MD DNR Fisheries Service Public Regulatory Scoping Meeting

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The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Fisheries Service will hold a public meeting at 6 p.m. on May 9 in the Fellowship Hall at the Calvary United Methodist Church in Annapolis to present and obtain input on several regulatory ideas, including:

–  Possible changes to the current commercial female blue crab closure periods and catch limits

– A new regulation for egregious or repeat crab or striped bass violations related to using illegal gear, harvesting during a closed season, harvesting from a closed area, exceeding harvest catch or size limits and violating, tagging and reporting requirements. This action will also add oyster poaching penalties.

– Elimination of a regulation that prohibits the commercial harvest of blue crabs on the second and third Thursdays in November.

– Removal of the requirement to list a vessel number on a commercial crabbing license.

– A clarification that all recreational crab pots are required to be marked with owner’s name and address.

– Allowing temporary transfers of frozen and male only limited crab harvester licenses.

– A clarification that oyster taxes only apply to oysters caught in the public commercial fishery.

– A requirement of an individual to declare their intent to commercially harvest clams

– Create consistency between regulations for the black sea bass, summer flounder and horseshoe crab commercial fisheries and allow some flexibility in coastal commercial permitting.

– To prohibit all recreational and commercial fishing for river herring beginning January 1, 2012.

– To allow leasing in sanctuaries on non-historic natural oyster bars.

Additional information on these agenda items is available at

Regulatory Scoping Meetings are held to discuss possible changes to fishing rules. Draft regulatory ideas are posted on the Fisheries’ Service website and comments are taken by email, fax, or mail by a specified date and at the Public Scoping Meeting.

Based upon public input, the Department will determine whether or not to proceed with these regulatory ideas, as presented or modified, by submitting a proposed regulation.

Sign language interpreters and other appropriate accommodations will be provided upon request.

You may submit comments on these regulatory ideas by going to the Fisheries Draft Regulations Website, faxing them to 410-260-8310 or mailing them to Fisheries Regulations, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, 580 Taylor Ave., B-2, Annapolis, MD 21401.

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