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February 7, 2018

Maine's elver quota could jump almost 20%

Photo / David Clough
Photo / David Clough
The American eel management board of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission is considering an 18% increase of Maine's annual catch quota for elvers, a move that could significantly boost revenues for Maine's elver fishery in 2019.

The American eel management board of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission is considering an 18% increase of Maine's annual catch quota for elvers.

The Bangor Daily News reported that a draft amendment to the ASMFC's eel management plan includes the option of increasing Maine's yearly elver harvest to 11,479 pounds, up from the current statewide quota of 9,688 pounds.

The quota would go into effect for the 2019 fishing season. The increase could mean an additional $2.6 million in revenue for the Maine elver fishery, which harvested over $12 million worth of the baby eels in 2017.

The 9,688-pound quota for the 2018 season, which has not started yet, was established in 2014. The fishery is extremely lucrative for harvesters, who in 2017 were paid an average price of $1,431 per pound.

Read more

Handful of lucky Mainers win right to apply for lucrative elver licenses

Elver quota set for 2018 season

Maine elver harvest tops $12 million as season ends

2016 proves a record year for Maine's fishing industry

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