from the following year's available Episodic Events Fishery Set Aside.
- Small Scale Fishery will commence after both the State Allocation and Episodic Events Fishery quotas have been met. As described in Chapter 41.30(4), harvest may occur seven days a week, with a daily limit of 6,000 pounds and transfers at sea are prohibited. Monthly reporting via harvester logbooks is required.
2019 Announcements, most recent first
- August 7, 2019 ASMFC Atlantic Menhaden Board Maintains TAC at 216,000 MT for 2020 (PDF file from ASMFC, 1 page)
- July 25, 2019: Small Scale Fishery Opens July 29, pdf file, 367 kb
- July 19, 2019: Directed State Fishery Re-Opens, pdf file 413 kb
- July 16, 2019: Daily Reporting Required for the Episodic Fishery, pdf file, 407 kb
- July 12, 2019: Maine Episodic Fishery Opens July 15, Updated, pdf file, 318 kb
- July 11, 2019: Maine Episodic Fishery Opens July 15, pdf file, 397 kb
- June 28, 2019: Maine State Quota Fishery Closes, pdf file, 79 kb
- June 4, 2019: Menhaden State Quota Fishery Open, pdf file, 194 kb
- March 13, 2010: DMR Menhaden Fishery Rules, pdf file, 16 pages
2018 Announcements, most recent first
- September 17, 2018: Menhaden State Allocation Fishery to Re-open September 17, 2018 (PDF file, 160 kb, 4 pages)
- August 11, 2018: Menhaden Episodic Event Fishery to Close Saturday, August 11 , 2018 (PDF file, 10 kb)
- July 22, 2018: Menhaden Episodic Event Fishery to Start Monday, July 23, 2018 (PDF file, 10 kb)
For More Information:
- Maine State Territorial Waters Fishery: Regulations (scroll down to Chapter 41 Menhaden)
- For more information, contact Melissa Smith at DMR.