Posted June 2014

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, June 27

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, a new study suggests changes in forage fish abundance may have contributed to controversy surrounding cod stock assessments; the Washington Post responds to President Obama’s protection of Pacific marine habitat; Cape fishermen applaud the Council’s herring decisions; Regional Fishery Management Council appointments are announced; great white sharks are rebounding off the eastern US; Cape Pond Ice looks to diversify; Maine considers a referendum to support lobster processing capacity; a New York Times opinion piece calls for sourcing more of our seafood domestically; the Council hears a positive report on individual scallop quotas; NMFS approves an experimental fishery for barndoor skates. … More Info »

Protecting essential fish habitat: Homes and nurseries

On May 29, the House Natural Resources Committee met to refine legislation reauthorizing and amending the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the primary law that governs fishing in U.S. ocean waters. This is vital work: Our oceans are one of our nation’s most valuable natural resources. And congressional leaders should capitalize on this opportunity by adding stronger protections for essential habitat that fish populations need to spawn and grow in a healthy marine ecosystem. … More Info »

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, June 20

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, the NEFMC maintains the current haddock catch cap for the herring industry; John Kerry’s oceans conference coincides with two executive actions by President Obama; a herring quota overage will affect other marine life, too; the Washington Post highlights successes in forage fish conservation; an editorial calls for more cooperative fisheries research; Capt. John McMurray says striped bass are a cautionary tale for what could happen with more flexibility in federal fisheries management; the NEFMC continues work on its Omnibus Habitat Amendment; the City of New Bedford releases a plan for groundfish industry revitalization. … More Info »

New England’s Fishing Pathology

The industrial herring fleet recently overshot its quota for the herring management area 1B by some 60%. Sixty percent! That is like driving 104 mph in a 65 mph speed zone. This incident—and particularly the herring fleet’s response to it—are symptomatic of a deeper pathology in some of New England’s fisheries that should not be allowed to just fade away as another bad memory of a poorly managed fishery. … More Info »

When the Herring Fleet Takes More than Just Herring

The New England Fishery Management Council will take up an emergency request from the Atlantic herring industry this week regarding limits on the amount of bycatch, or non-target species, the herring trawlers should be allowed. The council action comes as the herring fleet is attracting media scrutiny for the amount of sea life that ends up in their nets other than Atlantic herring. … More Info »

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, June 13

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, fishermen continue to voice frustration over the distribution of $33 million in federal disaster aid; DC hosts Capitol Hill Ocean Week and John Kerry’s ocean summit; the ASMFC considers a limited access program for northern shrimp; larval lobster abundance has experienced a downturn; New England and the Mid-Atlantic will receive $5.6 million in Saltonstall-Kennedy grants; NOAA announces recipients of scallop research set-aside awards; Massachusetts fishermen participate in safety training; local professors explore possibilities for deep water mussel aquaculture. … More Info »

Mid-Atlantic Managers Further Restrict Bycatch of River Herring and Shad

The Mid Atlantic Fishery Management Council moved Wednesday to sharply reduce the amount of river herring and shad that can be killed by the trawling vessels targeting Atlantic mackerel, an important step in the recovery of these important but imperiled little fish. … More Info »

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, June 6

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, fishing industry members respond to a plan to distribute $33 million in federal disaster aid; fishermen say eight large trawlers cleared out 160 percent of the herring quota in Area 1B; the west coast groundfish fishery gains MSC certification; the Senate Appropriations Committee passes a funding bill with several fisheries provisions; Maine’s elver catch falls short of the quota; summer flounder are moving north, sparking debate over quota allocations; Maine lobstermen say a NOAA hydrographic survey vessel is cutting their lines; softshell clam beds on the North Shore close due to a red tide bloom. … More Info »

Celebrating New England’s Oceans on World Oceans Day

This Sunday is World Oceans Day, an international event to celebrate and honor the ocean. World Oceans Day is a global event, but we thought we’d bring it back home to New England by celebrating the incredible marine habitat in the Gulf of Maine. … More Info »

Avoiding the Next Disaster

Federal and state officials recently announced a plan for the distribution of millions of dollars in disaster assistance for New England fishermen who depend on cod and other bottom dwelling groundfish. But some of these same regional officials are considering a proposal that threatens to make things worse by cutting back habitat protections for depleted groundfish species. … More Info »