Wednesday, March 15, 2017

AK Guided Halibut Regulations Approved for 2017:

NMFS Adopts New Charter Halibut Regulations for 2017

On March 3, the new 2017 regulations for the halibut fishery became effective. These regulations include a few changes from 2016 affecting the charter halibut sector.  

Unguided halibut sport fishers in Alaska will continue to observe a daily bag limit of 2 fish any size per person per day. 

A quick-reference summary of the regulations for charter halibut anglers is available on the NMFS website (link). Summaries are also being sent by U.S. mail to all charter halibut permit holders.

New regulations for 2017 are as follows: 

In Area 2C (Southeast Alaska):
Reverse slot limit: Retained halibut must be less than or equal to 44 inches or greater than or equal to 80 inches in length. This reverse slot limit allows anglers to keep halibut less than approximately 30 pounds and greater than 208 pounds, after the head and guts have been removed. The lower size limit of the reverse slot limit was increased by one inch from 2016 regulations.
In Area 3A (Southcentral Alaska):
Tuesday closure: Charter vessel anglers may not catch and retain halibut (except GAF) on three Tuesdays in 2017: July 18, July 25, and August 1. These Tuesday closures are new for 2017 and are in addition to the Wednesday closure for the entire season.

The complete International Pacific Halibut Commission Annual Management Measures as published in the Federal Register are also available on the NMFS website (link).
The sport fishing regulations for Alaska are in Sections 25 and 28.

For more information about sport halibut regulations, visit NOAA Fisheries' Alaska Regional Sportfishing website. 

Questions or comments? Contact Julie Scheurer, Regional Recreational Fisheries Coordinator, at 907-586-7111 or julie.scheurer@noaa.gov.