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Public Hearing Set for Feb. 24 on Proposed Amendments to Summer Flounder and Black Sea Bass Regulations

February 14 2005

The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control will hold a public hearing at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 24 regarding proposed amendments to the Tidal Finfish Regulations concerning summer flounder and black sea bass. The hearing will be held in DNREC’s auditorium, Richardson and Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover.

Delaware can maintain the same management measures used in 2004 for the 2005 recreational summer flounder fishery since the harvest cap was not exceeded in 2004. The eight management options that were presented for public review in 2004 will once again be presented as approved methods for the 2005 fishery. Six of the eight options include extended seasonal components to compensate for an 8 percent increase in the state’s harvest cap for 2005.

The following management options, including the season, number of open days, bag limit and minimum size, are proposed for the 2005 recreational summer flounder fishery:

Jan. 1-Aug. 8 season, open 220 days, bag limit 7, minimum size 16 inches
Jan. 1-Aug. 14 season, 226 open days, bag limit 5, minimum size 16.5 inches
Jan. 1-Sept. 6 season, 249 open days, bag limit 5, minimum size 17 inches
May 25-Aug. 10 season, 78 open days, bag limit 7, minimum size 16 inches
May 25-Aug. 18 season, 86 open days, bag limit 5, minimum size 16.5 inches
May 25-Sept. 17 season, 116 open days, bag limit 5, minimum size 17 inches
Jan. 1-Dec. 31 season, 365 days, bag limit 4, minimum size 17.5 inches
Jan. 1-Dec. 31 season, 365 open days, bag limit 6, minimum size 17.5 inches

Also proposed is an amendment to Tidal Finfish Regulation No. 3507 that will eliminate any reference to a closed season for recreational black sea bass anglers in 2005. The amendment is being proposed because the coast wide requirements for recreational black sea bass fishermen in 2005 are a 12-inch minimum size length with a 25-fish creel limit and no closed season.

Individuals may present their comments or request additional information by contacting the Fisheries Section, Division of Fish and Wildlife, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901; phone, (302) 739-3441. The record will remain open for written or email comments until 4:30 p.m., March 4, 2005.

For additional information, contact the Fisheries Section, (302) 739-3441.

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