Category Archives: Canada

Commercial crab fisher ordered to forfeit traps, fined $20,000 after repeat offences

A B.C. judge lamented the state of protections for Canadian fisheries this month as she tore a strip off a commercial skipper with a history of repeat fishing violations. Powell River Provincial Court Judge Kimberley Arthur-Leung slapped Tuan Huu Le with a $20,000 fine, a four-month fishing prohibition and an order to forfeit his traps after he pleaded guilty to a series of crab fishing offences. >click to read<17:06

Cape Breton lobsterman gets court’s OK for replacement to trap under his licence

A Federal Court judge has temporarily granted a disabled Nova Scotia lobster fisherman the ability to hire someone to fish for him. Justice Sylvie Roussel ruled in favour of Lester Martell’s request to extend his use of a substitute operator,,, He’s been fishing since 1947 and personally fished lobster under the licence from 1978 on a full-time basis until excruciating knee pain and balance difficulties in 2009 prevented him from doing so.,, DFO approved Martell’s request for a substitute operator for the 2015 and 2016 seasons, but told him future requests would not be considered.>click to read<09:09

Canada’s next-generation RADARSAT satellite constellation successfully launched

Canada’s RADARSAT Constellation Mission (RCM) was launched successfully into space aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California.The constellation of three satellites will provide daily images of Canada’s vast territory and maritime approaches, as well as images of the Arctic, up to four times a day. It will have daily access to 90 percent of the world’s surface. The RCM is also equipped with an Automatic Identification System (AIS), allowing improved detection and tracking of ships, including those conducting illegal fishing. >click to read<18:19

Labrador fleet wants separate quota for northern cod – FFAW and FISH-NL do not support

Fishers from the 2J fleets partnered with the Labrador Fishermen’s Union Shrimp Company to make the proposal. In 2018, a 9,500-tonne limit was placed on the northern cod stewardship fishery for fishing zones 2J3KL.,,, Dwight Russell, a Mary’s Harbour fisherman, is chair of the 2J fishers. He told The Northern Pen the fleet is just looking for a fair share.,, Russell says he doesn’t believe the 2J cod fishing fleet, historically, has been given much opportunity to grow. He says if they could get a higher share of the total Northern cod quota, it would allow the industry to grow in the region. >click to read>08:34

Conservationists raise alarm over wild fish killed inside B.C. salmon farms

A conservation charity said it’s concerned by what it calls a “growing trend” of wild fish killed by the salmon farming industry on British Columbia’s coast. Stan Proboszcz,  Watershed Watch Salmon Society, said nine times as many wild fish were reported inside open-net pen farms in 2017 compared with 2011.,,  The society estimates that about 13.2 million wild fish may be held in B.C.’s 65 salmon farms at any given time, and an additional 653 tonnes of wild fish may be hanging around outside the farms because they’re attracted by things like food and lights.,,, “The farms are known to be amplifiers of pathogens, parasites and viruses. Are these things being spread to wild fish?” >click to read<20:47

Big brawl in Little Harbour over lobster fishing grounds

The Eastern Shore’s lobster fishery has once again been marred by violence. On Saturday afternoon RCMP responded to a brawl in Little Harbour stemming from a longstanding dispute between two families over lobster fishing grounds. “The dispute resulted in two men going to the home of another man to confront him,” reads the RCMP account of the fight. “Two more men arrived, and a physical altercation ensued, with some of the parties involved using weapons, including a wrench, a golf club, and a baseball bat.” Video, >click to read<08:48

Workers Compensation Board after fishermen to wear PFDs

Starting Monday, the Workers Compensation Board of P.E.I. will be heading to wharves across the Island to ensure fishermen are wearing personal flotation devices. The visits are part of an education and compliance initiative the WCB started last year. “The fishing industry is a dangerous industry,” said Danny Miller, director of occupational health and safety. “We’ve been focusing on the education, and the recent fatalities on P.E.I. have further reminded us that there’s more work to do.” Four people died in commercial fishing accidents last year in P.E.I. waters. >click to read<10:51

Ken MacDonald – Hanging out at the wharf

Port Morien wharf. It’s an annual rite of spring in many of our coastal communities. As predictable as the longer hours of daylight and buds sprouting on the trees, the wharf emerges from its winter hibernation. Boats are launched, equipment is checked and traps are transported to the wharf, stacked neatly; ready to load. This beehive of activity takes place in the weeks leading up to the May 15th opening of the lobster season, as it has been for decades. In its heyday, the wharf was a scene of perpetual activity. Boats were sometimes tied four and five alongside each other. Fishermen docked in the same place at the wharf, and many of us can still remember where they tied up their boats. As kids, we could look from a distance and knew who owned every boat. >click to read<09:52

Scallop vessel finds itself in challenging situation when it runs aground in Tiverton, Digby County

After a nine-day trip at sea the crew of the scallop vessel Digby Challenger expected to be offloading their catch on Sunday, June 9. But the vessel found itself facing another challenge instead.  Around 5 a.m. the boat grounded on the shoreline in Tiverton, Long Island, down on Digby Neck. The crew was not injured. Photo’s, >click to read<15:49

“Wolverine” – Initial assessment did not reveal evidence of vessel strikes or fishing gear entanglement

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans says the death of a North Atlantic right whale in the Gulf of St. Lawrence does not appear to be the result of a recent vessel strike or entanglement in fishing gear. A necropsy was conducted Friday on the shores of Miscou Island in New Brunswick, and the government said the initial assessment was inconclusive. The nine-year-old male known as “Wolverine” was towed there after his carcass was discovered in the Gulf on Tuesday. >click to read<10:16

First Nation in New Brunswick demands DFO allow access to crab fishery

The chief of the Eel Ground First Nation in northeastern New Brunswick is calling on the federal government to honour treaty rights and allow access to the snow crab fishery. Chief George Ginnish says the community, also known as Natoaganeg, has been waiting for 20 years to exercise their rights. He says the band council authorized a treaty fishery for snow crab, but the Department of Fisheries and Oceans has seized their traps.,, AFN Regional Chief Roger Augustine said the DFO has seized 31 snow crab pots so far. He’s asking Fisheries and Oceans Minister Jonathan Wilkinson step in,,, “It is disturbing to me and does not make sense that a First Nation would be given a licence but no quotas,” Augustine said. >click to read<22:54

Bill C-68 will protect smaller inshore fishery operators from corporate takeover, group says

Trudeau government legislation that enshrines the independence of Atlantic Canada’s inshore fishing fleets and enhances protections for fish stocks and fish habitat has cleared the Senate. The news is a relief to Martin Mallet. “This is great news. We’ve been waiting for this for a long while,” said Mallet, executive director of the Maritime Fishermen’s Union.,,, Minister expects new Fisheries Act to pass. In North Vancouver, federal Fisheries Minister Jonathan Wilkinson also welcomed the Senate vote. >click to read<12:06

Ninety Foot Crab and Demersal Fish Trawler Delivered

Shipbuilding Asia and Macduff Ship Design are pleased to announce the completion and handover of a new 90 foot fishing vessel for the Piercy family of Newfoundland Canada. The vessel Atlantic Titan, built in Vietnam by Shipbuilding Asia and designed and kitted by Macduff Ship Design, has the capability to fish for crab and to trawl for demersal fish. >click to read<10:28

New regulation for Maine fishermen might ease tension in ‘grey zone’

Melanie Sonnenberg, the general manager of the Grand Manan Fishermen’s Association, said there’s been some tension between fishermen in the zone because American fishermen are worried Canadian fishermen are stealing lobsters from their traps at night. Canadian fisherman can check their traps after dark, but American fishermen aren’t regulated to do so. Until now. New legislation in Maine will now allow American fishermen to check their traps at night. >Audio report, click to read<20:03

Canada’s Second New Offshore Fisheries Science Vessel Launched

Canada’s second of three new Offshore Fisheries Science Vessels (OFSV) was launched on June 5. The Canadian Coast Guard vessel was built by Seaspan’s North Vancouver Shipyards under the National Shipbuilding Strategy. The OFSVs are the first class of ships to be built by Seaspan’s Vancouver Shipyards as part of the non-combat package under the National Shipbuilding Strategy. They will support science and research activities undertaken by Fisheries and Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard. >click to read<15:50

D-Day: June 6, 1944

Inside General Eisenhower’s Sleepless Night Ahead of the D-Day Invasion – >click to read< On June 6, 1944, 150,000 Allied soliders arrived on the beaches of Normandy, France for the largest seaborn invasion in world history. “D-Day,” as it’s now referred, was a major tactical victory against the Nazis in Europe during World War II, and it is remembered as one of the most courageous operations in the history of international warfare.In photos: Nations mark the 75th anniversary of the D-Day invasion ->click here to review< >click to read/view<14:42

Dead right whale had survived ship strike, entanglements, is first death in Canadian waters in 2019

The dead north Atlantic right whale drifting off Quebec’s Gaspé coast had a history of entanglements and was struck by a ship, said officials with the New England Aquarium. The young whale was sighted Tuesday during an aerial surveillance flight by researchers from the U.S.-based National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. It’s first dead whale in Canadian waters in 2019.,,, On Wednesday, all efforts were deployed to locate the whale’s body, with planes flying over the Gulf of Saint Lawrence all day. >click to read<10:12

D-Day confidential: How four Canadian soldiers made it through their longest day

A fisherman, a farmer, a labourer and a civil servant were among the thousands who fought in the Allied invasion that turned the tide of the Second World War. For decades, the records of what they did sat in American archives, unheard. These are their stories.,,,  To sign up, Private Henry Churchill, (in the center), sold his lobster fishing licence and twice walked 19 kilometres from his hometown, Port Maitland, N.S., to the nearest recruiting office in Yarmouth. A paratrooper, he would drop into Normandy with 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion, ahead of the seaborne assault. Sapper Schaupmeyer was the third of the seven children of German immigrants farming near Edmonton. He and two brothers enlisted,,, >click to read<16:04

Chasing Demons: 75 Years On, D-Day Haunts, Drives Its Vets

They are back, some for the first time since war stole their innocence 75 years ago on Normandy’s D-Day beaches. They are back on battlefields where the World War II veterans saw friends killed, took lives themselves, were scarred physically and mentally and helped change the course of history. Given the painful memories, given their unfamiliarity with the country they liberated, given the difficulty of traveling abroad, why are Americans and veterans from other Allied nations in their 90s coming back for this week’s anniversary of the June 6, 1944, invasion of Normandy?,, Here, in their own words, >click to read< 17:45

Lobster prices – ‘There is a problem with the whole system and it has to be addressed’

The group that markets P.E.I. lobster says this year’s price is good, but could be better. The Lobster Fishers of P.E.I. Marketing Board says fishermen are getting a bit more than last year — between $5 and $5.75 for canner lobsters which are smaller and $6 to $6.75 for larger markets, said the group’s chair and fisherman Charlie MacGeoghegan. He said fishermen in Nova Scotia are getting more for their lobster. “If you take 2018 versus 2017 it was over a dollar a pound in the difference between Nova Scotia and here, so that’s, on last year’s catch that’s $38 million.” >click to read<12:55

Nature Conservancy president resigns in wake of sexual harassment probe

Nature Conservancy President Brian McPeek resigned Friday, just days after the group completed an investigation into sexual harassment and workplace misconduct at the world’s largest environmental organization. The news came two days after POLITICO first reported on the internal investigation at the group, which reported $1.3 billion in revenues last year and has long drawn support from both Democrats and Republicans. Its board of directors includes former Republican Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist and former Obama administration Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, and its executives include former Obama White House climate adviser Heather Zichal. >click to read<11:06

It takes an army and a lot of peeling to dish up this church’s seal flipper dinner

The cooks behind the massively popular seal flipper dinners at Wesley United Church in downtown St. John’s are proof that you don’t have to love what you do, in order to do it well. “I don’t like flippers. Nope.… But I’ve been cooking them for over 20 years,” says Phoebe Sheppard, chair of the Fall Fair Committee at the church, which organizes three annual seal flipper dinner fundraisers at the church.,,, “You’ve got nine million seals out there, so what a great economic opportunity to hunt more,” >click to read<09:31

Police believe P.E.I. fish processor scammed out of load of lobster

Police are on the lookout for a truckload of P.E.I. lobster that has gone missing. RCMP Corp. Lisa Jones with the West Prince detachment said a load of lobster left South Shore Seafoods on May 17 destined for Massachusetts, but it never reached its destination. “It was supposed to be delivered on May 20. They got a call from the customer, saying the shipment didn’t arrive,” said Jones. The theft was reported to Prince District RCMP on May 21. >click to read<11:11

Where crab is king: Lucrative fishery hauls in millions while avoiding whales

Bruno Gaudet takes the steps at Cheticamp Boat Builders three at a time. “I’m telling everyone I’m not committing to any more deadlines and hold onto your boat,” said the yard’s 58-year-old owner. Cheticamp Boat Builders is booked with refits and new builds for the next four years. Inside its big steel building on Wednesday were two fibreglass Cape Islanders under construction and outside a new diesel engine was getting lowered into one getting repowered at the pier.,,, The southern Gulf of St. Lawrence crab quota went up 32 per cent to 32,480 tonnes this year. >click to read<10:10

Fishing licences and quota on the West Coast are murky business

Being a commercial fish harvester is tough work. There are long hours, unpredictable seas and demanding physical conditions, not to mention the experience it takes to know where to drop the traps or cast a net..,, In the West Coast fisheries, a single licence may be exchanged for tens of thousands of dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars, and quota transactions are worth tens of millions of dollars annually. However, the market for licences and quota is not transparent or tightly regulated.,,, As licences and quota concentrate in fewer hands they become out of reach for active harvesters. In turn, the socioeconomic fabric of Indigenous and coastal communities stretches and strains. A recent study by the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans comes to similar conclusions. >click to read<16:31

Analysis of Commercial Fishing Licence, and Quota Values  – As at December 31, 2016 Prepared for Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Pacific Region >click to read<

Alan Holman – Make PFDs mandatory on fishing boats

It has been noted in past columns in this space that fishing is the most dangerous occupation in Canada. On a per capita basis more people die in the fishing industry than any other, including construction, mining and policing. But, is enough being done. All other Island industries operate under stringent health and safety regulations; the fishery, not so much. Not all, but most Island fishing boats are too small, or they don’t go far enough from shore, to fall under the federal department of transport regulations concerning safety measures requiring the crew to wear life-jackets. And, most Island fishermen think that’s alright. They don’t want any more regulations. This lack of regulation would be fine, if Island fishermen were taking measures to prevent the kind of accident that happened recently off Naufrage when 22-year-old Jordan Hicken fell overboard, unnoticed, as the boat headed out to sea. >click to read<14:29

Cocaine use a growing problem on fishing vessels, says industry rep

“It’s everywhere — in all the ports,” said Hubert Saulnier, who fishes out of Meteghan, N.S., and is on the drugs and alcohol committee of the Fisheries Safety Association of Nova Scotia. “You hear about it a lot … It’s an ongoing issue and it’s getting to be a little bit worse.” Saulnier said he hears of cocaine use at sea from fishermen themselves, as well as from the RCMP and the federal Fisheries and Oceans Department. He believes some fishermen may use hard drugs in part to increase their endurance and productivity during long trips, which can last 48 hours or more. >click to read<11:44

No wonder there’s a problem! – Deep sea fishermen pull in big catch of cocaine, worth nearly $1M, off Charleston coast >click to read<

Northern Peninsula fisherman outraged after buyer backs out of deal

A fisherman on the Northern Peninsula is outraged after his buyer backed out of a deal. Roland Genge says it cost him thousands of dollars. NTV’s Leila Beaudoin reports. >Video, click to watch< 15:53

‘I’ll teach her’: Mom proud to show daughter the ropes of fishing

As a teenager, Jasmine Paul wanted nothing more than to, as she says, “get clear” of the outport fishing life in Newfoundland and head to Toronto. She got as far as St. John’s. In recent years, however, visits back home to Come By Chance made her feel nostalgic about her rural roots.  “It made me realize what I was missing,” Paul said. At 31, Paul has come full circle: she’s decided that the fishing life she once loathed could be her future. This season, for the first time, Paul is learning the ropes as a harvester under the guidance of her parents. >click to read< 15:06

EDITORIAL: Tidal turbines’ troubled waters

For decades, politicians and provincial boosters have been touting the potential of Nova Scotia’s tidal power. We’re steeped in tide lore around here, from the Shubenacadie River’s tidal bore to those time-lapse videos of dockside fishing boats being floated off the bottom by the incoming tide. There’s enormous power in the Bay of Fundy, if only some clever engineer could channel it somehow into our energy grid. It’s clean, it’s renewable and it’s free. Well, it’s proving more complicated, expensive and difficult to harness that energy than even the most skeptical observer could have imagined. And an accident involving a fishing boat is just more bad news for efforts to use the tides to wean ourselves from coal-burning electricity generation. >click to read<13:15