State officials have closed coastal and inland waters to commercial and recreational spotted sea trout fishing after recent cold weather led to fish kills.
The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries says the waters will remain closed until June 15.
Division Director Louis Daniel issued a proclamation this week closing all coastal waters after cold stun events were confirmed in several coastal rivers, bays and creeks.
Under a management plan, if a significant cold stun event occurs, the division will close all spotted sea trout harvest to allow those that survive the maximum time to spawn in spring.
The spotted trout season, which closed officially at noon on Wednesday, is typically open all year. Seafood dealers have until Feb. 12 to get rid of unfrozen spotted trout taken before the closure.