The recreational greater amberjack season will close in Louisiana waters on Thursday, March 30.
NOAA Fisheries has projected that the adjusted annual recreational catch limit of 335,741 pounds will be harvested, and the closure is necessary to prevent further harvest. Previous annual catch limit overruns in 2016 led to a reduction in the 2017 recreational quota (1,255,600 pounds to 335,741 pounds). Federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico are scheduled to reopen on January 1, 2018.
During the closure, recreational harvest or possession of greater amberjack is prohibited in state and federal waters. This closure is necessary to protect the greater amberjack resource. The greater amberjack population is considered overfished (the population is too low) and limiting harvest is necessary for the population to recover.
Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Secretary Jack Montoucet was authorized by the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission in previously promulgated (LAC 76.VII.335.G.5) rules to change or modify the opening and closing dates for any recreational reef fish season in Louisiana waters when notified by NOAA Fisheries.