Tag Archives: California

New fishery rules could protect deep sea corals in California

The Pacific Fishery Management Council will decide Monday what happens to the underwater areas as part of an update to essential fish habitat for West Coast groundfish. “The Pacific Fishery Management Council will be making a decision on changing the areas that are opened or closed to West Coast groundfish bottom trawling,” said Kerry Griffin, a staff officer to the council, which regulates fisheries in federal waters from the Mexican border to the Canadian border, from three miles to 200 miles off shore. The proposal, scheduled for a vote Monday, >click to read<20:31

Alaska, West Coast to receive fishery disaster recovery funds, unclear when

The president signed a bill this month that directs recovery funds to fisheries disasters on the West Coast, including in Alaska, but it’s still unclear how the limited funds will be distributed. In a letter to the U.S. Senate in January, senators wrote that they saw a $150 million need in Alaska following the 2016 pink salmon season disaster in the Gulf. They also identified a $140 million need for the fisheries disasters in California and $117 million for those in Washington State.,, “There’s only $200 million that has been identified for all nine of these disasters,,,, >click to read<15:39

Why California’s most productive salmon hatchery is millions of fish short

California’s most productive salmon hatchery has 6 million fewer fish this year, another sign the state’s drought woes linger despite last winter’s record rainfall.  The federal Coleman National Fish Hatchery tries to produce about 12 million fall-run Chinook salmon for release each spring into Battle Creek, a Sacramento River tributary south of Redding. This spring, the Coleman hatchery will only have half as many young salmon to release. click here to read the story08:16

Death by Killer Algae

They didn’t think much of the first dead whale. Dwarfed by the rugged cliffs of Patagonia’s high green fjords, the team of biologists had sailed into a gulf off the Pacific Ocean searching for the ocean’s smaller animals, the marine invertebrates they were there to inventory. That night, while hunting for an anchorage in a narrow bay, the team spotted a large, dead whale floating on the water’s surface. But for the biologists, death—even of such an enormous animal—didn’t seem so unusual. Not so unusual, that is, until they found the second whale, lying on the beach. And a third. And a fourth. In all, they found seven in that bay alone. Over the next day, they counted a total of 25 dead whales in the fjord. click here to read the story 15:42

Crab bill strengthening the Pacific Northwest’s Dungeness crab industry heads to President Trump

A bill introduced by Oregon’s Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley to strengthen Oregon’s crab fishery passed the United States Senate and will now head to the president’s desk for signature into law. The bill permanently extends a decades-long fishery management agreement that has been vital to the Pacific Northwest’s Dungeness crab fishery.,,, The states of Oregon, Washington, and California cooperatively manage the West Coast crab fishery in federal waters under a tri-state agreement that Congress first authorized in 1998. The act would make that authority permanent. click here to read the story 15:51

Commerce Secretary Declares Fisheries Disasters for Nine West Coast Species

The US Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker has determined there are commercial fishery failures for nine salmon and crab fisheries in Alaska, California and Washington. In recent years, each of these fisheries experienced sudden and unexpected large decreases in fish stock biomass due to unusual ocean and climate conditions. This decision enables fishing communities to seek disaster relief assistance from Congress. Read the story here 09:54

Navy to Expand Sonar, Other Training off Northwest Coast

navy-sonar-sonobuoy-2953763The U.S. Navy has finalized a plan to expand sonar testing and other warfare training off the coasts of Washington, Oregon and northern California. The Navy decided to implement its preferred plan after a lengthy review that included a determination from the National Marine Fisheries Service that the exercises would not have major impacts on endangered orcas and other marine mammals. It announced its decision on Nov. 4. The fisheries service last year renewed the Navy’s five-year permit, through 2020, to conduct the activities in areas from the inland waters of Puget Sound in Washington state to the northern coast of California. The plan includes expanding the use of “sonobuoys,” devices that send out underwater sonar signals used by air crews training to detect submarines. Read the rest here 16:54

Governor Brown signs Whale Legislation, but the Enviros are never satisfied.

governor_jerry_brown_0California Gov. Jerry Brown announced Friday that he signed legislation meant to bring down the record numbers of whales getting caught in fishing gear meant for Dungeness crabs, causing unknown numbers of the entangled mammals to drown or starve. The Democratic governor approved the bill that allows fishermen to collect abandoned and lost crab pots — the cage-like contraptions used to catch the crustaceans — in the off-season for a bounty, paid for by those who lost the gear. Crab fishermen joined environmental groups in backing the legislation after federal agencies logged 61 reports of entangled whales off the West Coast last year,,, Conservation groups have urged state and federal agencies to do more, including closing some areas with high numbers of whales to crab fishing. Read the story here 12:32

Will California Approve Massive Offshore Wind Farm Project?

wind farmThe deep waters off the coast of California could become home to the country’s largest offshore wind energy project and a test case for a technology that is still in its infancy. The 765-megawatt project, proposed by Seattle-based Trident Winds, would sit about 25 miles off California’s central coast, near the town of Cambria. If built, it will be larger than the 630-megawatt London Array off the coast of Kent, – the world’s largest working offshore wind farm that began operating in 2013. To win government approval, Trident will have to prepare a lengthy report to investigate the potential environmental impact of its project. California’s coast is a major migration route for several whale species, and the underwater structures of the floating wind turbines could pose an entanglement risk. The Trident project calls for mounting 100 turbines on floating foundations in water that’s roughly half a mile deep. Read the rest here 09:29

To Save Its Salmon, California Calls in the Fish Matchmaker

On a frigid morning in a small metal-sided building, a team of specialists prepared to orchestrate an elaborate breeding routine. The work would be wet and messy, so they wore waders. Their tools included egg trays and a rubber mallet, which they used to brain a fertile female coho salmon, now hanging dead on a hook. Diana Chesney, a biologist, studied a piece of paper with a matrix of numbers, each one denoting a male salmon and potential match for the female coho. “This is the bible,” she said of the matrix. “It’s what Carlos says.” Read the article here 12:57

Fish wrap-up – Debriefer: October 14, 2015

debrief-1a00e9e6b5a2371fFrom the Article: U.S. Rep. Jared Huffman co-sponsored the West Coast Dungeness Crab Management Act that seeks to permanently extend a 20-year fisheries management agreement aimed at protecting the health of the crab fishery in . It is set to expire next September. But there’s a longstanding critique of Dungeness management that small-time Bodega Bay operators say puts them at a disadvantage. And speaking of endangered species,,, Read the rest here 08:28

California wild salmon harvest continues to dwindle with drought

california-salmon-2014-20150129-001It’s still a little too early to tell for sure, but the news on the California wild salmon front is not good. A combination of low water levels in streams because of the drought and high summer temperatures resulted in a massive die-off of young salmon in Northern California. Read the rest here 13:57

California crab task force recommending a number of changes to the fishery.

The state’s advisory panel on crab fishing has released its report to the state legislature recommending a number of changes to the fishery. The panel was formed according to a 2008 law meant to help make the fishery, which has become one of the most valuable in California, especially to independent commercial vessels. The task force promised to look into changes in the state’s program on limiting crab traps per boat and reactivating unused permits. Read the rest here 19:13

Pressure’s on to help Delta fish suffering amid drought

With populations of numerous endangered Delta fish species at alarming lows, officials in California are planning a number of steps to help them survive if 2015 proves to be a fourth year. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife last week released the results of its annual fall population survey for five key fish species in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. Read the rest here  08:10

A fishing-permit buyback program has had an as-yet-undetermined effect on the health of California’s fisheries.

This month, Congress announced it would work to reduce the financial strain on commercial fishermen who participated in a federal buyback of permits and fishing boats, mostly draggers, in California back in 2003. There’s a bill in the House to refinance a buyback loan at a lower rate than the 5 percent set by the feds when the buyback was enacted. It’s welcome news for commercial fishermen—but what good did the original buyback do, if any? Read the rest here 08:47

A Rosie Report! Observer program gets ‘sea legs’ as fisheries recover

observer sean sullivanThis summer, the alleged assault of a federal fisheries observer by a deck boss of a groundfish trawler from Astoria,,, Brad Pettinger, director of the Oregon Trawl Commission, called it a “renewal of the social contract that we have with the public.” Now, NOAA is juggling new questions ,, And observers, once viewed with distrust and even hostility, say their jobs have gotten easier. Read the rest here 18:00

Commercial Crab Season Set to Get Cracking Saturday – The Crab look Primo, Baby!!

Cali crab seasonPast the tourist traps at Fisherman’s Wharf, the real fishermen of San Francisco are at work hoisting stacks of crab pots onto boats that line the pier. The commercial Dungeness crab season in California opens Saturday. Fishermen are still in negotiations with wholesalers about a price, but say they hope to settle on that by Friday. If they do, the will have fresh crab by the weekend. Read the rest here 11:56

Rome Packing Co., Inc., of East Providence Recalls Crab Meat

 A company is recalling crab meat they sold to several states after finding it was contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes bacteria. The Rhode Island Department of Health said on Friday that Rome Packing Co., Inc., of East Providence, issued the voluntary recall of several kinds of fresh and frozen crab meat sold under the Ocean’s Catch brand. The meat was distributed in Florida, Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois and California to retail stores including but not limited to: Shaw’s Supermarkets, Legal Sea Foods, and Harbor Fish Market. Read the rest here 20:06

Overview of California DFW’s Annual Marine Fisheries Report – April 2014

California’s Annual Marine Fisheries Report – The Marine Life Management Act (MLMA) guides State fishery management policy.  It does so by instructing managers to focus on sustainable use, conservation (including habitat protection), rebuilding depressed stocks, preventing overfishing, and establishing a scientific foundation for management decisions. Presented during the Fisheries Forum – April 2014 Read the report  14:13

California – Watch state of salmon forum on webcast; webcast live by the California Channel, www.calchannel.com, video will be archived

SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Wesley Chesbro, chair of Legislature’s , has finalized the agenda for this week’s special hearing on the state of California salmon. The hearing is scheduled for 1:30 to 4:30 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 21, in room 437 at the state Capitol in Sacramento. [email protected]  21:52

Endangered Species Act gone wild! The ENGO Northern spotted owl in the Coal Mine?, or Nature Prevail’s despite Meddling

Endangered Species Act gone wild! It’s too bad another species of owl must lose its life in the process: Authorities are proposing to shoot or remove more than 3,600 barred owls from four test areas of California, Oregon and Washington forests. The more successful barred owls — larger, less picky about their food and more aggressive — have taken over much of the spotted owl’s territory. That territory used to be prime timber harvest land until the Endangered Species Act, which protects the spotted owl, forced the government to shut down 90 percent of logging on federal lands in the Pacific Northwest. [email protected]

Washington State Awarded $22 Million for Salmon Recovery – Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Fund

OLYMPIA – The Washington State Salmon Recovery Funding Board has received a $22 million federal grant to continue the state’s salmon recovery efforts in Washington. “A healthy Washington state economy is reliant on healthy salmon populations,” said Gov. Chris Gregoire. “Salmon support jobs and small businesses – especially our mom-and-pop tackle shops, restaurants, fishing guides and hotels. This grant not only will help Washington keep people employed, it will help our efforts to restore and protect our natural resources, making Washington a better place for all of us to live.” Of the $22 million, $15 million will be awarded by the Salmon Recovery Funding Board as competitive grants for projects statewide that will restore and protect the rivers, streams and bays that salmon need to recover. “The grant process is very competitive and works from the ground up,” said Kaleen Cottingham, director of the Recreation and Conservation Office, which administers the federal grant and supports the Salmon Recovery Funding Board. “Local communities wrote salmon recovery plans, which were approved by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Local watershed groups, called lead entities, select projects based on the priorities in those plans and community needs. State scientists review the projects to make sure they will be effective. The process helps us ensure we are investing in projects that will do the most to recover salmon.” Read more  http://www.lakestevensjournal.com/county-state/article.exm/2012-09-06_washington_state_awarded__22_million_for_salmon_recovery

The federal Department of Commerce’s NOAA administers the fund and will competitively award the $65 million for Fiscal Year 2012 among the states of Washington, Oregon, Alaska, Idaho and California, and to the west coast tribes.

“We are pleased to continue this investment in salmon recovery in the Northwest,” said Will Stelle, NOAA’s Northwest regional administrator. “In addition to improving our environment, salmon restoration projects generate jobs on par with dollars spent on infrastructure projects like roads and highways.”