A record $10.7bn was sold in US fish licenses last week, marking the first time the number of licenses has been more than twice that of the week before.
The market for licenses in US fisheries has remained at a low point in the past year, according to the Bureau of Land Management.
In the first three weeks of November, the bureau recorded a total of 4,637,902 licenses.
That number is up nearly 8% from the same period last year.
The market was also boosted by a number of fish-related events, including the release of a new bluegill from the Gulf of Mexico, the launch of a bluegills recovery program and the release from the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific oceans of bluegillerfish from the Bering Sea.
In all, there were 2,935,737 fish licenses in the US in the week ending November 1, a 17% increase from the week preceding.
The biggest increase was for the fish-use permits.
Sales of fishing permits increased by 11.6% in the last week of October, compared with the same week last year, when the number rose 13%.
In terms of dollars, the biggest gain was in the $1.9 billion category, as permits accounted for more than $1 billion in market value.
The bureau’s Fisheries and Oceans Division has been issuing licenses for fish for about a decade.
It has been a key source of revenue for the bureau.
Since 2010, the agency has processed more than 1.2 billion licenses, with the majority of the licenses being sold to small-scale fishermen.
The licenses are intended for individuals or small groups, but the bureau also sells licenses to commercial fishermen.
The number of permits sold increased from 3,723,099 in the same month last year to 4,958,972 in November.
The bureau has issued about $2.4 billion in fishing licenses this year.
Last week, the federal government issued a revised and expanded version of the fishery management plan.
The new plan was intended to increase the number and size of permits and to include an annual cap on fishing.
However, it has not been widely adopted and has not stopped the growth of the market.
“This week, it was clear the fishers were looking for a way to raise the cap, but this is not a silver bullet to get them to that point,” said Mark Pritchard, a research professor at the University of Georgia’s Center for Sustainable Fisheries.
“They need to be willing to do the work of setting a cap, then make the changes that are necessary.”