Meeting on Flounder Regs Slated

OCEAN CITY- The Maryland Department of Natural Resources will host the second of two public meetings to discuss possible recreational flounder fishing regulation changes for 2010 next Tuesday at the Ocean City Marlin Club at 6 p.m.

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) largely controls flounder fishing regulations in Maryland. Last year, ASFMC determined Maryland and other states, such as Delaware and New Jersey, exceeded their recreational fishing quotas, necessitating the effort revisit the numbers for 2010. NOAA survey data indicates that anglers took home roughly 89,000, if not more, flounder in 2009, despite the quota set at 63,000. State fishery managers and flounder anglers will be required to reduce their harvest for this season, although NOAA has increased the quota to 75,000.

Options on the table include an increase in the minimum size for keepers, a shorter season, a smaller creel limit or a combination of all three. DNR biologists will present their preferred options during a public input session at the Ocean City Marlin Club next Tuesday at 6 p.m. The final recommendation will be presented to the ASMFC flounder board on February 3.