Posted in Protecting Ocean Ecosystems

Can the Endangered Species Act Help River Herring?

On August 15, 2017, NOAA Fisheries announced a status review of alewife and blueback herring, two species of river herring. The review will serve to determine whether either species should be listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act. It’s time that we recognize the grave threats to river herring survival and give them the protections they need to rebuild. … More Info »

Public Comment Opportunity: ASMFC Deciding the Future of Menhaden Management

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) will host a very important meeting for “the most important fish in the sea” on November 13-14 in Baltimore, MD. The ASMFC coordinates the conservation and management of 27 nearshore fish species along the U.S. East Coast; one of these species is Atlantic menhaden, also known as pogies or bunker. … More Info »

Leaked Report Reveals Recommendations to Allow Commercial Fishing in the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Monument

Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke submitted his report on the review of 27 of America’s national monuments to President Trump on August 24th. The report had been kept hidden from the public until it was leaked to the media on Sunday, revealing recommendations for drastic changes to ten national monuments, including the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument. … More Info »

Op-ed: Monument tradeoffs are necessary – Preserving the ecosystem and biodiversity is crucial

Can anyone really say why there is such an outcry about the establishment of the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument? It is doubtful that a majority of those speaking out against it could accurately locate the area on a chart. Let’s face it: there are a lot of politics involved in what should be a purely scientific decision. With Secretary of the Interior  Ryan Zinke’s decision to leave the door open to making changes to the monument, it’s clear that the science – and therefore, America’s best interests –  may not be his priority. … More Info »

Advocacy through Art: ‘Shark’ Brings the Animal’s Plight to Life

Happy Shark Week! In honor of this annual event, we sunk our teeth into a new book, Shark, by our friend and partner Brian Skerry. … More Info »

Marine Reserves are Climate Reserves

Scientists have been researching ways to slow climate change or at least mitigate its impacts. One new study shows that marine reserves allow ecosystems to adapt and be resilient to the major predicted impacts of climate change: acidification, sea-level rise, the intensification of storms, shifts in species distribution, and decreased productivity and oxygen availability.  … More Info »

The Harmful Underwater Search for Oil and Gas

A new study published in Nature describes how seismic testing has greater and more widespread ecosystem impacts than previously known. Past research has focused on the detrimental impacts for marine mammals and commercially important fish, but the Nature study revealed that seismic testing has the potential to decimate phytoplankton populations – the foundation of the marine food chain. … More Info »

Longfin Squid Catch a Break

Several years ago, the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council began thinking about making amendments to the longfin squid fishery. Longfin squid are an important forage species especially off the coasts of New England. They are a source of food for commercial, recreational, and other familiar species such as sea bass, flounder, and bluefish. Having a healthy population of forage species is crucial to maintaining food webs and a productive ecosystem. So when fishermen and scientists began reporting changes in the fishery, the Council took notice. … More Info »

On World Oceans Day, Help Defend New England’s National Monuments!

This year’s World Oceans Day is more important than ever as some of our most treasured ocean areas (as well as land areas) are under attack. President Trump has ordered a review of 27 national monuments around the United States – including the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument – and has expressed a desire to reverse the hard-earned protections for these monuments. The Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument is another New England treasure that is also under threat. … More Info »

Why wouldn’t we support the New England Marine Monument?

Whatever your political leanings, one has to acknowledge that the Obama Administration did something extraordinary last fall. Through the Antiquities Act, it protected almost five thousand miles of an incredibly biodiverse piece of ocean off of New England from large-scale extraction, while preserving recreational fishing access. This was the first such action to protect large-scale ecosystems on the East Coast, and it was generally supported by the recreational fishing community. … More Info »