State regulations to establish mandatory V-notching of legal size egg-bearing female lobsters captured by lobster permit holders in Lobster Conservation Management Area (LMA) 4, which encompasses the waters off the south shore of Long Island, have been adopted, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) today announced. The rules also require that permit holders who fish in more than one LMA abide by the most restrictive V-notch rules of the LMAs listed on their fishing permit. This Notice of Adoption will adopt the emergency rules which became effective July 11, 2012.

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) American Lobster Management Board approved Addendum XVII to the American Lobster Fishery Management Plan (FMP). The objective of the Addendum is to decrease lobster harvest by 10 percent in Southern New England to initiate rebuilding of the depleted lobster population. The Addendum implements mandatory V-notch programs in LMA 2, 4, and 5, so these rules apply to coastal areas from Cape Cod to Virginia.

A V-notch is a triangular cut on the tail fin of a legal size female egg-bearing lobster that takes several molts to disappear. It is illegal to harvest a lobster that has been marked thusly. The V-notch protects female lobsters from harvest for two years.

These rules are designed to meet the requirements of the lobster fishery management plan. For additional information, contact DEC Marine Resources Division at 631-444-0444 or go to on the DEC website.

Logo courtesy New York Department of Environmental Conservation

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