Fisheries commission to hold Cobia management plan webinar

Woman holds caught Cobia
Brunswick, Ga.
Monday, June 10, 2019

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission will host a webinar at 6 p.m. Tuesday, June 18, to provide the public an opportunity to give input regarding changes to the Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for Atlantic cobia.

The changes, known as Draft Amendment 1, address 13 topics within the FMP, including: clarifying the process to evaluate recreational harvests against state harvest targets; potential changes to commercial fishery management measures; and establishment of de minimis criteria for the commercial fishery.

These changes are occurring because Atlantic cobia is no longer managed by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council’s FMP. The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission now manages Atlantic cobia, giving more flexibility to establish state-level season and harvest opportunities. Draft Amendment 1 does not include changes in recreational or commercial regulations related to minimum size, bag/vessel limits or season.

“This change of management will allow Georgia to manage our portion of the annual cobia harvest within constraints established by the states, through ASMFC,” said Doug Haymans, director of the Coastal Resources Division of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. “Access to Georgia’s cobia fishery will no longer be managed based on the harvest of the entire South Atlantic region.”

The webinar will begin with a review of  the various topics within Amendment 1, followed by an opportunity for anglers to comment on each.  Draft Amendment 1 is available at http://www.asmfc.org/files/PublicInput/CobiaDraftAmendment1_PublicComment_May2019.pdf or via the Commission’s website, www.asmfc.org, under Public Input. Written comments from the public will also be accepted until 5 p.m. EST July 15, 2019, and should be sent to  Dr. Michael Schmidtke, Fishery Management Plan Coordinator, 1050 N. Highland St, Suite A-N, Arlington, VA 22201; 703.842.0741 (FAX) or at comments@asmfc.org (Subject line: Cobia Amd 1).

Webinar Information

June 18, 2019; 6:00 PM

Webinar Registration: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/3902998396468814081

For audio, dial 1.888.585.9008 and enter the Conference Room Number: 275-479-282

Contact for Questions: Dr. Michael Schmidtke at 703.842.0740