Category Archives: International News

Confrontation: Far North locals blaming commercial fishing for dwindling fish stock

A group of Far North locals who blame commercial fishermen for their dwindling fish stock are taking matters into their own hands. Karikari Peninsula residents are petitioning the Government for a change in the rules but are also having confrontations on the water. Karikari Peninsula community leader Thomson Lawrence said, “We’ve lived here all our lives and we know the stock numbers have dropped off. Video, >click to read<07:56

Newbuild Research arrives in Whalsay

Whalsay has been welcoming its second brand-new state-of-the-art pelagic trawler in as many months. The new 80-metre long Research (LK 62), said to have cost an estimated £34 million, sailed into Symbister on Friday morning after crossing the North Sea from Norway overnight. The vessel, built for the locally owned Research Fishing Company,,, >click to read<17:46

Five men and the sea: Huge marlin sinks Philippine fishing boat

Like a modern-day take on “The Old Man and the Sea,” five Filipino fishermen were cast adrift for days on a makeshift raft after a huge marlin sank their boat. The men were fishing in the South China Sea when a 6-foot-long (1.8-meter) marlin punctured their boat’s wooden hull with its giant bill, vessel master Jimmy Batiller said on Wednesday. Their 12-meter boat quickly dipped beneath the waves in the early evening of Oct. 3, leaving the crew with little drinking water or food until their rescue by the U.S. Navy on Monday. >click to read<13:27

Sealord crew member missing near Cape Palliser

A Sealord crew member is missing and a search under way in the Pacific Ocean near the coast of Cape Palliser. The crew member did not report for duty on one of the company’s fishing vessels, the Otakou, on Thursday morning. A “full muster” was conducted to confirm he was missing before a search commenced and authorities were notified, a statement from Sealord said. >click to read<10:11

F/V Louisa salvaged and renamed, is back at sea

The fishing boat Louisa which sank in the Western Isles resulting in the deaths of three fishermen is back at sea. Renamed Nimrod, the crab boat is working in South West Cornwall. The convener of Western Isles Council has said that this news must evoke strong memories for the families of those involved with the Louisa. Louisa sank while at anchor off the Isle of Mingulay in the Outer Hebrides on April 9 2016. Skipper Paul Alliston and crewmen Martin Johnstone and Chris Morrison all perished. One survivor, Lachlan Armstrong, managed to swim to shore.. >click to read<15:29

Finding help for addicted fishermen

It hurts to be a fisherman. Tyler Miranda found that out when he started working on a scallop boat at age 18. The son of a lobsterman and nephew of a scalloper, he was prepared for long days of heavy, repetitive work. But he didn’t anticipate how much his back would hurt after hours of shucking scallops, hauling buckets, and shoveling debris. Nor did he foresee the remedy his boatmates would offer: Percocets. >click to read<13:42

Man die’s from sea snake bite in Australia after being attacked while working on fishing trawler

A 23-year-old British man has died after being bitten by a sea snake in Australia while working on a fishing trawler. NT News, describing the man as a “backpacker”, reports that CareFlight assisted, as well as other ships in the area, to provide medical supplies for emergency treatment. But the man was declared dead after the trawler arrived at the town of Borroloola. The British High Commission has been informed of his death. It may be the first recorded death from a sea snake in Australia, say experts. >click to read<12:48

Researchers Had ‘No Idea’ Killer Whales Could Dive This Deep

Killer whales in the South Atlantic Ocean are willing to dive more than a thousand feet more than previously recorded—if they are certain to get a snack at the end of it, researchers have discovered. And the best way to guarantee food is to steal it. BC-based marine researcher Jared Towers witnessed a tagged killer whale diving 3,566 feet to snag some toothfish off a long commercial fishing line. More than 60 killer whales and 40 sperm whales were studied, though just one of each was tagged because whales aren’t particularly cooperative, said Towers. >click to read<20:00

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Scottish fishermen face cuts to mackerel quota

The International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (Ices), an influential group of scientists whose advice helps to shape fisheries policy in the EU and elsewhere, has called for north-east Atlantic mackeral catches to be slashed by nearly 70%. Mackeral was worth £162 million, or 29% of the total catch by value for the Scottish fleet last year. Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association chief executive Ian Gatt said yesterday the proposed cut was a “huge concern” and he would be meeting European Commission officials today to discuss it. >click to read<08:04

It’s official: EU IS forcing small fleet fishermen out of work with quotas, report says

Policies imposed by Brussels on British fishermen have hugely harmed traditional fishing operations, experts from the University of Kent said. In their paper, researchers from the Kent’s School of Anthropology and Conservation (SAC) stated the EU policies are favouring larger boats and richer owners. As a result, smaller fleets and individuals were pushed out of their livelihood. Professor Douglas MacMillan, one of the researchers taking part in the study, said the CFP focuses too much on fish stock conservation and has no meaningful policy regulations to ensure that quotas for over-fished stock such as tuna are equally shared amongst fishermen. >click to read<

The life of Newlyn trawlerman Mike Mahon – part II.

At the conclusion of Part I, skipper Mike ‘Grimmy’ Mahon revealed how his political activities started, leading to his ceaseless fight with British governments and authorities, reports Phil Lockley. When the senseless dumping of fish gained media attention, waiting in the wings was Grimmy, and the intensity of his activities increased.,, Grimmy and Brian Tobin were united in promoting the fishing industries in Canada and its mother country, the UK. If you are a Brexiteer, read on; it will raise your hopes – and if you are a Remainer, please read on to understand why a huge percentage of British fishermen voted for Brexit, and how Brexit warriors like ex-skipper Mike Mahon will fight on until Britain truly becomes an independent coastal state. Grimmy said: “I never did agree with licences or quotas. In Canada,,, >click to read< Part 1 >click to read<09:30

Tasmanian fishers star in new documentary series Aussie Lobster Men

A television series about rock lobster fishers working in the oceans surrounding Tasmania will debut in 2019. The producers of Aussie Lobster Men recently finished filming six lobster boats and their crews working at sea. Minster for the Arts Elise Archer said the documentary series explored the “real-life dramas” of fishers willing to “risk it all in search of one of the world’s most prized seafood delicacy”. >click to read<12:37

Killer Whale Populations At Risk from Toxic Chemicals

A paper in the Sept. 28 issue of Science says killer whales are at great risk, but not from climate change, loss of habitat or loss of their prey. It will be due to something that sounds very 1970s – PCB, or polychlorinated biphenyl. PCBs are human-made chemicals used for making plastics, electronics, lubricants, heat transformers and other materials and technology. In the late 1970s, studies showed the harmful effects of PCB on humans and on wildlife, such as birds, otters and seals. According to a 2017 paper, killer whale populations off the coast of the most industrialized parts of Europe are close to extinction. >click to read<12:02

Fisheries nations to decide fate of declining bigeye tuna

Dozens of nations with commercial fisheries in the Atlantic Ocean will grapple next week with a new finding that bigeye tuna, the backbone of a billion dollar business, is severely depleted and overfished.,,, An internal report by 40-odd scientists working under the inter-governmental International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT), finalised last week, shows that populations have fallen to less than 20 percent of their historic levels. Even more critical, the stock is barely half the size needed to support a “maximum sustainable yield”—the largest catch that can be taken without compromising long-term stability of the species. Current harvests, overwhelmingly legal, are also more than 60 percent above levels that would give bigeye at least a fighting chance of recovering its numbers, the report said. >click to read<15:46

Blood, guts and albacore -‘Battlefish’ series gives glimpse into gritty world of West Coast commercial albacore fishing

It’s blood, hooks, aching backs and sun-burnt skin. And cussing. Lots of cussing. A new Netflix series, “Battlefish,” debuted Friday, Sept. 21, giving audiences a raw glimpse into the commercial albacore tuna fishery off the Washington and Oregon coast. The series follows five crews from fishing vessels TNT, Oppor-Tuna-Ty, Intrepid, Judy S and Ashley Nicole from the ports of Ilwaco, Warrenton and Westport during the 2017 albacore tuna season. California-based Pilgrim Media Group, creators of other reality shows such as “Wicked Tuna,” “The Ultimate Fighter” and “Dirty Jobs,” produced the series. >click to read<09:07

Annual NAFO meeting adopts measures for Greenland halibut, Flemish Cap cod

The 40th annual week-long meeting of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) ended on Friday in Tallinn, Estonia, where there were a number of measures accepted by Canada and other NAFO member contracting parties aimed at improving the monitoring and management of international fish stocks outside Canada’s 200-mile limit in the Northwest Atlantic. In addition to the traditional total allowable catch (TAC) and quota decisions made, other decisions included: >click to read<20:01

Wicker advocates for bipartisan bill to end illegal global fishing, seafood trade

U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS), a member of the U.S. Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, earlier this week questioned whether increased federal action would aide in the halt of illegal fishing and seafood trade in the global marketplace. Sen. Wicker on Aug. 28 introduced the bipartisan Maritime Security And Fisheries Enforcement (SAFE) Act, S. 3400, to address the threat to national security from illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and associated illegal activity, to prevent the illegal trade of seafood and seafood products, among other purposes, according to the text of the bill. S. 3400 calls for “a whole-of-government approach” that would include the intelligence community to help combat IUU fishing,,,>click to read<09:08

Scallop wars barely over as new accusations from Cornish fishermen spark crab wars

The scallop wars are barely over but already new tensions have emerged in the English Channel in the form of crab wars. Cornish fishermen have accused French trawlers of deliberately sabotaging their crab pots, costing them hundreds of thousands of pounds. They said French trawlers had been seen in English waters towing nets “without a care in the world” within the UK’s 12-mile limit. Paul Trebilcock, chief executive of the Cornish Fish Producers Organisation (CFPO), said: “They are just dragging through all the gear, they break the ropes, damage the pots or just tow them away altogether.” >click to read<11:13

NOAA Seeks $3 Million in Civil Fines against Carlos Rafael, Takes Aim at 20 Captains

NOAA hasn’t removed Carlos Rafael from its crosshairs. It’s requesting more than $3 million from the fishing tycoon and also took aim at 20 additional Rafael captains in a civil action filed last week, the governing agency told The Standard-Times on Thursday. NOAA issued superseding charging documents in its civil administrative case involving Rafael on Sept. 10, which added charges and included more respondents than the original document NOAA issued Jan. 10. The new document seeks to revoke 42 of Rafael’s federal fishing permits, prevent Rafael or his agents from applying for NOAA permits in the future, and increase the total monetary penalties sought from $983,528 to $3,356,269.,,, The documents, which are non-criminal, also increased the number of alleged violations of federal fishery laws from 35 to 88 in addition to lassoing 20 of Rafael’s captains into the civil action. The original documents included only two captains. NOAA also is seeking to revoke operator permits of 17 fishing vessel captains for Rafael. >click to read<20:48

‘Barely a scallop’: fears oil and gas exploration will destroy fishery

There are calls for a moratorium on seismic surveys by the oil and gas industry from members of the fishing industry after new Australian research shows it has serious impacts on invertebrates such as lobster, scallop, abalone and crab. The calls come as three different oil and gas companies have told industry bodies they want to carry out seismic explorations in Otway basin this summer. Tasmanian Seafood Industry Council (TSIC) chief executive, Julian Harrington, says: “This is a big issue for our industry and we now have research that backs our concerns.” >click to read<20:19

Chile purse seine project nominated for conservation award

In October, the Pink-footed Shearwaters begin to arrive on Robinson Crusoe Island, off the coast of Chile. “These [fishing fleets] are fishing in the same areas as these birds. They are capturing the very fish these seabirds eat,” said Cristian Suazo, a member of the Albatross Task Force Chile, which is working to combat bycatch. “The fleets are also out at the same time these birds, many of which are migratory, have the greatest need for food to both refuel and to feed their young.”,,, In Chile, the ATF has been working since 2007, where it began by trying to reduce bycatch in pelagic longline fisheries. In 2013 though, the team noted that there was also bycatch coming from purse seine fisheries, and began working to reduce bycatch in this industry as well. >click to read<17:43

The Visionaries of Evolution: The Future of Fish Farming May Be Indoors

If it catches on, indoor aquaculture could play a critical role in meeting the needs of a swelling human population, Nordic CEO Erik Heim says. He believes it could do so without the pollution and other potential threats to wild fish that can accompany traditional aquaculture—although the indoor approach does face environmental challenges of its own. “There’s always some risk, but the risk of the land-based system is a small percentage of the risk of an outdoor system,” says Michael Timmons, an environmental engineer at Cornell University who has studied aquaculture for more than 20 years and is not involved in the Nordic project. >click to read<16:54

Pacifical Responds To Undercurrent’s Fake News With Facts

The menace of fake news and sensationalized lies has reached even the tuna world, with a London based seafood website, Undercurrent News (UCN), releasing an article with misleading and false information on Pacifical, the successful joint venture between Sustunable and the PNA countries. Pacifical has responded to what appears to be a hit job with a series of facts that aims to stop the efforts to spread information about the joint venture. >click to read<08:45

Tsukiji market’s last days: Tuna from around the world

At 5:30 a.m., a bell clanged at Tsukiji fish market, marking the start of its famed auction of frozen tuna. An auctioneer, swaying with a unique rhythm, soon began calling out the price of the fish per kilogram in a thick voice: “1,100 yen!” “1,200 yen!” Tuna, referred to as “omono (big items)” at the market, are symbols of Tsukiji, which deals in about 480 kinds of fish. The catches are shipped in from around the world, from the waters off Tahiti in the southern Pacific Ocean to those off Angola in Africa. >click to read<21:33

Scallop wars: French fishermen pull plug on talks with UK rivals

French fishermen have broken off talks with British rivals for a new deal on access to scallop-rich waters in the English Channel, a long-simmering conflict that flared into a high-seas confrontation last month. Representatives from both sides had been meeting in London since last week to hammer out an accord that would stop smaller British boats from scooping up the prized mollusks outside the official fishing season. “It’s game over,” Hubert Carre, the head of France’s CNPMEM national fishing committee, told AFP. >click to read<10:30

Answering The Question: What’s Fishing For Leave’s Position On Fishing Entitlement?

Fishing For Leave (FFL) are adamant that all repatriated quota is held as a national resource and is divided out to all fishermen in a community. Under the principle of one ton to one boat. If someone doesn’t use their slice it goes back in the pot to be divided again. That is what we’ve represented to the highest levels of government repeatedly and has had some acknowledgement in the white paper. This is in spite of the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation (SFF) insisting all repatriated resources are distributed through the current Fixed Quota Allocation (FQA) system which has facilitated and driven consolidation as the EU CFP quota system failed. >click to read<10:38

Wait, So How Much of the Ocean Is Actually Fished?

How much of the world’s oceans are affected by fishing? In February, a team of scientists led by David Kroodsma from the Global Fishing Watch published a paper that put the figure at 55 percent—an area four times larger than that covered by land-based agriculture. The paper was widely covered, with several outlets leading with the eye-popping stat that “half the world’s oceans [are] now fished industrially.” Ricardo Amoroso from the University of Washington had also been trying to track global fishing activity and when he saw the headlines, he felt that the 55 percent figure was wildly off. He and his colleagues re-analyzed the data that the Global Fishing Watch had made freely available. And in their own paper, published two weeks ago, they claim that industrial fishing occurs over just 4 percent of the ocean. How could two groups have produced such wildly different answers using the same set of data? >click to read<21:21

The United Nations Is Considering Banning High-Seas Fishing

Far offshore are the high seas—waters beyond any country’s jurisdiction and the focus of a contentious debate. The high seas, which cover nearly two-thirds of the ocean’s surface, have recently seen an increase in fishing and other activities, such as deep-sea mining. To protect the biodiversity of this vast environment, delegates attending a meeting currently underway in New York are negotiating for a new international treaty, an addition to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. Depending on the outcome of this and subsequent meetings, the United Nations could move to regulate—or even ban—fishing and other activities on the high seas. >click to read<17:55

Pro and anti whaling nations brace for battle in Brazil

Pro- and anti-whaling nations are set for a showdown when the International Whaling Commission (IWC) meets in Brazil from Monday as Japan leads an assault on a three-decade old moratorium on commercial whale hunting. Tokyo heads into the biennial meeting as chair of the 88-nation body determined to shake-up what it says is a dysfunctional organization mired in dispute and unable to make key decisions. But Japan’s package of proposals, entitled “The Way Forward,” has left conservationists seething even before delegates have taken their seats at the 67th IWC meeting in the Brazilian surfing resort of Florianapolis. >click to read<17:59