The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries on Monday began issuing new permits licensed fish dealers must have to purchase estuarine-caught flounder from fishermen during this year’s commercial southern flounder season, the dates for which have not been announced.
Applications for the free, estuarine flounder dealer permit are available online, by calling or in person by appointment at one of the following offices:
- Division Headquarters, 3441 Arendell St., Morehead City. Phone: 252-726-7021 or 800-682-2632.
- Manteo Field Office, 1021 Driftwood Drive, Manteo. Phone 252-473-5734 or 800-405-7774.
- Pamlico District Office, 943 Washington Square Mall, U.S. 17, Washington. Phone: 252-946-6481 or 800-338-7804.
- Southern District Office, 127 Cardinal Drive Extension, Wilmington. Phone: 910-796-7215 or 800-248-4536.
Call the nearest office or email License@ncdenr.gov to set up an appointment. Office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Applications can also be dropped off at these offices.
In May, the North Carolina Marine Fisheries Commission adopted Amendment 3 to the Southern Flounder Fishery Management Plan. The amendment adds southern flounder to the division’s quota monitoring program. Licensed fish dealers will be sent a letter, also posted online, through the mail that explains the quota monitoring requirements.
The commercial fishery annual harvest quota will be divided into two gear categories: pound nets and mobile gears, or gill nets and gigs. The quota will be split by harvest areas for monitoring purposes. Dealers will be required to submit quota monitoring logs daily while the commercial flounder season is open for the categories and harvest areas chosen on the permit.
The pound net fishery will be divided into three areas:
- Northern — Albemarle Sound and its tributaries, including the Croatan and Roanoke sounds.
- Central — Pamlico Sound and its tributaries.
- Southern — All waters from Core Sound south.
Mobile gears will be divided into two areas:
- Northern — North Carolina and Virginia border south to the incidental take permit areas B and D boundary line in Core Sound, roughly from the Club House on Core Banks west to a point on the shore at Davis near Marker 1.
- Southern — The incidental take permit areas B and D boundary line in Core Sound, where the Northern area ends, south to the North Carolina and South Carolina border.