Regulations Amending the Atlantic Fishery Regulations, 1985: SOR/2021-100
Canada Gazette, Part II, Volume 155, Number 11
SOR/2021-100 May 14, 2021
P.C. 2021-390 May 14, 2021
His Excellency the Administrator of the Government of Canada in Council, on the recommendation of the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, pursuant to subsection 43(1) footnote a of the Fisheries Act footnote b, makes the annexed Regulations Amending the Atlantic Fishery Regulations, 1985.
Regulations Amending the Atlantic Fishery Regulations, 1985
1 Subsection 3(4) of the Atlantic Fishery Regulations, 1985 footnote 1 is replaced by the following:
(4) Subject to paragraph 49.01(c) and subsections 49.3(2) and 91(1), the close times set out in these Regulations do not apply with respect to recreational fishing in accordance with subsection 15(1) or (2).
2 (1) Subsection 48(1) of the Regulations is replaced by the following:
48 (1) Subject to subsections (2) and (4), a person shall not fish for, buy, sell or have in their possession any mackerel that is less than 26.8 cm in length.
(2) The portion of subsection 48(2) of the Regulations before paragraph (a) is replaced by the following:
(2) Subsection (1) does not apply with respect to mackerel that are less than 26.8 cm in length if
(3) Paragraph 48(2)(b) of the English version of the Regulations is replaced by the following:
- (b) the number of mackerel less than 26.8 cm in length retained during any one fishing trip does not exceed 10% of the number of longer mackerel caught and retained during the fishing trip.
3 The Regulations are amended by adding the following after section 49:
Recreational Mackerel Fishing
49.01 A person engaged in recreational fishing for mackerel in Mackerel Fishing Areas 1 to 21 shall not
- (a) in any one day, have in their possession more than 20 mackerel;
- (b) have in their possession any mackerel that is less than 26.8 cm in length;
- (c) fish for mackerel during the close time of January 1 to March 31; or
- (d) fish for mackerel with more than five fishing lines or with a fishing line to which more than six hooks are attached.
Coming into Force
4 These Regulations come into force on the day on which they are registered.
REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT
(This statement is not part of the Regulations.)
The Atlantic mackerel recreational fishery was unregulated. This created significant conservation and enforcement challenges for Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO).
The lack of an established daily fishing limit in the Atlantic mackerel recreational fishery allowed recreational fishers to land unlimited amounts of mackerel. Some commercial licence holders, including bait licence holders, used the loophole to land significant quantities of mackerel using gear not permitted under their commercial licence, as well as to avoid having to report landings and the associated costs of dockside monitoring (as required for commercial fishing operations). According to DFO, it was not uncommon for some “recreational” Atlantic mackerel fishing vessels to land at port with amounts of more than 500 kg of Atlantic mackerel per day.
The lack of an established yearly close time in the Atlantic mackerel recreational fishery also created a loophole allowing some recreational fishers to exploit the lack of a closed season to fish after the commercial fishery had closed as well as target other recreational species that were closed (e.g. Atlantic salmon, trout, striped bass) by claiming that they were fishing for Atlantic mackerel.
Atlantic mackerel (Scomber scombrus L.) is found in the waters of the Northwest Atlantic, from North Carolina to Newfoundland and Labrador. During spring and summer, Atlantic mackerel is found in inshore waters. From late fall through winter, it is found far from the coast, deep in warmer waters at the edge of the continental shelf. In the Maritime provinces, Newfoundland and Labrador, and Quebec, several thousand commercial fishers participate in the Atlantic mackerel fishery. They fish mainly inshore using gillnets, jiggers, handlines, seines, and traps, depending on the region and the time of year, while recreational fishers mostly use jiggers or handlines. The spawning stock biomass for Atlantic mackerel is the lowest ever observed and has been in or near the critical zone for the past decade.
While subsection 43(1) of the Fisheries Act provides authority for the Governor in Council to make regulations respecting the management of the Atlantic mackerel recreational fishery, such as the imposition of quotas and size limits, no regulatory tools are currently in place to manage those aspects of this fishery. Therefore, the Atlantic mackerel recreational fishery, which occurs mostly in the summer months, is currently unregulated; there is no mechanism for catch reporting, and there are no fishing limits or seasons. The activity of recreational fishing for Atlantic mackerel is practised throughout Eastern Canada by many people, including tourists, at wharves or aboard chartered vessels. The lack of a daily fishing limit in the Atlantic mackerel recreational fishery allows recreational fishers to land unlimited amounts of mackerel. This also creates the potential for commercial harvesters to fish Atlantic mackerel for bait under the guise of a recreational fishery to avoid reporting requirements and associated costs. For these reasons, the actual Atlantic mackerel catches may be much higher than current reported landings suggest. It has been estimated by DFO Science that there could be between 2 000 and 5 000 metric tons of unreported catches per year, which includes fishing mortality from various sources, notably recreational and some unreported commercial (including bait) harvests, discards and other mortalities. These unreported catches could potentially undermine the validity of DFO's Atlantic mackerel stock assessment, a concern that has been consistently raised by the Atlantic Mackerel Advisory Committee (AMAC).
According to the most recent stock assessment conducted in 2021, Atlantic mackerel is currently in the critical zone (about 58% of the limit reference point — the stock level below which productivity of the resource is sufficiently impaired to cause serious harm) based on the Precautionary Approach Framework, with limited chance for rebuilding in the near future. Given the critical status of the stock, it is important to impose measures to regulate the Atlantic mackerel recreational fishery so that it remains truly recreational in nature.
In recent years, where the commercial Atlantic mackerel total allowable catch (TAC) has been lowered and the commercial fishery was closed early because the TAC had been reached (in 2016, 2018, 2019, and 2020), there was no mechanism to close the recreational fishery concurrently with the closing of the commercial fishery. Moreover, because there is no recreational fishing limit, this creates the potential for commercial-scale fishing to continue under the guise of a recreational fishery, after the commercial fishery has been closed. While this practice is contrary to the Regulations, it has proven challenging to document instances of unauthorized sales and lay charges under the Fisheries Act.
The current management approach is inconsistent with responsible management practices used by the Department to ensure stock sustainability of all species. Better knowledge of catches, including putting limits on recreational catches, will support rebuilding of the stock. Better accounting of removals has become more important in recent years when the commercial TAC has been fully utilized. A rebuilding plan for Atlantic mackerel has been completed, and controlling recreational catches is an important component of that plan.
The amendments will help ensure a sustainable recreational harvest and contribute to conservation objectives.
The amendments will also support the rebuilding of the stock of Atlantic mackerel and will have overall positive impacts on the future sustainability of the resource.
The regulatory amendments to the Atlantic Fisheries Regulations, 1985 will establish a yearly close time from January 1 to March 31 so that no person can fish Atlantic mackerel for recreational purposes during that time. The regulatory amendments will also set a daily possession limit of 20 Atlantic mackerel that a person can catch and retain in any given day when fishing recreationally. They will also increase the size minimum for possession of Atlantic mackerel to 26.8 cm for commercial and recreational fishing to protect juvenile fish, and will put a limit of five fishing lines and a limit of six hooks on a fishing line.
Since 2017, DFO has consulted on the amendments with Indigenous groups, commercial industry representatives, and conservation groups as well as the Atlantic provinces and Quebec through a number of DFO-led advisory meetings. Indigenous groups, commercial industry representatives, provinces, and conservation groups have supported DFO's effort to amend the Regulations, as they recognize that the amendments would eliminate the existing loophole.
The amendments were discussed with the AMAC and the Atlantic Mackerel Rebuilding Plan Working Group several times between 2017 and 2020. The consultations included commercial and Indigenous participants as well as provincial government representatives from the Atlantic provinces and Quebec. Recreational fishery participants were not included, as they are not currently members of the AMAC.
There was no opposition from industry stakeholders, Indigenous groups or the provinces during consultations. Participants expressed support for these amendments going forward and urged the Department to do so as soon as possible due to the negative impact that unlimited catches in the recreational fishery are likely having on the Atlantic mackerel stock.
Between 2016 and 2020, consultations with the recreational fishery sector took place through annual recreational fisheries advisory committees, as well as regional small pelagic / mackerel or other regional advisory meetings in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador. There was no opposition from recreational fishery stakeholders during consultations.
DFO also established an informal online recreational fishing survey for the collection of Atlantic mackerel catch and participation data in Atlantic Canada and Quebec, which was online and available for access in the fall of 2018 and 2019. Three questions in the survey requested participants to provide their views on the amendments, including an appropriate length of season and potential daily limits for this fishery. Publicity for the survey took place through social media, email distribution through mackerel and pelagic advisory committee members, as well as through contacts in the recreational fishery sector.
Results from the survey have been used to inform the development of seasons and daily fishing limits. Three hundred seven responses to the questionnaire show that the majority of respondents (approximately 65%) were in favour of a daily fishing limit, and 73% of respondents indicated that if a daily limit was to be established, they would support a daily possession limit of 25 or less mackerel per person per day. In addition, with respect to the fishing season, according to the survey's results, the peak Atlantic mackerel fishing for recreational purposes appears to be from June to October.
The new size of 26.8 cm for possession of Atlantic mackerel was supported by the majority of commercial harvesters at the March 2019 and 2020 AMAC meeting and consistent with the most recent scientific advice.
Prepublication in the Canada Gazette, Part I
The proposed regulations were prepublished in the Canada Gazette, Part I, on October 10, 2020. DFO received five written submissions from stakeholders; one from an organization representing Indigenous groups, two from non-governmental organizations; and one from a fish harvester representative body. A comment was also received collectively from the U.S. Conservation Law Foundation, Wild Oceans, The Pew Charitable Trusts, and Bennett Nickerson Environmental Consulting who supported the proposed amendments and encouraged the Department to take additional measures in all sectors of the fishery to rebuild the stock.
There was overall support for the amendments from all organizations that submitted comments; however, the Department was also encouraged to implement more measures to protect the stock, including by adding a recreational fishing licence, reducing fishing pressure on the stock, and enhancing reporting requirements. Other comments specific to these amendments are outlined below.
An Indigenous group raised concerns that the originally proposed daily limit is a catch and retain limit and not a possession limit, which could have created a loophole to enable individuals to stockpile fish (greater than 20 fish a day) caught or sold through illegal means. DFO addressed this by clarifying the final regulatory text to specify the daily limit is a possession limit.
The same Indigenous group disagreed with the statement in the RIAS that limiting the amount of landings in the Atlantic mackerel recreational fishery would reduce the amount of unreported catches. DFO confirms that in recent stock assessments, the level of recreational catches was unknown. However, DFO has considered these catches as part of an estimate of “unaccounted for mortalities” that was included in its stock assessment. DFO has determined that limiting the amount of recreational activity would reduce the amount of recreational catches. Additionally, it is anticipated that the new regulatory measures would improve the quality of data used to generate science advice for the management of fish stocks.
This Indigenous group also expressed concerns that DFO is not positioned to determine the level of need by Indigenous groups for food, social and ceremonial (FSC) purposes, and that FSC needs are not considered in the Precautionary Approach Framework and rates of removal. DFO notes that the regulatory changes do not directly impact FSC harvest. However, the concerns of this Indigenous group reflect a broader interest in the overall management of fisheries in order to ensure the priority FSC requirements of Indigenous groups are met before commercial and recreational limits are established. DFO is currently actively negotiating rights recognition agreements with Indigenous Nations in the Maritime provinces and Quebec that will provide them with an enhanced role in fisheries management, which may include collaborative management of FSC. In parallel, DFO has been doing extensive outreach with industry groups, and through the work of a federal special representative to bridge the interests of Indigenous and non-Indigenous harvesters. Both of these efforts will assist DFO in addressing the broader fisheries management interests of Indigenous harvesters and groups.
More broadly, DFO recognizes that the Department has a key role to play in the transformation of Canada's relationship with Indigenous peoples. The DFO-Coast Guard Reconciliation Strategy, published in 2019, further calls on the Department to recognize and implement Aboriginal and treaty rights in a manner consistent with the following: the Canadian constitutional legislative framework (section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982, Reconciliation and the Honour of the Crown, and the Duty to Consult); the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; and the Federal Principles Respecting the Government of Canada's Relationship with Indigenous Peoples. The actions associated with the DFO Strategy include enhancing DFO's internal capacity to deliver on reconciliation, transforming laws and policies, negotiating treaty and non-treaty agreements, building decision-making and collaborative management processes, and enhancing economic opportunities and capacity. Its vision is found in the reality that reconciliation is an ongoing and evolving journey, and that it will change as DFO continues to build its relationship with Indigenous peoples.
Environmental non-governmental organizations
An environmental non-governmental organization (ENGO) expressed its concern that the close time set in regulation would not reduce fishing pressure on the stock during spawning. DFO notes that it has the authority, under the Fisheries Act and the Fishery (General) Regulations (FGR), to modify or vary the close time from January 1 to March 31, as set in regulation. Variation orders are a management tool that can be used to change a harvesting area's close time (season), as well as fish quota and limits on minimum size of fish. In this case, the recreational fishery could be closed by variation order at other times during the year, for proper management and control of the fishery and/or due to safety issues.
The fish harvester representative body suggested an increase of the minimum size requirement to 30.0 cm for possession of Atlantic mackerel for commercial and recreational fishing, and suggested it be “subject to change.” The minimum size of 26.8 cm was recommended by DFO during the 2019 and 2021 stock assessments. The minimum size is based on the calculated length at which 50% of Atlantic mackerel would be considered sexually mature. The idea behind the minimum size is that it should theoretically allow a minimum of 50% of fish to spawn at least once before being targeted by the fishery. DFO's intention is that any change in minimum size would be implemented through variation orders, based on the latest science information, and would cover all Atlantic mackerel fishing activity, including recreational.
The same fish harvester representative body also indicated that six hooks and five fishing lines was too high and recommended the number of hooks be reduced to three hooks per line. DFO recommends this number of lines and hooks to harmonize this amendment with the Maritime Provinces Fishery Regulations (SOR/93-55). This will allow this regulation to be more easily enforced by having the same rules across fisheries and thereby prevent opportunity for harvesters to claim that they are fishing another species with different rules.
Modern treaty obligations and Indigenous engagement and consultation
In March 2018 and March 2019, the amendments were discussed at a supplementary session (within the advisory committee process) after the AMAC meeting to ensure that First Nations and Indigenous groups had a forum to share views about the Atlantic mackerel fishery. There was no opposition to the amendments. Further, it was communicated that the cultural significance of mackerel to Indigenous communities in Eastern Canada is important. It was felt that the current level of harvest on this stock, which is in the critical zone, was neither appropriate nor responsible. Some Indigenous communities that hold commercial-communal licences for Atlantic mackerel are choosing not to partake in the commercial fishery because of concerns over stock status and a desire to leave fish in the water for FSC purposes.
During the assessment of modern treaty implication process, DFO identified that the northern limit of occurrence of Atlantic mackerel is in Canadian fisheries waters adjacent to the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, where one modern treaty was identified: the Labrador Inuit Land Claims Agreement. The Nunatsiavut Government is a member of the AMAC, where consultation on this regulatory change took place in March 2017, March 2018, and March 2019.
The occurrence of Atlantic mackerel in the Labrador Inuit Settlement Area (LISA) is rare due to the cold water temperatures, which are below the thermal tolerances of the species. In consultation with the Nunatsiavut Government, DFO confirmed that there had been no reports of mackerel in the LISA and its appearance is rare. DFO also confirmed that Atlantic mackerel is not an important food source for the Labrador Inuit, and there are no concerns that there would be negative impacts on the Labrador Inuit stemming from the regulatory change for the recreational fishery.
At this time, the Labrador Inuit do not have a major interest in Atlantic mackerel. However, as stated in the final agreement, the treaty partners have a right to fish Atlantic mackerel for commercial and for FSC purposes. In the future, a well-managed stock could move into the LISA and the treaty partners could avail themselves of these rights. Therefore, the amendments have the potential to benefit the Labrador Inuit Land Claims Agreement by supporting the sustainable management of Atlantic mackerel.
As per the 2015 Cabinet Directive on the Federal Approach to Modern Treaty Implementation, an assessment was conducted on these amendments. This assessment concluded that implementation of these amendments has no negative impact on the rights, interests and/or self-government provisions of the Labrador Inuit Land Claims Agreement and, in fact, has a potential positive impact in the future. DFO will continue with its engagement with Labrador Inuit treaty partners on policy and program changes as part of the implementation of these amendments.
Following a risk assessment of the Atlantic mackerel fishery, a lack of information on harvests and controls in the recreational mackerel fishery was identified as a key risk to the sustainable management of the fishery.
The Department has a successful model where a similar regulatory option was chosen. In 2001, a daily possession limit of 20 fish was added to the Maritime Provinces Fishery Regulations for the recreational gaspereau (alewife) fishery. Similar to Atlantic mackerel, gaspereau is also used as bait in commercial fisheries, previously had no possession limit, and was being heavily fished under the guise of the recreational fishery and allegedly illegally sold. The addition of the possession limit has been very beneficial to the conservation, control, and proper management of the gaspereau fishery.
If the Department does not take action with respect to management and control of the recreational Atlantic mackerel fishery, it has the potential to affect Indigenous groups' access to mackerel for FSC purposes.
Benefits and costs
The direct costs of the Regulations cannot be quantified, as there is no recreational fishing licence for Atlantic mackerel, and landings of Atlantic mackerel for recreational purposes are not reported. However, costs are expected to be negligible for recreational fishers catching Atlantic mackerel for their personal consumption, as recreational catches cannot be legally sold. Therefore, the incremental impacts on recreational fishers would primarily be from a loss in consumer surplus due to reduced fishing time and the daily fishing limit. However, most recreational fishers are likely to shift recreational fishing activities to other species rather than cease recreational fishing activities. In addition, during the consultations, the majority of recreational fishers supported a daily fishing limit similar to that outlined in these amendments. The cost impact on businesses providing recreational services (such as lodges and charters) is also anticipated to be negligible. Stakeholders indicated during consultations that there is very little recreational fishing of Atlantic mackerel between January 1 to March 31, and no concerns were raised regarding lodges and charters.
Increasing the minimum size for possession of Atlantic mackerel by all harvesters to 26.8 cm, from 26.3 cm, is not anticipated to have a negative effect on recreational fishers, or on their ability to reach the daily fishing limit. The increase in size was based on science advice and supported by the majority of the commercial harvesters. It is not anticipated that this change will result in any incremental impact on harvesters.
By limiting the total amount of landings in the Atlantic mackerel recreational fishery, the amendments will support the health of the fish stock, which will benefit the recreational and commercial mackerel fisheries over time. Between 2014 and 2019, the annual landed value of commercial Atlantic mackerel in Atlantic Canada and Quebec averaged $8.1 million. footnote 2 The socio-economic benefits from a healthy Atlantic mackerel fishery include protecting a way of life for Indigenous communities, recreational fishers and commercial harvesters, maintaining intergenerational employment opportunities, and maintaining a healthy ecosystem.
The socio-economic benefits of a healthy commercial Atlantic mackerel fishery may accrue in rural coastal communities where other opportunities are limited.
Although Atlantic mackerel is not one of the top recreational species caught in Canada overall, DFO's Survey of Recreational Fishing in Canada, 2015 found it was one of the top three species caught recreationally in Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. Limits on recreational fishing for this species may have a greater local impact in these provinces. However, ensuring the long-term sustainability of the species should positively affect the same population.
Small business lens
Atlantic mackerel caught in the recreational fishery cannot be legally sold. The daily possession individual limit of 20 fish per recreational fisher allows for the continued operation of businesses providing recreational services (such as lodges and charters). There will be minimal recreational harvesting traditionally taking place during the closure period, and no concerns regarding lodges or charters were raised during consultations. Therefore, it is not expected that the amendments would have a cost impact on these businesses. Furthermore, the small business lens does not apply to this regulatory amendment, as there are no expected impacts associated with the amendments.
The one-for-one rule does not apply, as this regulatory amendment is not expected to increase administrative costs for commercial entities.
Regulatory cooperation and alignment
These amendments are not related to a work plan or commitment under a formal regulatory cooperation forum.
Strategic environmental assessment
These amendments fulfill targets and key priorities of the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy. They contribute to the sustainable fisheries targets and they help achieve progress towards the 2020 biodiversity goals and targets for Canada for healthy coasts and oceans and healthy wildlife populations. This is accomplished through different means, including by moving forward on ensuring that fish stocks are managed and harvested sustainably, legally and applying ecosystem-based approaches, and by ensuring that species that are secure remain secure, and populations of species at risk listed under federal law exhibit trends that are consistent with recovery strategies and management plans.
In accordance with the Cabinet Directive on the Environmental Assessment of Policy, Plan and Program Proposals, a preliminary scan concluded that a strategic environmental assessment is not required, as the amendments are not likely to result in important environmental effects.
Gender-based analysis plus (GBA+)
As outlined in the distributional section of benefits and costs, the amendments are expected to result in improved sustainability of the resource for the benefit of rural coastal communities that depend on the Atlantic mackerel fishery for their livelihoods and food sources. For these communities, ensuring a profitable fishing industry that supports community, society and culture by maintaining biodiversity and ensuring food security is another key argument in support of the amendments.
Overall, rebuilding the Atlantic mackerel fishery, for which closing the unregulated recreational harvest loophole is an important component, will contribute to protecting a way of life for Indigenous communities, recreational fishers and commercial harvesters, and to maintaining intergenerational employment opportunities in rural coastal communities that depend on continued access to the fishery over the long term.
Adding a daily possession limit of 20 mackerel per fisher for the recreational Atlantic mackerel fishery will limit the total amount of landings in this fishery and ensure that harvests are of a recreational nature. There was majority support for a daily limit of 25 fish or less expressed through consultations. Based on this, legitimate recreational fishers will have sufficient access to the Atlantic mackerel resource for their recreational fishing purposes even with the 20-fish daily possession limit. It was also determined that a 20-fish daily possession limit will be important to support the health of the stock, and this level could be varied based on stock status in the future.
Closing the loophole, which was used by some commercial licence holders who are harvesting significant quantities of Atlantic mackerel under the guise of a recreational fishery, will significantly facilitate enforcement by fisheries officers.
The amendments will establish a yearly close time from January 1 to March 31 that would align with other existing recreational fisheries closures in the marine environment where Atlantic mackerel is found. Based on consultations and availability of the Atlantic mackerel resource, the closed time is a period when Atlantic mackerel is not traditionally fished recreationally. Establishing a close time in regulations will allow for seasons and/or harvest levels to be varied in accordance with the health of the stock. In addition, it will provide a mechanism to close the recreational fishery for Atlantic mackerel at other periods of time, if justified for conservation reasons, through variation orders.
The imposition of a daily possession limit will dissuade the retention of large amounts of recreationally caught mackerel and discourage the inappropriate use of the recreational rules to conduct commercial fishing activities. The resulting actual impact of reduction in unreported catch will have to be evaluated by DFO Science after implementation and with the collection of additional data over subsequent years.
The minimum size change of 26.8 cm was recommended by DFO Science during the March 2019 and March 2021 stock assessments. The size is based on the calculated length at which 50% of Atlantic mackerel would be considered sexually mature as the minimum fish size to be followed. The minimum size of 25 cm that used to be in place was the previously calculated size when the minimum size was put into the Atlantic Fishery Regulations, 1985. The size has been set to a minimum of 26.3 cm, by variation order, since 2014.
This new size was supported by the majority of commercial harvesters, and to avoid confusion, the same length will be required for the commercial and recreational fishery of Atlantic mackerel.
Implementation, compliance and enforcement, and service standards
DFO will undertake outreach activities to ensure that recreational and commercial fishers are aware of the new Regulations. Information about the new regulatory requirements will be posted online and shared via social media to expand common knowledge on the changes and to reduce the learning curve for stakeholders. Departmental officials will share information about the new regulatory requirements directly with key stakeholders during meetings whenever possible. Following publication of the amended Regulations, enforcement activities will be prioritized based on risk and severity of the violation. Fishery officers will conduct outreach activities as needed.
Compliance and enforcement
Regulations pertaining to the recreational fishery of Atlantic mackerel will be enforced by fishery officers through routine compliance monitoring, including regular inspections on the water and on shore. These activities are part of a fishery officer's existing duties, hence no additional training or resources will be required.
The new Regulations will facilitate enforcement of the Fisheries Act and regulations because they will provide clarity for both fishers and enforcement personnel. Currently, enforcement in the recreational mackerel fishery is limited, as fishery officers are only able to enforce the size requirements (e.g. possession of undersized mackerel). When the Regulations are in place, fishery officers will enforce the close time and daily possession limit provisions. These enforcement efforts are expected to dissuade the improper retention of large amounts of mackerel under the guise of the recreational fisheries while the commercial fishery is closed.
Fishery officers will use established departmental approaches and procedures to monitor compliance and to address violations.
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