Notice of licence

Regional or Local Number: DFO-17-PMAR-00001

Notice is hereby given that pursuant to the provisions of section 74 of the Species at Risk Act licence no. DFO-17-PMAR-00001 is issued.

Activity affecting the species is incidental to the carrying out of the activity

Commercial fishing with pelagic longline gear is authorized for use by license holders in the Swordfish and Other Tunas (Albacore, Bigeye, Yellowfin) fisheries in Atlantic Canadian waters. Pelagic longlines consist of a mainline, gangions and baited hooks that can be suspended at any depth in the water column, depending on the target species. Incidental bycatch of Loggerhead Sea Turtles is known to occur in fisheries using pelagic longline gear to target Swordfish and “other tunas”. This is the only recorded human-induced threat to this species in Atlantic Canadian waters.

Start Date: 2017-05-03   End Date: 2017-12-31

Issuing Authority: Department of Fisheries and Oceans

Authority Used:

  • Species at Risk Act
  • Fisheries Act

Location of Activity (province, territory or ocean):

  • Atlantic Ocean

Affected Species:

a) Alternatives to the activity that were considered included closure of the fishery and changes in the season, location and/or gear type. Closure of the fishery would have significant regional socio-economic impacts, as the export value of the fish landed by this fleet is over $10 million per year. Changes in time and/or location are not feasible as the distribution, depth/temperature preference and seasonal occurrence of Loggerhead sea turtles overlaps with the targets species in the fishery, therefore displacement of effort to other times/locations would result in the inability to catch the target species. Changes in gear type would have significant impacts on the catchability of the target species and the fishing effort required. b) Measures to minimize impact: Conditions have been added to fishing licenses to minimize the impact of this activity on this species. These conditions represent the known feasible measures that can be implemented at this time. Conditions include boarding and release requirements, the requirement to carry specific gear on the vessel for use in the release of incidentally caught Loggerhead sea turtles, requirement for a member of the crew to have a valid certificate of completion of an approved dehooking/disentanglement training course, and the requirement to complete and submit SARA monitoring documents after every fishing trip. c) Effects on survival and recovery: After the application of the feasible measures to minimize the impact, the proposed activity will still result in injury and/or mortality to individuals. It is unknown whether the measures implemented will reduce harm or mortality below current levels. The Threat Assessment for Loggerhead sea turtles (2017/014) states that the fishery currently catches an estimated 1,200 juvenile Loggerhead sea turtles per year, with mortality estimated at 200-500 individuals annually. This accounts for an estimated 0.8% of all documented Loggerhead sea turtle mortalities in the Northwest Atlantic. The Threat Assessment concluded that it is not likely that this level of mortality would result in jeopardy to the survival or recovery of the population.

Other Relevant Information:
Fishing licence identification numbers: , 108291, 108293, 108295, 108296, 108297, 108300, 108304, 108309, 108327, 108339, 108340, 108341, 108343, 108344, 108346, 108347, 108348, 108349, 108350, 108351, 108354, 108355, 108359, 108362, 108363, 108364, 108365, 108398, 108401, 108406, 108407, 108408, 108409, 108462, 108481, 108485, 108496, 108506, 108553, 108554, 108579, 108583, 108588, 108599, 108600, 108608, 108625, 108824, 108825, 108826, 108831, 108900, 108982, 108990, 109224, 109225, 109226, 109227, 109228, 109232, 109233, 109234, 109235, 109247, 109248, 109249, 109252, 109254, 109255, 303417, 303850, 305796, 309640, 310604, 315773, 315872, 336197.

Contact Person(s)
Fisheries Management – Maritimes Region
Bedford Institute of Oceanography, Fisheries and Oceans Canada
1 Challenger Dr.
PO Box 1006
Dartmouth, NS
B2Y 4A2
Tel: 866-891-0771