Tagged fisheries science

Warming Waters and New England Fisheries

Two op-ed pieces this week address the rapid warming of the Gulf of Maine’s ocean. The first outlines the emerging science of climate change effects on the ocean, and the second offers ecosystem-based fisheries management as a sensible response. … More Info »

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, November 14

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, NOAA announced Gulf of Maine cod and haddock emergency measures; former deputy director of NMFS reassures that the science behind cod stock assessment is accurate; fishermen complain that lobstermen are exempt from new closure areas; NEFMC meeting is next week, November 17-20; University of Maine and NOAA Northeast Fisheries formed a new partnership for undergraduate students; The Gloucester Times will run a “Fish Tales” series next week; UMass Amherst researchers are tracking bluefin populations from the air; shellfish and herring were a hot topic at Wellfleet harbor conference; NOAA is transitioning to mail surveys for collecting recreational fishing data; U.S. seafood consumption is declining; the Cape Cod Fish Share is failing; nine endangered sea turtles were rescued from Cape Cod Bay; the number of dead zones are increasing; climate change is changing the Gulf of Maine ecosystem; the Blue Ocean Film Festival celebrated ocean conservation last week; NOAA established a new ocean exploration guide panel; a new USCG rule tries to stop invasive species; and a new technology was developed to monitor illegal fishing. … More Info »

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, October 31

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, a Gulf of Maine cod emergency action plan can be expected in mid-November; NOAA released the 2013 Fisheries of the United State Report; MA gubernatorial candidates debated New England fisheries issues; Dartmouth, MA attempts to replenish its shellfish beds; NMFS closed the Gulf of Maine Atlantic herring fishery; NEFMC announced its member elections; NEFMC released its November meeting agenda; ASMFC may shut down the Maine shrimp season; ASMFC cut Maine’s elver quota; ASMFC but Atlantic coast striped bass catch by 25%; ASMFC approved a FMP for Jonah crab and is amending the American lobster FMP; a new fish bypass opened on the Naugatuck River; Downeast aquaculture received a $2 million grant; MA is seeking $8.3 million for fisheries aid phase two; select-sized lobster prices fell; Maine lobster processors have trouble finding workers; a letter to the Boston Globe called attention to the mackerel fishery; NMFS is seeking new council member for the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Advisory Panel; a judge order Joe’s Lobster Mart owner to sell all fish stock before closing; and the Island Institute released a new video relating Maine lobster to Florida oysters. … More Info »

Sorry Charlie: The Real Problem with Baker’s Fish Story

It’s hard to see how Baker’s spotty recall of an encounter with a fisherman matters much. What matters about this fish story is that both major party candidates for governor have their facts wrong about the disastrous state of cod fishing in New England and neither seems willing to even confront reality, much less offer helpful solutions. … More Info »

Lost in the Fog

I was having a bit of an out-of-the-body experience last week when the Council’s Science and Statistical Committee (SSC) re-thought setting the Acceptable BIOLOGICAL Catch (ABC) for the collapsed Gulf of Maine cod stock. Most of the debate was driven by economic issues, not biological issues. The discussion was focused mainly on identifying the various estimated economic impacts associated with various ABC levels. There was surprisingly little said about whether any catch of the collapsed cod population was acceptable. … More Info »

Fish Talk in the News – Friday, September 19

In this week’s Fish Talk in the News, NEFMC proposed emergency recommendations for the Gulf of Maine cod stock; John Waldman comments on the thriving Norwegian and Russian cod fishery; regional fishing groups for the Fishing Community Coalition; the Newfoundland cod fishery is undergoing a major transformation; the Maine Department of Marine Resources makes a temporary exception to their lobster trawl limit rule; invasive green crab numbers in Maine are beginning to decline; the proposed amendment for the flounder, scup, and bass fishery management plan is entering its public comment period; a new book on herring and southeastern Massachusetts was released; a new study reveals phytoplankton out-evolving climate change; NOAA Fisheries announced the 2014 Funded Prescott Grant Proposals; Omega Protein Corp. released its inaugural corporate social responsibility report; NMFS and NEFMC are soliciting Atlantic Sea Scallop RSA Program proposals; the largest-sized U.S. scallops are in short supply; a NOAA and UNC-Wilmington study addresses how climate change is affecting fish communities; and conservation groups move to protect endangered whales from drift gill nets. … More Info »

“Known is a drop. Unknown is an ocean.”

That still-true ancient line, penned by Tamil poet Avvaiyar some two thousand years ago, reminds us all that while it is worth paying attention to what we see, it is often critical not to be seduced by our convictions about what it means. And so it is that recent reports from the Portland waterfront of bountiful cod can neither be ignored nor fully credited. … More Info »

The Beer-Reviewed Stock Assessment: A Fisheries Phenomenon

We’ve all heard about peer-reviewed stock assessments. That’s what you get when a team of biologists assesses the health of one stock of fish, and another panel of expert scientists, unrelated to the first, reviews that team’s work and determines whether it is good enough to use for fisheries management purposes. If it is, it represents a sort of “gold standard” for fisheries managers, who can then establish regulations based on the assessment, and be reasonably certain that they’re doing the right thing. However, if you go down to the docks, pick up a press release put out by one of the anglers’ rights groups or read some of the comments on Internet chat boards, you’ll find that a lot of people don’t give the peer-reviewed assessments, or the scientists who provide them, much weight. … More Info »

New England Inches Toward Improved Fisheries Management, But There’s a Catch

This week the New England Fishery Management Council holds the first meeting of a committee aiming to revive efforts on Ecosystem-Based Fisheries Management, or EBFM. This is great news, but also greatly overdue. … More Info »

Industry Lawyers Wrong on Closed Areas Science: An Open and Shut Case

It must have come as a surprise to dozens of scientists from leading institutions to read in National Fisherman that “there are no scientific studies showing that closed areas, in temperate areas like New England, provide benefits to fishery productivity or conservation.” This is so demonstrably false it would be funny, if the stakes weren’t so serious. … More Info »