In the News

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, June 17

New England is home to an abundance of the spiny dogfish shark. Photo courtesy of NHCS.

  • A recent National Fisherman blog discussed the abundance of dogfish in New England waters. The director of the Marine Science Center at the University of New England is quoted in the blog saying, “The Gulf of Maine used to be dominated by groundfish and now it’s dominated by spiny dogfish sharks.” The focus now is to build new markets for the species and ensure proper, long-term use of the resource.
  • The Atlantic White Shark Conservancy detected the first great white shark of the season off the coast of Cape Cod. The shark, named “Scratchy,” was tagged last August.
  • Connecticut Senators Blumenthal and Murphy, as well as Representative Courtney, have called for a Department of Commerce investigation into the federal fisheries quota system. The congressional delegates say that the quotas put an unfair disadvantage on Connecticut fishermen causing “extreme economic hardship.” They assert that the system does not account for changes in the fishery due to climate change.
  • The Cape Cod/Gulf of Maine yellowtail flounder common pool fishery has harvested 90 percent of its Trimester 1 quota. This has triggered a closure of the catch area through August 31 for Northeast multispecies common pool vessels with gillnet or trawl gear.
  • As of June 16, the Nantucket Lightship North Scallop Access Area is closed to limited access individual fishing quota scallop vessels, announced NOAA Fisheries. It was projected that 100 percent of the allocated trips had been taken. The closure remains in effect until February 28, 2017.
  • The U.S. District Court judge in David’s Goethel’s at-sea monitoring lawsuit has requested additional briefs from both sides, further delaying a final judgement. The decision was made after consulting both counsels. The deadline to submit the briefs is June 24, unless determined otherwise by counsel.
  • Even with tight management on New England fisheries, the Boston Fish Pier is “bursting with seafood business.” The success comes from Boston being a “seaport hub,” as the chief executive of Stavis Seafoods told the Boston Globe. The seafood businesses are able to trade around the world because of easy access to Logan Airport, local highways, and the Conley terminal.
  • A letter to the editor in the Boston Globe asserted that Governor Baker “is right to shape [the Massachusetts] fisheries board as he sees fit.” The LTE notes that those who were replaced were “holdovers whose statutory terms had long expired.”
  • A decision will soon be made on a $50 million wetlands restoration project in Wellfleet and Truro, MA. A state environmental impact assessment on the project was released last week, and a Cape Cod Commission subcommittee will hold a public forum on June 30. The forum will provide the “a good opportunity for the public to get engaged at an early stage,” said the chief regulatory office to the Cape Cod Times.

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