Monthly Archives: February 2014

ARDORs, hair crab limited entry revived –

23523_354387901211_7651997_aJUNEAU — The bill to resurrect the Alaska Regional Development Organization program and the now-unique vessel-based limited entry system for the currently closed Korean hair crab fishery is on its way to Gov. Sean Parnell after a House floor debate as strange as the measure’s weird path through the Legislature. Read more here  23:10

Commercial Vessel Discharge Reform Act gains support Cordova District Fishermen United supports exemptions for commercial fishing vessels

Pending federal maritime legislation to exempt commercial fishing vessels from certain requirements of the Clean Water Act, which could otherwise result in substantial fines, is gaining widespread support with commercial fisheries groups.”Onerous,” was just one of the words John Renner, vice president of Cordova District Fishermen United, used to describe the situation facing commercial fishing vessel owners and operators who could otherwise be subject to fines for activities such as deck washing. Read more here 21:51 cordovatimes

Maine lobster landings value jumped $23 million in 2013 – overall value of Maine’s lobster landings in 2013 was $364.5 million

ROCKPORT, Maine — Thanks to a 20-cent increase in the average price lobstermen received for their catch, the landings value of Maine’s most lucrative commercial fishery jumped by more than $20 million in 2013. Read more here  21:33  BDN

One of the worst stone crab seasons on record in Southwest Florida – video

It’s shaping up to be one of the worst stone crab seasons on record in Southwest Florida. Fishermen say octopi are stealing the crabs right out of their traps. A crab trap is like a diner for an octopus. The crabs can’t go anywhere, so an octopus can go to town eating everything in the trap. Read more here 20:47

Marketing Maine Lobster: Effort Intensifies Amid Big Harvests

Maine’s lobster catch topped 100-million pounds again last year – proof that the surging supply of the state’s signature seafood shows no signs of dropping off. A shortage of markets for all that product Read more here 18:35

This is Fish Radio. I’m Stephanie Mangini. Halibut surveys do it deeper – and shallower – and need more boats

FISH-With-Mic-Logo-GRAPHIC-303-x-400-e1360148757522Plans to expand halibut surveys by 30% have been trimmed a bit but boats are still needed to help. Each summer halibut scientists survey 1,300 stations from Oregon to the Bering Sea. Read more here  16:12

EPA Moves to Protect Bristol Bay from Pebble Mine

The Environmental Protection Agency today announced that they are using section 404 C of the Clean Water Act to halt development of the Pebble Mine in Southwest Alaska. Section 404 C authorizes the EPA to prohibit or limit projects that would have an unacceptable adverse impact on the environment. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy made the announcement during a teleconference this morning. Read more here  15:43

Out in Left Field – “and their Senate leaders reward them with $33 million in fisheries welfare”???

“Our recreational sector was never looking at handouts to sit at home like the New England commercial sector, but we were just looking for an honest hand so that our folks can keep fishing,” Donofrio added.  Ya Gotta read more here! 12:53

Process underway now to plan ahead for upcoming lobster seasons

863a4ac9dc_64635696_o2 If things go as planned, lobster fishermen in southwestern Nova Scotia won’t find themselves wondering at the 11th hour whether there will be any changes to their season in the weeks leading up to the opening of the 2014 fall fishery. Read more here 12:41

SHORT NOTICE: Full Committee Legislative Hearing on Magnuson Stevens at 9:30AM. Tune in here

Washington, D.C. – On Friday, the House Natural Resources Committee will hold a balanced hearing on the state of fisheries management in the United States. The hearing comes after Democrats used Rule XI of the Committee rules to force an additional day of testimony on a Republican proposal to gut the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Democrats pursued the Rule XI move earlier this month at the latest in a series of hearings Republicans have held on our nation’s primary law governing fisheries management. The Republican-led legislation, floated in December as a discussion draft with no input from Committee Democrats, would undermine protections that are critical to maintaining the healthy fish stocks and marine ecosystems vital to U.S. fishermen.  LINK IN FROM HERE LIVE

Energy giant, BP, has failed in a judicial bid to stop payments from a fishing compensation fund.

The company claimed that some of the claimants did not suffer at all from the disastrous 2010 oil spill, and that in some cases names have being invented. Read more here  08:20

$11 million in federal fishery disaster money will help restore oyster and blue crab fisheries in Mississippi

Both were declared disasters following a 2011 season ruined by freshwater from the opening of the Bonnet Carre spillway. Read more here  07:53

N.H. fishermen wait for allotment of federal fish disaster funds

y SEABROOK — Officials at Yankee Fisherman’s Cooperative are pleased about the nearly $33 million in fishery disaster relief funds allocated to those in the Northeast who make their livings on the sea, but they have yet to learn how much of the money will trickle down to New Hampshire’s commercial groundfishing fleet owners. Read more here  07:39

Fishermen to net millions: Federal funds help struggling industry Read more here seacoastonline.com

Editorial: Hail fishing aid when it reaches those who need it

gdt iconBut you should excuse fishermen and even federal and state lawmakers if all this good news didn’t exactly touch off celebrations along the docks, and in the halls of government, where people like Congressman John Tierney called it simply “the next critical step in the process.” That’s because it’s also clear that this money — desperately needed by front-line fishermen months ago — is still weeks, and likely months from reaching them. Read more here  03:19

Alaska’s record pink salmon harvest in 2013 could create a market glut that will drive prices down for several years.

Alaska fishing fleets caught 219 million pink salmon last year. That helped fill an estimated 4 million cases of tall pink cans and left companies with almost 5 million cases in inventory. Read more here  22:41 petersburgpilot

“Deadliest Catch” star meets with Maine fishermen – Video

ROCKPORT, Maine(NEWS CENTER) —  Maine commercial fishermen had a chance to meet one of their industry celebrities on Thursday and found out he knows a little bit about Maine fishing. Captain Keith Colburn is owner and captain of the fishing vessel “Wizard,” and is one of the stars of the TV show, “The Deadliest Catch.” Read more here  22:34

Deadliest Catch’ reality TV star hauls in big audience at Rockport fishing talk – Read more here at BDN  08:46

Rayne man arrested for theft and selling shrimp illegally

A Rayne man has bonded out of jail after being accused of shrimp violations by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. 36-year-old Shannon J Roche was charged with 13 counts of selling shrimp without a retail seafood license, three counts of theft by fraudulent sales, and failing to maintain records. Read more here  22:14

Industry Says U.S. Fish Law Works Well in Alaska

The Magnuson-Stevens Act, the 1976 law that governs fishing in the Bering Sea, Gulf of Alaska and other federal waters, is up for reauthorization in Congress. Listen, Read more here 22:08

Canada agrees to work to prevent fishing in High Arctic until there’s more study

Canada and four other Arctic nations have agreed to work toward a deal to block commercial fishing in the central Arctic Ocean until more is known about the potential of the resource. The agreement with the United States, Russia, Denmark and Norway was reached late Wednesday in Nuuk, Greenland, after three days of talks Read more here  18:56

USF study: Diseased fish show dissolved oil from BP spill as far south as Sanibel

The study, published this week in a scientific journal called Deep-Sea Research II, is not good news for BP, which is battling the U.S. government and other claimants in federal court over how many billions of dollars in damages it owes for pollution caused by all the oil it spilled. Read more here  17:35 tampabay.com

Obama administration takes step toward allowing Atlantic Ocean drilling

fisherman-obamaThe Obama administration forbids Atlantic Ocean drilling through 2017. An earlier version of President Obama’s five-year offshore drilling plan permitted such activity, but he excluded Atlantic drilling from the plan following the 2010 BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Read more here  16:50

Maine’s Elver Season Could be Delayed

Commissioner Patrick Keliher said today that’s there is a “50-50” chance the start of the season on March 22 will be pushed back. Read more here  16:27 mpbn

Hearing scheduled for setnet lawsuit

23523_354387901211_7651997_aOral argument in the Alaska Fisheries Conservation Alliance’s appeal of the Lieutenant Governor’s decision not to certify its proposed ballot initiative is scheduled for April 22 in Anchorage. The alliance, or AFCA, wants to ask voters whether to ban setnets in urban parts of the state. If the initiative made it on to the ballot and passed, it would eliminate setnetters in Cook Inlet. Read more here  15:42

NEFMC – Press Release – Draft Habitat Protection Rules Move Forward

nefmc logoDear Stakeholders and Interested Parties: Please click here for a copy of the NEFMC Press Release Council Moves Draft Habitat Protection Rules Forward for Pubic Review The Press Release provides details about the Council’s February 25-26, 2014 Council meeting in Danvers, MA.  Read the Press Release here  14:48

Bureau of Ocean Energy Management : Proposed US energy rules would shield whales

wolf-in-sheeps-clothing-scaled500-e1371562470325The so-called mitigation measures outlined by BOEM also call for visual observers to avoid vessel strikes with whales and other marine life; testing to detect and avoid other marine life, including dolphins; and protections for nesting sea turtles, dolphins and areas where right whales congregate. Read more here  14:37

Hearing – Feb 27 2014 10:30 AM North Pacific Perspectives on Magnuson-Stevens Act Reauthorization

WASHINGTON, D.C.— The U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation’s Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard will hold a hearing on Thursday, February 27, 2014 at 10:30 a.m. titled, “North Pacific Perspectives on Magnuson-Stevens Act Reauthorization”.  Please note the hearing will be webcast live via the Senate Commerce Committee website. Refresh the Commerce Committee homepage 10 minutes prior to the scheduled start time to automatically begin streaming the webcast. Read more here   10:00

http://www.commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Home

Alaska joins Hawaii to have central North Pacific humpbacks struck from endangered list

The state of Alaska is asking the federal government to remove Endangered Species Act protections for the humpback whales that swim between Alaska and Hawaii, spending months each year off Alaska’s Arctic Coast, a prospective oil-rich region. Read more here  09:46

California Salmon forecasts favorable, despite drought uncertainty

Predictions for a robust king salmon haul buoyed California fishermen assembled Wednesday for a preseason meeting with state and federal regulators, even if forecasts fell short of last year’s projection. Read more here  pressdemocrat.com  09:01

Fukushima radiation on B.C. coast measured by crowdfunding – Scientists from Woods Hole recruiting ‘citizen scientists’ to collect data

CBC_News_logoPeople along B.C.’s coast are being asked to step in where governments in Canada and the U.S. have not — to measure radiation from Japan’s crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in B.C.’s ocean waters. Scientists from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Woods Hole, Maine, are calling on the public to collect data from B.C.’s oceans for a crowd-funded research project. Read more here  08:20

The crews of F/V Miss Jana and F/V Equinox rescue three persons from sinking vessel near Valdez Arm – Then it got sticky!

uscg-logoSector Anchorage command center watchstanders received a mayday call on VHF radio channel 16 from the crew of the Belltech 5. Sector Anchorage issued an urgent marine information broadcast and the crew of the Miss Jana responded to the scene, rescuing the three men from the water. Shortly after embarking the men, the crew of the Miss Jana reported engine problems and transferred the men to the nearby fishing vessel Equinox. The Equinox took the Miss Jana in tow. Read more here  uscgnews 07:27

Fisherman try for new ideas to generate cleaner waters

BEAUFORT, CARTERET COUNTY – Commercial fishing generates more than 3,000 jobs and $50 million in income in our state each year, but local fishermen say it’s getting harder to make a living on the water. Now a grassroots effort is being made to fix the problems they frequently face. The effort is being led by commercial fisherman Chris McCaffity. “We can’t change the reality of what we have we just need to offer positive solutions right now,” says McCaffity Read more here  07:06

N.E. lands $33M in federal fishing aid

gdt iconNOAA announced the first apportioning of the federal fishery disaster funds Wednesday, awarding $32,847,955 — or 43.8 percent of the appropriated $75 million — to New England’s five Atlantic fishing states and New York. Read more here 00:33

Where’s the fishing disaster aid going? N.J., N.Y. get $3.8 million; New England banks majority Pallone is HOT!

Rep. Frank Pallone@FrankPallone 39m Unacceptable that @NOAA is only allocating $3mil to NJ/NY fisheries out of $75mil w/ the extent of #Sandy devastation http://1.usa.gov/Ny1vDp

Industry advocates in New Jersey blamed the latest allocation on John Bullard, NOAA’s Northeast regional fisheries director based in Massachusetts — ground zero of the near-meltdown in New England’s fishing fleet for cod and other groundfish. “That $33 million goes to groundfish, which largely helps New Bedford, where he was the former mayor,” said Thomas P. Fote, legislative chairman for the Jersey Coast Anglers Association and a New Jersey representative to interstate fishery management groups. Read more here app.com  21:24

Three poachers plead guilty and sentenced for oyster theft

On Feb. 25, John Phillipe, 32, Patrick Sylve, 25, both of Port Sulphur, and Jean Taylor, 32, of Sparta, Tenn., pleaded guilty to numerous commercial oyster violations in Plaquemines Parish, according to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. Read more here    kalb.com  20:19

Just Now!! New Bedford Fleet Idled by Regulation

idled18:00

25-30-year-old man Coast Guard medevaced from 680-foot fish processing vessel Ocean Phoenix

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard 17th District command center in Juneau received the request for medevac from the master of the Ocean Phoenix when a crewman suffered a severe injury to his left hand. Read more here  16:27

Boat of the Week from the Boat of the Week from the Athearn Marine Agency:: 2006 – 46′ Long Beach Lobster Boat, Fiberglass, 800HP, 8 Cylinder Scania D116

lb3538_01 Specifications, and information here  15:25

Greater Atlantic Region fisheries to receive $36 million in disaster relief funds – (post- tropical cyclone Sandy?)

nmfs_logoAs part of the Fiscal Year 2014 federal budget, Congress approved $75 million in fishery disaster relief funds. Today, NOAA NMFS announced that the New England groundfish fishery will receive $33. Commercial and recreational fisheries in New Jersey and New York will receive $3 for relief effort to address the impacts following Hurricane/post-tropical cyclone Sandy. Read more here 14:41

R.I. fishermen to share in $32.84 million for New England disaster relief Read more here Providence Journal 17:06

Chinook Fishermen to Get $20 million for 2012 Disaster – Read more here ktuu  17:20

NOAA Awards State $10.9 Million for Commercial Oyster & Blue Crab Fisheries Disasters – Read more here   Senate.gov  17: 26

Sen. Murkowski scores ~ $21 million for AK regions hurt by low Chinook runs Read more here The Fluff ‘n Buff @ Fish Radio 22:29

P.E.I.’s North Shore lobstermen vote down trap reduction

CBC_News_logoLobster fishermen on P.E.I.’s North Shore have once again voted down a proposal to reduce the number of traps they put in the water. The proposal was to cut the number of traps allowed from 300 to 270.  Read more here  14:12

Alaska to get $20.8 million in fish disaster funds

23523_354387901211_7651997_aAlaska communities will receive $20.8 million in aid for the disaster declarations on the Yukon and Kuskokwim rivers and in Cook Inlet. The designations came in 2012, although it included 2010, 2011 and 2012 on the Yukon and 2011 and 2012 for the Kuskokwim. Congress included $75 million for fisheries disasters throughout the country, including New England, Alaska, and Lousiana, in its most recent appropriations bill. Read more here 13:27

Gulf Oystermen Harvest Support from D.C. Legislators and Organizations

GSI-LogoOver the course of four days, the oystermen met with more than 20 Congressmen or staff, as well as with the House Transportation Committee, the Food and Drug Administration, the Senate Labor Appropriations Subcommittee, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration‘s new head of fisheries Eileen Sorbeck. Read more here  13:14

BREAKING: $33 Million to New England in Disaster Funding.

Bruce Tarr confirms officials expect NOAA to announce about $33 million in fish disaster aid for New England. More to follow.  11:36

Your View: Eric Hansen – Scallopers need access to Georges Bank

sct logoThe scallop fishery has become the lifeblood of the New Bedford waterfront, a bright spot in a fishing industry encumbered by onerous regulations and heavy-handed management. It has helped make New Bedford, for the 13th year in a row, the most valuable port in the nation. But,,,Read more here  11:11

Pebble Mine Opponents Urge EPA To Kill Project

About 30 opponents of the proposed Pebble Mine met in Washington today with White House and high-ranking EPA staff. They came armed with a new EPA study that found a mine of Pebble’s size would pose a significant risk to Bristol Bay and its valuable salmon fisheries. Now they’re asking the Environment agency to take the next step and kill the project. They didn’t get a definite answer. Listen and Read more here 10:34

Deadline for Terminating Inshore Fishing Controlling Agreement Fast Approaching

863a4ac9dc_64635696_o2OTTAWA, ONTARIO–(Marketwired – Feb. 24, 2014) – Inshore fishermen in Atlantic Canada and Québec are reminded that they have until April 12, 2014 to terminate or adjust their controlling agreements in order to comply with the policy on Preserving the Independence of the Inshore Fleet in Canada’s Atlantic Fisheries (PIIFCAF). “The objective of the PIIFCAF Policy was to strengthen the Owner-Operator and Fleet Separation policies. We remain fully committed to these policies and we will continue to work with the industry to ensure that the fishery remains economically prosperous for future generations.” Read more here 09:57

Millions of shellfish are dying off before they can be harvested at Island Scallops

CBC_News_logoThe deteriorating health of B.C.’s oceans is impacting not only the province’s marine life, but also its economy. Millions of shellfish are dying off before they can be harvested at Island Scallops, near Parksville, B.C., due to increased acidity levels in the ocean. Read more here  07:23

Viewed as necessary for the betterment of the country? Newfoundland’s place in the Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement

863a4ac9dc_64635696_o2One of the more contentious issues related to CETA is the impact it may have on the province’s fish processing industry. CETA may reduce the 11 – 25 per cent tariffs on Canadian fish products creating the incentive to avoid value-added processing in the country. The agreement will not protect…Read more here. The Muse 06:56

Status quo reigns with New England Fisheries Management Council

nefmc logogdt iconDANVERS — Tuesday morning had morphed into afternoon and then on toward the evening — not that anybody attending the New England Fisheries Management Council meeting inside the artificial gloaming of the DoubleTree Hotel’s grand ballroom had the slightest idea of what time it was. Read more here 03:37

City port recovery plan touts $12M needs – GDT Editorial: Port recovery plan an important step for city’s future

gdt iconTransitional aid to shoreside business and fishing crews, specific uses for Saltonstall-Kennedy Act money, and federal money to hire idled fishing boats to serve as research vessels. Read more here

GDT Editorial: It is headlined as a Gloucester Groundfish Port Recovery & Revitalization Plan. Read more here  03:31

Dock to Dish Cuts out Middlemen by Bringing Fish Directly to Restaurants

“The whole idea was to be a change in the marketplace,” he says, back to the way the fishermen out of Montauk have been doing things since the first hungry settler put a skiff in the water, when supply came before demand. Read more here  19:39

A Sustainable Natural Resource: Newfoundland launches seal-industry campaign as Ottawa appeals WTO ruling

Hutchings said there are now an estimated eight million seals in the region, taking an uncertain toll on cod and other fish stocks. “Just looking at one species like the animal welfare groups do, I’d certainly welcome a look at the whole ecosystem and how they can support us in supporting that ecosystem.” Read more here  19:16

Shaheen, Ayotte Ask Commerce to Waive State Matching Requirement on Behalf of New Hampshire Fisheries

(Washington, DC) – As part of their ongoing efforts to protect New Hampshire’s fishing industry and mitigate industry-wide economic losses, U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) are calling on U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker to waive the state matching requirements for federally declared disaster relief funds for the Northeast Multispecies Groundfish Fishery. Read more here  17:21

Political solution sought for China geoduck ban

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski and members of the Southeast Alaska Regional Dive Fisheries Association talked last week about the possibility of a political solution to China’s ban on Alaska and Washington State geoducks. Doherty noted that Canadian geoducks are not included in the ban,  Listen and read more here krd.org 15:19

Just Now!! Mackerel as far as the eye can see

freezer mackerelThese mackerel are being frozen at the Norpel fish plant in New Bedford. With just over 4 percent of the quota for 2014 there is speculation that the fishery will be stopped on George’s Bank due to bycatch of the over-abundant haddock that are currently drastically under-fished due to regulatory problems in the New England ground fish fishery. 14:31:08

Penny a pound lobster levy gets initial approval – Levy could raise $250,000 for marketing Island lobster

863a4ac9dc_64635696_o2In the test vote, fishermen in Lobster Fishing Area (LFA) 24, from Tignish to North Lake, gave overwhelming support. “This was just a test zone to identify some opinion,’’ said Mike McGeoghegan, president of the P.E.I. Fishermen’s Association (PEIFA). “But based on these findings, we are now talking about an Island-wide vote to see what we get.” Read more here  The Guardian 12:54

NC Fishermen: An Endangered Species

For years, the North Carolina commercial fishermen have been bearing the brunt of attempts from outside interests to seize control of North Carolina residents’ food supply. The industry is being fined and regulated out of existence for admitted personal gain. Read more here  12:38

Transcriptomics helps researchers trace origins of codfish decline

The mega-decline in cod and other fisheries across the North Atlantic Ocean threatens the livelihood of fishermen and communities in New England and Atlantic Canada. One suspect in the disappearance of cod and other groundfish is the food source for their young: a planktonic copepod crustacean, no larger than a grain of rice. Read more here 12:08

Reopen historic, lucrative Georges Bank scalloping grounds – Tim Healy

ROCKLAND — In a region where years of harsh, inflexible regulations have led to a dwindling fishing fleet and shrinking dockside revenues, the scallop fishery stands out as one of the few success stories, producing one of the most valuable and sought-after seafood products in the country. Read more here  11:48

Coast Guard medevacs 48-year-old man 272-foot F/V American Dynasty near Cold Bay, Alaska

American Dynasty - PaulinANCHORAGE, Alaska — A Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Kodiak, forward deployed to Cold Bay, medevaced a 48-year-old man from the 272-foot fishing vessel American Dynasty approximately 95 miles northwest of Cold Bay, Monday. Read more here  10:52

B.C. groups seek federal auditor’s help on salmon inquiry

CBC_News_logoTwo British Columbia conservation groups are asking the federal auditor general to examine Ottawa’s response to a $26-million public inquiry into the collapse of West Coast salmon stocks. Read more here  10:29