Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Atlantic Mackerel Commercial Fishery and Bait Closure
The Minister is implementing a closure of all Atlantic mackerel commercial and bait fishing in Atlantic Canada and Quebec to allow the stock to rebuild. The Department will take the necessary steps and notify affected licence holders about any refund to which they may be entitled.
The results of the 2021 Atlantic mackerel stock assessment indicate the stock has declined further into the critical zone. Scientific analyses indicate that the Atlantic mackerel stock is overfished and that fishing mortality is a significant influence on stock status.
Please be advised that the recreational and food, social and ceremonial fisheries will remain open. The Department will monitor these fisheries throughout the season to ensure that removals do not undermine the goal of rebuilding Atlantic mackerel.
DFO is committed to supporting the future opening of the Atlantic mackerel commercial and bait fisheries. Future access to the Atlantic mackerel fishery will be dependent on the duration of the closure and the health of the stock when the moratorium is lifted. Next steps for this fishery will be considered following the Atlantic mackerel stock assessment in 2023.