Highly Migratory Species

NOAA Fisheries West Coast Region's Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Program works to develop, implement, and evaluate fisheries policies and regulations for managing sustainable fisheries for eastern Pacific Ocean species such as Pacific tunas, swordfish, sharks, and billfish. Because highly migratory species are found throughout the Pacific Ocean and migrate across jurisdictional boundaries, this program engages stakeholders and governmental groups in the management of these species at both domestic and international levels.

Domestic Highly Migratory Species Management

NOAA Fisheries works with the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) to manage U.S. West Coast fisheries for  highly migratory species  in Federal waters. The Fishery Management Plan for U.S. West Coast Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species was developed by the Council as a means to coordinate state, federal, and international management of the of the highly migratory species stocks. The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act) is the primary authority for U.S.fisheries management. However, NOAA Fisheries and the Council must also ensure consistency with the requirements of other laws including the Tuna Conventions Act, Marine Mammal Protection Act, the Endangered Species Act, and many other federal laws and executive orders. 


 Highly Migratory Species stocks - VIEW 

International Highly Migratory Species Management

NOAA Fisheries works with many nations in the management of shared marine resources. The Highly Migratory Species Program is engaged in representing U.S. positions and carrying out U.S. obligations as a member of the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC), a signatory to the U.S.-Canada Albacore Treaty, and party to the Agreement on the International Dolphin Conservation Program (AIDCP). The Program is also responsible for implementing international resolutions under the Tuna Conventions Act and works closely with partners to encourage sustainable fisheries, complementary policies, and regulations across national and Regional Fishery Management Organization jurisdictions, especially between the Inter-American Tropical Tuna and Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commissions.

Highly Migratory Species Management Areas of Responsibility - VIEW

For more information on Highly Migratory Species, contact Heidi Taylor at 562.980.4039.
For more information or questions on permits, contact Shannon Penna at 562.980.4238.