Document Type



Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Publication Date



Virginia Marine Resource Report VMRR 2001 - 01


The Magnuson - Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1996 strengthened the ability of the ational Marine Fisheries Service and other Fisheries Management Councils to protect and conserve habitats of marine, estuarine, and anadromous mollusks, and crustaceans. The 1996 amendments to the act require the identification and description of essential habitat for the managed species, minimization of adverse effects on essential fish habitat (EFH) caused by fishing, and encouragement toward the conservation and enhancement of essential fish habitats. "Essential fish habitat" is broadly defined to include "those waters and substrate necessary to fish for spawning breeding feeding, or growth to maturity " (NMFS 2000). The ational Marine Fisheries Service identified bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix) as a species for which EFH must be described. Bluefish are considered one of the most important recreational species along the Atlantic coast of the United States and have long captured the attention of saltwater anglers. Our objective is the dissemination of information about bluefish essential fish habitat in Virginia's tidal waters based on long-term data collections.



Fisheries, Habitat, Virginia

Publication Statement

Prepared for The Chesapeake Bay Program's Bluefish Management Plan