As of October 23, 2015, the commercial menhaden pound net fishery has been closed. According to the Virginia Marine Resource Commission, based on landing reports from mandatory harvest reporting and Virginia seafood buyers, it is projected that Virginia has caught 100% of the 3,753,222 pounds of the menhaden pound net quota.
This quota is established by VA code Chapter 4 VAC20-1270-10 et seq. “Pertaining to Atlantic Menhaden”. Oddly, this only pertains to the “non-purse seine menhaden bait sector gear quota”. While pound netters are being restricted, the Omega Protein purse seine fleet is still free to ravage the juvenile bunkers—while continuing to use spotter planes.
If you are a pound netter, after 6:00 P.M., EDST, October 23, 2015 it will be a violation to harvest or land more than 6,000 pounds of menhaden per day, for commercial purposes for the remainder of 2015.
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