The recreational black sea bass fishing season will open May 15 in federal and North Carolina waters north of Cape Hatteras.
The minimum size limit will be 12.5 inches total length (tip of the snout to the tip of the tail, excluding the tail filament), and the bag limit will be 15 fish per person, per day. The season will close Dec. 31.
The recreational black sea bass regulations north of Cape Hatteras comply with the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council and Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission Summer Flounder, Scup and Black Sea Bass Management Plan. Anglers should see Proclamation FF-19-2018 at http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/proclamations-current for more specific information or contact Chris Batsavage at 252-808-8009.
The recreational black sea bass fishery south of Cape Hatteras is managed by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council. South of Cape Hatteras, the minimum size limit is 13 inches total length and the bag limit is seven fish per person per day. The recreational black sea bass season begins April 1 each year and closes when the quota is met.
The 2018-2019 season is open, but anglers should frequently check the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council regulations webpage for closures or download the Fish Rules App on their cell phones. Regulations for black sea bass south of Cape Hatteras in North Carolina state waters mirror those in federal waters south of Cape Hatteras.