Notice of Emergency Rulemaking: Ch 41 MENHADEN; Modified Harvest Limit

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Notice to Commercial Menhaden License holders:

Good afternoon,

Please be advised of the following emergency amendments to Chapter 41 Menhaden regulations; the full document is available (attached) and will be made available Tuesday on the DMR website.

In preparation for the Episodic Event Fishery, please be advised of the following change in effort controls: 

  • Harvest limit has been reduced to a daily landing limit of 6,000 pounds or 17 barrels

This amendment to Chapter 41 Menhaden regulation is being made to prevent an overage of the episodic events set aside given an increase in participation witnessed during the state allocation fishery and persistent late reporting by some fishermen. The harvest schedule and reporting requirements remain the same as last season, on Tuesdays and Fridays only, with reporting required on the same day as landing, prior to 11:59 pm. 

The Department has submitted its request to participate in the Episodic Event Set Aside Program (EESA) and is currently awaiting confirmation from Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission regarding the request. The Department will announce when the EESA fishery will begin as soon as approval is granted. A follow-up notice is anticipated Monday morning, June 20, 2022. 

Electronic reporting is still required on the same day as fish are landed to ensure that DMR has the most accurate accounting of the catch as possible. Electronic reporting can be completed through either LEEDS or the VESL electronic harvest reporting application available for iOS and Android devices.  Please note that if you have already signed up to VESL for a different species, you will already have access for reporting menhaden. Contact (207-633-9500), option 2 for Landings Division and then Option 4 for electronic reporting. Email any questions on electronic reporting to


Under the Interstate Fishery Management Plan (ISFMP) for Atlantic menhaden, the Episodic Event Set Aside (EESA) program receives 1% of the coastwide total allowable catch (TAC). The estimated EESA quota for FY2022 is 4,285,786 pounds and is a shared quota pool between Northeastern states. Increased participation observed during the FY2022 state allocated fishery requires further limitations in harvest controls for the EESA to reduce a risk of overage of the shared EESA quota. Harvest for EESA is permitted on Tuesdays and Fridays only. Harvesters are restricted to a single landing of 6,000 pounds per vessel daily with same day reporting required.

The Commissioner has determined that it is necessary to take emergency action to reduce the daily landing limit to prevent unusual damage to the menhaden resource by exceeding available quota. The Commissioner hereby adopts this emergency regulation as authorized by 12 M.R.S. §6171(3)(A).

EFFECTIVE DATE: June 21, 2022