In the News
Fish Talk in the News – Thursday, August 25
From time to time, we like to keep you updated on the other news sources that have been “talking fish.” Here’s a quick look at some recent stories and websites that we think might interest Talking Fish readers:
- On the Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance’s Who Fishes Matters blog, NAMA Development and Outreach associate Sean Sullivan writes about what he learned at a June workshop on spatial scale structure of fish populations and ecosystems, and he discusses how understanding the close relationship between fish populations and the ecosystems they inhabit is crucial for better fishery management and the shift to ecosystem-based fishery management.
- On WGBH’s Climatide blog, Heather Goldstone discusses the current and future impacts of climate change on New England’s commercial fisheries. She asks if fishermen are aware of this threat and suggests that some of the ways fishermen have coped with overfishing – namely, developing innovative methods to earn a living while catching fewer fish – could be used to deal with climate change as well.
- The New York Times Science section featured an article on new efforts to modify fishing gear to reduce bycatch. It also contains some interesting perspectives on the collaborations and relationships between fishermen, scientists, and conservation groups that can lead to regulations and bycatch reduction innovations.
- In The Working Waterfront, published by the Island Institute, Anne Hayden and Philip Conkling write about the importance of implementing strategies to address the findings of the recently released independent analysis of the roles of the agencies that regulate New England’s fisheries. Chief among those findings that must be addressed, write Hayden and Conkling, are: the creation of an “overarching vision, strategy or plan to guide policy and management priorities” – and the inclusion of stakeholder input in the creation of this vision; and a “follow up on all management actions to evaluate their effects,” which would result in the NEFMC holding itself accountable for its decisions.
- WBUR ran a piece surveying the views of Gloucester fishermen on the sector management system for the groundfish fishery, now that it has been in place for over a year. Although last year many in Gloucester made apocalyptic predictions about the fishing industry ending as a result of sectors, the report shows that the tone has shifted: now, about sixteen months later, fishermen are learning to adjust to the new system, although it has created both winners and losers.
- The Environmental Defense Fund blogged about how catch shares can make fishing, one of the most dangerous jobs in the U.S., less risky. When fishermen don’t have to worry about a limited number of days at sea or a fishery that will close down once a certain number of fish have been caught, and they are instead allocated a set amount of fish that they don’t have to race to catch – as they are under catch shares – they have more flexibility to fish when they want to. This includes not heading out on days when poor weather conditions would make the job even more dangerous than it already is.