Feds say few commercial fishing trips are monitored

Federal officials revealed Wednesday that most of the New England fishing cooperatives that catch cod, haddock, flounder and other groundfish failed to meet the minimum standards for having observers on their boats. National Marine Fisheries Service regional administrator Michael Pentony sent letters to 14 of 19 sectors informing them that they were below the required 15 percent of their trips accompanied by fishery monitors and federal observers. Ten sectors were below 10 percent. Observers count and identify the fish caught and discarded, which helps scientists estimate impacts on fish populations. “We are not trying to point fingers or lay blame,” Pentony told the New England Fishery Management Council at their meeting Wednesday, calling it a systemic problem. >click to read<08:57

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