Monthly Archives: December 2017

FFAW payback: FISH-NL supporters say union pressured DFO to close cod fishery

Well-know Grand Bank fisherman Wayne Meade accuses the FFAW-Unifor of being behind a recent federal Fisheries and Oceans decision to shut down the cod fishery in a small area of Fortune Bay because most inshore harvesters who were fishing there are FISH-NL supporters. “This was not a DFO decision because DFO doesn’t run the fishery, and hasn’t since the moratorium — the FFAW calls the shots,” says Meade, who’s publicly endorsed FISH-NL since it was organized in the fall of 2016. “Eighty to 90 per cent of the fishermen who were fishing that cod support FISH-NL, and it’s the FFAW getting back at us.” click here to read the press release 10:48

Yank Marine – 820-ton boat lift could boost Cumberland town’s economy

A hulking apparatus recently assembled on the banks of the Maurice River could spur economic development in this large, rural township. Yank Marine, a shipbuilding and repair company, unveiled a $3.5 million boat lift Monday capable of hauling ships weighing up to 820 metric tons. That makes it one of the most powerful ship hoists on the East Coast, said Bette Jean Yank, who runs the company with her husband, John.,, “There is a need for this size lift,” she said. “It means we can work on every commercial fishing boat in Cape May and Atlantic City that we could never work on before.” click here to read the story 08:23

Fish, Drugs, and Murder – As fisheries along this idyllic looking coast unravel, so does social order.

Lieutenant Olivier Ramirez didn’t waste time. On an August morning in 2015, he scrambled a small coast guard team on Costa Rica’s Pacific coast. Local fishermen had spotted poachers hauling nets full of shimmering fish from the Gulf of Nicoya. Ramirez hoped to catch the offenders and press charges. But that morning, little went according to plan: Ramirez and his men intercepted the poachers close to their home base and within minutes, the officers were in serious trouble. Dozens of poachers were swarming to the scene, wielding rocks, machetes, quarter-stick explosives, and Molotov cocktails. Audio, click here to read the story 07:55

A Fundraiser for the Family of Fisherman Mike Roberts

On December 4, 2017, Mike Roberts lost his life when the Misty Blue clamming boat sunk 10 miles off the coast of Nantucket. Mike left behind his wife of almost 10 years Tammy, along with her four children, Ryan, Breanne, Kalie and Kevin, which Mike thought of as his own. Mike was loved by everyone in the community but most of all by his granddaughter Aaliyah. Mike’s death has left his family with a great financial hardship. Mike went on this trip with the intention of his salary to pay for their family’s Christmas. With Mike gone, Tammy is left in a one paycheck family to run the household and cover his final expenses. Please help the Roberts family keep Mike’s memory alive by donating what you can. Bright blessings to you and your family and Happy Holidays. click here to donate if you can. 07:15

Why Fishermen Fail To Unite and Resist Being Swept Off of Our Historic Fishing Grounds

As fishermen it often seems we are beset on all sides by so many issues that would disenfranchise us, derail our efforts to safeguard our industry, destroy our livelihoods and communities, and push us off of the historically wild and free ocean. Whether it is in the name of industrial power production or environmental protection, we are up against marine monuments, death by a thousand cuts regulation, forests of windmills, observers, cameras, and tracking systems watching us like an Orwellian nightmare, and grids of closure areas that threaten to push us onto fishing reservations like the Native Americans who once stood in the path of progress. click here to continue reading By Jon Johnson 18:51

Westport crabber sentenced for stealing commercial pots

A Grays Harbor County judge has sentenced a commercial crab fisherman to 90 days of electronic home monitoring and fined him $5,000 for stealing crab pots offshore of Westport, concluding a case that began with an investigation last year by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW). Larrin Brietsprecher, 57, of Westport, was sentenced Dec. 1 by Grays Harbor County Superior Court Judge Mark McCauley after a jury found him guilty of possessing stolen property and related charges. Beginning May 1, click here for press release 17:28

Puget Sound report tells the environmental story that took place in 2016

The year 2016 may be regarded as a transition year for Puget Sound, coming between the extreme warm-water conditions of 2014 and 2015 and the more normal conditions observed over the past year, according to the latest Puget Sound Marine Waters report (click here). The report on the 2016 conditions was released this past week by the Marine Waters Workgroup, which oversees the Puget Sound Ecosystem Monitoring Program (PSEMP). The report includes data collected in 2016 and analyzed over the past year. Some findings from the report, click here to read the story 16:01

DEM gets $1.6M grant for Port of Galilee infrastructure improvements

The R.I. Department of Environmental Management has received a $1.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration to make critical port infrastructure improvements needed to support the region’s commercial fishing industry, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced Monday.,,, “President Trump has been clear about the urgent need to upgrade American infrastructure from coast to coast,” Ross said in a statement. “The completion of this project will help drive new opportunities to the local commercial fishing industry in the Port of Galilee.” click here to read the story 14:57

Clark’s Harbour wharf: Lobster landings looking good

It looks as though lobster landings have been holding their own for the first two weeks of the season, with estimates that the catch is on par with last year in Shelburne County. “We’re seeing about the same as last year,” said Clark’s Harbour lobster buyer Gary Blades. “Some fishermen are up, some are down.” For many fishermen the first hauling day of the season didn’t come until Nov. 30, after traps were dumped on Nov. 28. This was due to gale force winds on Nov. 29. The season opening had also been delayed by a day. After that, for the most part, the weather was cooperative. click here to read the story 14:29

Matt Ridley: Blue Planet II Was Superb, Save A Few Fishy Facts

Nothing that Hollywood sci-fi screenwriters dream up for outer space begins to rival the beauty and ingenuity of life under water right here. Blue Planet II captured behaviour that was new to science as well as surprising: giant trevally fish eating sooty terns on the wing; Galapagos sea lions herding yellowfin tuna ashore; an octopus wrapping itself in shells to confuse sharks. The series also preached. Every episode had a dose of bad news about the ocean and a rebuke to humanity, while the entire last episode was devoted to the environmental cause, featuring overfishing, pollution, climate change and ocean acidification. The team behind the incomparable Sir David Attenborough has acceded to demands that it should push more environmentalism. click here to read the story 12:26

Hearing – National Ocean Policy: Stakeholder Perspectives, Tuesday, December 12, 2017 2:30 p.m.

U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska), chairman of the Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard, will convene a hearing titled “National Ocean Policy: Stakeholder Perspectives,” at 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday, December 12, 2017. The hearing will examine the state of the National Ocean Policy and the program’s interaction with existing laws and regulations for ocean management. Witnesses: – Ms. Bonnie Brady, Executive Director, Long Island Commercial Fishing Association – Mr. Christopher Guith, Senior Vice President, Global Energy Institute, U.S. Chamber of Commerce – Mr. Dan Keppen, Executive Director, Family Farm Alliance  – Ms. Kathy Metcalf, President and CEO, Chamber of Shipping of America click here to read, and the link will open to watch the proceedings tomorrow @ 2:30 pm

Mid Atlantic Fishery Management Council Meeting in Annapolis, MD December 11-14, 2017

The public is invited to attend the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council’s December meeting in Annapolis, MD. Briefing Materials & Agenda Overview Agenda click here Attend Meeting with Adobe Connect Click here Listen Live! 10:38

Seaspan launches Canadian Coast Guard’s first Offshore Fisheries Science Vessel

The first large vessel to be designed and built under the Canadian National Shipbuilding Strategy (NSS) was launched at Seaspan Shipyards on December 8. ‘Sir John Franklin’ is the first of three offshore fisheries science vessels (OFSV) which will be operated by the Canadian Coast Guard. In 2011, the government of Canada selected Seaspan to be its non-combat shipbuilder as part of the NSS program. click here to read the story 09:44

On This Day: Dec. 11, 1975 – Attack on British vessels heightens Cod War

An Icelandic gunboat has opened fire on unarmed British fishery support vessels in the North Atlantic Sea, it is reported. The violent clash left the Icelandic coastguard ship, Thor, badly damaged but the three British vessels involved appear to be unaffected. The Thor is said to have tried to arrest the British Star Aquarius and her sister vessel the Star Polaris as they sheltered from a force nine gale within Iceland’s 12 mile territorial waters. click here to read the story 09:03

Promising results from UK lobster hatchery

Set up primarily to support the local lobster-fishing industry, the National Lobster Hatchery (NLH)  concentrates on hatching eggs from gravid females caught by local fishermen, keeping them within the safety of the hatchery during their vulnerable larval phase, before releasing them – as comparatively robust juveniles – back into the seas around Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. However, the researchers have since been experimenting with on-growing these juveniles for longer – and to larger sizes – in a number of different sea-based systems. They hope that this ecological conditioning will not only help to improve the survival of those lobsters that they release back into the wild,,,,  click here to read the story 08:05

Coast Guard medevacs 1 from fishing vessel near Hatteras Island, NC

The Coast Guard medevaced a man who had suffered possible injuries aboard a fishing vessel near Hatteras Island Sunday morning. Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector North Carolina in Wilmington received a call on VHF-FM channel 16 at 9:45 a.m. that a 20-year-old man had fallen down a ladder and suffered possible injuries to his hip, thigh and head aboard the 71-foot fishing boat Tamara Alane. Photo’s, click here to read the story 19:32

Triumph tows disabled dragger with 42,000 lbs of fish aboard through deep draft bar

The Coast Guard towed a 58-foot fishing vessel after the crew lost use of their main engine about 17 miles west of Willapa Bay, Sunday. A boat crew aboard the Triumph II, a 52-foot Motor Life Boat from Coast Guard Cape Disappointment, met the crew of the fishing vessel Ashlyne, a 58-foot dragger with four people and 42,000 pounds of fish aboard, and safely towed them across the Columbia River bar into Astoria, Oregon. click here to read the story 18:55

4.5 tonnes of unmarked genetically modified salmon fillets sold in Canada

It appears Canadians were among the first diners in the world to eat a genetically modified animal — and they likely didn’t know it. U.S.-based AquaBounty Technologies said in a recent fiscal update about 4.5 tonnes of its fresh AquAdvantage salmon fillets were sold in Canada between April and June. The company got approval from Health Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection agency last year to sell the product. AquaBounty — which has a production plant in P.E.I. — did not say exactly where the salmon was sold. click here to read the story 16:20

This area of Canada is becoming known for its truly gigantic salmon

Ted Walkus may have made the catch of the year at Rivers Inlet, B.C. Walkus, a hereditary chief of Wuikinuxv First Nation, caught a salmon that makes the fish most of us see at the supermarket look like sardines. It was a 50-pound monster, nearly as tall as Walkus himself. Catching a fish this big isn’t a total anomaly in the area. Rivers Inlet is known as something of a lost world, one of the only places on Earth where massive Chinook salmon are born. The biggest-ever salmon caught in the area was an incredible 83.3 pounds. click here to read the story 15:50

LETHBRIDGE: Pulp friction grips Pictou once again

Pictou County is a community torn asunder by the smell, foam and brown water of money. The controversy over Northern Pulp — known locally as “The Mill” — has been ripping apart families, neighbours and businesses. This is the toxic byproduct of economic output from the plant, and the jobs it generates in rural Nova Scotia. This week, wounds were ripped open again, as Northern Pulp announced a plan to pump effluent into the Northumberland Strait. The mill is facing a January 2020 deadline to replace the treatment facility at Boat Harbour. click here to read the story 15:08

Pushing back against the greying of the fleet

The average age of an Alaska fisherman today is more than 50 years old. That number is growing statewide, according to a November report, as permit and quota holders leave coastal communities, reducing opportunities for youth to enter fisheries. The absence of youth in Alaska’s fisheries has become known as the “greying of the fleet” and it’s affecting rural and urban communities across the state. To help with the problem, the Alaska Marine Conservation Council has chosen five young leaders from the fishing industry to help steward projects aimed at increasing youth access to the fishing industry. click here to read the story 14:05

Possible wind farm sites 17 miles off Hamptons identified

A federal agency has identified a swath of the South Shore 17 miles off the coast of the Hamptons as a potential area for new offshore wind farms. If selected, the site would encompass 211,839 acres of ocean waters 15 nautical miles from land, from Center Moriches to Montauk.,,, LIPA has approved a 90-megawatt project off the coast of Rhode Island, New York State has a plan to inject 2,400 megawatts of offshore wind into the state grid, and Norwegian energy giant Statoil has a lease for more than 70,000 acres 15 miles from Long Beach for an offshore wind farm that could be completed by 2024. click here to read the story 12:43

Maritime Angels to help fishing families

When Aundrea O’Neal, bookkeeper for the N.C. Fisheries Association, heard there were commercial fishing families who needed help for Christmas, she went into action. She approached the board of the N.C. Fisheries Association, a nonprofit trade organization that represents the state’s commercial fishermen, with the idea of helping struggling families with Christmas gifts, especially for the children. She also suggested the idea to the Carteret County Fishermen’s Association, the county affiliate of the state organization. click here to read the story 11:46

Officials: Whales, After Deadly Year, Could Become Extinct

Officials with the federal government say it’s time to consider the possibility that endangered right whales could become extinct unless new steps are taken to protect them.,,,  The situation is so dire that American and Canadian regulators need to consider the possibility that the population won’t recover without action soon, said John Bullard, the Northeast Regional Administrator for NOAA Fisheries.  click here to read the story 09:39

Don Cuddy: Offshore wind is coming, whether it’s cheap or not

As the North American manager of Bay State Wind, one of three developers bidding to install wind turbines in federal waters south of Martha’s Vineyard, Denmark’s Thomas Brostrom is the man to tell us how he sees it as the Dec. 20 deadline for submission approaches. “Its different here than in Europe,” he told me. “,,, With economy of scale, bigger is better, Brostron said. “That means a lower price. And more volume means its easier to attract the supply chain here and companies looking to set up shop. click here to read the story 09:13

Jack Spillane: In gratitude for fishermen

They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; 24 These see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep. Psalm 107 Misty Blue In the wake of its tragic destiny, even the name seems to betoken sadness. Misty Blue, of course, could also bring piece of mind and beauty. And surely there was a time when the rugged guys who worked the surf clammer on a gentle Atlantic day thought about their boat that way. Click here to read the story 22:24

Cantwell’s legislation provides regulatory relief for smaller vessels like crab and salmon boats

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) introduced the Fishing and Small Vessel Relief Act (S.2194) to extend protections for fishermen and small vessel owners from adhering to costly requirements that do not tangibly protect or improve water quality for vessels of their size. An EPA study found that incidental discharges from these small vessels do not generate a significant threat to our waters. The bill will extend a current moratorium that exempts fishing vessels and vessels under 79 feet from incidental discharge permitting requirements mandated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). These vessels have been continuously exempt since 2008 under a temporary moratorium as they do not pose a serious environmental risk. click here to read the story 21:35

Sam Parisi is asking all fishermen to attend the Gloucester Fisheries Commission meeting December 14th

I recently had a letter I wrote printed in our local paper. This was regarding a commitment the Mayor of Gloucester, Sefatia Romeo Theken made when she was running in 2016. That being, to hire a Fisheries Director part time and than look down the road for full time. She kept her word. In my letter I said we need to now hire someone full time. Not to take anything away from our director Al Cottone, he has done a good job, but you can not expect him or anyone else to do this effectively on a part time basis. click here to read the story 15:07

Yacht Captain Charged With Negligence After Fatal Collision In Waters Near Stonington

A federal grand jury has indicted a professional yacht captain for maritime negligence, charging that his failure to maintain a look-out and other inattentiveness were responsible for a collision that took the life of a Connecticut fisherman near Watch Hill, R.I., two years ago. The grand jury charged that Capt. Cooper “Chick” Bacon, 78, of Cape May, N.J., was running a 60-foot Viking luxury motor yacht though a marked passage into Fishers Island Sound at more than 30 knots when he ran over a 23-foot skiff operated by 81-year old Walter S. Krupinski of Stonington. click here to read the story 11:22