N.C. slot limit for ocean striped bass begins Jan. 1

slot limit
North Carolina anglers will have a slot limit on saltwater-caught stripers beginning Jan. 1, 2020.

Minimum 28 inches, maximum less than 35 inches

A slot limit for recreationally-caught striped bass will go into effect Jan. 1 in North Carolina ocean waters. 

Fishermen will be allowed to possess one striped bass per person per day that is at least 28 inches and less than 35 inches total length (fishermen may not keep a 35-inch fish). For the specific regulation, see Proclamation FF-54-2019. Until the slot limit takes effect on Jan. 1, the minimum size limit for ocean striped bass remains 28 inches total length with a one fish possession limit.

The slot limit is required by the recently adopted Addendum VI to Amendment 6 to the Atlantic Striped Bass Interstate Fishery Management Plan. It is designed to end overfishing and bring fishing mortality to the target level in 2020 by reducing total coastwide striped bass removals by 18%.

The latest coastwide stock assessment determined that ocean migratory Atlantic striped bass are overfished and overfishing is occurring. The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission’s action also requires a coastwide commercial quota reduction of 18%. For additional information, see the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission news release.

The recreational regulations for striped bass in internal coastal waters remain unchanged.

For more information, contact Division of Marine Fisheries biologist Charlton Godwin at 252-264-3911 orcharlton.godwin@ncdenr.gov.

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