Commercial Market Squid Fishery to close Nov 18th
The Department of Fish and Game (DFG) will close the commercial fishery for market squid, Loligo (Doryteuthis) opalescens, on Friday, Nov. 18 at noon.
Based on landings information and projections, DFG has determined that the season’s harvest limit of 118,000 short tons of market squid will be reached by that date.The squid fishing season runs from April through the following March of each year, meaning the fishery will remain closed through March 31, 2012. Market squid remains the state’s largest and most lucrative commercial fishery, valued at over $73 million in 2010.
DFG has been tracking catches daily this fall in anticipation of reaching the harvest limit, which was established to ensure squid are not overharvested. The harvest limit is one of many constraints on the fishery, which has been managed under the state’s Market Squid Fishery Management Plan since 2005. The goals of the plan are to ensure long-term conservation and sustainability of the market squid resource, reduce the potential for overfishing and provide a framework for management.
In addition to the harvest limit, only a limited number of commercial squid fishing permits are issued, and a closure of the fishery on weekends is imposed to allow for periods of uninterrupted spawning each week.
The plan was developed under the provisions set forth by California’s Marine Life Management Act (MLMA), which became law in 1999. The MLMA created state policies, goals and objectives to govern the conservation, sustainable use and restoration of California’s living marine resources such as squid.