Presence of North Atlantic Right Whales - Notice of fishery closure: GX40, GX41, GY41, GY42, GZ41, GZ42, GZ43, HA41, HA42, HA43

Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) - The Gulf and Quebec Regions are providing notice of new temporary fishing area closures due to the confirmed presence of North Atlantic Right Whales (NARW).

As per the Fisheries Dynamic Management Protocol, the following grids will be closing on June 6, 2019 at 5:00 p.m. Atlantic Daylight Time (ADT):

  • Full grids GX40, GX41, GY41, GY42, GZ41, GZ42, GZ43, HA41, HA42, HA43

DFO is providing a 96 hours delay for this fishery closure due to the weather forecast. All gear affected by this notice must be removed from the closed area before the time of closure.

Also due to weather conditions, closures previously announced to take effect today have been postponed to June 3, 2019 at 5:00 p.m. Atlantic Daylight Time (ADT), for the following grids :

  • Full grids GV39, GV46, GW39, GW40, GW41
  • Portions of grids GU39, GU40, GV40, GV41, GW46 (portion outside of dynamic area), GX46 (portion outside of dynamic area)

Please note that the following grids remain closed:

  • Full grids GV37, GV38, GV44, GV45, GW38, GW42, GW43, GW44, GW45, GX42, GX43, GX44, GX45, GY43, GY44, GY45, GY46, GY47
  • Portions of grids GU37, GU38, GV42, GV43, GW46 (portion inside the dynamic area), GX46 (portion inside the dynamic area), GX47

The closures will remain in effect until further notice. In the event that areas are reopened, DFO will inform industry prior to their reopening.

The closures will be in effect for the following fisheries where the fishing seasons are currently opened: snow crab, toad crab, rock crab, lobster, whelk, Greenland halibut (fixed gear) and winter flounder (fixed gear). Closures will also be in effect for Atlantic halibut (fixed gear), mackerel (gillnet) and herring (gillnet) when gear is left unattended.

The closures are in effect for the following fisheries where the fishing seasons are currently opened: snow crab, toad crab, rock crab, lobster, whelk, Greenland halibut (fixed gear) and winter flounder (fixed gear). Closures will also be in effect for Atlantic halibut (fixed gear), mackerel (gillnet) and herring (gillnet) when gear is left unattended.

DFO asks licence holders to be vigilant during fishing activities concerning the presence of North Atlantic Right Whales. Furthermore, please be reminded that it is the responsibility of the licence holder to take into account the marine safety notices issued, amongst others, by Environment and Climate Change Canada and Transport Canada, as well as the standards and best practices in marine safety, and to take all measures to ensure safe fishing operations.

The coordinates representing the contour of the closed static area are listed below:

Closed Static Area
Points Positions*
North Latitude West Longitude
1 48° 20' 0" N 63° 50' 0" W
2 47° 40' 0" N 63° 50' 0" W
3 47° 40' 0" N 64° 00' 0" W
4 47° 30' 0" N 64° 00' 0" W
5 47° 30' 0" N 64° 20' 0" W
6 47° 50' 0" N 64° 20' 0" W
7 48° 00' 0" N 64° 10' 0" W
8 48° 10' 0" N 64° 10' 0" W
9 48° 10' 0" N 64° 00' 0" W
10 48° 20' 0" N 64° 00' 0" W
11 48° 20' 0" N 63° 50' 0" W

The coordinates representing the contour of the Fisheries dynamic management protocol closure are listed below:

Fisheries dynamic management protocol closure
Points Positions*
North Latitude West Longitude
1 48° 20' 0.0" N 62° 55' 38.2" W
2 48° 20' 0.0" N 62° 50' 0.0" W
3 48° 30' 0.0" N 62° 50' 0.0" W
4 48° 30' 0.0" N 62° 20' 0.0" W
5 48° 06' 55.8" N 62° 20' 0.0" W
6 48° 03' 15.7" N 62° 10' 0.0" W
7 47° 50' 0.0" N 62° 10' 0.0" W
8 47° 50' 0.0" N 62° 50' 0.0" W
9 47° 30' 0.0" N 62° 50' 0.0" W
10 47°30' 0.0" N 63° 20' 0.0" W
11 48° 00' 0.0" N 63° 20' 0.0" W
12 48° 00' 0.0" N 63° 30' 0.0" W
13 48° 10' 0.0" N 63° 30' 0.0" W
14 48° 10' 0.0" N 63° 50' 0.0" W
15 48° 20' 0.0" N 63° 50' 0.0" W
16 48° 20' 0.0" N 64° 00' 0.0" W
17 48° 38' 20.2" N 64° 00' 0.0" W
18 48° 40' 0.0" N 63° 56' 36.3" W
19 48° 40' 0.0" N 63° 50' 10.1" W
20 48° 20' 0.0" N 62° 55' 38.2" W

*Area enclosed by rhumb lines (similar to straight lines plotted on a nautical chart) joining the points listed above in the order they are listed. Point references are based on the geodesic system North American Datum 1983 (NAD83). Positions are expressed in degrees, minutes and seconds.

Map identifying the grid closures in the Southern Gulf of St. Lawrence due to the presence of NARW.

Map identifying the grid closures in the Southern Gulf of St. Lawrence due to the presence of NARW.

For more information

Regular updates and maps indicating sightings will be posted here