N.C. Reduces Red Drum Catch Limit
To pay back overages from last year, the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries reduced the commercial red drum harvest limit this year by more than half.
The harvest limit for the Sept. 1 through April 30, 2009, season is set at 60,000 pounds, 90,000 pounds less than the seasonal allowance for the state’s commercial fall fishery under its red drum fishery management plan.
The organization also plans to close the season Dec. 1 if the limit has not been caught by then. Normally running from Sept. 1 through Aug. 31, the state closed the season April 3 this year because the harvest was approaching the 250,000-pound annual cap.
Red drum is a commercial bycatch fishery; it is illegal for commercial fishermen to target red drum.
The trip limit for this fall is four fish per day, and the red drum catch must not weigh more than the combined catch of flounder, spotted seatrout and striped mullet.