Tag Archives: Gulf of Mexico

U.S. puts restrictions on Mexican boats over illegal fishing

The U.S. government is putting restrictions on Mexican fishing boats entering U.S. ports over allegations that the Mexican government has failed to prevent illegal fishing in U.S. waters. Starting Feb. 7, all Mexican fishing boats in the Gulf of Mexico will be prohibited from entering U.S. ports. “This is an example of how rampant illegal fishing is in Mexico,” said Alejandro Olivera with the Center for Biological Diversity. “Mexican fisheries enforcement has been weakened since the start of this administration.” >click to read< 09:50

Stormy weather triggers 1st mullet run in ‘nick of time’ for a Christmas payday

It was the first substantial mullet run of the 2021-22 season and, by late morning, dozens of boats and anxious fishers were on the Intracoastal Waterway pursuing mullet near the Cortez Bridge. Along the way, fishers race and jostle to net them and unload their catch at the Cortez fish houses, which pay higher prices for egg-bearing females. Around 11 a.m. Dec. 21, Brett Dowdy, Shawn Childers and Ryan Sloan, mullet fishers with about 39 years of combined experience, unloaded their first haul of the day at John Banyas’ fish processing plant, Cortez Bait and Seafood. Photos! >click to read< 07:40

Commercial Fishing Safety on the West Coast

In 2009, NIOSH completed an in-depth study of commercial fishing fatalities in the United States for the decade spanning 2000-2009. The purpose of the study was to identify the most hazardous fisheries around the country and to describe the unique safety issues in each. For this study the US was divided into four fishing regions: Alaska, West Coast, East Coast, and the Gulf of Mexico. The results of this analysis for the West Coast region can be found in the document,,, >click to read< 13:18

Anglers welcome offshore wind energy in the Gulf of Mexico; shrimpers skeptical

While commercial shrimpers worried that turbines might crowd them out of prime harvesting areas, recreational fishing groups wanted assurances they could get as close as possible to turbines, which can act as artificial reefs. Off the coast of New England, commercial fishers are fighting plans for large offshore wind farms. They say the farms will overlap some of the best spots to catch squid, lobster and other species, and could make fishing more dangerous and costly. >click to read< 07:43

Fishing Vessel Fire and Sinking Caused by Deteriorated Wiring

The F/V Lucky Angel was trawling for shrimp in the Gulf of Mexico when a fire broke out in the vessel’s engine room on December 10, 2020. The three crewmembers attempted to fight the fire but were forced to abandon the vessel. They were rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard. The vessel sank two days later. No pollution was reported. There was one minor injury. The vessel was a total constructive loss with an estimated value of $120,000. A smoke alarm for the engine room indicated on the alarm panel in the wheelhouse of the Lucky Angel. When he reached the engine room, the Captain,,, >click to read< 13:07

’Twas the night before mullet season

’Twas the night before mullet seasonw hen all through the village not a husband was home there was no one around. The nets were all hung by the fisherman with care in hopes that the mullet run soon would be there. My crew in their slickers and new boots and caps took a few moments to take a quick nap. When out on gulf there roared such a sound, like thunder the fish, they showered all around, away to our nets we flew like a flash, tore open the box lid threw the net, splash. >click to read< 07:08

National: Legal Petition Seeks Federal Ropeless Rule to Save Whales, Turtles From Fishing Gear

The Center for Biological Diversity formally petitioned the National Marine Fisheries Service to require crab, lobster and other trap fisheries to convert to new ropeless or “pop-up” gear within the next five years. The petition requests that the agency prioritize the transition in national marine sanctuaries.,, The proposed change would protect whales and other animals from entanglements in California’s Dungeness crab fishery, New England’s lobster fishery, the stone crab fishery in the Gulf of Mexico, and others. >click to read< 07:17

Coast Guard interrupts suspected illegal shrimp harvest off Key West

Coast Guard Cutter Isaac Mayo’s law enforcement crew detained a U.S. flagged fishing vessel Saturday for suspected shrimp fishing in the Dry Tortugas shrimp sanctuary during an annual closure period. The law enforcement team boarded the F/V Double E at approximately 7:30 p.m. and also discovered two safety violations. The vessel was escorted to Station Fort Myers Beach for further investigation by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries, Office of Law Enforcement, Southeast Division. >click to read< 19:31

Alabama: Fishermen land big haul of roe mullet on Fowl River

More than half a dozen boats lined up at the mouth of Fowl River Monday for a big catch of roe mullet. The roe mullet is a popular fish that can be sold for money, especially the females that hold eggs. Licensed fishermen use gill nets to capture the fish as they move from the rivers to the Gulf of Mexico. In Alabama, gill net fishing will soon be extinct. The state no longer issues gill net licenses for environmental concerns. Many gill net fishermen have been fishing for roe mullet for generations and sell the fish to support their families. Video, >click to read< 07:34

NOAA: Temporary rule allows shrimpers limited tow times as an alternative to TED’s

NOAA is publishing a temporary rule to allow shrimp fishers to continue to use limited tow times as an alternative to Turtle Excluder Devices. According to LDWF, the use will be in specific Louisiana state waters from 91° 23’ West longitude eastward to the Louisiana/Mississippi border, and seaward out three nautical miles. The temporary rule is effective from December 7, 2021 through January 5, 2022. >click to read< 12:02

A vanishing coastal icon

You don’t see shrimp trawlers working the sea like you once did. You don’t see them coming in with their photogenic outriggers up. To be clear, trawlers still work the sea but nowhere in numbers like they once did.,, Times were you’d see them out at sea working, nets out, capturing shrimp. Beachgoers would see several trawlers with nets up coming home with a haul. Beachgoers and locals alike knew where to get fresh-caught shrimp and it was no marketing spin. It was the real deal, but those days are slipping away. Regulations, pollution, imports, inaccessible shrimping grounds, mariculture, maintenance costs, aging fleets, and other factors have put the hurt on the shrimping industry.  >click to read< 07:36

The U.S. is hungry for seafood, but more industrial aquaculture is not the answer

An often cited statistic to prove the need for industrial aquaculture is that as a country, we import as much as 90% of the seafood we consume. A lesser-known fact is that U.S. seafood exports have grown to record levels over the past decade. Rather than allowing destructive fish farming practices that can pollute our environment and displace commercial fishing in our markets, we should support our domestic fishing communities, so they can sell more of the higher-quality wild-caught seafood we produce here at home. Right now, megacorporation’s are pushing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and other federal agencies to gut existing regulations and fast-track permit approvals to build new floating factory fish farms and control even more of the seafood market. >click to read< 14:11

Photo’s, Florida Stone Crab season begins for local crabbers

Stone crab season began in Florida on Friday prompting area crabbers to the Gulf of Mexico with traps loaded with fish heads and pigs blood. The goal: haul in thousands of pounds of the highly sought after crustacean claws, known for their delicate and succulent taste. Justin Ivers, left, of New Port Richey, and Josh Brokus, of New Port Richey, collect a basket of stone crab claws on Friday, Oct. 15, 2021, while offloading them from a stone crab boat at Lockhart’s Seafood Fish and Stone Crab Market at 589 Island Dr. in Tarpon Springs. Photos, >click to read< 10:55

Stone crab season to open, race to place traps begins

Stone crab season opens Oct. 15 and crabbers are permitted to drop traps 10 days in advance. Cortez fisher Brian Lacey and his crew wasted no time Oct. 5, the first day traps were allowed in the water, putting their first load out in the Gulf of Mexico at midnight. “The longer the soak period, the better the catch, typically, for stone crabs,” Lacey said Oct. 5. In 400-trap increments, the 7-year commercial fisher aimed to drop 2,700 traps within a 40-mile area in a four-day span. >click to read< 08:47

Hurricane Ida: A Bad Time on the Bayou

Hurricane Ida struck the heart of Louisiana’s seafood industry as a Category 4 hurricane, wiping out homes, boats, trucks, plants and icehouses…. ‘This is just a bad time to be on the bayou it seems,’ said Venice shrimper Acy Cooper, a member of the Louisiana Shrimp Task Force. ‘Before the storm we were being hit hard by Covid. Covid is still here, but now we have to face the difficulties brought on by Ida,’ he said, adding that he has been fortunate compared to those to the east of him. ‘Here in Venice, we lost three or four shrimp boats, but over in Chauvin and Dulac, it’s more like half that fleet. People have lost their homes, their boats. They don’t have power, gas or food. These are people that aren’t going to ask for anything, but let me tell you they need it, and they need it now.’ Click to read >Pt.1< and >Pt.2< 18:55

Hurricane Ida: Leaves Toxic Chemicals, Oil Spills, And Sewage Swirling In Her Wake

Days after the storm swept through the region, the environmental aftermath is emerging in a petrochemical corridor packed with hazardous-chemical plants and refineries. In some areas, the chemicals are mixing with raw sewage released from treatment plants that lost power.,, Nearly 100 spills and other episodes have been reported to the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality as of Thursday afternoon, raising concerns among environmentalists and public health officials about toxic discharges. >click to read< 10:47

Louisiana: Coast Guard conducts Hurricane Ida post-storm overflights along the Gulf Coast

The Coast Guard is conducting critical incident search and rescue overflights and assessing for damage Monday along the Gulf Coast Region of Louisiana following Hurricane Ida. Assets conducted critical incident search and rescue overflights and assessing for damage  Monday along the Gulf Coast Region of Louisiana. Photos, >click to read< 14:39

Hurricane Ida is Forecast to Rapidly Intensify Before Reaching the Northern Gulf Coast on Sunday

At 1000 PM CDT (0300 UTC), the center of Hurricane Ida was located near latitude 27.2 North, longitude 88.0 West. Ida is moving toward the northwest near 16 mph (26 km/h), and this general motion should continue through late Sunday or early Monday, followed by a slower northward motion on Monday. A northeastward turn is forecast by Monday night. On the forecast track, the center of Ida will continue moving across the central and northern Gulf of Mexico tonight and early Sunday, and make landfall along the coast of Louisiana within the hurricane warning area Sunday afternoon or evening. Ida is then forecast to move well inland over portions of Louisiana and western Mississippi on Monday and Monday night. >click to read<  10:50

Hurricane Ida Expected To Move Into The Gulf Of Mexico Tonight

800 PM EDT, the center of Hurricane Ida was located over western Cuba near latitude 22.4 North, longitude 83.5 West. Ida is moving toward the northwest near 15 mph, and this general motion should continue until Ida reaches the northern Gulf coast on Sunday. A slower northward motion is forecast after Ida reaches the northern Gulf coast. On the forecast track, the center of Ida will remain over western Cuba for another hour or two, and then move over the southeastern and central Gulf of Mexico later tonight and Saturday. Ida is forecast to make landfall along the U.S. northern Gulf coast within the hurricane warning area on Sunday. >click to read<  – Visit The National Hurricane Center, >click here<  20:14

The Bluefin Tuna Trophy angler season closed in March. Normally it would last into June.

The popular show “Wicked Tuna” put the species on a lot of people’s Bucket Lists. I fished seasonally through the 90’s until 2012. A small fish back then dressed over 300 lbs.! I’m writing now because of the effects of the BP Deep Water oil spill and poisoning. The Gulf of Mexico is one of the major spawning grounds for Bluefin Tuna. We sacrificed through Quota cuts to help the species. Commercial size limits allowed for the fish to reach sexual maturity to help propagate the species. The spill has affected the spawn since 2010 after a swipe of a pen set off the poison “COREXIT” rain!!! Dr. Jane Lubechenco signed that paper. The Gulf continually suffers from this planet changing maneuver! The effects of “COREXIT” have been known since the Exxon Valdez spill off 1989. She easily erased all of our sacrifices for the Bluefin Tuna Fishery. Regards, SBH. Click to comment! 16:25

UPDATED: Harrowing details of fatal Seacor Power capsizing – ‘All hell broke loose’

The captain of a vessel that was near the Seacor Power when it capsized in the Gulf of Mexico in April, leaving 13 men dead, said Monday that he never heard an emergency radio call from the lift boat as it toppled in a ferocious storm. “I heard Mayday calls from some of the other boats, but I never heard any Mayday calls from the Seacor Power,” said Ted Duthu. In emotional testimony Monday afternoon, independent contractor Dwayne Lewis described a harrowing escape,,, Lewis, who can’t swim, said he bobbed for three hours in the Gulf before a shrimp boat rescued him. “You’re getting beat up, and you’re just begging God to please calm the seas,” he said. >click to read< 08:44

Listen to SEACOR POWER USCG Marine Board Public Hearing-The USCG and NTSB Joint Formal Hearing examining the cause of the capsize and loss of life onboard the SEACOR POWER that occurred on April 13, 2021. 

More Florida manatees died in 2021 compared to any other year

There have more manatee deaths so far this year in Florida compared to any other year in the state’s recorded history. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reports 841 manatees have died through July 2, topping the previous record of 830 deaths that were recorded in all of 2013. That occurred following a red tide outbreak,,, This year, the FWC says, there has been “unprecedented manatee mortality due to starvation.” video, >click to read< 15;04

Uncertain Future: Commercial shrimp season nears for “frustrated” Port Arthur shrimpers

Port Arthur area shrimpers are facing an uncertain future even with the opening next week of the Gulf of Mexico commercial shrimp season for state and federal waters. Texas and federal waters are slated to open for commercial shrimping at 30 minutes past sunset Thursday. Port Arthur Area Shrimpers Association Vice President Kim Tran,,, a combination of events that includes Hurricane Harvey fallout and the COVID pandemic produced less-than-ideal shrimping hauls leading to fewer boat captains and deckhands. >click to read< 09:16

Tropical Storm Elsa Public Advisory – 800 AM EDT

The center of Tropical Storm Elsa was located near latitude 24.5 North, longitude 82.6 West. Elsa is moving toward the north-northwest near 12 mph (19 km/h) and this general motion is expected to continue today, followed by a turn toward the north by tonight. A north-northeastward motion is expected on Wednesday. On the forecast track, Elsa will continue to pass near the Florida Keys this morning, and move near or over portions of the west coast of Florida later today through tonight. On Wednesday morning, Elsa is forecast to make landfall along the north Florida Gulf coast and then move northeastward across the southeastern United States through Thursday. >click to read< 08:25

‘Eye of fire’ Near Offshore Platform in Mexico Extinguished

Bright orange flames jumping out of water resembling molten lava was dubbed an “eye of fire” on social media due to the blaze’s circular shape, as it raged a short distance from a Pemex oil platform. The fire took more than five hours to fully put out, according to Pemex. The fire began in an underwater pipeline that connects to a platform at Pemex’s flagship Ku Maloob Zaap oil development, the company’s most important, four sources told Reuters earlier. >click to read< 12:49

Tropical Storm Warning up along northern Gulf Coast with Claudette forming today

At 10 a.m. Friday, the National Hurricane Center said Potential Tropical Cyclone 3 was centered 220 miles south of Morgan City, Louisiana and moving north at 14 mph. It had sustained winds of 35 mph. It is expected to strengthen into Tropical Storm Claudette by afternoon and reach the northern Gulf Coast by Saturday morning. Winter dry air is still mixing down deep into the tropics. Yes, it is not cold air, but it is dry air. This almost always leads to asymmetrical tropical systems. The “wet” side is generally east of the storm track and it is in this region, where over the next 3-5 days we will see the wettest and stormiest, along with the highest winds and highest storm surge (if any, this is a weak system). >click to read< 11:41

Between June 18 and 21, 1959, an Atlantic hurricane caused one of New Brunswick’s worst fishing-related disasters. – The incident, called the 1959 Escuminac disaster, killed 35 people and caused US$2.5 million worth of damage. On June 18, the storm developed in the Gulf of Mexico. >click to read< – 16:41, 6/20/2021

Research concludes after years of studying the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and its effects in the Gulf

The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative, a consortium of 17 institutions in six countries, was funded through a $500 million grant from BP. The money was spent on a variety of studies, looking at both the Deepwater Horizon incident itself, and also the long-term ecological impacts.,, Steve Murawski is with the University of South Florida College of Marine Science, which was a leader in the multinational project. The biggest takeaway, he said, is that we weren’t ready for this event. They didn’t have the technology to cap a runaway well, a mile deep, and the government wasn’t prepared,” >click to read< 14:01

US Embargo Hits Mexican Shrimp Industry Hard

The United States has suspended certification of wild-caught Mexican shrimp, preventing producers from export part of their production to the USA. Already financially weakened Mexican shrimp exporters are confident that the decision will be reversed soon, but have concerns about the severe economic consequences. US inspectors identified non-conformities in the turtle excluder devices (TEDs) in dozens of fishing gears inspected at Sonora, Sinaloa, Tamaulipas and Campeche ports. News of the embargo was received with concern by the shrimp fishermen all over Mexico. ‘But we haven’t felt any impact yet, given that we had already exported all stocks and we’re now waiting for the next shrimp season to start in September,’ >photos, click to read< 13:13

Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser – $2 billion river diversion is opposed by many. I am opposed.

Turning the tide on land loss in coastal Louisiana is a matter of self-preservation.  However, the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority’s (CPRA) plan to address coastal land loss is a staggering $2 billion river diversion,,, I oppose this large-scale river diversion, and I’m not alone.  The parish councils of Plaquemines, St. Bernard and St. Tammany have joined in because those communities will lose already limited flood protections while the negative impact to their fisheries environment upends the livelihood of fishermen who rely on fresh water, salt water and land. >click to read< 12:28

Seacor Power crew tried to drop vessel’s legs, anchor to seafloor when it capsized

A squall was passing over the Seacor Power in the Gulf of Mexico, the wind pounded and visibility from the wheelhouse of the massive lift boat had dimmed when a decision was made, three hours after leaving Port Fourchon on April 13, to drop its massive legs and anchor them to the seafloor. The emergency plan was to raise the deck above the rising sea and wait out a storm that was much more powerful than forecast, according to an early assessment of the tragedy released Tuesday by federal regulators. In a preliminary report,,, >click to read< 11:43