Category Archives: International News

US-China Trade Deal: US lobster dealers anxious to resume business with China

Hugh Reynolds, a lobster dealer from Stonington, Maine, was excited to learn that the China-US phase-one economic and trade deal came into effect on Feb 14. According to the deal, China promises to purchase more agricultural products from the United States, and lobster is highlighted in the sector.,, Annie Tselikis, executive director of the Maine Lobster Dealers’ Association, said China accounted for 15 percent to 20 percent of the export value of US lobsters at the time. >click to read< 09:43

U.S. seafood exports dry up while cheap Russian crab is undercutting local industry

Fishermen in Alaska claim they have been caught up in Russia’s counter-sanctions, with Moscow’s ban on western food imports blocking sales to one of their key markets while allowing cheap Russian seafood to flood into the U.S. Russian seafood exports to the U.S. have jumped 69% since 2013 — the year before Russia blocked most imports of agricultural products from the U.S. and the EU in a tit-for-tat response to sanctions levelled against Russia after it annexed Crimea.  >click to read< 08:11

Lobster fisherman hopes to survive impact of coronavirus, rising costs

In Tasmania’s north-west, fisherman Scott Inkson is one of the lucky ones who may survive the impact of the coronavirus on the lobster industry. As COVID-19, as it is now known, continues to prevent live fish exports to China — his main market — he has decided to set up shop off his boat in Wynyard and give the community a cheap treat., “After 90 minutes on the wharf we completely sold out., King Island fisherman Mark Smith, 28, has struggled to sell his lobsters this season. >click to read< 23:15

Matthew Morgan: A Change, and my presentation to the Tasmanian Legislative Council Inquiry into the Tasmanian Salmon (Finfish) industry

My name is Matthew Morgan, and I am Skipper of a Commercial Southern Rock Lobster Boat, F/V Monica is 57 feet long X 20 feet Beam x8 feet Draught. Her and I are in the Top 10% of this Fishery in Tasmania Originally my group on facebook was called Wild Fishers Against Salmon (Finfish) Farming. We were asked to change that from Against, to FOR Sustainable by a former government advisor that the former name Wild Fishers Against, would make it unlikely we would gain our access to the Minister. We Complied. >click to read< 10:19

Life on an Alaska Crab Boat

I grabbed the rails and prepared to vomit. My half-digested bowl of Honey Bunches of Oats would soon be fish food.,,, With a mix of curiosity and stupidity, I said yes to a week on the F/V Silver Spray, one of just 60 boats that harvest crab in the Bering Sea in the dead of winter. Preparing for the worst, I packed a backpack full of warm layers and wool socks, and emptied the local pharmacy of seasickness medications. The weather report for the week ahead was best described as bleak to downright grim. photo’s, >click to read< 06:34

Scoping Hearing on Lobster/Gear Right Whale Entanglements

On Tuesday night there will be a scoping meeting from 6-8 PM at Mass Maritime Academy to receive public input on ways to alter the American lobster fishery regulations to reduce mortality of North Atlantic right whales by 60%. This is a followup to the August 21, 2019 NOAA Fisheries GARFO (Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office) public meeting in Bourne that sought input on the recommendations from the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Team,, >click to read< 20:29

Harry Roberts, a popular and well respected member of the team at Morecambe RNLI is “hanging up the yellow wellies”!

Harry has seen plenty of action out in the bay over the last three decades. On February 4, 2004, the night of the Morecambe Bay cockling disaster, when 21 Chinese labourers drowned after being cut off by the tide – Harry was the commander of the RNLI’s hovercraft, and flew the vessel for 22 hours. Despite Harry and the crew being both physically and mentally exhausted, they relaunched again the next evening for another emergency call out. >click to read< 13:06

As both sides crank up the rhetoric, UK to outline post-Brexit trade vision. France warns both sides could ‘rip each other apart’

The UK is expected to contest the bloc’s demands that Britain stick closely to EU rules in exchange for access to European markets. It comes as France has warned that the two parties risk tearing themselves apart during the talks,, On Sunday the French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian used strong language while predicting that tense negotiations lie ahead.,, The EU wants to keep access to British waters for European fishing boats, and leaders have suggested the issue will be linked to other matters such as financial services in the upcoming talks. >click to read< 08:46

Menhaden regulations have plagued lawmakers for decades.

Every year, the drama has followed the same lines. Some lawmakers and environmentalists concerned about the health of the valuable fishery, the only one managed by the legislature rather than regulators, push to transfer its management to the Virginia Marine Resources Commission. The industry and its unionized fishermen, concerned that regulators will cramp their business, push back. It’s been perhaps the state’s dullest political tug-of-war. But then, this winter, it ended when Omega Protein, the Reedville-based Canadian company that is the largest single player in the U.S. menhaden industry, told a Senate panel that it supported legislation to hand over fishery management to the VMRC. >click to read< 07:39

International Scientific Expedition to probe Pacific salmon survival

“While we recognize that ocean and climate conditions are major factors regulating salmon abundances, the mechanisms regulating abundances in the ocean are not known,” B.C. scientists Richard Beamish and Brian Riddell,, Scientists are seeking to provide more accurate forecasts of salmon returns during what Beamish and Riddell say might be the most difficult time in recent history for stewardship of Pacific salmon.,, The survey takes place as B.C. fishermen fear disastrous returns this year following poor returns for much of the coast last year. >click to read< 18:56

The last of the seafaring life at the Boston Fish Pier

The workday starts before first light at the Boston Fish Pier, a vestige of a blue-collar Boston now surrounded by acres of gleaming glass towers, hotels, and condo buildings. What once defined the South Boston Waterfront is now an outlier, an oddity in fact. It is fair to ask, why is it still here? But also, would Boston be truly Boston if it were not? ,,, Still, questions about the pier’s future loom. In December, the abrupt closure of the No Name restaurant, the wharf’s oldest and most famed tenant, photo’s, >click to read<or >here< 11:16

Video: A sea of obstacles imperil American Samoa’s tuna industry

Locally based fishermen who supply the lone Starkist tuna cannery in American Samoa are facing a perfect storm of obstacles that are threatening their economic survival. A battle is now on in the U.S. territory to fend off those looming challenges, from rising fuel costs to international competition.,, Carlos Sanchez is a veteran longliner, but he’s in the process of giving it up. “All my boats are for sale. I have seven boats, and they are for sale.” You have no hope for the industry? “We have no help for the industry!…” Video, >click to read< 08:43

Maine BEP begins public testimony on Nordic Aquafarms’ land-based fish farm application

The Board of Environmental Protection held more than eight hours of public hearings on Nordic Aquafarms’ land-based fish farm application for the first two days of its review. On the first day, Tuesday, the board considered financial capacity and water usage. A crowd made up mostly of opponents packed the Hutchinson Center to watch testimony from Nordic representatives and intervenorsat the Feb. 11 meeting. Later that night, members of the public had a chance to address the board about their concerns. >click to read< 07:57

Fishing protest in Royal Square – Unite and Keep Fighting!

More than a hundred fishermen marched in protest yesterday to the Royal Square, where they were promised ‘political intervention’ to overhaul a historic fishing treaty to allow the Island to take back control of its territorial waters. Many clad in their oilskins and dry-suits, they said they feared for their livelihoods as an increasing number of French boats competed with Jersey vessels for depleting stocks of brown crab and lobster. Sirens and air horns sounded in the Royal Square, where Environment Minister John Young vowed that action would be taken. >click to read< 17:51

From Gloucester NMFS protest, 2009, Fishermen Unite and Keep Fighting –  >click to watch<

‘In shock’: Coronavirus sidelines Southeast Alaska dive fishermen

The coronavirus that emerged in late 2019 has infected more than 60,000 people, mostly in China. Though there haven’t been any confirmed cases in Alaska yet, some Alaskans, namely geoduck clam fishermen are feeling ripple effects from the epidemic.,, Though geoducks are native to the Western Hemisphere, Doherty said 95 percent of the catch gets sent across the Pacific. >click to read< 08:24

‘Invisible oil’ from Deepwater Horizon spill may have reached the Florida Keys, possibly as far as North Carolina

Nearly a decade after the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history killed 11 people and dumped 200 million gallons of crude into the ocean, researchers found discrepancies in the satellite footprint that was used to establish fisheries closures and data from sampling and field tests. They concluded that the real extent of the BP oil spill may have been 30 percent larger than originally estimated.,,,  “We realized that the satellite footprint and the fisheries closure areas didn’t capture the full extent of the spill, and that the impact on marine life may have been overlooked,“ >click to read< 07:40

The Voice Of The Lobster

Over in the Tweetiverse, someone was all boo-hoo about the eeevil effects of “climate change” that he claimed had “already occurred”. He referenced a publication from a once-noble organization that sadly has drunk the “CLIMATE EMERGENCY” koolaid, National Geographic. So I read it, and the only thing in that, other than what “might” and “probably” and “could” occur at some uncertain time in the future, was a mention of “oceanic heatwaves” in Maine and surroundings, viz: “The U.S. is already grappling with climate change’s heavy costs, like when a powerful ocean heatwave struck the Northeast and devastated the region’s lobster fishery.” As a long-time commercial fisherman, that piqued my interest. So I looked to see what I could find out. >click to read< 05:56

A massive fine for fishing in an MPA off the coast of Haida Gwaii

Michael Bullock, captain of the commercial halibut fishing vessel Hopefull, has been hit was fines totalling $45,000 after he was convicted of illegally fishing in the protected sponge reefs off the coast of Haida Gwaii. Bullock was ordered by the court to pay $20,000 for illegal activity prohibited under the Hecate Marine Protection Act and ordered an additional fine, under the Fisheries Act of $25,000 for possessing illegally caught fish. The final conviction on Oct. 15, 2019 made it the first such case under the Oceans Act. >click to read< 16:14

Blue Acceleration: Capitalism’s Growing Assault on the Oceans

“The Blue Acceleration: The Trajectory of Human Expansion into the Ocean,” published in January in the journal One Earth, describes and graphs capital’s growing drive to industrialize the oceans and sea beds. Commercial activity in the oceans is expanding rapidly, and “considerable investments … are driving growth in existing industries and the emergence of new ones, spanning an increasingly diverse range of activities.”,, The authors believe that the blue acceleration marks the beginning of “a new phase in humanity’s relationship with the biosphere, where the ocean is not only crucial for sustaining global development trajectories but is being fundamentally changed in the process.”  >click to read< 13:44

Thanks for all the fish: a wild salmon story

I live in a place that’s wedded to salmon. Hundreds of local people in this town of 5,000 are commercial salmon fishermen, scores more fish for themselves or work in an industry tied to salmon. So it makes sense that the local calendar runs on these fish. Schools break up in late May so families can prepare for the salmon season. The ebb and flow of boats from the harbour and local boatyards follow salmon. Tourists do too, thronging into town just as the fish start filling local rivers.It might be odd that Homer calls itself the “Halibut Fishing Capital of the World” when it’s salmon that truly captures locals’ hearts. Halibut are dun-coloured flatfish; we think of them as meat that swims. photos, >click to read< 09:12

Coronavirus: Florida Keys Spiny Lobster Fishing Industry Hit Hard

Spiny lobster is Florida’s most valuable seafood. But the fishermen in the Keys were already having a lousy year. Then came the coronavirus. “The price crashed $4 in a day,” said George Niles, who fishes out of Stock Island. Bill Kelly from the Florida Keys Commercial Fishermen’s Association said the price went from about $10.50 a pound off the boat to $6. >click to read< 19:22

DMR Commissioner Patrick Keliher: NMFS didn’t give the state’s plan credit for all of its whale protections

The state Department of Marine Resources believes that its right whale plan, with its range of lobster fishing restrictions meant to avoid gear entanglements, clocks in right around the 60 percent risk reduction target sought by the National Marine Fisheries Service. Federal regulators – who determined that the state plan reduced risk by just 52 percent – failed to give Maine credit for all its proposed protection measures, as well as those enacted since the last federal right whale review in 2014, Marine Resources Commissioner Pat Keliher said Wednesday. >click to read< 07:15

Maine Lobstermen Dismayed By Fed’s Push For More Gear Changes To Protect Endangered Whale>click to read<

Sea Shepherd’s declaration of media war against BC seal hunt

In the middle of what is presently called “The 6th Extinction”, the DFO, our Ministry of Fisheries and a few westcoast First Nations individuals and Chinese Government officials are entertaining a massive west coast seal slaughter.,,, Commentary by Captain Paul Watson The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has physically opposed the slaughter of seals and sea lions around the world since 1977 – from Newfoundland and Labrador to Namibia, Norway, Russia, Finland and Scotland. We cannot ignore any seal killing program,,,  >click to read< 10:07

Sea Shepherd says it was shot at by poachers  in Mexico>click to read<

NMFS: Maine’s proposal to keep right whales from getting entangled in lobstering gear doesn’t go far enough

The National Marine Fisheries Service has concluded that Maine’s plan to use a combination of weak rope and a 25 percent reduction in the number of buoy lines in state waters achieves, at best, a 52 percent risk reduction, while federal regulators are demanding a 60 percent reduction. “Because your proposal does not meet the 60 percent risk reduction target, we will be obligated to consider additional measures through our federal rulemaking,” said Michael Pentony, regional administrator of NMFS’s Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office. includes letter, >click to read< 08:09

Vineyard Wind to Miss Startup Target Over Permit Delay

“While we need to analyze what a longer permitting timeline will mean for beginning construction, commercial operation in 2022 is no longer expected,” Vineyard Wind Chief Executive Lars Pedersen said in a statement. Vineyard Wind is a joint venture between Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners and Avangrid Inc. >click to read< 06:12

Further protection measures coming to protect North Atlantic right whales

Federal Fisheries Minister Bernadette Jordan says Ottawa will announce further measures in the coming weeks to protect the endangered North Atlantic right whale. Speaking to a fishing gear innovation summit in Halifax today, Jordan didn’t release any details of the coming measures.,, The minister says testing also continues on new technology such as ropeless gear, which could help reduce the risk of entanglements for whales. More than 250 harvesters and fishing gear manufacturers from Canada, the United States, Iceland and Norway are attending the two-day summit. >click to read< 12:50

Coronavirus: With China’s Borders Closed to Imported Live Seafood, Local Fishermen Feel the Pinch

As the number of the sick and the dead continue to rise alarmingly in China, the economic effects of the 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak were felt in the Santa Barbara Harbor.,,, “Santa Barbara brings in $4 million to $5 million a season,” said Chris Voss, president of Commercial Fishermen of Santa Barbara. The prized crustacean had been stockpiled for China’s late January Lunar New Year festivities, he said, from New England to Australia. When China closed its borders to live-animal foodstuffs about 10 days ago, everyone was hit. >click to read< 10:21

West Coast fishery appeals for aid but federal fisheries minister is missing in action

Commercial fishermen in B.C. are sending out an SOS following last year’s disastrous salmon season that has already sunk some boat owners. The union representing commercial fishermen says years of Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) “mismanagement” pushed some commercial fishermen to the brink, and 2019 pushed them over. “Hundreds of fish harvesters are facing financial ruin after decades of fisheries regulation mismanagement,” said Joy Thorkelson, president of the United Fishermen and Allied Workers’ Union. >click to read< 09:19

Dewey Hemilright: U.S.Fishermen in desperate need to level playing field in U.S. marketplace

The U.S.A is a member of ICCAT, which is the International body with 53 contracting party countries {CPC}with additional 6 countries having cooperating status that manages Highly Migratory species in the Atlantic Ocean,, ICCAT has a {SCRS}, which stands for {standing committee on research statistics},,, I attended as a member of U.S.A. delegation in November 15-25 ,2019 the 26th annual meeting of ICCAT in Mallorca, Spain. >click to read< 17:35

The Daily Catch! What’s Your Story?

All hands on deck! We are looking for fisherman, fishermen’s spouses, loved ones, family members, people who work in and around the seas who have a story to tell. Join professional award-winning storytellers for a four week workshop which will end with a live performance of stories in front of a New Bedford audience. Share your experiences and wisdom! For more information, >click to read< 11:39