VIRGINIA MARINE RESOURCES COMMISSION
"PROCEDURE FOR MEASURING THE STRETCHED MESH OF MENHADEN NETS"
REGULATION 4 VAC 20-190-10 ET SEQ.
This regulation establishes the procedure for measuring the stretched mesh of menhaden nets.
This regulation is promulgated pursuant to authority contained in §28.2-201 of the Code of Virginia. This regulation amends and re-adopts previous Regulation 450-01-0025, which was adopted December 15, 1980 and was effective February 2, 1981. The effective date of this regulation is August 1, 1995.
4 VAC 20-190-10. Purpose.
The purpose of this chapter is to set forth the procedure that will be used for determining compliance with § 28.2-410 of the Code of Virginia. This section sets forth in part: "It is also unlawful for any person to use any purse net or other net having a stretched mesh of less than 1 3/4 inches." Since the law does not specify how the stretched mesh (mesh size) will be determined, this chapter shall serve to clarify the term stretched mesh and establish a technique for determining the size of the stretched mesh.
4 VAC 20-190-20. Definitions.
The following words and terms, when used in this chapter, shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Bunt" means the section of the net where the fish are concentrated during pumping operations.
"Cork line" means the line containing floats or corks attached to the top of the net as it hangs in the water.
"Ring line" means the line passed through the rings attached to the bottom of the net as it hangs in the water.
"Selvedge" means the reinforced edge of the net required for mounting of the net on the ring line and cork line.
"Stretched mesh" or "mesh size" means the inside distance between two knots or joints on opposite sides of the mesh.
4 VAC 20-190-30. Procedure.
A. The nets shall be wet when measured.
B. A measurement shall consist of the inside stretched distance of one mesh.
C. Fifty individual measurements shall be taken from the net in a location other than the bunt, at least 10 meshes below the selvedge, and from meshes that are not part of a seam.
D. The measuring device shall be inserted into the mesh in a vertical direction as the net is oriented between the ring line and cork line.
E. A force of 8.8 pounds (4 kilograms) shall be applied in taking the measurements.
4 VAC 20-190-40. Compliance.
The stretched mesh will be determined by computing the average of the 50 measurements which will yield the average stretched mesh measurement and this average shall be equal to or greater than 1 3/4 inches (44.45 millimeters).
4 VAC 20-190-50. Penalty.
As set forth in § 28.2-410 of the Code of Virginia, any person using any purse seine or other net having a stretched mesh of less than 1 3/4 inches to catch menhaden shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.