PORTLAND (AP) — A key federal panel will provide recommendations to fishery regulators soon about Maine’s elver quota for next year.

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission’s American Eel Management Board is considering options for elver fishermen that range from closing the fishery to maintaining this year’s quota of 11,749 pounds. A spokeswoman for the commission says the American Eel Working Group’s recommendations to the board will be released on Wednesday.

Maine’s elver fishermen caught 9,586 pounds of the baby eels last season. They are sold overseas as seed stock for Asian aquaculture companies that raise them to maturity and sell them as food. Price per pound of Maine elvers has increased considerably in recent years.

The eel management board is set to approve a quota and potentially other rules on Oct. 27.

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