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Recreational Fisheries Management

NOAA is responsible for the management, conservation, and protection of living marine resources within the United States Exclusive Economic Zone. To accomplish this, we work closely with our partners, the Regional Fishery Management Councils, Interstate Marine Fisheries Commissions, and International Fisheries Management Organizations. To learn more about how decisions impacting recreational fishing are made, please see the information below.

Guiding Laws

Highlighted Federal Recreational Fisheries Management Issues

NOAA Fisheries is constantly working to enhance management of our nation's fisheries through responsive, adaptive management. Below are a subset of issues on which NOAA Fisheries is working which may be of interest to the recreational fishing community.  

The Magnuson-Stevens Fisheries Conservation and Management Act outlines National Standards for fisheries management. They include ending and preventing overfishing, use of the best scientific data available, minimizing costs and duplication where practicable, and others.

NOAA Fisheries developed guidelines to facilitate implementation of the National Standards. In 2012, NOAA Fisheries began a public process to refine the guidelines for National Standard 1, which pertains to the prevention of overfishing. Read more about the status of the National Standard 1 Guideline updates

International Fisheries Management

Habitat Conservation and Restoration