March 30, 2017 — New Jersey is continuing its fight against reductions to this year’s summer flounder catch.
The state’s representatives to the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission have filed a formal appeal of the commission’s decision to cut the flounder harvest by about 30 percent.
“We are appealing the ASFMC decision because of the numerous process, data, policy and regulatory issues that will significantly impact New Jersey’s fishing industry,” state Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin said in a statement announcing the appeal.
An ASMFC decision in February would reduce recreational bag and size limits in New Jersey from five fish at 18 inches in the Atlantic Ocean in 2016 to three fish at 19 inches this year. In the Delaware Bay, limits would decrease from four fish at 17 inches to three at 18 inches.
The decision is based on federal fishery studies that indicate the flounder population is declining and has been experiencing overfishing since 2008.