How NOAA Federal Fisheries Permits Apply to Lobster and Caged Catches

NOAA Federal Fisheries Permits

Commercial fishermen can make a pretty good living on the water and lobster are just one of the lucrative species that buyers will always want. The proper NOAA federal fisheries permit ensures that you know who caught your lobster and that it was done so legally and sustainably. Finding out about the lobster’s journey lets you know that the fisherman was fairly compensated when it was caught. If you want to fish commercially for lobster, this guide will tell you everything you need to know about getting the correct permit. 

Coastal Lobster Permit

With a coastal lobster permit, you can legally fish for lobster along the coast of your home state. In addition to the application and fees associated with the permit, you must also pass a written test that goes over the local lobster population. Because there are quotas, both daily and annually, in place for lobster fishing, you must also be familiar with the number of lobsters you can bring home. Some species have a higher quota, while others may be much lower. This is not a standard commercial lobster fishing permit, which must be applied for separately. This permit allows you to use traps and hand lines to fish for lobster. 

Offshore Lobster Permit

This permit allows you to fish for lobster outside state waters and is one of the commercial fishing permits available for catching lobster and selling it. A coastal lobster permit does not allow for making a profit from your catch so if you plan to put your lobster up for sale, you need an offshore lobster permit. This permit allows for nets, long lines, traps, and some other fishing gear to catch lobster. Be sure you understand any specific regulations in your state when you apply for your fishing permit. 

Seasonal Lobster Permit

Maybe you only plan to commercially fish for lobster part of the year and focus on other species during the other seasons. In that case, you need a seasonal lobster permit. It’s important to note that you cannot fish for lobster outside the months on the permit or you could face fines and legal repercussions. For example, if you get a seasonal license for May through June, you cannot legally fish for lobster outside those months. It’s also important to know that you cannot fish for any other marine life during the timeframe for your seasonal lobster permit. Keep your permit on you at all times. 

Rod and Reel Permit

If you want to fish for lobster on a smaller scale, a rod and reel permit may be what you need. While you can only keep five liters per year, you can fish for an unlimited number of days during the time frame of the permit. You may not be eligible to sell your lobster for a profit with this type of license so be sure you understand the rules before applying. 

Fishing for lobster can be exciting as well as lucrative if you decide to sell your catch. However, to ensure that you get the most out of it, a NOAA federal fisheries permit is required. Contact the Commercial Fishing Permits Center today for all of the help you need to acquire the correct permit.

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