16-89-MMS| December 16, 2016
BILOXI, Miss. – NOAA Fisheries will hold a public hearing in January in Biloxi to discuss a proposal that would require the use of Turtle Excluder Devices in skimmer trawls.
NOAA’s proposal includes withdrawing the alternative tow time restriction and requiring skimmer trawls, pusherhead trawls and wing nets (butterfly trawls) rigged for fishing to use TEDs. These devices are designed to keep small turtles from getting caught in the nets.
The hearing will be from 4-6 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 11, at the Biloxi Visitors Center, 1050 Beach Blvd, and fishermen are invited to attend and comment on the proposal.
NOAA Fisheries also will accept written comments through Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2017. Comments can be mailed to Michael Barnette, Southeast Regional Office, NMFS, 263 13th Ave. South, St. Petersburg, Fla. 33701 or faxed to 727-824-5309.
Comments can be filed electronically at www.regulations.gov. Enter the following docket number in the search box: NOAA-NMFS-2016-0151.
The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources is dedicated to enhancing, protecting and conserving marine interests of the state by managing all marine life, public trust wetlands, adjacent uplands and waterfront areas to provide for the optimal commercial, recreational, educational and economic uses of these resources consistent with environmental concerns and social changes. Visit the DMR online at dmr.ms.gov.