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Author Topic: MA Buoy Requirements, Applies to crab traps  (Read 13292 times)
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masspi
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« on: June 06, 2008, 11:57:07 AM »


Paul J. Diodati
Director
 Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Division of Marine Fisheries
251 Causeway Street, Suite 400
Boston, MA 02114
(617) 626.1520
Fax (617) 626.1509
Deval Patrick
Governor
Ian Bowles
Secretary
Mary B. Griffin
Commissioner
 

May 27, 2008
MarineFisheries Advisory

CLARIFICATION OF BUOY MARKING REQUIREMENTS FOR
NON-COMMERCIAL LOBSTER PERMIT HOLDERS


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It has come to the attention of the Division of Marine Fisheries (MarineFisheries) that there is some confusion regarding gear-marking requirements for non-commercial lobster permit holders. Recently buoy marking requirements were amended for commercial lobster permit holders, but please note for non-commercial lobster permit holders requirements remain unchanged, as follows:

All buoys and traps must be marked with licensee’s 4-digit permit #, burned or cut into the surface at least ˝” high by 1/8” thick.  Non-commercial lobster pot fishermen must also add the letter “N” preceding their permit #, and a dash (-) with a single digit from 0 to 9 which follows the 4-digit permit #.  The dash followed by the single digit number from 0 to 9 indicates the sequential pot number in the series that the permit holder is fishing.  For example, if a non-commercial lobster pot fisherman with the permit #1234 has four pots in the water, he would brand his pots and buoys as follows: N-1234-1, N-1234-2, N-1234-3, N-1234-4.  A maximum of 10 pots may be set; in the example used above the tenth pot would be branded N-1234-0.

Buoys must be painted with licensee’s approved color scheme.  Wooden lobster buoys may not be used.

 
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unclebuttsy
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« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2008, 09:03:03 AM »

Anybody know if trap tags are required for crab pots here in the Bay State? I can't find it in the reg's so I burned my numbers into the vent panels to be on the safe side.

Interesting side note: I asked a ship chandler in Maine to send me a few trap tags along w/ my flexabar and they told me there was a 100 pc minimum w/ numbers branded by the supplier b/c they don't sell blanks due to trap theft up there.
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masspi
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« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2008, 10:27:42 AM »

Jeff,

It is required to have each trap, crab or lobster marked with a tag.  I went to Red Top in Bourne on Main Street and got 10 with my license number engraved.  I used a stainless hog ring to attach.  They were only a couple of bucks
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unclebuttsy
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« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2008, 01:58:21 PM »

Thanks Dave,

I'll get a few from Ketcham or R & R. It makes perfect sense, but I never saw crab pots specifically mentioned in the reg's.

I'm miffed at myself for forgetting to ask for them when I was at Ketcham, and semi-surprised that Bob didn't hand them to me along w/ everything else.

O well.

I'm planning to head down to your neighborhood as soon as this flexabar dries on my buoys. Maybe tuesday.
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unclebuttsy
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« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2008, 12:10:10 PM »

Not that it matters to anyone, but I just ordered trap tags from my lobster pot builder. Bob Ketcham told me there wasn't any reason why burning my numbers on the vent panel would not suffice, but I think blue crab fishing w/ pots is a wide open issue here in Massachusetts - better to be safe than sorry.
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masspi
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« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2008, 12:52:55 PM »

I agree that the vent panel is sufficient according to my reading of the abstact and Directors rulings.  Number on float and trap.  It has only been a recent decision that it has to be on the trap too.

If you need tags, Bob Ketcham at Ketcham Traps have them as well as Red Top Sports in Bourne.


Remember that along with all the above, you must paint your floats in a color or combination of colors that you have pre selected when applying for your license.  The color combination must also be displayed on your boat.
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robc22
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« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2008, 12:59:40 PM »

generally, if its not written in the law or reg. then it is not required. read the reg. very carefully. for example if it says all traps must be tagged then that applies to lobster or crab. if the reg states all lobster traps have to be tagged then the rule applies to lobster traps only.

If the law does not specifically state something is illegal then its not !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The enforcing authority may try to tell you differently but the law does NOT allow them assumptions of convenience.

Do not be afraid to challenge them on an issue if you think you are right. They will go to the laptop and read the reg. carefully. The EPO's are pretty good about this stuff.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2008, 01:06:44 PM by robc22 » Logged

Lobster Troll #1.........

"Beli . . . Beli . . . Belichnikov! … Belichick! Great man! Great leader!".......George Steinbrenner

"Eat wild fish/shellfish...... not something from china"...... Stillfishing

"Listen or your tongue will keep you deaf."......... Native American Proverb

“Oh, I could spend my life having this conversation - look - please try to understand before one of us dies”...... John Cleese

"Never met a bluefish I wouldn't sell"........Maddmatt
unclebuttsy
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« Reply #7 on: July 07, 2008, 03:37:44 PM »

Well Rob, EPO's I've spoken to cannot figure out that my pots are allowed to sit in a navigable channel, so I'm not taking any chances w/ tags.

Regs only specifically state that a lobster pot must have a tag. I burned my #s into the ghost panels on my crab pots,  which should suffice but I would rather be safe than sorry. Anyway, my lobster pot builder is sending me some blank tags.



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masspi
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« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2008, 04:21:19 PM »

I can tell you all that enforcement is dependant on the person doing the enforcement and interpreting the law at the time.  You could be 100% right and still be cited, and even prove your innocence in court.  But why take the chance.......mark your floats with your "N" number and pot number and tag or mark the traps.  Simple to do and you will avoid a lot of hassle later on.
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unclebuttsy
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« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2008, 04:29:37 PM »

You're preaching to the choir Dave.

I don't think MA EPO's have enough experience w/ crab pots in the estuaries to make informed opinions.

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robc22
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« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2008, 10:14:31 PM »

You guys are both right and I can't blame you one bit for taking the smart and easy road. Ive done it myself a million times.

However...........

As naive and idealistic as it may sound, I don't think it hurts to remind the regulating authorities that they are not the imperial guard and they work for us, not the other way around.

 I have tags on my crab traps not because I'm I.D.ing my traps for the state's benefit but to help bust the poachers who pull my gear illegally.Getting caught pulling a pot with someone Else's name on it pretty much proves someone is poaching.

Ive never been afraid to hold my ground with regards to state law/local regs when dealing with law enforcement. ButI all ways work to be respectfull and polite when getting my point(s) across.   
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Lobster Troll #1.........

"Beli . . . Beli . . . Belichnikov! … Belichick! Great man! Great leader!".......George Steinbrenner

"Eat wild fish/shellfish...... not something from china"...... Stillfishing

"Listen or your tongue will keep you deaf."......... Native American Proverb

“Oh, I could spend my life having this conversation - look - please try to understand before one of us dies”...... John Cleese

"Never met a bluefish I wouldn't sell"........Maddmatt

A D V E R T I S E M E N T


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