Tag Archives: Baby eels

Maine men sentenced to probation, fines for trafficking baby eels

Two Maine men were sentenced Thursday to serve federal probation and to pay fines for their roles in an interstate baby eel trafficking ring. Michael Squillace, 40, of Woolwich, and John Pinkham, 51, of Bath, each pleaded guilty last summer to trafficking in hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of illegally harvested baby eels, or elvers. They are among 19 men charged in federal court in three different states with illegally catching, selling and transporting more,,, >click to read< 21:00

Inside the Multi-million-Dollar World of Eel Trafficking

The alleged kingpin of one of the biggest domestic wildlife smuggling operations ever to hit the East Coast is exactly where you’d expect to find him on a rainy evening in early May: firmly planted in a swivel chair at a big green metal desk inside his renovated Quonset hut on Foster Street, in Ellsworth, Maine. At this post Bill Sheldon waits day and night for fishermen to come and fill his bowl with writhing masses of baby eels. The 72-year-old fisherman wears glasses, a blue flannel shirt, jeans, duck boots, and a brown L.L. Bean baseball cap. His cell phone goes quack, quack, quack when it rings. The sign above his head reads, “Buying Glass Eels Here,” with the day’s market price: $1,250 per pound. (so much more about the fishery in this article than “trafficking”) click here to read the story 09:26

Maine’s latest fishing frenzy brings in $1,200 a pound — and it’s not lobster

It is just past midnight, rain clouds stalking a full moon, and Julie Keene is out on a muddy riverbank in thigh-high rubber boots and a camouflage jacket, a headlamp strapped over her hair. As she wrestles with an oversize fishing net, Keene tells how she went from rags to riches, and that’s not a story many fishermen tell. Just a few years ago, the sardine factory in her hometown of Lubec had closed, and Keene was scrounging for a living digging clams and gathering periwinkles from the beach. “We were so damn poor we were on food stamps,” Keene said.Then came what for Maine was the equivalent of a gold rush. It was slimy, squirmy baby eels — in such demand in Asian markets that they were suddenly more profitable than even the beloved Maine lobster. One memorable night in 2012 when the baby eel were running strong, Keene was paid $36,000 — in cash — for her catch Click here to read the story 10:17

How Does a Four-Inch Eel Hurdle a 40-Foot Greenwich Dam?

Baby eels are making their annual migration from Long Island Sound to rivers across Connecticut, but along the way, they’re encountering one persistent obstacle: river dams. Now, one man in Greenwich is working to make the eels’ journey a little easier. Read more here wnpr.org 12:27