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Reminder: New Requirements for Recreational and Commercial Shark Fishing Take Effect on January 1, 2018

Posted December 18, 2017

NOAA Fisheries reminds Highly Migratory Species (HMS) vessels that the remaining new recreational and commercial measures implementing Amendment 5b to the 2006 Consolidated Atlantic HMS Fishery Management Plan (FMP) become effective January 1, 2018.  Amendment 5b implemented a range of management measures to end overfishing and rebuild overfished dusky sharks.  Other measures for Amendment 5b became effective June 5, 2017.  For more details on all of these measures, and to view the associated outreach materials, please refer to the Amendment 5b website:

Who is affected?

Amendment 5b could affect:

What happens on January 1?

The following commercial management measures will go into effect: 

Recreational Measures


Permit Requirements and Outreach

Require HMS permit holders fishing for sharks recreationally to obtain a shark endorsement, which requires completion of an online shark identification and fishing regulation training course, plus additional recreational fisheries outreach.  Available here:

Circle Hook Requirement

Require the use of non-offset, non-stainless steel circle hooks by all HMS permit holders with a shark endorsement when fishing for sharks recreationally south of 41° 43’ N latitude (near Chatham, Massachusetts - the northern extent of the dusky shark’s U.S. Atlantic range), except when fishing with flies or artificial lures.

Commercial Measures


Circle Hook Requirement

Require the use of circle hooks by all HMS directed shark permit holders using bottom longline.

 This notice is a courtesy to permit holders to help keep you informed about Atlantic shark fisheries.  For further information, contact the HMS Management Division at (301) 427-8503, or go to

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