In September 2015, the Council approved new protections for forage fish species that are currently unfished and unmanaged. The purpose of the action is to prohibit new directed commercial fishing in Federal waters on unmanaged, unfished forage fish species until the Council has had an adequate opportunity to both assess the scientific information relating to any proposed directed fishery and consider potential impacts to existing fisheries, fishing communities, and the greater marine ecosystem. This was taken in recognition of the importance of these forage fish to the species managed under the Council’s FMPs and to the larger California Current Ecosystem. The suite of species was added to each FMP as Ecosystem Component species.
Final rule (Effective May 4, 2016)
Secretarial approval letter for Amendment 15 (March 10, 2016)
Amendment 19 language (December 2015)