The New Jersey Marine Fisheries Council (Council)met at 5 p.m. on March 15 at the Stafford Township Municipal building where they took action on porgy and tautog for the 2018 season, while hinting at good things in store for summer flounder (fluke) and black sea bass in the coming weeks.
BLACK FISH SEASON: Once made official by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), the following fishable days and bag limit will be in effect for the rest of the 2018 tautog season with a 15-inch size limit.
Jan. 1 to Feb. 28 (4 fish)
Apr. 1 to Apr. 30 (4 fish)
Aug. 1 to Nov. 15 (1 fish)
Nov. 16 to Dec. 31 (5 fish)
Council also approved measures which would keep the porgy season open 365 days a year with a 50 fish bag and 9-inch size limit
On the fluke front, the Council reported that ASMFC had approved New Jersey’s proposal for an increase in the length of season; the ASFMC technical committee also approved what one NJDEP representative said would amount to a “significant increase in RHL (recreational harvest limits)” for the 2018 season for recreational black sea bass. However, the Council’s advisory committees must first meet to review the approved options sometime in the next week, after which the Council will convene again on April 5 to review options with the public. That meeting will take place at the Bay Avenue Community Center at 775 East Bay Avenue in Manahawkin, NJ at 5 p.m.