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e-CFR data is current as of September 17, 2020

Title 50Chapter VIPart 697Subpart B → §697.20


Title 50: Wildlife and Fisheries
PART 697—ATLANTIC COASTAL FISHERIES COOPERATIVE MANAGEMENT
Subpart B—Management Measures


§697.20   Size, harvesting and landing requirements.

(a) Minimum lobster carapace length. (1) The minimum lobster carapace length for all American lobsters harvested in or from the EEZ Nearshore Management Area 1 or the EEZ Nearshore Management Area 6 is 314 inches (8.26 cm).

(2) The minimum lobster carapace length for all American lobsters landed, harvested, or possessed by vessels issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit fishing in or electing to fish in the Nearshore Management Area 1 or the EEZ Nearshore Management Area 6 is 3 314 inches (8.26 cm).

(3) The minimum lobster carapace length for all American lobsters harvested in or from the EEZ Nearshore Management Area 2, 4, 5 and the Outer Cape Lobster Management Area is 338 inches (8.57 cm).

(4) The minimum lobster carapace length for all American lobsters landed, harvested or possessed by vessels issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit fishing in or electing to fish in EEZ Nearshore Management Area 2, 4, 5 and the Outer Cape Lobster Management Area is 338 inches (8.57 cm).

(5) Through April 30, 2015, the minimum lobster carapace length for all American lobsters harvested in or from the Offshore Management Area 3 is 312 inches (8.89 cm).

(6) Through April 30, 2015, the minimum lobster carapace length for all American lobsters landed, harvested or possessed by vessels issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit fishing in or electing to fish in EEZ Offshore Management Area 3 is 312 inches (8.89 cm).

(7) Effective May 1, 2015, the minimum lobster carapace length for all American lobsters harvested in or from the Offshore Management Area 3 is 31732 inches (8.97 cm).

(8) Effective May 1, 2015, the minimum lobster carapace length for all American lobsters landed, harvested, or possessed by vessels issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit fishing in or electing to fish in EEZ Offshore Management Area 3 is 31732 inches (8.97 cm).

(9) No person may ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, or purchase, in interstate or foreign commerce, any whole live American lobster that is smaller than the minimum size specified in paragraph (a) of this section.

(b) Maximum lobster carapace length. (1) The maximum lobster carapace length for all American lobster harvested in or from the EEZ Nearshore Management Area 1 is 5 inches (12.7 cm).

(2) The maximum lobster carapace length for all American lobster landed, harvested, or possessed by vessels issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit fishing in or electing to fish in the EEZ Nearshore Management Area 1 is 5 inches (12.7 cm).

(3) The maximum lobster carapace length for all American lobster harvested in or from the EEZ Nearshore Management Areas 2, 4, 5, and 6 is 514 inches (13.34 cm).

(4) The maximum lobster carapace length for all American lobster landed, harvested, or possessed by vessels issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit fishing in or electing to fish in one or more of EEZ Nearshore Management Areas 2, 4, 5, and 6 is 514 inches (13.34 cm).

(5) The maximum lobster carapace length for all American lobster harvested in or from EEZ Offshore Management Area 3 or the Outer Cape Lobster Management Area is 634 inches (17.15 cm).

(6) The maximum lobster carapace length for all American lobster landed, harvested, or possessed by vessels issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit fishing in or electing to fish in EEZ Offshore Management Area 3 or the Outer Cape Lobster Management Area is 634 inches (17.15 cm).

(c) Mutilation. (1) Subject to the rebuttable presumption in §697.7(c)(3), no person may remove meat or any body appendage from any American lobster harvested in or from the EEZ before, or at the time of landing, or have in possession any American lobster part other than whole lobsters, up to the time when a dealer first receives or possesses American lobster.

(2) Subject to the rebuttable presumption in §697.7(c)(3), no owner, operator or person aboard a vessel issued a Federal American lobster permit may remove meat or any body appendage from any American lobster before or at the time of landing, or have in possession any American lobster part other than whole lobsters, up to the time when a dealer first receives or possesses American lobster.

(d) Berried female lobsters. (1) Any berried female lobster harvested in or from the EEZ must be returned to the sea immediately. If any berried female lobster is harvested in or from the EEZ Nearshore Management Areas 1, 2, 4, or 5, or in or from the EEZ Offshore Management Area 3, north of42° 30 North latitude, it must be v-notched before being returned to sea immediately.

(2) Any berried female lobster harvested or possessed by a vessel issued a Federal limited access lobster permit must be returned to the sea immediately. If any berried female lobster is harvested in or from the EEZ Nearshore Management Areas 1, 2, 4, or 5, or in or from the EEZ Offshore Management Area 3, north of 42° 30 North latitude, it must be v-notched before being returned to sea immediately.

(3) No vessel, or owner, operator or person aboard a vessel issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit may possess any berried female lobster.

(4) No person may possess, ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, or purchase, in interstate or foreign commerce, any berried female lobster as specified in paragraph (d) of this section.

(e) Removal of eggs. (1) No person may remove, including, but not limited to, the forcible removal and removal by chemicals or other substances or liquids, extruded eggs attached to the abdominal appendages from any female American lobster.

(2) No owner, operator or person aboard a vessel issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit may remove, including but not limited to, the forcible removal, and removal by chemicals or other substances or liquids, extruded eggs attached to the abdominal appendages from any female American lobster.

(3) No person may possess, ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, or purchase, in interstate or foreign commerce, any whole live American lobster that bears evidence of the removal of extruded eggs from its abdominal appendages as specified in paragraph (e) of this section.

(f) Spearing. (1) No person may spear any American lobster in the EEZ.

(2) No person on a vessel issued a Federal lobster license may spear a lobster.

(3) No person may harvest or possess any American lobster which has been speared in the EEZ.

(4) No person on a vessel issued a Federal lobster license may harvest or possess any American lobster which has been speared.

(5) No person may possess, ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, or purchase, in interstate or foreign commerce, any American lobster which has been speared.

(g) V-notched females. (1) No person may possess any female lobster possessing a zero tolerance v-shaped notch harvested in or from the EEZ Nearshore Management Area 1.

(2) No vessel, owner, or operator issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit fishing in or electing to fish in EEZ Nearshore Management Area 1 may land, harvest, or possess any female lobster possessing a zero tolerance v-shaped notch.

(3) No person may possess any female lobster possessing a standard v-shaped notch harvested in or from the EEZ Nearshore Management Area 2, 4, 5, 6, Outer Cape Area, or the EEZ Offshore Management Area 3.

(4) No vessel, owner, or operator issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit fishing in or electing to fish in the EEZ Nearshore Management Area 2, 4, 5, 6, Outer Cape Area, or the EEZ Offshore Management Area 3 may land, harvest or possess any female lobster possessing a standard v-shaped notch.

(h) Jonah crabs—(1) Minimum Jonah crab carapace width. The minimum Jonah crab carapace width for all Jonah crabs harvested in or from the EEZ 434 inches (12.065 inches).

(2) Berried female Jonah crabs. (i) Any berried female Jonah crab harvested in or from the EEZ must be returned to the sea immediately.

(ii) No vessel, or owner, operator or person aboard a vessel issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit may possess any berried female Jonah crab.

(iii) No person may possess, ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, or purchase, in interstate or foreign commerce, any berried female Jonah crab as specified in paragraph (d) of this section.

(3) Removal of eggs. (i) No person may remove, including, but not limited to, the forcible removal and removal by chemicals or other substances or liquids, extruded eggs attached to the abdominal appendages from any female Jonah crab.

(ii) No owner, operator or person aboard a vessel issued a Federal limited access American lobster permit may remove, including but not limited to, the forcible removal, and removal by chemicals or other substances or liquids, extruded eggs attached to the abdominal appendages from any female Jonah crab.

(iii) No person may possess, ship, transport, offer for sale, sell, or purchase, in interstate or foreign commerce, any whole live Jonah crab that bears evidence of the removal of extruded eggs from its abdominal appendages as specified in paragraph (e) of this section.

[71 FR 13038, Mar. 14, 2006, as amended at 72 FR 56942, Oct. 5, 2007; 74 FR 37551, July 29, 2009; 80 FR 2036, Jan. 15, 2015; 84 FR 61581, Nov. 13, 2019]

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