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2014 TEMPERATURE CONTROLS CLOSED SEASON OYSTER HARVEST
Thursday, March 27, 2014 @ 14:53:25 EDT

2014 TEMPERATURE CONTROLS – CLOSED SEASON OYSTER HARVEST

Dr. Louis B. Daniel III, Director, Division of Marine Fisheries, hereby announces that effective April 1, 2014 the following restrictions will apply to the harvest, transport and storage of oysters taken from shellfish leases and franchises in Coastal Fishing Waters:

I. TIME PERIOD 

        The following restrictions are in effect for all commercial oyster harvesting operations for the time period of April 1, 2014 through September 30, 2014. 

Relaying and transplanting activities are not considered harvesting operations.

II. NOTIFICATION AND TAGGING REQUIREMENTS

A. It is unlawful for shellfish lease or franchise holders to fail to notify the N.C. Marine Fisheries, Habitat and Enhancement Section by telephone at 800-682-2632 extension 8048 or 252-808-8048 prior to beginning oyster harvest from shellfish leases or franchises during the June through September time period. Only one call for the entire June through September time period is required.

B. It is unlawful to possess oysters in a commercial fishing operation without a harvest tag recording the time of the start of harvest and the information as described in 15A NCAC 03K .0109, affixed to each container of oysters. The time of the start of harvest shall be the time when the first oyster is initially removed from the water. 

III. TRANSPORT AND STORAGE RESTRICTIONS

A. It is unlawful for harvesters to fail to deliver oysters harvested from shellfish leases and franchises in Coastal Fishing Waters to a licensed shellfish dealer within 12 hours of the time of the start of harvest from April 1, 2014 through May 31, 2014.

B. It is unlawful for harvesters to fail to deliver oysters harvested from shellfish leases and franchises in Coastal Fishing waters to a licensed shellfish dealer within 5 hours of the start of harvest from June 1, 2014 through September 30, 2014.

C. It is unlawful for a licensed shellfish dealer to receive oysters from Coastal Fishing Waters where the interval between the time of the start of harvest on the harvest tag attached to the container of oysters and the time of receipt exceeds 12 hours from April 1, 2014 through May 31, 2014. 

D. It is unlawful for a licensed shellfish dealer to fail to place oysters under mechanical refrigeration within two hours of receipt from a harvester from April 1 through May 31, 2014.

E. It is unlawful for a licensed shellfish dealer to receive oysters from Coastal Fishing Waters where the interval between the time of the start of harvest on the harvest tag attached to the container of oysters and the time of receipt exceeds 5 hours from June 1, 2014 through September 30, 2014.

F. It is unlawful for a licensed shellfish dealer to fail to place oysters under mechanical refrigeration within 5 hours after start of harvest from June 1 through September 30, 2014.

G. It is unlawful for a licensed shellfish dealer to fail to record the following information when receiving oysters from shellfish leases or franchises in Coastal Fishing Waters:

1. Harvester;

2. Harvest area;

3. Time of the start of harvest;

4. Quantity and type of shellfish received;

5. Time shellfish were received; and

6. Time shellfish were refrigerated.

IV. GENERAL INFORMATION:

A. This proclamation is issued under the authority of N.C.G.S. 113-170.4; 113-170.5; 113-182; 113-221.1; 113-221.2; 143B-289.52; and N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission Rules 15A NCAC 03H .0103 and 03K .0110.


B. It is unlawful to violate the provisions of any proclamation issued by the Fisheries Director under his delegated authority pursuant to N.C. Fisheries Commission Rule15A NCAC 03H .0103.


C. The National Shellfish Sanitation Program Model Ordinance requires shellfish harvesters to:

1. Keep shellfish out of bilge water and protected from contamination from fuel, oil, and other contaminants;

2. Shade shellfish when necessary to reduce the chance of temperature abuse; and

3. Protect shellfish from adulteration and contamination during transport.


D. The call-in and record keeping requirements established by this proclamation eliminate the need for the Closed Oyster Season Harvest Permit for Leases and Franchises.


E. Contact Patti Fowler or Steve Murphey at N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries, P.O. Box 769, Morehead City, NC 28557 (252) 726-6827 or (800) 682-2632 for more information or visit our website at
http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/.


F. The intent of this proclamation is to implement National Shellfish Sanitation Program requirements that mandate measures to control the temperature of oysters after harvest. These measures will reduce post-harvest growth of potentially hazardous, naturally occurring bacteria in these shellfish.

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