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Gulf of Maine herring and Atlantic mackerel stop seine/weir

Current Classification on the 2017 LOF

Category III
Estimated Number of Participants >1
Target Species Herring,
Atlantic mackerel
Applicable Take Reduction Plans N/A
Observer Coverage N/A
Marine Mammal Species/Stocks Killed or Injured Harbor porpoise, GME/BF
Harbor seal, WNA
Minke whale, Canadian east coast
Atlantic white­sided dolphin, WNA

^ Number of participants estimates are based on state and federal fisheries permit data.  The estimated number of participants is expressed in terms of the number of active participants in the fishery, when possible.  If this information is not available, the estimated number of vessels or persons licensed for a particular fishery is provided.  If no recent information is available on the number of participants, then the number from the most recent LOF is used.  NMFS acknowledges that, in some cases, these estimations may be inflating actual effort.  

*Observer coverage levels include the latest information reported in the most current final Stock Assessment Report (SAR)

1Indicates the stock or species is driving the classification of the fishery 

Note: Current classification based on final LOF, no proposed changes are reflected in this table.

Basis for Current Classification

No new information has been received which would change or confirm placement as Category III. If interactions with harbor porpoises occur, it is likely that mortality and serious injury would be <1% PBR.


Gulf of Maine, Atlantic Ocean; “Most U.S. commercial catches of herring occur between May and November in the Gulf of Maine”Carolina.  The harvest is widely distributed between Maine and North Carolina. Concentrations of catch occur on the continental shelf southeast of Long Island, NY and east of the Delmarva Peninsula, The bulk of commercial landings occur Jan – Apr when stocks are in shallower water” 

Gear Description

“Stop nets [are used] in coastal embayments to close off the opening to a small cove or bight to harvest schooling fish.  Fishermen sometimes harvest the schools with beach seines after they are in the stop net". ”Weirs consist of a fence or multiple fences constructed to intercept schools of feeding or migrating fish. The fences form successive enclosures of the heart, the pound, and the pocket into which fish are directed by a leader.  Fishermen remove fish with seines or other devices”   mackerel 


Atlantic Herring Fishery Management Plan and Interstate Fishery Management Plan for Atlantic Herring, Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish Fishery Management Plan.


Historical Information

Original Category (Year added to the LOF) III (1989)
Original Number of Participants 50
Basis for Original Classification season length and gear type suggest a remote likelihood of marine mammal interactions
Past Names N/A
Species/stocks historically documented as killed or injured (but not currently on the list) N/A


Timeline of Changes

  • Estimated number of vessels/persons operating changed to >1.
  • Estimated number of vessels/persons operating changed to “unknown”.
  • North Atlantic right whale, WNA, and Humpback whale, WNA, deleted from species incidentally
    killed/injured because interactions have not been documented in recent years.  Atlantic white­sided dolphin, WNA, added to list of species incidentally killed/injured because interactions have been documented in recent years.


Updated December 14, 2016