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Vessel movement monitoring

Action status

  • Implemented
  • Undergoing NMFS Review
  • Approved by Council
  • Under development by the Council

In April 2016, the Council took final action on a package of recommendations related to the monitoring of vessel movements. The package includes:

  • providing fishermen a choice between increasing their vessel’s satellite vessel monitoring system (VMS) ping rate, using electronic discard monitoring in conjunction with their VMS unit, or the use of an enhanced VMS unit that includes a data logger;
  • allowing vessels declared into the whiting mothership fishery to change their declaration at-sea in order to switch into the shorebased individual fishing quota (IFQ) fishery without first returning to shore;
  • creating a declaration for testing gear that would allow vessels under such declaration to have gear deployed without an observer on board; and
  • adding a provision to allow a vessel on a trawl sector IFQ trip to move pot gear across management lines without returning it to shore.

The Council also recommended that National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) revise the definition of continuous transit in the groundfish regulations. Additional description of the adopted options is provided in the Vessel Monitoring Public Scoping Document.  The proposed rule from this package has been delayed due to other NMFS workload priorities.