Tag Archives: Mary Bess Phillips

Capt. Mark Phillips and the Illusion, the last of its kind

‘It’s not fish you’re buying – it’s men’s lives.’’ – Sir Walter Scott. The Predator sits dockside in Greenport, behind Alice’s Fish Market, a rusting hulk of a fishing trawler, 75 feet long and with no certain future to speak of. It is Mark Phillips’ boat, but he is away most days trolling offshore for squid in his other trawler, the Illusion. “It is not going to sea anytime soon,” Phillips said by cellphone, an edge of weary disgust in his voice. “The Predator’s days have come and gone.” The Illusion was dragging for squid near Nantucket on a hot day in mid-July. Phillips had started that week near Jones Inlet on western Long Island, but the ocean had heated up and the squid, which don’t like warm water, were scarce, so he moved the Illusion farther east in pursuit of success. >click to read<09:41

Fishing is a family business – Three couples know everybody needs to pitch in to make a living

Long Island’s fishing families know how to adapt. They have to if they want to keep making their living from the water. Many have succumbed to the sea of quotas and regulations. Fewer and fewer are hanging on. In the past eight years, the number of commercial food fish licenses has dropped by double digits —11 percent — from 1,030 in 2018 to 916 so far this year, state data show.,, Most of the families still in commercial fishing run mom-and-operations, Brady said. “Some can go back 15 generations, some have been here since the ’70s,” she said, “and some are just starting out”  The Phillipses, the Osinskis, and the Lofstads. >click to read<08:51

The loss of Greenport’s fishing fleet is another sign of a changing village

Just a few decades ago, Greenport Village looked very different. Fishermen describe as many as 50 towering fishing vessels crammed into the deepwater port, making pit stops at Claudio’s dock before their offshore expeditions in the Atlantic. The docks were swarmed with fishing crews unloading their stock for sale at fish markets across the East Coast. But today, the dozens of captains whose boats once fed Greenport’s fishing industry have either fled for other ports or been scuppered altogether. Read the article here 09:17