Signs of hope in fisheries management October 07, 2012 2:00 AM

When long-time Portsmouth Herald editor Ray Brighton wrote his definitive two-volume history in honor of Portsmouth’s 350th anniversary, he called it “They Came to Fish.” Fishing brought settlers to our shores and was a sustaining industry for centuries. When locals want to celebrate and when tourists come to the Seacoast they want to eat seafood: lobsters, steamers, quahog chowder, cod and haddock. It is the quintessential New England fare. Today our fishing fleet and associated industries are mere shadows of their former selves. Every year a few more fishermen give up the fight. The Yankee Fisherman’s Cooperative in Seabrook offers the last shore support for our decimated fleet. Distrust runs high among regulators, scientists and the fishermen who feed their families by their dangerous and backbreaking work at sea.