state Division of Marine Fisheries is reminding anglers that the
recreational cobia season closes in state waters this Friday, Sept. 30.
the season closes, anglers must immediately release any cobia they
catch, but for the rest of this week the regulations remain as adopted
by the Marine Fisheries Commission in May:
- A 37-inch fork length (measured from the tip
of the snout to the fork in the tail) minimum size limit for all
- Anglers fishing from private boats may only
fish on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays under daily possession limit
of two fish per vessel or one fish per person if only one person is on
- Those fishing from the shore or shore-based
structures (pier or surf) may fish seven days a week with a daily
possession limit of one fish per person.
- Those fishing on a for-hire boat (charter or
guide) may fish seven days a week with a daily possession limit of four
fish per vessel or one fish per person if fewer than four people are on
- Those practicing catch-and-release may fish seven days a week.
By default, this means that Wednesday will be the last day of cobia season for those fishing on a private boat.
season in federal waters has been closed since June 20 because
recreational fishermen exceeded the annual catch limit in 2015. Under
the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council's accountability
measures, when the annual catch limit is exceeded in one year, the
length of the following year’s season must be reduced to ensure that
the recreational harvest does not exceed that year’s annual catch limit.
federal government encouraged states to remain consistent with these
measures and close state waters for recreational cobia season on June
20, as well. The North Carolina Marine Fisheries Commission sought to
avoid shutting the fishery down in the summer and, instead, adopted a
Sept. 30 closure and stricter regulations.
Recreational cobia season will reopen in state and federal waters on Jan. 1, 2017.
For more information, contact Michelle Duval with the Division of Marine Fisheries at 252-808-8011 or at [email protected], or see Proclamation FF-28-2016 at http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/proclamations.