Posted January 2015

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, January 30

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, NMFS announced it will not modify Gulf of Maine cod restrictions; NEFMC rejected river herring protections; one editorial says Maine’s lobster industry provides a good example for ecosystem-based management; Maine’s scallop season will likely be cut short; Maine scallop divers feel restrictions are unfair; Maine elver exporters may need to get a license; a Cape Cod shellfisherman received his license to build an oyster farm; shrimp prices are up; Portland’s Mayor wants to serve more locally caught fish; the 2015 menhaden stock assessment highlights the need for ecosystem-based management; increasing fish consumption drives fears of depleted stocks; climate change is affecting fish distribution; and NMFS released its draft Climate Science Strategy. … More Info »

Rare Glimpse of Ancient Corals and Other Creatures of the Deep

A video from The Pew Charitable Trusts offers a look at the beautiful deep-sea corals in the mid-Atlantic, and the abundant marine life these colonies support. Dr. Les Watling, a coral expert, explains why they need protection. … More Info »

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, January 23

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, Massachusetts DMF is challenging new regulations on lobstering; NOAA’s science was attacked at a Gloucester public forum; NEFMC’s next meeting is next week; NEFSC issued a new report on Northeast groundfish economic performance; researchers continue to study gray seal pups in Massachusetts; Cape Cod fishermen suggested seal control measures; Maine wild mussel populations are declining; restaurants are trying to change people’s opinions towards “trash fish”; CEI developed web tools to integrate Maine seafood with local food systems; GMRI sponsored an education program workshop for local fishermen; a new blog describes the importance of deep sea corals; NMFS announced a public comment period for its new bycatch reporting methodology; NMFS proposed new rules for managing Atlantic shark fishing; and a new surveillance system to track illegal fishing was developed. … More Info »

Bargaining with Cod

Comments submitted in December by the Gloucester Fishing Community Preservation Fund (GFCPF) in connection with NOAA’s emergency action on Gulf of Maine cod were recently reported in The Gloucester Times. GFCPF proposed trading cod quota for redfish, pollock and haddock access, utilizing sector-based quota-trading approaches to avoid hitting the lowered cod quota. … More Info »

What’s Happened to All the Striped Bass?

For the past six years I’ve fished for striped bass a few days each fall off Montauk, Long Island, with charter boat Capt. John McMurray, a fellow Coast Guard veteran who is a member of the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, which sets fishing policies in federal waters from New York to North Carolina. In the past, McMurray and I caught so many big bass on light tackle—a lightweight rod, reel, and line—that we lost count and returned to the dock exhausted. But in the last couple of years, unfortunately, it’s gotten harder to spot the fish. And on our most recent trip, we could hardly find any. I caught only one. … More Info »

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, January 16

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, two studies debated the health of our oceans and marine life; Gloucester fishermen are seeking a trade deal with NOAA; Commonwealth magazine interviewed John Bullard; lobstermen are extending their season; Gulf of Maine water temperatures were unusually high this fall; Maine fishermen favor reduced striped bass catch; Massachusetts issued the 2015 ocean plan; a Cape Cod town orders boat captains to stop clam dredging; MAFMC began public hearings for the Deep Sea Corals Amendment; the U.S. government adopted new regulations for seafood imports; ASMFC and NOAA Fisheries is funding two river herring research projects; NOAA Fisheries approved Framework Adjustment 52; NOAA Fisheries file proposed revisions to the Magnuson-Stevens Act in the federal register; and two NYTimes articles carried news of climate change this week. … More Info »

The Question Not Asked

On January 5th, Senators Markey and Warren sent a set of questions to Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration concerning Atlantic cod. Paraphrasing the Senators’ questions for purposes of space and simplification, here’s how I would answer them … More Info »

With Menhaden Making a Comeback, Managers are at a Crossroads

It appears that we may soon get some promising news about the fish that’s sometimes called the most important one in the sea—the Atlantic menhaden. These small forage fish constitute a key part of the marine food web, and now the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission is nearing completion of a new assessment of the stock. … More Info »

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, January 9

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, the OHA2 DEIS comment period closed; a New York Times op-ed commented on New England overfishing; New England groundfish kingpin is selling his fleet; EDF says electronic monitoring is inexpensive and effective; MA will receive a second round of federal aid funding from NOAA; Senator Warren will seek more federal funding for the fishing industry; NOAA began conducting mapping surveys in the Gulf of Maine; John Pappalardo was appointed to NEFMC; NEFMC released its January meeting agenda; the future of offshore wind in Nantucket Sound is uncertain; and a new booklet tells the stories of two New England fishing boat disasters. … More Info »

Tragedy of the New England Fishing Commons

Fisheries—especially New England fisheries—are a common example used to illustrate the tragedy of the commons, and a recent New York Times Op-ed titled “Where Have All the Cod Gone?” emphasizes just this. NOAA’s recent interim Gulf of Maine cod measures were an important step in addressing this problem, but if history tells us anything, more action is necessary. Habitat protection is one of the best ways to help fish stocks recover. … More Info »