Category Archives: Pacific

President Trump! About our great Fishermen, our great Farmers and tariffs

President Trump, as we sit here listening to your arena chat with another strong crowd of support tonight (9-16-2019) in New Mexico, you once again brought up the nations farmers, I’d like to mention another group of outstanding, and hard working Americans, U.S. Commercial Fishermen, of whom many are your supporters that have been standing with you on the trade war. We have heard the praise of the Miners, and the Farmers, and its time for you to praise the Fishermen. >click to read< 11:31

Offshore Wind Energy Looks More Promising for Oregon

A stretch of the Pacific Ocean off the coast between Humboldt County, California, and Coos Bay, Oregon, has some of the highest wind power generating potential in the country. The area north of the California border looks particularly promising to green energy advocates because the region already has a functioning electric grid. But a past attempt to install five floating turbines off Coos Bay faced rising costs and opposition from the fishing industry, and was eventually moved to California when no one could be found to buy the high-priced power the facility planned to generate. >click to read< 11:24

13 years ago, the Nature Conservancy desperately wanted to protect groundfish. Now it wants you to eat them

In 2006, the crash of the groundfish population — bottom-dwelling fish like petrale sole, chilipepper rockfish and sand dabs that used to be common on Bay Area tables — led the Nature Conservancy to buy up 13 fishing permits and some California fishermen’s vessels. The state worked with a handful of the state’s remaining groundfish trawlers to change how they fish and protect vulnerable habitat. Now that groundfish populations have rebounded, the Nature Conservancy wants the public to know they’re OK to eat again. >click to read< (if you don’t get propaganda sick) 10:27

Salmon Tales: Sex, myth and molecular genetics of an iconic fish

A sockeye salmon’s life ends right back where it began, culminating in an anadromous drama of sex, decay and sacrifice. Patty Zwollo says that it’s all part of sexual maturation in salmon: They swim up out of the Pacific into the same streams in which they were born and into the lives, literature and religion of the native peoples of the drainages. >click to read< 10:34

Starkist Hit With $100M Fine in Seafood Price-Fixing Scheme

Starkist must pay a $100 million criminal fine for conspiring to fix packaged seafood prices, a federal judge ruled Wednesday, despite arguments it could bankrupt the company or cause its employees to lose jobs. “I think it’s in the interest of the economy not to bankrupt Starkist, but the court has the leverage to extend the payments out,”,,  Starkist general counsel and senior vice president Robert Scott Meece said the company has about 100 employees at its Pittsburgh headquarters and 2,100 working at a factory in American Samoa. “These employees have had this hanging over their heads for a long time,” >click to read< 12:00

Whale entanglments are down on the West Coast. The reason for the reduction is in question.

According to the NOAA, as of Aug. 23, the National Marine Fisheries Service reported 17 confirmed whale entanglements in 2019, compared to 40 for the same period a year prior.,,, The reason for the sharp reduction in entanglements is in question.,,, Pieter Folkens, a permitted whale disentangler for NOAA, said the Center for Biological Diversity’s claim of victory is premature. He said shortening the crab fishing season had little influence on the number of entanglements this year. >click to read< 11:01

Sockeye harvest breaks all-time top 5; pinks picking up

The 2019 salmon season has seen plenty of fish return to the state, but far from evenly across regions. As of Sept. 10, commercial fishermen across Alaska have landed 198.4 million salmon of all five species, about 8 percent less than the preseason forecast of 213.2 million. Most of that shortfall is in pink and chum salmon, which haven’t delivered on their forecasts so far, but a surplus of sockeye salmon helped make up for some of that gap. Statewide, commercial fishermen have landed more than 55.1 million sockeye, about 9 percent more than last year and 5 million more than the preseason forecast. >click to read< 07:40

Pacific Fishery Management Council Meeting in Boise, Idaho September 11-18, 2019

The Pacific Fishery Management Council and its advisory bodies will meet September 11- 18, 2019 in Boise, Idaho at the Riverside Hotel, 2900 Chinden Blvd Boise, ID 83714 September 2019 Briefing Book >click here<   Listen to the meeting on the internet, >click to connect< 16:51

Whale entanglements in NSW waters hits new record

Marine Wildlife Project Officer with NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, Andrew Marshall, said between May and September there were 35 reported whale entanglements off the NSW coast and only a handful of successful rescues.,,, Mr Marshall said it was a common misconception that whales were mainly getting tangled in shark nets or marine debris. “That just doesn’t stack up with our data; in the vast majority of cases, it’s not debris and less than 10 per cent is nets,” he said.   Mr Marshall said it was fantastic to see humpback whale numbers recovering and booming, but that also meant there would be an increasing number becoming entangled. >click to read<  10:52

Commercial fishermen on Canada’s west coast say it’s the worst season they’ve ever experienced.

According to Joy Thorkelson, president of the United Fishermen and Allied Workers Union, at least 2,500 people are affected by the record low numbers of salmon. Catches have been far below normal and some fishermen simply haven’t fished at all this season.,,, Reasons for the low salmon returns along the B.C. coast are being cited as climate change, habitat destruction, and overfishing. But, they never mention waste (click) water treatment,,, >click to read< 13:29

31st annual Fishermen’s Fall Festival coming up Sept. 21

The yearly festival celebrates the return of the North Pacific fishing fleet to the terminal, and benefits the Seattle Fishermen’s Memorial Foundation. It’s a family-friendly event, with several free hands-on, fishing-themed art projects such as wooden boat building. Admission to the festival is free, but proceeds from all paid activities will go to the foundation to assist families of fishers lost at sea. Some of the highlights include the Salmon BBQ, Reptile Man (happening at noon on the main stage), Salmon Fillet Contest, Survival Suit Races, and photo opportunities of the F/V Brenna A from The Deadliest Catch TV show. >click to read, with schedule and previous event photos< 16:03

What we know and don’t know about dive boat Conception’s demise – crew, ship and regulations are all under scrutiny

Amid anguish over 34 lives lost in the fire that consumed a recreational diving boat off the Channel Islands this week — one of the worst passenger boat accidents in modern history — a central question lingers: What could have caused such a swift, deadly catastrophe? Speculation has swirled from overheated lithium batteries in charging cell phones and laptops to enhanced oxygen to prolong dives and electrical wiring. But as investigators probe the Labor Day disaster, attention is focusing on three key areas: the crew’s actions and training, the boat’s design and construction, and the regulations governing the operation. >click to read< 14:06

Search warrants served in California boat fire investigation>click to read< 18:16

NOAA makes plans for sea lion control

NOAA Fisheries has released a draft plan for public comment to remove and kill as many as 416 California and Steller sea lions each year in a 180 mile stretch of the Columbia River from just downstream of Bonneville Dam at river mile 112 upstream to McNary Dam at river mile 292.,,, Addressing sea lion predation is part of a comprehensive salmon and steelhead recovery strategy, NOAA says. ,,,“This action is intended to reduce or eliminate sea lion predation on the fishery stocks that are listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act of 1973,” >click to read< 11:48

Thornton Edward “Ed” Luttrell II

Thornton Edward “Ed” Luttrell, II of Marysville, Washington, passed away on September 2, 2019 while visiting his beloved family ranch in Roseburg, Oregon. He was 67 years old.,, Following his graduation, Ed accepted a position with Peter Pan Seafoods in Alaska. Though friends predicted he wouldn’t last two weeks on a fishing trawler, Ed quickly worked his up to Superintendent on the 296-foot M/V Royal Sea.This experience, combined with his education, tenacity, and work ethic, led Ed to prominent executive positions in the fishing and marine industries, including American Seafoods and Arctic King. .,, Ed is preceded in death by his parents and son, Thornton Edward Luttrell, III, “Teddy”. His daughters Erin Joy Leigh, Elizabeth Luttrell Fellars, and son-in-law Shreve Fellars survive him, as well as many beloved friends and business associates. >click to read< 18:08

Scientists monitoring new marine heat wave off B.C. coast similar to ‘the Blob’

The swath of unusually warm water stretches roughly from Alaska down to California, according to NOAA in the United States. The marine phenomenon began in the Gulf of Alaska sometime around June 15 and ballooned over the summer.Officials tracking the system said it is already the second-largest experts have seen since 1981 — the first year for which satellite data used to track marine heat waves is available. “Already, on its own, it is one of the most significant events that we’ve seen,” Andrew Leising, a research scientist at the NOAA’s Southwest Fisheries Science Center in La Jolla, Calif., said in a statement Thursday. >click to read< 19:37

Though impossible to prove, Con group claims early end to crab season helped reduce whale entanglements

Though impossible to prove, the Center for Biological Diversity credited the improvement to removal of commercial Dungeness crab gear from California coastal waters in mid-April, under a legal settlement,,, Sonke Mastrup, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, was less willing to make a definitive connection,,, His boss, agency director Chuck Bonham, had linked the initial spike in entanglements with environmental factors that in 2016 shifted the location of forage fish and whale feeding grounds at the same time that a toxic algae bloom delayed the start of the commercial crab season by 4 1/2 months. The result was that most of the crab fleet had gear in the water at the same time whales came up the coast to feed,,, >click to read< 11:06

Port Alberni fisherman found dead after getting caught in net remembered as ‘hardworking and honest’

Family members have identified a fisherman who died in the water off Port Alberni early Wednesday morning. The man who died was Son Ho and his daughter released this statement Wednesday afternoon. “My dad was an honest, hardworking and beautiful person who cared so much for those around him. He gave all he could to those around him and never asked for anything in return. He taught us how to be good people through his actions. We love him so much and we will miss him with all of our hearts.” >click to read<  19:46

California crab fishermen are testing “ropeless” gear

This is not a new concept. It is currently being tested by snow crab fishermen in the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence in Canada, whose MSC certification—one of the seafood industry’s most important sustainability certifications—was suspended in 2017 for entangling imperiled North Atlantic right whales. In fact, California’s court settlement incentivizes the use of ropeless gear by allowing Dungeness crab fishermen to fish in areas otherwise closed to fishing as of 2021, explains Kristen Monsell, a senior CBD attorney. (there’s a lot to unpack, as damn near all the lobstermen in NE, and Eastern Canada, are generally opposed. Will the CBD settlement affect your fisheries?) >click to read< 13:29

‘The fish can’t get through’: Tsilhqot’in issues salmon closure notice after Big Bar landslide

The Tsilhqot’in National Government has issued a salmon closure notice effective immediately due to extremely low levels of sockeye, chinook and coho salmon in the Chilcotin, Chilko and Taseko rivers.  At the beginning of August the Tsilhqoti’in Nation declared a local state of emergency because of a massive obstruction caused by a landslide in the Fraser River north of Lillooet, which is preventing salmon from going upstream. As of this week, just over 200 sockeye and only 26 chinook have been spotted near the spawning ground along the Chilko River, said Randy Billyboy, fisheries manager for the Tsilhqot’in National Government. Normally, they would see more than 500,000, he said. Video, >click to read< 10:04

Fewer Whales Caught in Crabbing Gear After Settlement, but,,, there’s always that but,,,

The National Marine Fisheries Service reported 18 whale entanglements through Aug. 23, 2019, compared to 40 ensnared whales found during the same period last year. “We are really happy that the numbers are lower this year, but we think there still needs to be progress made on reducing the risk of entanglement,” said Catherine Kilduff, senior attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity. >click to read< 09:06

UPDATE 2: Coast Guard suspends search for survivors of sunken boat near Santa Cruz Island

The Coast Guard suspended their search for survivors aboard the Conception Tuesday at 9:40 a.m. following a search that began Monday. In total, Coast Guard assets searched for 23 hours covering approximately 160 square miles. The Coast Guard utilized the following assets throughout the search: (5) MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crews (2) 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crews, The Coast Guard Cutter Narwhal, an 87-foot Patrol Boat homeported in Corona Del Mar. The Coast Guard will continue working alongside partner agencies throughout the recovery and investigation phases.
-USCG- >Video, click to watch< 16:30

Rescue crews still searching for passengers trapped aboard Conception. Once the fire started, it was too late for many

Rescuers continued searching overnight off the coast of Santa Cruz Island for passengers who were trapped aboard the Conception when the dive boat caught fire and sank early Monday. At least 15 people were confirmed dead, and others were still missing early Tuesday,,, Additional bodies were recovered from the wreckage overnight, but updated numbers were not available early Tuesday, said Amber Anderson, a spokesperson for the Santa Barbara City Fire Department. >click to read<  10:54

The 75-foot dive boat Conception was considered one of the best of its kind in the region, and both it and its operator, Truth Aquatics Inc., were in compliance with U.S. Coast Guard regulations.,, The cause has yet to be determined, but regardless of what sparked and fueled the fire, this much is clear: Once it started, it was too late for most of those on board to safely escape. >click to read<

Great Catch: Oregon’s fishing industry

It’s a business like any other — and unlike any other — and for those who fish the Oregon coast, it’s all about pride in doing it right, from sea to shore.,, According to the Oregon Dept. of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW), an estimated 1,310 commercial fishers landed more than 300 million pounds of seafood in 2017, a dockside value of approximately $148 million.,, It’s a multigenerational livelihood steeped in tradition, with many fishing at an early age as part of a family business.,, Captain Robert Anthony, owner of the Liberty II and the Luna Sea Fish House market and restaurant in Yachats, began fishing in his twenties. >click to read< 09:10

UPDATE 1: Coast Guard, local agencies continue response to boat fire near Santa Cruz Island

SAN PEDRO, Calif. Coast Guard and partner agencies continue their response to a vessel fire that led to the Conception sinking near Santa Cruz Island Monday morning. A family assistance number has been established at (833) 688-5551 or (800) 400-1572. A 3,000-foot temporary flight restriction has been established around the Conception. Thirty-nine people were reported aboard the vessel at the time of the incident. Five people were rescued from the water during the initial response to the incident. Several deceased victims have also been recovered from the scene. >click to read< 19:01

The Cape Kiwanda dory fleet of Pacific City

There’s no fishing fleet quite like the Cape Kiwanda dories.,, it’s a pretty slick operation to watch: a tow vehicle will rapidly back into the teeth of the surf to launch the boat between the waves, then hastily retreat. Two crew members will then expertly spin the boat to get its bow pointing into the waves and head off into the teeth of the surf… It looks like risky, fast-paced fun for skippers who have the skill and practice to pull it off. But it wasn’t always so quick and easy. The Cape Kiwanda dory fleet is one of the oldest fishing operations in the state. It dates back to the late 1800s. >click to read< 17:00

Coast Guard, local agencies responding to boat fire near Santa Cruz Island, 33 people aboard the vessel are unaccounted for.

SAN PEDRO, Calif – Coast Guard and partner agencies are responding to a vessel fire near Santa Cruz Island Monday. At approximately 3:15 a.m., Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach watchstanders overheard a mayday call via channel 16 of an engulfed 75-foot commercial diving vessel with 38 people aboard. Crews from the Coast Guard, Santa Barbara Fire Department, Ventura County Fire Department and Vessel Assist responded. The fire department crews were fighting the fire when the vessel sank 20 yards off shore in 64 feet of water. >click to read< 12:01

BREAKING: 34 killed in boat incident off Ventura County coast in California, Limited Information

The Ventura County Fire Department has confirmed 34 people have been killed in a boat incident off the Ventura County coast. That’s according to KTLA. >click to read< A rescue operation was underway early Monday involving a boat off the Ventura County coast, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. >click to read< 09:19

Mystery: One-time “Shark Capital of the World” Cape Town, South Africa has lost all of its “man-eating” Great Whites!

I’ve been so busy keeping up with the heaps and heaps of Great White sharks turning my once bucolic North County, San Diego paradise into a blood-curdling hell that I’ve not kept up with one-time “Shark Capital of the World” Cape Town, South Africa. The man-eating beasts were a constant threat for Afrikaans-speaking locals. Attacks were not uncommon and neither were deaths. Extremely scary but waters once teeming with ghastly teeth and rolled-back eyes are now peaceful. No Great White has been spotted in over eighteen months. >click to read< 14:57

Proposal would kill more sea lions to protect fish

More than 1,100 sea lions could be killed annually along a stretch of the Columbia River on the Oregon-Washington border to boost faltering populations of salmon and steelhead, federal officials said Friday. The National Marine Fisheries Service said it’s taking public comments through Oct. 29 on the plan requested by Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and Native American tribes. The agency says billions of dollars on habitat restoration, fish passage at dams and other efforts have been spent in the three states in the last several decades to save 13 species of Columbia Basin salmon and steelhead protected under the Endangered Species Act. >click to read<  13:43

Despite Strong Harvest To The South, Commercial Salmon Season Slow In Calif. Klamath Management Zone

“Fisheries have been stronger in the Morro Bay, Avila and San Francisco areas, although we don’t know for certain why that is,” said CDFW environmental scientist Kandice Morgenstern. “We can be speculative in that fish will tend to go where ocean conditions and prey abundance is better, so it’s likely that environmental conditions are better on that section of coast.”,,, The rebound comes after three years of low catches that resulted from poor ocean conditions and the state’s five-year drought  >click to read< 09:22