In anticipation of the upcoming Labor Day holiday weekend, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) reminds all anglers to avoid yelloweye rockfish (Sebastes ruberrimus) when engaging in recreational ocean fishing.
DFW urges anglers to avoid fishing in areas where yelloweye rockfish are known to occur (e.g., rocky outcrops and pinnacles). If taken, yelloweye rockfish should be immediately returned to the water with a descending device to minimize injury and mortality. DFW also encourages anglers who encounter them to change fishing locations to prevent catching additional yelloweye rockfish.
Yelloweye rockfish are a long-lived, slow-growing shelf rockfish species that was declared overfished in 2002. They are currently managed under a strict federal rebuilding plan to allow the population to recover, which has required significant cutbacks to West Coast sport and commercial fisheries for more than a decade.
For more information regarding groundfish regulations, management, stock status information, fish identification tools and current catch trends, please visit the DFW Marine Region Groundfish Central website at www.wildlife.ca.gov/Conservation/Marine/Groundfish.
California Department of Fish and Wildlife photo