The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) today announced that the recreational scup fishery, originally scheduled to close on September 27 (October 12 for Party/Charter vessels) has been extended for 90 days by emergency regulation.

For anglers fishing from shore or on private vessels, the minimum size (10 ½”) and bag limit (10 fish) remain unchanged during the extended season.

For paying passengers fishing from a party or charter vessel (P/C), the current 40-fish bag limit remains in place only through October 11.  Thereafter, the bag limit returns to 10 fish.  The 11-inch minimum size for P/C fishermen remains unchanged through the rest of the year.

All anglers are reminded that recreational scup fishing in federal waters closed on September 27. Federal waters occupy portions of Block Island Sound, all of the Atlantic Ocean beyond three miles from shore, but not Long Island Sound.  Anglers are also reminded to check regulations in neighboring states before fishing there.   Both Connecticut and Rhode Island, with whom New York shares the local scup population, have extended their seasons as well.

DEC is extending the season based on data that show that the scup stock is rebuilt to very high abundance, and that commercial and recreational harvest on the coast is projected to fall nearly 10 million pounds short of this year’s allowable harvest of these popular food and sport fish.  Also, increased access to the robust stocks of scup could redirect fishing effort and reduce the ecological risks faced by the local tautog population which has been declared overfished.

DEC filed the emergency regulations with the Secretary of State’s Office on Tuesday, September 27.  It will take effective immediately, thus allowing for an uninterrupted continuation of the 2011 New York recreational scup fishery.

Marine fishing regulations can be viewed on the DEC website at:  http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7894.html.

For additional information about the regulations, contact DEC Marine Resources Division at 631-444-0435.

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