Fishery Notice

RECREATIONAL - Fin Fish (Other than Salmon)
FN0818-RECREATIONAL - Fin Fish (Other than Salmon) - Halibut - Changes to Daily Limit - Effective August 14, 2020

The DFO and Sport Fishing Advisory Board (SFAB) Halibut Committee meets monthly throughout the season to review estimated catches. At the most recent meeting, it was determined that the recreational fishery harvest to June 30, 2020 was approximately 116,276 pounds of the recreational fishery's Total Allowable Catch of 877,750 pounds. Given the current management measures in effect and catch forecasts to December 31, 2020, DFO is proceeding with a change to the daily limit of halibut measuring under 90 cm in length. This Fishery Notice supersedes FN0156 and provides updated coast-wide daily limit measures for halibut as noted below:

Open time:

Effective at 00:01 hours March 1, 2020 fishing for halibut was opened coast-wide until further notice.


The 2020/2021 Tidal Waters Sport Fishing Licences and Conditions of Licence are in effect on April 1, 2020 until March 31, 2021. 

Limits and sizes:

Effective 00:01 hours August 14, 2020 until further notice:

- The maximum length for halibut is 126 cm (97 cm head-off).
- The daily and possession limit for halibut is either of:
---- one (1) halibut measuring 90 cm to 126 cm in length (69 cm to 97 cm head-off), OR
---- two (2) halibut, each measuring under 90 cm in length (69 cm head-off).
- The annual limit is six (6) halibut per licence holder per licence year, as set out on the 2020/21 Tidal Waters Sport Fishing Licence.

- All halibut retained by the licence holder between April 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021 shall be immediately recorded in ink on the 2020/2021 Tidal Waters Sport Fishing Licence. The area from which each halibut is caught and its head-on length shall immediately be recorded on the licence.

- Head-off measurements are made from the base of the pectoral fin at its most forward point to the extreme end of the middle of the tail.

The exceptions to these openings are:

Areas 121:
No person shall fish for or retain halibut, rockfish and lingcod in Area 121 outside the 12 nautical mile limit seaward of a line that begins at 48 degrees 34.000 minutes and 125 degrees 17.386 minutes W and continues south easterly at a bearing of 116 degrees True to a point at 48 degrees 28.327 minutes and 125 degrees 01.687 minutes W.

Area 121:
Closed to all finfish, year round in the waters of Swiftsure Bank, inside a line from 48 degrees 34.00 minutes N and 125 degrees 06.00 minutes W, thence to 48 degrees 34.00 minutes N and 124 degrees 54.20 minutes W, thence to 48 degrees 29.62 minutes N and 124 degrees 43.40 minutes W, thence following the International Boundary between Canada and the U.S. to 48 degrees 29.55 minutes N and 124 degrees 56.20 minutes W, thence in a straight line to the point of commencement.  

Variation Orders 2019-RCT-201 (Close Time) and 2020-RFQ-420(Quota)

Note: Rockfish Conservation Area (RCA) and Glass Sponge Reef (GSR) closures remain in effect - refer to the following web pages for descriptions:

1) RCAs-
2) GSRs-

Anglers are reminded of mandatory condition of licence for the release of rockfish; all anglers in vessels shall immediately return all rockfish that are not being retained to the water and to a similar depth from which they were caught by use of an inverted weighted barbless hook or other purpose-built descender device.


Contacts: Greg Hornby (Regional Recreational Coordinator) -

Fisheries & Oceans Operations Center - FN0818
Sent August 13, 2020 at 1013