In the News

Fish Talk in the News – Tuesday, August 18

Alewives swimming upstream. Image via NOAA Habitat.

  • Earlier this month, NOAA announced its National Habitat Policy, effective June 30, 2015. In a statement about the policy, NOAA addresses the vital importance of healthy habitat in protecting ocean and coastal ecosystems, and says this “is a long-term policy and will influence future actions and priorities related to habitat conservation, allowing us to be more efficient and effective.”
  • Maine fishing regulators announced new rules for recreational fishing in Maine in compliance with NEFMC and NMFS fishing year 2015 regulations. Effective August 8, cod fishing in Maine state waters is closed, and the minimum size for recreationally-caught haddock is 17 inches.
  • The Casco Bay Classic Fishing Tournament wrapped up on Saturday with some large catches. Competition participants caught an 800 pound tuna and a nearly 400 pound thresher shark. Only certain species of sharks are allowed to be kept, and any sharks not kept are tagged and tracked by the University of New England.
  • NOAA Fisheries adjusted the 2015 annual catch limits for New England groundfish sectors and common pool vessels. The adjustments are based on final sector enrollment, which totaled 838 vessels. For more information, read the permit holder bulletin.
  • Atlantic White Shark Conservancy researchers photographed a great white shark attacking and eating a seal off Monomy on Saturday. The photos were taken from a spotter plan flying over the scene. Also, a video released by the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy shows another shark catching air to grab a seal off the coast of Cape Cod. The shark was unsuccessful.
  • A recent Warwick Beacon article by charter boat captiain Dave Monti highlights the importance of stock assessments for the “sustainable management of our Nation’s fisheries.” He claims that fishermen benefit from the assessments as well, and that RI recreational fishing has seen a good year.
  • Maine lakes and ponds are seeing the benefits from alewife restoration projects. The juvenile fish spend their summers in the freshwater, where the feed on algae and zooplankton, and in doing so, act as phosphorus sinks. The predation on zooplankton helps prevent algal blooms in the water. This is certainly not a cure all for water quality issues, but just another step towards restoring ecosystem balance.
  • A letter to the editor in the Gloucester Daily Times called for the return of a full-time executive director for the Gloucester Fisheries Commission. This person would be a dedicated representative to the Gloucester fishing industry and would fully engage with NOAA, NEFMC, and Mass Division of Marine Fisheries on fishing related processes.

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