Federal fishery regulators will consider habitat protections to key fishing grounds during a meeting in Rhode Island.

The New England Fishery Management Council is meeting in Newport, Rhode Island, from Tuesday through Thursday. The board is continuing a discussion of habitat protections that it began during its April meeting.

The council approved pieces of a long-awaited habitat plan in April. The changes impact the way fishermen catch important species including cod, clams and scallops in federal waters from Maine to Rhode Island. One of the issues still on the table is how to handle habitat protection in Georges Bank off of Massachusetts. Another is protecting spawning areas in the Gulf of Maine and Georges Bank.

The council voted in April to keep protections to Cashes Ledge in the Gulf of Maine.  (Associated Press)