HMS Tuna Longline

Electronic Monitoring Provision Included in International Measures to Conserve Atlantic Shortfin Mako Sharks

Mandatory EM in the U.S. Atlantic pelagic longline fishery provides a benefit over other international longline fleets.

In 2017, the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) completed a stock assessment of North Atlantic shortfin mako sharks, finding that the stock was overfished and experiencing overfishing. This stock status was a marked change from the previous assessment and the resulting scientific advice called for a substantial reduction in catches of this species across all ICCAT fisheries. The urgent question facing delegations from the 52 countries participating in the ICCAT annual meeting became, what conservation measures could be adopted to end overfishing of shortfin mako sharks?

A number of delegations, including the United States, worked together to propose conservation measures requiring vessels… Read More »


EM for the Atlantic HMS Tuna Longline Fishery

OVERVIEW OF THE FISHERY & PROGRAM

  • Fishery: Pelagic longline (Swordfish/tunas)
  • Geographic Scope: New England, Mid-Atlantic, South Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean regions
  • EM Program Purpose: To monitor/verify bluefin tuna bycatch
  • Program Implementation: June 2015
  • Number of Participating Vessels: 136 eligible (approximately 110 active)
  • Questions and Challenges:
  • The Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (AHMS) program is managed differently than other federally manages species in that it’s a single management program encompassing five Regional Management Councils as established under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. This approach was taken because it proved difficult to coordinate management actions among the New England, Mid-Atlantic, South Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean Councils. The AHMS program is also responsible for implementing HMS management… Read More »