reef ball Artificial Reef Issues - good habitat and good diving  

On August 15, 2016 The Army Corp of Engineers published a Public Notice - CENAP-OP-R-2016-00755-84, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has now requested authorization to continue placement of artificial reef materials within the fifteen (15) previously authorized sites in the Atlantic Ocean. The current proposal consists of the following specific actions: (1) to continue deployment of artificial reef materials at the 15 existing reef sites; and (2) to add 2 additional artificial reef sites to the state-wide program bringing the total number of artificial reef sites along the coast of New Jersey to 17. The locations of the artificial reef sites are identified in the attachment. NOTE: Public Notice was amended with accurate clearance information on August 26, 2016.  and then on 8/25/2016 amended the notice and extended the comment period to 9/30/2016.  The document is available here:

On September 23, 2016 the Mid Atlantic Fisheries Management Council published their SMZ Monitoring Team’s report on the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection's request for Special Management Zone (SMZ) Designation for 13 Artificial Reef Sites in the EEZ, the report is available here:

The report will be discussed at their October 5th meeting in Galloway, NJ and hopefully a decision to modify or accept it will be taken.

On September 21st the reef program sank the 68-foot trawler, Austin, as part of the Axel Carlson Reef, 4.4 nautical miles southeast of Manasquan Inlet.
The 115-foot surf clam vessel, Lisa Kim, is scheduled to be sunk as part of the Wildwood Reef, 8.3 miles northeast of Cape May Inlet this Friday, weather permitting.
The boats are among as many as 10 vessels the DEP’s Division of Fish and Wildlife plans to deploy by the end of fall.

On November 2, 2015 the NJDEP published final rules on new Artificial Reef Regulations. 
A letter announcing the rules can be viewed at:

The regulations can be seen here:

Maps are here:

On February 2nd the New Jersey Register published a proposed rule amending our artificial reef regulations.  The proposal would limit commercial and recreational fixed gear (potting) to three small sections on our two inshore reefs.  The Sandy Hook (1 zone) and Axel Carlson (2 zones) reefs will have small sections known as “full access zones” where potting will be permitted.  Limitations on size of strings, times for attending them and penalties are included in the proposal. 

 Public comments can be submitted thru April 2, 2015 by using the following website: 

 Press releases are available here:

 The regulations can be obtained at either of the following:           
(Click on NJ - New Jersey Register in left hand column, put in reef for search)

 Graphics of the “full access zones” are available here:

January 8, 2015  -  
Early this evening the New Jersey Marine Fisheries Council (NJMFC) voted unanimously to move the Artificial Reef Regulation on to be published as a Proposed Rule in the NJ Register on February 2nd. This compromise between the Commercial and Recreational fishermen was brokered by the NJMFC Artificial Reef Advisory Committee, NJ Marine Fisheries Bureau and the NJDEP Commissioner’s Office. It allows the use of sections of the two reefs within State waters (Axel Carson and Sandy Hook) by Commercial and Recreational pot fishermen with restrictions and penalties. This regulation once published will have a 60 day public comment period. Thereafter, comments will be considered and a Final Rule will be published in a subsequent issue of the NJ Register.

2011 - No Reef News published.  See their website:
2010 - The New Jersey Department of Fish and Wildlife has issued the

Third Edition of Guide to Fishing and Diving New Jersey Reefs - out of print.    

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