Catch Shares in Action: United States Mid-Atlantic Golden Tilefish Individual Fishing Quota Program

by Sarah E. Poon

Jan 1, 2013
Established in 2009, the United States Mid-Atlantic Golden Tilefish Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) Program is a catch share program that has minimized the complexity of fishery management to create a usable, efficient system for fishermen and fishery managers. The program was implemented following the innovative self-organization of some fishery participants into an IFQ-like cooperative, which demonstrated the potential benefits of an IFQ. The goals of the IFQ program were focused on rebuilding the tilefish stock through overcapacity reduction and elimination of problems associated with derby-style fishing. Key design features include a discard prohibition and incidental tilefish catch limit for non-IFQ vessels to ensure all sources of tilefish fishing mortality are accounted for.
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