I heard ,That Halibut , had to stay Whole too,section 27.65 in the regs defines size limits for fillets. If the fish has a size limit, but there is not a fillet size limit, you can't fillet it.
Sheephead, cabezon, greenlings and leopard sharks fall into that category from what I can tell. There might be others that I'm missing
I am not sure the whole side has to be intact. The problem is if you quarter them all 4 quarters have to make the minimum fillet length. For the belly quarters to be legal size it would probably need to be a fish quite a bit over legal size. They also might count the 4 fillets as 2 fish.Halibuts are definitely allowed. I wonder if they got them for not leaving the each entire half intact.
I am not sure the whole side has to be intact. The problem is if you quarter them all 4 quarters have to make the minimum fillet length. For the belly quarters to be legal size it would probably need to be a fish quite a bit over legal size. They also might count the 4 fillets as 2 fish.
I agree with the goofy regs part. Not that I keep them anyways, but to find leopard shark regs you have to look under the rockfish regs.I think it really depends on how the warden is feeling. Technically the regs say you have to keep it intact (they can be split but must be held together by at least two inches at one end). If he's feeling generous, he can let it slide, but he doesn't have to.
Realistically, I'm all for ensuring folks are not taking shorts, but some regs (like the Halibut one are goofy). The real goofy one, though, is whitefish. There is no minimum size on whitefish, but the fillets still need to be 6.5". Huh?
In any case, I tend to bleed/gut on the water and fillet at home (just to avoid ever changing regs, lol)
Halibut can be filleted:
(6) California halibut taken from or possessed aboard a vessel south of Point Arena (Mendocino County): Fillets must be a minimum of 16 and three-quarter inches in length and shall bear the entire skin intact. A fillet from a California halibut (flesh from one entire side of the fish with the entire skin intact) may not be cut in half fillets. However, a fillet may be cut lengthwise in a straight line along the midline of the fillet where the fillet was attached to the vertebra (backbone) of the fish only if the two pieces of a fillet remain joined along their midline for a length of at least two inches at one end of the fillet.
From my experience, if the halibut is just keeper size (22"minimum), I would say don't fillet it. The minimum 16 3/4 inch length for the fillet requires it be cut all the way up around the gill plate up to the top of the head and on down to the insertion of the tail fin rays. One bad wave during the fillet cutting and you will have a short filet. Also, if you accidentally separate the filet quarters, each quarter could count as a full half fillet toward your limit, depending on how the warden feels that day; after all, the regs direct that the two pieces remain joined for at least 2 inches.
I guess some posters didn't read my post before they wrote theirs. Mine was taken directly from the DFW Ocean Regs (new 2016 reads like the old 2015)