Tag Archives: commercial fisherman

Robert Henry Smith, Jr.

Robert Henry Smith Jr. of Lincoln City, Oregon, passed away on May 30, 2018. Better known as Bob (or Burly and or Bobby by many in the family). Bob was born Sept. 12, 1941 in Portland Oregon to his parents of Mary Frances (Murphy) Smith and Robert Henry Smith.,, Bob worked on King Crab boats in Alaska. I love to tell the story of him likely being the only person you would ever know that fell overboard, in the dark, no survival suit and survived! It did not detour him from eventually becoming a full time commercial fisherman. “Burly” loved his time on the sea and was at his best when he was 100 miles out on a clear night, by himself, and pursuing the elusive “Tuna” or “Wild Salmon”. A celebration of Life will be held August 18, 2018 at the Yaquina Bay Yacht Club, Newport, Oregon, between the hours of 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., overlooking the “Norma Jean”. >click to read<09:57

Somers to hold forum on commercial fishing Wednesday in Mystic, a free, open forum event

“Commercial fishing has been an integral part of Southeastern Connecticut’s way of life since before there were colonies. Local families going back generations have worked the sea to provide fresh seafood and feed the Eastern seaboard. These small proud family businesses are now on the verge of closing forever. I am looking forward to this panel discussion so that we can bring awareness to the problem, listen to first-hand experiences and work together to take steps to remedy it and help fishermen prosper in our state again. I want to encourage residents in Southeastern Connecticut to come to this free, open forum event.” >click to read<16:28

For longtime Wakulla fisherman, mullet is still the perfect catch

About 8:30 a.m. in 20-degree weather on 2018’s first Saturday, 80-year-old commercial fisherman Jonas Porter was catching mullet along Wakulla County’s coastline. Nothing stops him from fishing for a living, and since 1994, nothing has stopped him from challenging Florida’s net ban that dealt a life-altering blow to commercial fishing. “I told him not to go,” said Jonas’ wife, Bernice, handing him a cup of coffee,“ but he wouldn’t listen and now he’s sick.” And that’s the way it’s been throughout the Porter’s 57-year marriage,,, >click to read< 14:43

North Carolina: Commercial fishing under ‘assault,’ say Dare County Commissioners.

Calling it an “ongoing assault on the commercial fishing industry,” the Dare County Commissioners this week unanimously approved a resolution opposing the North Carolina Marine Fisheries Commission’s (MFC) proposed changes to the definition of a “commercial fisherman.” Commissioner Steve House, who made a brief presentation on the proposed changes to the board at its Jan. 22 meeting, said, “We’re in the battle again, and I’m proud to take on the fight.”  Under the proposed new definition, in order to qualify as a “commercial fisherman”,,, >click here to read< 18:32

Death of Maine fisherman found in his burned home being investigated as homicide

The death of a Whitneyville man found dead inside his burned home on Saturday is being investigated as a homicide. Maine State Police have identified the dead man as Wayne Foss, 48. Foss was a commercial fisherman who lived with his wife and son in the mobile home that burned, although his family was not home at the time of the fire, Maine Department of Public Safety spokesman Steve McCausland said in a news release Monday. click here to read the story 17:08

Three Run for Two Seats on Barnegat Light Council

This fall’s Nov. 7 general election in Barnegat Light is contested. Two three-year seats on Barnegat Light Borough Council are sought by three candidates.,,, Eric Svelling. “I am running because I am being urged to do so from supporters,” said Svelling. “I am a third-generation lifelong resident, 30-year business owner, 22-year taxpayer. I have a unique historical connection to Barnegat Light,” he said. As qualifications, he has also pointed to his work ethic and decision-making amid the uncertainties and dangers of making a living by commercial fishing. He helped build his fishing boat Native Son, and also owns the Edge Runner and Sea Beast, operating from Lighthouse Marina. click here to read the story 08:28

After 32 summers fishing with his dad, Cambria songwriter says goodbye to Alaska

Songwriter-singer Van William, a Cambria native son, says his recently released music video and the new songs he performs are deeply, profoundly personal.,, He says the music is a reflection of who and where he’s been, and his life’s successes, upheavals and heartbreaks, which — as is the case for most folks — helped to shape the person he is now. He said his summers spent in Alaska have “always been a huge part of who I am,” but “I’ve never been able to share much of it with anyone other than my immediate family. This video highlights how life feels up there and how heartbreaking it is to say goodbye to my years as a commercial fisherman.” Excellent video, photos, click here 20:53

Drone adds modern twist to an age-old fishing method for fourth generation Eden fisherman

His great grandfather arrived in Eden in the mid 1800s, and each successive generation has entered the fishing industry — from trapping and beach fishing to pioneering the lucrative bluefin tuna fishery using pole and live bait, then later purse seine trawling using light aircraft for fish spotting. After a long career as a commercial fisherman, Mr Fourter has now returned to his childhood passion catching salmon and mullet off the beaches of Twofold Bay and the Eden coast using the traditional beach seine method. He shoots a 300-metre-long net from a 16-foot rowboat around a patch of schooling fish. Excellent video,  click here to read the story 10:05

Death of deckhand in Hurricane Irma leaves void in Tarpon Springs

The boat was 32 feet, white fiberglass, with sails stretching up, up, up. It was, Carl Shepherd decided that day, the boat he would retire in. “What are you going to do?” asked his friend, Michael Ellzey, who drove him to Fort Myers in August to check out the vessel. Sail everywhere, Shepherd told him. Live out the rest of his life on the water. But Shepherd didn’t get to spend his last years peacefully on a sailboat. Instead, he spent his final moments in chaos on a shrimp trawler in the middle of one of the most powerful hurricanes in recent history. click here to read the story 11:28

Riding out Hurricane Irma – A reprieve in Dry Tortugas

Richie Stiglitz is having a sleepover on Key Colony Beach, grilling for his crew and friends six days post-Irma, telling stories of the past week. His story is a little different from most. He, with a fleet of nine commercial Marathon boats, rode the storm out 60 miles offshore in the Dry Tortugas. His home, on Cudjoe Key, was destroyed in the storm. “At first the storm was looking like it was going up the east coast of Florida,” said Stiglitz, boat owner and commercial fisherman. “We were on the seat of our pants for a little bit.” The crew included Marathon residents Justin Bruland with first mate Riley Young, and Raymond Bruland with grandson Jayden, 14, Randolf and Cole Daniels, Ray Salidino, Justin Woodward, and Stiglitz’s sons Deme and Peder, who, at 16 years old, each captained their own boats on the way down. click here to read the story 20:26

End of era for Naples fishing industry? Commentary by Tom Marvel, commercial fisherman, Naples

It is noteworthy in our city of Naples when a business lasts for 70 years. Such is the case with Combs Fish Co., where local commercial fishing vessels have unloaded their catches since the 1940s. As a commercial fisherman in Naples for the past 38 years, I have been closely following the potential sale and redevelopment of this business and the adjoining restaurant collectively known as Kelly’s. The significance of this property is that it is home to the last vestige of Naples’ commercial fishing heritage; it is our last remaining fish house inside the city.,, On some days, at the height of the fishing season, up to 10,000 pounds of fish will cross the dock, all before 7 a.m. With the proposed redevelopment, the future of this fish house is in question. click here to read the story 18:41

Chandler, Arizona man missing at sea; Coast Guard calls off search for 6 fishermen on crab boat

A Valley man is believed to be one of six people on board a missing fishing boat in the Bering Sea off of Alaska.  Kai Hamik, of Chandler, is a commercial fisherman who neighbors say loves his job.  “I see him off and on, depending on the season,” said Gabriel D’Zordo, who lives right next door to Hamik. “Sometimes he tells me the season is bad so he comes back early. He loves it. He loves it. He always tells me he loves it.” The U.S. Coast Guard in Alaska said the crew sent out a beacon alert 2 miles northwest of St. George, Alaska, on Saturday morning. The boat, a 98-foot crab boat named “Destination,” had six people on it and is owned by a company based in Seattle. D’Zordo had no idea Hamik might be lost at sea. He said he will stay hopeful.  “My goodness, my prayers. Every time he goes out I always say a pray because I know what he does,” D’Zordo said. Read the story here 12:23

The early shift: New Jersey People working while you’re still asleep

The early bird may catch the worm. But it certainly isn’t catching enough zzz’s. That’s the moral of the story for those who work during the wee hours. We caught up with a few New Jersey residents who regularly rise before the sun – a commercial fisherman, a waitress and an ER nurse – to chat about the challenges that come with working while the rest of us are in bed and find out why they stick with it. To make a profit as a commercial gillnet fisherman, you’ve got to sacrifice sleep. For 35 years, Kevin Wark’s schedule has been roughly the same: two nights at sea, one on land. But no matter how many times he toils through his 30-hour shifts, with little more than a 15-minute nap, Wark’s body has never grown accustomed to the effects of sleep deprivation. Read the story here 09:25

John Corbin, commercial fisherman and crabber, describes the challenges of the business

2016_nov_1859_farm2table_crab_robkerrphoto032-400x400Delivering tasty crustaceans to crab lovers has been John Corbin’s life work. He’s been involved with fishing one way or another since he was a high school student in Astoria. In 1989, he and three friends started a commercial fishing business—Buck & Ann Fisheries—with crab as one of its main pursuits. Although Corbin spends most of his time in an office these days, he describes the typical scene on a crab boat. When the season starts in December or January, a boat drops 900 wire mesh crab pots throughout the ocean. Each is marked with a buoy and tracked by GPS. “In the beginning of the season, we just kind of throw them out in different places,” he said. “You have your favorite spots, spots where you did well last year or think you might do well this year. Then, as you start picking them up, you find you’re totally wrong. You move to where you’re doing well, or you just go to another beach somewhere and lay them out.” Read the story here 16:01

Commercial fisherman turns low-grade fish into healthy, tasty pet treats

doggy treats from underutilized fishNo commercial fisherman ever wants to throw away or waste a fish he’s worked hard to catch. The reality is, though, some species demand very little interest among consumers and consequently, provide little or no return. But an enterprising fisherman in Mission Beach in far north Queensland believes he’s overcome the problem by transforming his low-grade fish products into high-value dog treats. Glen Murray said his ‘light bulb moment’ came when one of his own dogs was diagnosed with arthritis and the vet recommended fish oil tablets as a treatment. The beauty of his dog treat concept was not only finding a market for fish he traditionally struggled to sell, but the fact the manufacturing process utilised the resource more effectively. Read the story here 08:46

$1.25 Million Judgment Awarded to Injured Fisherman

justiceAttorney Matthew Shaffer obtained a $1.25 million dollar judgement from a federal district court in Galveston, Texas for his client, a commercial fisherman. The 54-year-old worker from Palacios, Texas was tying lines on a commercial fishing boat when he became trapped in marsh wetlands. He injured his knees and legs trying to free himself, but his boat and Captain abandoned him in the wetlands. Attorney Matthew Shaffer filed suit on behalf of the worker against the vessel owner and employer, alleging negligence under the Jones Act and failure to provide maintenance and cure benefits. “This worker was literally abandoned by the boat and its owner,” says Shaffer. “They left him injured and alone and failed to assist him in any form after he was injured. The employer has failed to pay for medical treatment or even pay for meager daily maintenance to keep a roof over our client’s head and food in his belly. We are so pleased that the Court ruled in his favor. We will continue to use all our efforts to obtain justice for this deserving worker.”  Link 11:25

Luke L. Gurney- lived life to the fullest and was the “best’’ husband, father, son and friend

through the stoemLuke Leonard Luscomb Gurney passed away on June 20, 2016. He lived life to the fullest and was the “best’’ husband, father, son and friend that anyone would want. Since 2009 he has fished commercially for whelk (conch), sea bass and scup in waters surrounding the Vineyard and Nantucket. He has lived on the Vineyard since 1994 but to anyone who knew him he was a “born and bred islander.” He had a passion for fishing and was the best at it according to his peers. However, more than fishing he loved his family with all his heart. His wife, Robyn Gurney and his two sons, Jacob and Sam loved him and will miss him dearly. He is also survived by his parents John and Linda Gurney, his sister Mary Gurney-Sylvia and her husband David Sylvia and their children, Grace, Luke, Meredith and Mairwen, his brother Joshua Gurney, his children Sophie and Elliot. With our deepest sympathy, Read the rest here  Help Support Luke Gurney’s Family In The Days To Come, click here  19:37 This is a very nice article about Luke Gurney. Islanders Mourn Fisherman, Father and Beacon of Light click here  20:56

A massive coastal wind farm off Long Island will please pretty much no one

cape-wind-power-farm-b1Election year is the season to channel more money into renewable energy resources because it tends to carry some significant sway with the liberal base. With that in mind, the green light has been given (yet again) to plans for a truly massive “wind farm” in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Long Island. But the usual liberal caveat of NIMBY (“Not in my back yard”) is always in play when such plans come close to fruition and this one is no exception. Some of the chief opponents to this forest of turbine towers are the fishermen who make their living in the targeted waters. Read the rest here 11:05

A dream becomes a nightmare

0220013When Dick Garbowski, a commercial fisherman in Green Bay, snagged an expensive net on an unknown obstruction in Lake Michigan in 1967, he probably did not know that he would set events in motion that would culminate in crushed dreams and a demolished schooner with a historical designation. Garbowski called an experienced diver and friend, Frank Hoffman, to help him free his $1,400 fishing net. The two originally kept their problem a secret, because as V.O. Van Heest writes in “Lost and Found,” “Garbowski had kept quiet about the predicament worried that someone might hear about it and try to abscond with the $1,400 net. Hoffman, too, had kept quiet because he knew that news of a new wreck could bring out other divers intent on looting.” was not until the summer of 1968 that the net was finally freed and Frank Hoffman realized he had an almost intact shipwreck to explore. The shipwreck was the Alvin Clark. Read the story here 16:42

Grand Isle commercial fisherman high on drugs, sentenced to 20 years for his sixth DUI conviction

judgement44-year-old Rockey Burnham, 44, was convicted as charged of his second fourth-offense DUI on April 20. Fourth-offense DUI is the most serious offense available to prosecutors under Louisiana law. Burnham was arrested on April 28, 2015, after he crashed a boat into moored vessels and the shrimp dock owned by Dean Blanchard Seafood. The U.S. Coast Guard investigated the boat wreck, while the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries handled the DUI investigation. The state agents concluded that Burnham did poorly on the field sobriety test, leading to blood work that yielded the presence of diazepam, nordiazepam and methamphetamine, according to evidence presented at the trial. His last conviction before this year’s was in 2011, for an arrest a year earlier for driving a trawler without authorization while under the influence of alcohol and crystal methamphetamine, crashing it into a dock. Read the story here 15:24

A fisherman’s doubt, and his love of the sea

scituatefish7He is up before the dawn, and, a creature of steady habits, he heads for the seashore. It’s dark when Frank Mirarchi jumps into his black pickup truck, and dark still when he reaches Scituate Harbor. He parks on the town pier and stares at the ocean. But his 55-foot stern dragger is no longer moored there. Actually, the boat is there. But it’s no longer his. It was renamed last June after he sold it — a poignant punctuation point to Mirarchi’s half-century career as a commercial fisherman. Read the rest here 15:01

Capt. Jack Hansen of Morro Bay

560-Hansen-IMG_0010_558_372_c1Captain Jack Hansen, 85, a long-time Morro Bay commercial fisherman, crossed the bar peacefully on August 22, 2015, at the home of his daughter, of whom his cherished boat, “The Darlene,” built with his own hands, was named after. At his side, of course, was his beloved cat and best friend, Morris. While fisherman and friends cheered him on, Jack regretfully left his boat for the last time just days ago, refusing assistance and stating, “By God, I’ve done it all these years, I can do it one more time!” As he was leaving, he placed his hands on the stern, and expressed gratitude for his boat aloud, “Thanks for the wonderful life, providing for my family and keeping them safe.” Read the rest here 09:48

Coast Guard Medevacs Commercial Fisherman 50 Miles Off Ocean City, Md. – Video

medevac f v apolloAn aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station Atlantic City, N.J., performs a medevac from an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter Sunday, June 7, 2015. The Dolphin crew medevaced a 20-year-old man who was suffering from respiratory issues aboard a fishing boat about 50 miles offshore from Ocean City, Md. The crew of the F/V Apollo  contacted Coast Guard Sector Delaware Bay watchstanders in Philadelphia at 3:36 p.m. to report the man was in need of immediate medical assistance. Read the rest here Watch video here  15:23

I want to be a commercial fisherman. What will my salary be?

Though many Canadians enjoy sport fishing, only a select few licensed and trained fisherman, operating in a limited number of regions across Canada, make a living from their catch. For such professionals, there are only a few seasonal windows when they are permitted to fish for certain species in certain locations, ranging from a few months to as little as a few days a year. As such, fishermen spend much of the off-season ensuring that they’re prepared for anything when that window opens. Read he rest here 07:40

SAFETY FIRST! Southampton commercial fisherman charged with exceeding state fluke limits

A Southampton commercial fisherman charged last week with exceeding state fluke limits by 630 pounds had informed authorities of his need to return to port because of bad weather, and will fight the charges, his lawyer said Wednesday. Bill Reed, who owns two commercial fishing boats at the Shinnecock Commercial Dock in Hampton Bays, said he encountered bad weather during a Jan. 6 fluke fishing trip 50 miles from the Long Island, and made a decision to return home. Read the rest here 20:18

Singing the halibut blues – Buck Laukitis, commercial fisherman

Why is more of the halibut resource wasted in the Bering Sea than landed and sold? Thirteen out of 14 fish in the Central Bering Sea will be wasted next season. Overall, the entire Bering Sea will only have 2.4 million pounds of halibut that can be sold in 2015, while more than 6 million pounds will be killed and thrown overboard as bycatch. Read the rest here 14:10

Maine women welcome a sea of opportunities

A blue lobster caught off Pine Point last month grabbed headlines for being a one in 2 million find. But the breed that appeared nearly as rare, in fact, was the person who caught it: a 14-year-old girl named Meghan LaPlante. Females make up a small minority of Maine lobster fishermen. Just 4 percent of the state’s 5,171 commercial lobster licenses are held by women, a number that has remained steady for about a decade,,, Read the rest here 09:47

Steve Urbon: Fisherman finds his way through industry morass

Willis “Bill” Blount calls himself “the poster child for struggling fishermen” in the hyper-regulated Northeast fishery. Blount was the sole fishing permit holder to attend a three-hour help session in the city for those applying for a slice of the fisheries disaster money, according to Kevin Creighton, fiscal officer for the Mass. Division of Fisheries. Dozens of others have already filed their paperwork, he said. We ran this article on Aug, 6, 2014  Read more here 11:59

Conversation with – Capt. Carl Snow

capt snowFor almost 50 years, Capt. Carl Snow has been plying Cape Fear’s waters as a commercial fisherman and charter boat captain. His extensive experience has earned him the reputation as the captain who puts fish on the dock among the locals in Carolina Beach. Read more here 15:33

Pilot Point, Alaska – 1 fisherman dies, 1 missing after skiff overturns

PILOT POINT, Alaska (AP) — A commercial fisherman died and another is missing after a skiff overturned on the Ugashik (oo-GA’-shik) river near Pilot Point on the north side of the Alaska Peninsula. Read more here 14:16