Recreational Atlantic Tunas Retention Limits
The recreational daily bluefin tuna (BFT) retention for limit for HMS Angling and HMS Charter/Headboat vessels (while fishing recreationally) is 1 BFT/vessel/day/trip, measuring 27 to less than 47”, and 1 BFT/vessel/day/trip, measuring 47 to less than 73" CFL. This limit effective through December 31, 2009. These BFT retention limits are effective for all areas, except for the Gulf of Mexico. The Gulf of Mexico is designated as a spawning grounds for BFT and therefore NMFS does not allow vessels, commercial or recreational, to target BFT while fishing in this area. However, HMS Angling and HMS Charter/Heaboats are eligible to retain 1 BFT (73 inches or greater) per vessel per year as a “trophy” fish for the boat. This fish may be retained in the Gulf of Mexico if it is caught incidentally while pursuing other species. The recreational yellowfin tuna daily retention limit is 3 yellowfin/person/day/trip. The minimum size for yellowfin and bigeye tuna is 27" curved fork length. There are no recreational limits for bigeye, skipjack or albacore tunas.