North Carolina is halting the commercial and recreational harvesting of speckled trout to protect stocks of the fish.
The state Division of Marine Fisheries will institute an indefinite halt to fishing for the trout starting at noon on Friday.
Marine Fisheries Commission Chairman Rob Bizzell says the decision comes after “cold stun” events in rivers, bays and creeks along the coast.
When the trout are stunned by cold temperatures, they come to the surface to warm up, making them easy to catch.
The ban will last until at least Feb. 11, when the Marine Fisheries Commission will consider the closure at its meeting in Pine Knoll Shores.