The Vermont Statutes Online

Title 10 Appendix: Vermont Fish and Wildlife Regulations

Chapter 2: FISH

Sub-Chapter 1: General Provisions

10 V.S.A. App. § 117. Fish propagation



§ 117. Fish propagation

(1) Purpose. The purpose of this regulation is to carry out the mandate of the Vermont General Assembly to control, through a permit program, the propagation of fish, 10 V.S.A. chapter 119, §§ 5207-5209. In addition, a Memorandum of Understanding of the operation of the fish health inspection program was adopted July 21, 1992, by the Commissioners of the Fish and Wildlife Department and the Department of Agriculture, Food and Markets. The Department of Fish and Wildlife will review the Fish and Wildlife regulation governing the industry of fish propagation annually. This review will consider the recommendations of the Vermont Aquaculture Advisory Board to include testimony and data.

(2) Scope of Regulations. The provisions of this part are in addition to, and not in lieu of, any present State law or regulation pertaining to the taking of any fish in a lawful means and lawful manner. These regulations provide for the establishment of an application process, investigation process, permit issuance process and conditions under which the propagated species may be sold or purchased.

(3) Definitions.

(A) Fish. All fresh water fish and any salt water fish capable of adapting to fresh water. Also includes live fish, viable fish eggs, and viable sperm.

(B) Propagation. To cause to multiply or breed. To increase the species, or to cause to spread.

(C) Endangered Species. All fish named as threatened or endangered by the Federal Endangered Species Act (P.L. 93-205) and those listed as threatened or endangered pursuant to 10 V.S.A. chapter 123.

(D) Commissioner. Commissioner of the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department.

(E) Department. Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department.

(F) Injurious Fish. Fish determined by the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department or the United States Fish and Wildlife Service to be a danger to or potential danger to, Vermont's fish or wildlife.

(G) Annual Fish Health Inspection. Annual inspection (minimum once a year) for fish pathogens using inspection procedures approved by the Department, such as those provided for in the most recent addition of the "Blue Book," which is developed by the Fish Health Section of the American Fisheries Society (AFS) or the most recent addition of the "Fish Health Protection Regulations Manual of Compliance," of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, Canada.

(H) Fish Health Inspector. Person responsible for carrying out fish health inspections based on standards approved by the Department, such as those provided for by the Fish Health Section of the American Fisheries Society and/or the New England Salmonid Health Guidelines.

Fish health inspectors shall have access to adequate laboratory facilities and qualified personnel to assure the prompt conduct of inspections, diagnosis, and reporting.

(I) Fish Lot. A group of fish of the same species and age that originated from the same discrete spawning population during the same year, and are being raised on the same water source.

(4) Permit Requirements.

(A) A person shall not rear for sale or distribution, any species of live fish within this state without first procuring a permit from the Commissioner to do so (10 V.S.A. chapter 119, §§ 5207-5209). Persons maintaining fish in a closed rearing aquarium (no water discharge) may request exemptions (on the fish propagation application form) from the Annual Fish Health Inspection and/or the Breeders License.

(B) All individuals holding a Breeders License for trout and/or salmon will be required to have annual fish health inspections, conducted by a qualified fish health inspector acceptable by the Department. However, persons maintaining fish in a closed rearing unit may be exempt from the annual fish health inspection. All fish lots on the facility shall be tested for VHS (Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia), IPN (Infectious Pancreatic Necrosis), IHN (Infectious Hematopietic Necrosis), BKD (Renibacterium salmoninarum), ERM (Yersinia ruckeri), Aeromonas salmonicida (Furunculosis), Myxobolus cerebralis (Whirling disease), and other disease agents, that may be deemed necessary by the Commissioner. Fish health inspections will be scheduled by the fish health inspector. Individuals holding a Breeders License will be responsible for providing aid to help the fish health inspector with the collection of fish during the scheduled date of the inspection.

(C) Other species will be required to be inspected for those pathogens deemed necessary by the Commissioner with the approval of the Commissioner of Agriculture, Food and Markets.

(D) Sample sizes for each lot must be approved by the Department such as those provided for by the Fish Health Section of the (AFS) and/or the New England Salmonid Health Guidelines. (Mixed fish lots will be sampled according to the discretion of the Department.)

(E) If at any time fish are found to be infected with the causative agents of VHS (Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia), IHN (Infectious Hematopoietic Necrosis), Whirling Disease (Myxobolus cerebralis) and/or other diseases as determined by the Commissioner to be a serious threat to the fishery resources of the State of Vermont, the Commissioner shall have the authority to impose an immediate prohibition on moving any fish. During the prohibition a compliance agreement stating the appropriate procedures for the disposal of fish and the disinfection of the facility shall be determined by the Department's appropriate representative and in consultation with the owner/operator in cooperation with a nonaffiliated fish health specialist. Other diseases as determined by the Commissioner, with the approval of the Commissioner of Agriculture, Food and Markets, to be a serious threat to the fisheries resources of the State of Vermont may also result in this action.

The action shall be designed to bring the least amount of economic hardship to the affected party, while affording maximum protection to other operators, growers, and the fishery resources of the State of Vermont.

(5)(A) Application.

(1) The applicant for a Breeders License shall apply on a form supplied by the Department and include appropriate fee. Such forms must be complete in all respects and shall contain the following information:

(a) License number.

(b) A description of the land or water to be utilized for propagation.

(c) Information on whether the applicant is the owner or lessee of such lands or waters. If the applicant is not the owner, list the owner's name and address.

(d) A map of the property and waters indicating any ingress and egress to his/her waters by public waters.

(e) A map of existing and/or proposed fish rearing units, including water sources. Unit type, volume, and available water supply (gallons per minute) should be included.

(f) Reason for propagating species: food fish or live sale (percent of each).

(g) The complete name, common and scientific, of each fish species will be listed on the application.

(h) A copy of the latest annual fish health inspection report and the fish health inspection reports of fish lots introduced to the station in the past year must be included. (See Page 2, B through E.)

(i) The applicant shall sign the application.

(j) A report shall be sent to the Department 30 days prior to the anniversary date of initial issuance. The report shall have an annual accounting (since submission of previous application) of all fish lots and/or eggs purchased or obtained, from who purchased or obtained, number, kind, and size of fish and/or eggs. The applicant shall sign the report. (Failure to comply will disqualify the permittee for issuance of a subsequent permit.)

(2) Upon receipt of the application the Department shall, within 30 working days, investigate and determine if the information on the application is correct and approve or deny the application.

(B) Issuance of Permit.

(1) Breeders Licenses will not be issued for: Endangered Species or Injurious Fish.

(2) If the permit application is denied, the applicant may appeal to the Commissioner for a hearing pursuant to Title 3, chapter 25 of Vermont Statutes Annotated.

(3) Conditional permits may be issued, based on specifications and requirements set forth by the Department.

(4) All Breeders Licenses shall expire on the anniversary date of initial issuance. Subsequent applications for a propagation permit will, if approved, receive the same breeders permit number assigned in the past.

(6) Marking-Invoices. All persons licensed to propagate fish pursuant to this part shall provide an invoice and/or mark any box, carton, barrel, can, or other type of container or wrapper containing any propagated fish with the following information:

(a) Name and address of propagator, supplier, or producer

(b) License number

(c) Species

(d) Number and/or total weight. (1994, Fish and Wildlife Commissioner's Reg. No. 1004, eff. March 26, 1994.)