North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources
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Avoid Hitting Fishing Gear

When on the water, boaters must remain aware of types of markers that indicate the use of commercial fishing gear.

Hitting a gill net or crab pot can damage boat props, as well as damage the fishing gear.

These gears are marked with buoys, and if boaters read the buoy system correctly, they will protect their property and the property of others.

Gill Nets
In all coastal waters, North Carolina requires commercial gill nets to have two solid yellow buoys, at least 5 inches long, attached to each end of the net.
Recreationally used gill nets must have two solid yellow buoys and one solid hot pink buoy on each end of the net.
Crab Pots
North Carolina requires commercial pots to have one solid buoy, at least 5 inches long, on a
non-floating line attached to each pot. The buoy
can be any color or combination of colors, so long as it is not yellow or hot pink.
Recreational pots must have one solid hot pink buoy on a line attached to each pot.

Boaters should be aware that buoys attached to crab pots may float with currents to either side of the pot.