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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 4. Conservation and Natural Resources
Agency 20. Marine Resources Commission
Chapter 900. Pertaining to Horseshoe Crab
7/11/2020

4VAC20-900-21. Permit Requirements and Exemption.

A. The taking by hand of as many as five horseshoe crabs in any one day only for noncommercial use shall be exempt from the licensing requirements.

B. It shall be unlawful for any individual to land horseshoe crabs in Virginia for commercial purposes without first obtaining a horseshoe crab permit as described in this section. A valid horseshoe crab permit shall be required of each individual to land horseshoe crabs for commercial purposes. Possession of any quantity of horseshoe crabs that exceeds the limit described in subsection A of this section shall be presumed for commercial purposes.

C. It shall be unlawful for any individual to take, catch, possess, or land any horseshoe crab by trawl gear without first having obtained a Horseshoe Crab Trawl Permit. The Horseshoe Crab Trawl Permit shall only be issued to a Virginia registered commercial fisherman who was issued an unrestricted horseshoe crab endorsement license or horseshoe crab bycatch permit prior to the license moratorium of May 1, 2011, and meets either of the criteria in subdivision 1 or 2 of this subsection:

1. Shall have documentation of a minimum harvest amount of one horseshoe crab at any time from January 1, 1993, through December 31, 2010, by trawl gear in the commission's mandatory harvest reporting system; or

2. Shall have documentation of a minimum harvest amount of one horseshoe crab at any time from January 1, 2004, through December 31, 2010, by trawl gear in the federal dealer reports to the Standard Atlantic Fisheries Information System.

D. It shall be unlawful for any individual to take, catch, possess, or land any horseshoe crab by dredge gear without first having obtained either and only one of the following two available horseshoe crab dredge permits: a Horseshoe Crab Class A Dredge Permit or a Horseshoe Crab Class B Dredge Permit. The Horseshoe Crab Class A Dredge Permit shall only be issued to a Virginia registered commercial fisherman who was issued an unrestricted horseshoe crab endorsement license prior to the license moratorium of May 1, 2011, and meets either of the criteria in subdivision 1 or 2 of this subsection. The Horseshoe Crab Class B Dredge Permit shall only be issued to a Virginia registered commercial fisherman who was issued a restricted horseshoe crab endorsement license or a horseshoe crab bycatch permit prior to the license moratorium of May 1, 2011, and meets either of the criteria in subdivision 1 or 2 of this subsection.

1. Shall have documentation of a minimum harvest amount of one horseshoe crab at any time from January 1, 1993, through December 31, 2010, by dredge gear in the commission's mandatory harvest reporting system; or

2. Shall have documentation of a minimum harvest amount of one horseshoe crab at any time from January 1, 2004, through December 31, 2010, by dredge gear in the federal dealer reports to the Standard Atlantic Fisheries Information System.

E. It shall be unlawful for any individual to take, catch, possess, or land any horseshoe crab by hand harvest without first having obtained a Horseshoe Crab Hand Harvest Permit. The Horseshoe Crab Hand Harvest Permit shall only be issued to a Virginia registered commercial fisherman who was issued a horseshoe crab hand harvester permit prior to the license moratorium of May 1, 2011, and shall have documentation of a minimum harvest amount of one horseshoe crab at any time from January 1, 1993, through December 31, 2010, by hand harvest in the commission's mandatory harvest reporting system.

F. It shall be unlawful for any individual to take, catch, possess, or land any horseshoe crab by pound net without first having obtained a Horseshoe Crab Pound Net Permit. The Horseshoe Crab Pound Net Permit shall only be issued to a Virginia registered commercial fisherman who was issued an unrestricted horseshoe crab endorsement license or horseshoe crab bycatch permit prior to the license moratorium of May 1, 2011, and meets either of the criteria in subdivision 1 or 2 of this subsection:

1. Shall have documentation of a minimum harvest amount of one horseshoe crab at any time from January 1, 1993, through December 31, 2010, by pound net in the commission's mandatory harvest reporting system; or

2. Shall have documentation of a minimum harvest amount of one horseshoe crab at any time from January 1, 2004, through December 31, 2010, by pound net in the federal dealer reports to the Standard Atlantic Fisheries Information System.

G. It shall be unlawful for any individual to take, catch, possess, or land any horseshoe crab by any method other than trawl, dredge, pound net, or hand harvest without first having obtained a Horseshoe Crab General Category Permit. The Horseshoe Crab General Category Permit shall only be issued to a Virginia registered commercial fisherman who was issued an unrestricted horseshoe crab endorsement license or horseshoe crab bycatch permit prior to the license moratorium of May 1, 2011.

Statutory Authority

§ 28.2-201 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 29, Issue 10, eff. January 1, 2013; amended, Volume 29, Issue 19, eff. May 1, 2013; Volume 30, Issue 10, eff. January 1, 2014.

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