Federal Requirements for Recreational Fishing of Black Sea Bass and Scup
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) today announced new recreational saltwater fishing regulations for black sea bass and scup that take effect immediately in New York’s Marine and Coastal District. These regulatory changes are necessary for New York State to remain in compliance with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) by reducing recreational harvest of scup and black sea bass.
Black Sea Bass
New York’s recreational black sea bass season opens June 23, and the minimum size limit is 16 inches. From June 23 through Aug. 31, recreational anglers may possess three black sea bass per day; and from Sept. 1 until Dec. 31, anglers are allowed six fish per day. New York State is required to reduce harvest by 20.7 percent per a decision by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) under federal rules filed June 9. New York is complying with the new rule by increasing the minimum size limit one inch and reducing the possession limit from seven to six fish during Sept 1. through Dec. 31 season dates.
The recreational minimum size limit for scup in New York is 10 inches and the season is open year-round. Recreational anglers may possess 30 fish per day and anglers aboard licensed party/charter boats may possess 50 fish from Sept. 1 through Oct. 31. New York State’s increased recreational minimum size limit for scup maintains consistency with the size limit in federal waters.
The complete text of the rulemaking is available on DEC’s website. DEC is accepting comments on the regulations from July 6, through Sept. 6, 2022. Written comments can be sent by mail to Rachel Sysak, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, 123 Kings Park Blvd., Kings Park, NY 11754, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
These new rules take effect immediately. New York’s failure to implement these restrictions would place the state out of compliance with ASMFC requirements and result in the closure of New York’s scup and black sea bass recreational fisheries. DEC continues to advocate for New York’s resources and participates in all levels of marine fisheries management to help ensure abundant and sustainable recreational fishing opportunities.
For current regulations, check DEC’s Recreational Saltwater Fishing Regulations. Anglers must enroll in the annual no-fee Recreational Marine Fishing Registry before fishing New York’s Marine and Coastal District waters or when fishing in the Hudson River and its tributaries for “migratory fish of the sea”. Anglers can enroll for the registry online or by phone or by visiting a license issuing agent location.