NMFS Announces Emergency Rule to Protect North Atlantic Right Whales

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) announced it is extending a temporary emergency rule to prohibit trap/pot fishery buoy lines between federal and state waters within the Massachusetts Restricted Area to reduce the incidental mortality and serious injury of North Atlantic right whales. The emergency closure is effective February 1, 2023, through April 30, 2023. The Massachusetts Lobstermen’s Association already has sued NMFS to challenge the closure.