In the News

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, August 18

Atlantic sturgeon. Image via NOAA Fisheries.

  • On Monday, Carlos Rafael filed a motion in court challenging the forfeiture of his vessels and permits associated with his guilty plea. The challenge is within Rafael’s rights according to the plea agreement. Rafael requested that the issue be addressed during his sentencing hearing at the end of September. Meanwhile, many in the industry are frustrated that Rafael’s vessels named in the plea agreement are still allowed to fish.
  • NOAA scientists are hosting a series of outreach meetings to discuss with fishermen the upcoming groundfish stock assessments. The recent meeting in New Bedford highlighted the discord that exists between the industry and the science. Some common ground was found though, such as agreeing that “focusing on specific species that could alleviate pressure would be beneficial.”
  • The Boston Fish Pier was added to the National Register of Historic Places. The Massachusetts Historical Commission had already endorsed the listing, so it did not come as a surprise. The Boston Globe reports that Massport, the pier landlord, is “committed to the blue-collar jobs that remain amid all the tech firms crowding in the waterfront.” Also that “[t]his is another reminder of the more colorful and authentic aspects of Boston that frequently get overshadowed by the city’s current boom.”
  • NOAA Fisheries designated new critical habitat areas for five threatened or endangered populations of Atlantic sturgeon along the U.S. Atlantic coast. As stated by NOAA Fisheries, “The critical habitat designation will require federal agencies to consult NOAA Fisheries if they operate or fund activities that may affect designated critical habitat in more than 3,968 miles of important coastal river habitat from Maine to Florida.” Read more in the federal register notice here.
  • NOAA Fisheries announced its review of alewife and blueback herring status under the Endangered Species Act. The review will determine whether or not either species should be listed as endangered or threatened. The agency is soliciting information dating back to 2013 until October 16, 2017.


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