Daily Archives: December 3, 2022

Texas: Shrimping grinds to a halt as import oversupplies add to ongoing woes

The Gulf shrimping industry, including the Brownsville-Port Isabel fleet, shrinking steadily over the last couple of decades, is now in a state of near total collapse thanks to new, unprecedented challenges in addition to the usual. So says Andrea Hance, executive director of the Texas Shrimp Association, who said she and her husband have put their two shrimp boats up for sale because it’s become impossible to make money fishing for domestic shrimp anymore. About 95% of the local fleet is tied up, most fleet owners are cutting their crews loose, and just about everybody Hance knows is trying to sell their boats and shrimping licenses, she said. >click to read< 19:09

Hull’s Quiet Disaster: The Christmas Day Tragedy of St. Finbarr

St Finbarr’s final trip was plagued by bad luck from the start. She took 14 days battling atrocious weather to get to Newfoundland’s Grand Banks, a trip usually done in half that time. Electrical faults reported from previous trips caused three delays before she even set sail from Hull’s St Andrew’s Dock on 16 November 1966. Ironically, it was St Andrew’s Day (the patron saint of fishermen), 30 November, when she reached the Newfoundland fishing grounds on her thirteenth and final trip. She had endured 38 days of foul weather, from Yorkshire’s Spurn Point to the storm-lashed grounds of the Grand Banks. Skipper Tommy Sawyer, a hard taskmaster, pushed his ship and her crew to the limit, 8 Photos, >click to read< 14:22

New Orleans fishing industry suffers sourcing issues

Fishing runs through Merlin Schaeffer’s blood. He has been fishing in Louisiana waters for decades, and before him, so were his father and his grandfather. While primarily a fisherman in Lake Pontchartrain, Schaeffer is also the owner of Schaeffer’s Seafood. Located in Bucktown, a small community that thrives on the fishing industry, Schaeffer’s is a shop that sells anything from crabs to shrimp to catfish. Because fishing is a touch-and-go job, fishermen often lack routine and certainty when they head out to work, he said. “You gotta go with the flow, around the weather, the bite, the tide, it goes off a lot, the sails,” Schaeffer said. “Everything varies.” This variance includes prices as well. >click to read< 11:30

Commercial Fisherman Thomas “Tommy Guns” Blevin, 60, of Wildwood, NJ, has passed away

Thomas “Tommy Guns” Blevin, 60, of Wildwood, NJ, passed away on November 9, 2022 after a brief illness. Tommy is a beloved grandson, son, nephew, brother, uncle, cousin, father, and true friend. He was a proud commercial fisherman for over 4 decades, as close to a true modern day pirate as one would ever meet these days. When he wasn’t on the sea, he was an avid outdoors man and skilled carpenter. He never passed an opportunity to share memories of days gone by scalloping, crabbing, etc. with his mates. >click to read< 10:53

Outgoing FFAW president denies conflict of interest over wife’s work with Nalcor

Keith Sullivan says his departure from the Fish, Food & Allied Workers union has nothing to do with allegations his wife was in a conflict of interest over a controversial agreement with scallop harvesters 10 years ago. Ryan Cleary, the most vocal critic of Sullivan throughout his tenure as FFAW-Unifor boss, posted an article on his blog Thursday evening that raised the allegations publicly for the first time. Cleary obtained documents through access-to-information requests that show Roseann Williams who is married to Sullivan, was part of a four-person negotiating team that worked opposite the FFAW in 2012 and 2013, while Sullivan was an assistant to the union’s president. The two sides negotiated a deal to compensate fish harvesters on the Northern Peninsula over the loss of valuable scallop fishing grounds to a subsea power cable laid by Nalcor Energy. >click to read< 10:03

A Sitka fish processor lost everything in 2020. Now it’s planning a comeback.

The wreck of its fish processing barge in Bristol Bay two years ago could have been the end of the newly formed Northline Seafoods, but the Sitka-based operation is planning a comeback in a big way. On Wednesday Northline announced it had received a $40 million federal food supply chain loan, to not only to rebuild its floating processor but also to reinvent the region’s processing industry. The pictures from the wreck of Northline’s SM-3 processing barge are not pretty. The 150-foot vessel began service in Southeast Alaska as a platform for helicopter logging, with an upper deck originally designed for aircraft. That superstructure collapsed when the SM-3’s anchor buoy parted in a September gale in 2020, and 80-mph winds blew it ashore in Bristol Bay not far from Ekuk. Animated video, >click to read< 09:17

Canada, U.S., Mexico to vote on investigation into U.S. efforts to protect right whales

A complaint, filed under the new North American free trade agreement, will force Canada, the U.S., and Mexico to pass judgment on efforts by the United States to protect North Atlantic right whales. “We recommended an independent investigation. We are looking forward to hearing a response and the position from the governments,” Paolo Solano, legal director for the Commission for Environmental Cooperation, said in Halifax this week. The commission is mandated under the Canada-U.S.-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) to investigate claims a country is failing to effectively enforce its environmental laws. Last year, an American environmental group, Oceana, filed a complaint against the United States about protections for the North Atlantic right whale. >click to read< 07:51