Category Archives: Featured

Lobsterman v. Lobsterman – Ropeless Fishing Divides Industry

At a virtual hearing last night, the Massachusetts Department of Marine Fisheries (DMF), presented the case of five commercial lobstermen who are seeking a Letter of Authorization to test the controversial equipment,,, But nearly 20 commercial lobstermen at the meeting said they were opposed for multiple reasons. Many said testing the gear during the closure puts the entire fishery at risk if a whale does get entangled. >click to read< 07:55

Newlyn: Grimmy Mike RIP.

There are, or rather were, two well-known skippers called Mike in Newlyn, both referred to by their ports of origin, Milford Mike and Grimmy Mike. Whilst Milford Mike is currently a contender for the oldest working fisherman in the port, sad news has reached Newlyn that Grimmy Mike has gone to the big wheelhouse in the sky. For those who are not aware, Mike Mahon, better known as Grimmy Mike became something of living legend in Newlyn and beyond. The photo above epitomises Grimmy’s political fishing career – the little guy steaming ahead, singlehandedly trying to champion his beloved fishing industry battling against the full weight of legislation in the form the much-hated Common Fisheries Policy. Grimmy’s finest moment came when he sought the support of Canadian Fisheries minister, Brian Tobin who flew to Newlyn for the 1995 Fish Festival. photos,>click to read< 14:47

Tacoma’s 70 years: A personal perspective

Last month MFV Almonta sank on its mooring for a second time. This once proud member of the Port Lincoln tuna fleet now sits forlorn, half submerged in Porter Bay. It seems likely another part of the 60s tuna fleet is to be lost. I am guessing funds are short and too few people care enough to keep her afloat. This gives me pause for thought. A short distance away in the Marina sits the MFV Tacoma – afloat, fully preserved, debt free, self-funded and heritage listed. >click to read< 07:36

Patrice McCarron: Maine lobstermen are committed to protecting our ocean

In-depth, investigative reporting is increasingly rare these days. The resulting series, “The Lobster Trap” missed the boat, however, in its quest to invent a drama that places Maine’s lobster industry on the front line in the “battle over climate change.” From the lobster industry’s perspective, the series doesn’t accurately tell their story. Its seven key takeaways are disconnected from the people who were just a means to an end. This reporting dismisses, dehumanizes and minimizes fishermen’s role in mitigation and adaptation strategies, and it perpetuates a narrative that they are unwilling to engage in climate change conversations. >click to read< 09:21

91-year-old active fisherman in P.E.I. to be inducted into Acadian Business Hall of Fame

For many people, eventual retirement is the force that pulls them to work every day, but for 91-year-old Alcide Arsenault, it’s a love of the sea. “In the spring, when the ice goes, it’s just like a magnet that takes you back to the shore. I’ve always loved fishing.” Alcide, who lives in Cape Egmont, has been fishing lobster off P.E.I.’s north and south shores since 1944 when he was just 14 and could be the oldest active fisherman in P.E.I. On Dec. 3, he was named one of four 2022 inductees into the Acadian Business Hall of Fame, considered the highest and most prestigious recognition from the Acadian and Francophone Chamber of Commerce of PEI. >click to read< 10:50

Norway: Kids Slice Out Cod Tongues for Serious Money

For as long as anybody can remember, tungeskjaererne have been responsible for the local cod tongue trade, even as fish factories give up the money they would otherwise get from the tongues by donating the fish heads to children and teenagers. The tradition introduces young people to the fishing industry and teaching them the value of entrepreneurship and hard work seems to matter more than making an extra kroner or two.The job makes selling Girl Scout cookies or running a lemonade stand look like child’s play. Arctander knows tungeskjaererne who have made more than $11,000 in a single season. “I haven’t thought of anything else in the world where kids can make so much money,”,,, >click to read< 08:34

Safeguarding the Outer Banks’ commercial fishing heritage by supporting the livelihoods of local fishermen

Dare County has released a video titled, “Dare County’s Commercial Fishing Industry: Safeguarding the Community’s Longstanding Heritage by Supporting the Livelihoods of Local Fishermen,” as part of the county’s ongoing effort to inform members of the public as well as state and national legislators about the impact that increased regulation is having on the those who work within the commercial fishing industry. >Video, click to read< 10:11

In Labrador, desperate pleas for search and rescue resources still unanswered

Dwight Russell can’t forget the apologetic words from one of the RCMP officers who came to his door on a Sunday evening in September. “We just don’t have the adequate resources to be able to do this,”,,, Mr. Russell’s son Marc Russell and his crewmate Joey Jenkins had been missing for two days after their boat failed to return to the wharf in Mary’s Harbour, a fishing community of about 350 people in southern Labrador. In this corner of Newfoundland and Labrador, where fishing is a lifeblood for many, the pair weren’t just missing fishermen, they were “Marc” and “Joey.” >click to read<, other related posts, >click here< 09:08

Premium prices no problem for shrimp, crab, lobster consumers

Global supply chain issues are affecting supplies of some crustaceans sold in US grocery stores, and driving some prices up, but consumers seem willing to pay extra for their “must have” shrimp, crab, lobster and other products.  “Red king crab availability is very tight, so look for more snow crab or even golden king crab in its place,” Shrimp is far and away the best-selling seafood item in the United States, and Amdahl doesn’t see that changing anytime soon.,, Despite the logistics headaches that are slowing shipments of foods worldwide, US retailers can expect to have volumes of a variety of crustacean products from Norwegian fisheries,,, >click to read< 10:38

MAFMC and the ASMFC vote to screw commercial fishermen

Last week at the Atlantic States Marine Fishery Commission/ Mid Atlantic Fishery Management Council joint meeting these two management bodies voted to steal millions of dollars from the commercial fishing industry by reallocating historical quota from the commercial sector to the recreational sector. The two groups in charge of the management of Scup, Black Sea Bass and Summer Flounder voted to change the historic quotas of these species that were developed in the creation of their original management plan in the early 1990’s and used data from the 1980’s time period. Quota allocation is always a controversial issue whether it is within a fishery sector, [state by state quota] or between commercial and recreational interests. There always seems to be someone dissatisfied with the result. In regard to these three demersal species, the recreational sector was never satisfied with the results of the real data and have tried for over 25 years to change the allocations in their favor. >click to read< 07:25 By Jim Lovgren

Maine’s lobster industry is in a fight for its survival

In October, a U.S. District Court judge in Bangor had ruled that there was reason to question the federal government’s decision to close this prime lobstering area for four months this winter. When an appeals court overturned this decision in November, lobstermen who had already set traps in this area were forced to dangerously hurry and take them up, creating economic hardship for those who invested in gear, rigged up and were already fishing in these productive waters. For Maine’s lobster industry, this is another frustrating example of one step forward, two steps back. This latest court ruling, however, is just the tip of the iceberg that threatens to sink the fishery. >click to read< 09:57

New Bedford Vessel Runs Aground on Longnook Beach

Part-time Truro resident Lynda West went with her father-in-law, Jock West, to Longnook Beach on Tuesday to take photos of the calm waters with his drone at low tide. “When we got here, I turned to him and said, ‘You hit the jackpot,’ ” Lynda said. “I’ve never seen anything like it.” At the bottom of the steep slope below the beach parking lot was a 78-foot blue-and-white groundfishing boat, the F/V Carrabassett, beached on the sand with one green light on and its radar dish spinning. “That’s not a good situation there,” said Provincetown fisherman Chris King, looking at the boat from the parking lot. >click to read< 09:48

It’s not easy being the family left onshore when the lobster fishery starts

The knot in my stomach started as soon as I read the post that dumping day in the southwestern Nova Scotia lobster fishery was a go for the next day. Part of it was due to the fact that it was not a unanimous vote during that morning’s LFA 34 lobster industry conference call. Eleven port reps voted in favour of a Dec. 1 opening following a two-day delay, but seven were opposed. Truthfully, though, even if it had been a 100 per cent unanimous ‘yes’ vote, the knot in my stomach and the lump in my throat would still be there. How do I know? Because it’s there every single year. photos, >click to read< by Tina Comeau

UPDATED: Fishing trawler aground near Frisco

A fishing trawler has run aground on the Outer Banks. The Cape Hatteras National Seashore says the F/V Jonathan Ryan is stuck in the surf about a mile south of the Frisco Campground. The trawler is 65 feet long and weighs some 113 tons. >click to read< and Fishing Vessel Grounds At Cape Hatteras National Seashore – National Park Service staff are monitoring a commercial fishing vessel that grounded at Cape Hatteras National Seashore (Seashore). The F/V JONATHAN RYAN is located near off-road vehicle ramp 48, approximately 1.25 miles southeast of the Frisco Campground. >click to read<,  11:55 Fishing trawler runs aground along southern Hatteras Island – The Jonathon Ryan fishing boat ran aground near Frisco NC. I have no information n what happened but there are still people on the ship and I’m sure it will get pulled back out. Authorities are on the scene. Video, >click to read< 13:29

Meet the families working to keep fisheries alive on Lake Ontario and Lake Erie

Lake Erie fisherman Tim Martin knows that his business has helped strengthen local food systems. He and his four family members harvest and process their own fish, then sell it at their retail location in Port Burwell, Ont. During the pandemic, when global supply chains buckled and grocery store shelves were wiped clean, the family was able to stay in business. They experienced a heavy rush of local customers, most of whom, Martin says, have become loyal regulars. Yet in Port Burwell, where the Martins have operated for more than 30 years, they are the only permanent commercial fishing business that remains. Deteriorating infrastructure on the waterfront and a high cost of entry into the fishery fails to support any aspiring newcomers. Here are three families still working in the Great Lakes commercial fishing industry in Ontario,,, photos, >click to read< 09:23

Devastating Damage from B.C., Atlantic storms no easy fix

The rainstorms in British Columbia and Atlantic Canada have impacted livelihoods, with damaged highways and rail lines cutting off communities and hampering key supply chain routes. Unprecedented rainfall from atmospheric rivers in B.C. and the Maritimes has dropped hundreds of millimetres worth of rain — surpassing in days the totals some regions see in a whole month. Video, photos, >click to read< For a page of some amazing stories from both coasts, with more being added as we find them. >click to read< 14:16

Record crab and lobster prices drive value of N.L. landings past billion-dollar mark

“It was remarkable,” Doyle says, referring to the $7.60 per pound, more than double last year’s price, Doyle and his son Thomas received for the roughly 16,000 pounds of snow crab they landed with their under-40-foot vessel, Tango Delta, this year. “In regard to prices, it’s better than I’ve ever seen it,” adds Doyle, adding that they also received record prices for their lobster landings. It’s not hard to hear upbeat language like that when talking to Newfoundland and Labrador fish harvesters this year, because their bank accounts were likely swollen by incomes of 40 to 50 per cent higher than past years. >click to read< 09:33

‘Not work, it’s a passion’: Commercial fisherman Santo La Macchia still hooked at 101

Australia’s oldest commercial fisherman, and his son, “Young Bobbie”, planned to have left their mooring in Avalon’s Careel Bay about 1pm on Monday, pointing their 70-year-old trawler Joyce towards the prime squid fishing waters off Patonga on the Central Coast.,, “We like to do the afternoon shift,” explains “Young Bobbie” (to distinguish him from Santo’s late father who started the fishing dynasty in 1924). “Young Bobbie” joined his father on Joyce in 1972, and now trawler, licence and trading company are in his name. So which of them is skipper? “He is,” says Santo, pointing at his son. “But sometimes, when he does something wrong, I’m the skipper.” >click to read< 07:50

The 40 year old fishing boat feeding a town in regional Victoria

The 15-member strong Apollo Bay Fishermen’s Co-op has invested nearly $500,000 in a small, 40-year-old fishing boat to fish along the coast every few days and provide the town with fresh seafood.,, The F/V Tambo Bay has since been modified to fish waters just off the rugged coast of Western Victoria. Her captain is Russell “Frosty” Frost, who retired from lobster fishing several years ago. The call of the sea was too strong for Frost and when approached by fellow members of the co-op, he agreed to take on the role of skipper. >click to read< 08:51

Southern Newfoundland cod stocks expected to be in ‘critical zone’ until early 2024

In a presentation of the assessment’s findings on Friday, stock assessment biologist Karen Dwyer said cod born in 2011 have been supporting the 3PS stock, between southern Newfoundland and St-Pierre-Miquelon, and the fishery over the last few years. She said “recruitment”, fish younger than two years old, have dropped to historically low levels. Very few fish have been born in any one year since 2011,,, Some factors affecting the health of the cod stock could be the changes in the ecosystem, said Dwyer. Meanwhile, the debate over whether seals are among the biggest reasons for the deterioration of the cod stock in 3Ps is far from over. >click to read< 15:50

Irish fishing fleet to be gutted by one third to make Brexit quota – “This is a very sad day.”

Sixty trawlers will be decommissioned and taken out of business by the end of next year leaving just 100 vessels left in the whole country. The Government is to pay out €63.5 million in compensation from EU funds to the fishermen who are leaving the industry. All of the country’s fishing groups agreed to the deal except the West and South Fish Producers Association. Precise details are expected to be given to the Dail in the next week or two. >click to read< 07:30

Maine lobstermen appeal to the public to fund legal fight against federal regulations

Without the financial means to fight both the government and environmental activists, lobstermen said their very existence is at stake. Lobstermen speaking at the press conference (today) said they feared the offshore regulations currently proposed would creep inshore, where most of them fish, eventually choking off their livelihoods. They also stressed how much money their industry brings into the state and how it supports communities beyond fishermen. According to the Maine Department of Marine Resources, Maine’s 2020 lobster catch was worth $406 million. That was down from $491 million in 2019. “That’s why we need everyone to step up and help us save the fishery,” photos, >click to read< 17:59

Observations from the Albatross IV Correctional Cruise by Captain Jim Lovgren

Five New England fishermen and myself met at Woods Hole Ma. On the evening of Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2002, to board the N.O.A.A. Research Vessel Albatross IV. The other fishermen were Jim Odlin, Sam Novello, Bud Fernandes, Matt Stommel, and Steve Lee. We met with Steve Murawski, (who did not go out on the trip) and with Henry Milliken, and Russell Brown who were in charge of reviewing the fishing and filming of this short cruise. Individually we walked around the vessel and checked out the net and gear. As I was the last fisherman to arrive, the gear, (which was laying on the deck) had already been closely scrutinized by the other fishermen, and some problems had been identified. >click to read< 08:04

Offshore Wind Farms: As turbines rise, small-scale fishermen have the most to lose

David Aripotch is 65, a weathered man with gray hair, just tall enough to see over the helm. He has been fishing for almost a half-century, but he still gets excited every time the net is lifted from the ocean. It’s all the other things that eat at him. The federal fishing quotas that sometimes make him steam as far south as North Carolina to catch fish he can find off Long Island. The mind-boggling expenses of running a fishing boat: $5,000 a month for insurance, $30,000 for a new net, $60,000 for a paint job. Worst of all are the wind farms. “There’s so many things going against you as a commercial fisherman in the United States,” he said. “And now these wind farms, it’s almost like that’s the final nail in the coffin.” >click to read< (2nd article of 2 parts, >part 1<) 09:20

Another Stab in the Back

Reinstatement of excluding commercial fishing in Obama’s Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument by Joe Biden is another stab in our backs. It will hurt fishermen from Maine to Rhode Island. As if we don’t have enough problems with losing ground. Lobstermen and crab fishermen will also be excluded in 2023. A huge mistake has been made, based on the lack of evidence that fishermen have damaged reefs, corals, or hurt any whales. I fished those waters for twenty years, and never saw a piece of coral. The depth is 2.000 feet, but we’d set our nets at 600 feet, never touching bottom. This situation is not good, and will put more fishermen out of business. I don’t know what can be done to overturn this, but something needs to be done. Sam Parisi, Gloucester, Mass. 16:17
A Proclamation on Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument>click to read<

N.J. commercial and recreational fishing groups aligning against coming offshore wind farms – ‘This is our farmland’

Capt. Hank Lackner docked a 100-foot trawler in Cape May on a recent day after unloading a catch of squid that might end up as calamari on someone’s plate just about anywhere in the United States. Lackner fears that offshore wind farms coming to the waters off the New Jersey coast in the next few years could threaten his business. Other commercial and recreational anglers, along with the Recreational Fishing Alliance, a political action organization, share his concerns. Jim Donofrio, founder of the RFA, and one of the most outspoken critics of offshore wind, says the industry creates too many issues for fishing that haven’t been fully addressed. “We want them gone,” Donofrio said. >click to read< 07:55

Community rallies support for lobster fisherman seriously injured while working on lobster boat

Julie Smith is taking things day by day. Her fiancée, Andrew Saulnier, has a long road ahead of him after the 24-year-old fisherman was seriously injured onboard on a lobster boat Saturday morning. The 24-year-old Saulnier was taken to the Yarmouth Regional Hospital before being airlifted to the QEII in Halifax, where Smith, who is six months pregnant, remains by his side. She says he is communicating and is now able to eat again. “They had to amputate his left leg above the knee, and they were thinking that they might have to amputate the right, but it’s looking way better, so they’re holding off on that,” Smith said. >click to read< – >click here for “Helping Andrew and his Family” fundraiser< 08:16

Seacor Power: Coast Guard points to early survivors as search continues, with updates from the Gulf this evening

Evening came to Port Fourchon on Thursday with still no word on the fate of a dozen missing crewmembers from a capsized lift boat seven miles offshore, though officials suggested for the first time that human life may still remain aboard the Seacor Power. U.S. Coast Guard officials said the observations of rescuers who were scrambling to save the crew hours into the aftermath of the disaster Tuesday caused the agency believe at least   two members who had survived the capsizing were still on board. >click to read<  Coast Guard saw five crew members on hull of Seacor Power Tuesday; 2 went back into vessel – A team of divers contracted by the U.S. Coast Guard headed to the wreckage site Thursday,,, As of Thursday, a total of six crewmembers aboard the Seacor Power had been rescued, and the body of 63-year-old captain David Ledet had been recovered. The remaining 12 members are unaccounted for, including the two who were on the hull late Tuesday and said they were going back inside. >click to read<God please bring him home’ – The niece of Gregory Walcott, 62, of Abbeville, said her family holds out hope that her uncle is among the survivors in an air pocket awaiting rescue. “Knowing him,” Crystal Randle said Thursday afternoon, “he’s worrying about us.” >click to read< 21:46

Women of New Bedford’s Waterfront

Captain Jessica Walker, 34, first stepped foot on a commercial fishing vessel, which happened to be the Legacy, when she was 19. The college history major was looking for a summer job and this one was far from “potato country”, the place in Northern Maine she called home. She started with summer trips that eventually became full-time work. She worked her way up to mate and learned everything from the boat owner and previous captain, David Wilhelmsen. When he stepped down, Walker assumed the role of captain in the summer of 2013. Further up in the harbor, fishing vessel Reliance was docked earlier in the week for maintenance before departing for the next scalloping trip. Two men with welding helmets sat on the deck repairing the metal gear while Crystal Vaughan stood up in the wheelhouse attending to inventory. 21 photos, >click to read< 10:20

Grand Isle scrambles to clean up after freak storm: “It was like a baby hurricane”

Businesses, residents and town workers in Grand Isle scrambled Wednesday to pump out water and clear debris ahead of a second batch of bad weather expected to blow through the island by about 3 p.m.  Grand Isle was hit suddenly by a violent storm Tuesday afternoon with wind gusts of up to 90 mph and rain that flooded streets, sank boats, stripped shingles off of roofs and threw trash cans and other unsecured personal property around, said Mayor David Camardelle. photo’s >click to read< 14:34

1 dead after capsized vessel caught in ‘microburst’ of bad weather off the Louisiana coast; 12 still missing, 6 rescued – The Coast Guard searched for 12 people missing off the coast of Louisiana on Wednesday,,, Lafourche Parish President Archie Chaisson III confirmed the missing crew members were on board the Seacor Power before it flipped over miles south of Port Fourchon. Capt. Ronald Dufrene said his offshore trawler Mister Jug was among the shrimp boats that struggled to survive the storm. >click to read<