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Atlantic Highly Migratory Species

  • Bluefin Tuna Retention Limit Adjustment

    NOAA Fisheries adjusted the General category (commercial handgear) Atlantic bluefin tuna (BFT) retention limit. Limit is four large medium or giant BFT (i.e., four measuring 73” or more) per vessel per day/trip effective June 1-August 31, 2014. Read More . . .

  • Commercial Blacktip Shark Fishery Closure

    NOAA Fisheries is closing the commercial Gulf of Mexico blacktip shark fishery as of 11:30 p.m. local time June 2, 2014. Read More . . .

  • Shark Fishery Closure

    NOAA Fisheries Announces Closure of the Commercial Fisheries for Blacknose Sharks and Non-Blacknose Small Coastal Sharks in the Atlantic Region Read More . . .

  • Proposed Rule to Implement Amendment 9

    NOAA Fisheries announces the availability of the proposed rule to implement Amendment 9 to the 2006 Consolidated Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan. Read More . . .

  • Amendment 7 – Bluefin Tuna Management

    NOAA Fisheries announces the availability of the final rule for Amendment 7 to the HMS Fishery Management Plan. Read More . . .

The Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Management Division manages a number of fish species in U.S. Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico waters known as highly migratory species (HMS). These fish—tuna, sharks, swordfish, and billfish—live throughout the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico and often migrate long distances. Because these species cross domestic and international boundaries, NOAA Fisheries' HMS Management Division is responsible for managing them under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. In cooperation with an advisory panel, the division develops and implements fishery management plans for these species taking into account all domestic and international requirements under the Atlantic Tunas Convention Act, Marine Mammal Protection Act, the Endangered Species Act, and the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

Because these fish travel long distances, responsible management of HMS requires international cooperation through a number of agreements including the International Convention for the Conservation of Atlantic Tuna (ICCAT), Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).