Tag Archives: nefmc

Coral plan threatens fishing grounds

 The NEFMC is working with the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council and the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council to preserve deep-sea corals from the Canadian border to Virginia. Area lobstermen could lose valuable fishing grounds if a federal proposal to close four areas of Gulf of Maine waters comes to fruition. The New England Fishery Management Council (NEFMC) has drafted a plan that would close a span of 161 square miles offshore to commercial fishing in an effort to conserve deep-sea coral there. Two of those areas, Mount Desert Rock in Lobster Management Zone B and Outer Schoodic Ridge in Lobster Management Zone A, are preferred fishing grounds for local fishermen when lobster head further offshore in the winter. The other proposed offshore closure areas lie in Jordan Basin and Lindenkohl Knoll to the south.  Read the story here 09:34

Warming waters have fish on the move. Regulators need to act now! Captain Sam Novello, Gulf of Maine Fisherman

T0 NOAA & NEFMC – Because of our warming ocean temperatures fish & squid stocks are moving into north for cooler waters to survive. In the near future , these stocks will be moving into the  waters and these stocks will be more abundant there than in the southern  waters. Most Gulf of Maine fishermen have very little quota of these stocks and most have no quota at all!  Our  regulators and the NEFMC should be addressing the issue now. Today in the Gulf of Maine, most of fishermen and boats are now out of commercial  fishing. At one time there was 2500 fishing  permits in the fishing  industry. Today I believe there about 200 active permits left. Most  of these permits are  small family day boats who are struggling to stay in business fishing. It would  be  a devastating disaster to our natural fishing resources and having Gulf of Maine fishermen dump these fish because of  lack of quota. Regulators and Management should consider using incidental catch limits on new stocks. Example- 2000 lbs, per trip. All Gulf of Maine communities and  fishermen would  benefit by using  incidental  catch limits in Gulf of Maine waters!  Captain Sam Novello, Gulf of Maine Fisherman 15:01

Gloucester Fisheries Commission opposes limited access to the historically open-access whiting fishery

manatthewheelA mere two days after the NEFMC received its first look at the proposals being generated by its whiting advisory panel and whiting committee, Gloucester commission members raised concerns over the impact the proposals could have on the city’s whiting fleet — particularly the small boats. “We should not allow any other species to go under limited access,” said commission member Angela Sanfilippo, also the president of the Gloucester Fishermen’s Wives Association. “This is a healthy stock and I am totally against limited access.” Sanfilippo’s views were echoed by member Joe Orlando and Chairman Mark Ring. The three proposals to potentially limit access to the fishery are contained in currently being developed by the council. The council’s whiting committee hopes to furnish a more finished product at the council’s next meeting in late January. The city fisheries commission, however, wasn’t waiting around for the council staff’s final analysis. It voted 6-0 to oppose any attempts to limit access to Ipswich Bay for the local whiting fleet. Read the story here 08:49

NEFMC Press Release: Council Approves 2017 US/Canada TACs; hears FW 56 progress

us-canadian-tacsNEFMC approves the 2017 total allowable catch for three groundfish stocks on Georges Bank. The agreement sets the shared TAC at 730 metric tons.The U.S. will be allowed to take 146 metric tons and Canada will get the rest.  Read the rest here 17:31

“Corrupt” goings on? Fishery council decision endangers scallop stock

PewOutdoor writer Bill Biswanger received a letter from Jason Colby, who is a charter-boat captain and sits on the board of directors for non-commercial fishermen here in Massachusetts about the nasty — he calls it “corrupt” — goings-on in the scallop fishery. He told me how Eddie Welch, a shellfish advisor, had written to him about the problem down on the Cape and wanted to share this with me and the readers. Here are excerpts from his letter: “A recent controversial decision to open select scallop grounds off the coast of New England to certain select fishing groups undermines sustainable scallop management, and threatens the future health of one of the region’s most valuable resources. Read the rest here 08:48

Fishermen Plan Demonstration during NEFMC Meeting in Plymouth Wednesday, 2 to 4 p.m.

The Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance is the group spearheading Wednesday’s demonstration, which is scheduled for 2 to 4 p.m. outside the fisheries council meeting at the Radisson hotel on Water Street in Plymouth. Stephen Welch, who lives in Hanover and fishes out of Scituate and Hyannis, plans to be at Wednesday’s demonstration. “I used to have two boats and eight employees. Now I have one boat and one employee,” said Welch, a member of Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance, a fishermen-led organization. Read the rest here 07:52

NEFMC Scientific and Statistical Committee Meeting Sept 1, 2015 – Listen Live

NEFMC SidebarThe public is invited to listen in to the September 1, 2015 Scientific and Statistical Committee Meeting (SSC). It is scheduled to begin at 9:00 a.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn Boston Logan Airport, 100 Boardman Street. Webinar Registration: For online access to the meeting – Click here to register and listen,  The webinar will be activated beginning at 8:00 a.m. and end at approximately 6:00 p.m. EST. Click here to read the Agenda. For more info, Click here 16:57

NEFMC Approve Some Habitat Changes – blocks no-fishing zone for scientific research on Stellwagen Bank

Federal fishery regulators say they will keep much-debated protections for Cashes Ledge in the 100_1407in place as part of a broad effort to alter the scope of New England’s fishing grounds. Peter Baker, director of northeast U.S. Oceans for Pew Charitable Trusts, said that with the recent approvals, the council remains “on a course to eliminate thousands of square miles of important fish habitat areas” in favor of commercial fishing concerns. He said the council has ignored conservationists’ (shrugs shoulders),,, Read the rest here 20:48

NEFMC Votes to Keep Cashes Ledge Closed

cashes ledge closedFederal fishery regulators are keeping protections of Cashes Ledge in the Gulf of Maine as part of a broad effort to alter the scope of New England’s fishing grounds. The ledge is an underwater mountain and offshore ecosystem mostly closed to fishing that environmentalists have ardently opposed reopening. The New England Fishery Management Council says its protections will stay. The council is meeting Thursday to approve a long-awaited plan for federal waters from Maine to Rhode Island. Read the rest here 16:03

Mainer Mary Beth Nickell-Tooley’s vote disallowed on NEFMC, What about John Pappalardo’s?

Mary Beth Nickell-Tooley, an at-large member from Maine since 2008, was informed Wednesday by NOAA Attorney Adviser Mitch MacDonald she “may not vote during the Council’s final deliberations on Habitat Amendment alternatives that open or close areas to fishing nor on the final vote to approve the Habitat Amendment for submission to NMFS.” Nickell-Tooley’s recusal served as a backdrop for another inquiry from , who operates the Saving Seafood website, whether council member John Pappalardo should have received a similar order for recusal. Read the rest here 08:45

Fishery science dispute front and center at storm shortened NEFMC meetings

gdt iconThe New England Fishery Management Council cancelled Tuesday’s session of the upcoming meetings in Portsmouth, N.H., but still holds out hope it will be able to squeeze much of the three-day agenda into Wednesday afternoon and Thursday. If that is the case, the final item could be the most contentious: Northeast Fisheries Science Center Director Bill Karp’s report on NOAA Fisheries’ stock assessment process and modeling program. Read the rest here 11:45

UPDATED!! NEFMC – Revised Council Meeting Agenda!

NEFMC SidebarDear Interested Parties: Because of the winter storm that is headed to New England, the Council leadership has reorganized the previously distributed agenda. The meeting will now be held in Portsmouth, NH from late afternoon on Wednesday, Jan. 28th, through Thursday, January 29th. Also, a number of items have been eliminated and will be addressed at a future date. Please see the new agenda REV.agenda_Jan2015 for details  or check our website www.nefmc.org, under Council Meetings. 15:08

Reminder – NEFMC, Notice of Public Hearings for Habitat Amendment 2

NEFMC SidebarThis is a reminder that there are still five Omnibus Habitat Amendment 2 public hearings scheduled before the comment period for this action ends on January 8, 2015. The remaining hearings will be held in New Bedford and Gloucester, MA, Newport News, VA, and in Brewer and Portland, ME. A webinar is scheduled for Monday, January 5, for those who cannot attend any of the hearings. Information here,, Public Hearing Doc here 16:50

NEFMC and MAFMC propose new bycatch reporting system for Northeast fisheries

NEFMC SidebarMAFMC SidebarThe Mid-Atlantic and New England fishery management councils jointly proposed the revision. They want the revision to apply to all 13 fishery management plans in the area. The proposal involves not only a standardized reporting and monitoring method, but also new procedures for observers, new set-asides and more. It would change the way NMFS operates framework adjustments. It covers 40 species and 14 types of fishing gear. Read the rest here 22:40

New England: NEFMC, Notice of Public Hearings for Habitat Amendment 2

NEFMC SidebarDear Council Members and Interested Parties: Please note we have has updated the public hearing notice – REVhabitat.mtg_notice.pdf –  1. The Gloucester meeting has been moved to a new location; and  2.  The public hearing document is available online for those who were not able to access it previously – NEFMC_Habitatpublichearing doc.pdf. Patricia M. Fiorelli, Public Affairs Officer, NEFMC [email protected] 19:31

Massachusetts: At Large Seat on NEFMC- Needs to be filled – Applications due Dcember 1

NEFMC SidebarInterested in serving on the New England Fishery Management Council? Applications are due 12/1:  09:34

Editorial: Fishery panel (NEFMC) holds chance to show need for reforms

130307_GT_ABO_BULLARD_1Angela Sanfilippo,,, violates standards of Magnuson-Stevens that require NOAA to consider the economic impact on fishing communities.,,And given the secrecy of the “unscheduled” study, there are more questions than ever about NOAA’s use of the “best available science” ,, Read the rest here 09:43

Tom Dempsey Resigns from the NEFMC

dempsey I’m writing to tell you that I’ve accepted a new job and, for that reason, have resigned as a member of the New England Fishery Management Council.  I’ll be working with The Nature Conservancy’s Sustainable Fisheries Initiative in California,,, Read the rest here 08:24

UPDATED! Don’t whisper a word, but, a very, very interesting rumor is floating about!

We have received word from the guys out back in the shipping/receiving department of Fisherynation, that someone has supposedly resigned from the effective immediately and will be helping fishermen out through the Nature Conservancy! My most reliable contact on the inside wouldn’t budge. We have heard who it is, but until we see something “official” our lips are sealed. 16:35 UPDATED 18:42 Dempsey Resigns, Takes position with Nature Conservancy! Read the tea leaf in the comment section!

Live Streaming Informatio​n – NEFMC Scientific and Statistica​l Committee Meeting, October 20, 2014

NEFMC SidebarThe public is invited to listen in to the New England Fishery Management Council’s SSC Meeting on Monday, October 20, 2014 Time:  8:30 a.m. The webinar will be activated beginning at 8:00 a.m. and end at approximately 6:00 p.m. Meeting Materials: here  Webinar registration here 11:52

Live Streaming NEFMC EBFM Committee’s Plan Development Team meeting Oct. 15, 09:00

NEFMC SidebarThe notice announcing the EBFM Committee’s Plan Development Team meeting, Oct. 15 EBFM Plan Development Team Meeting, has been revised to accommodate the details about live-streaming for anyone interested. Please note, this is a listen-in only opportunity. The agenda is here, and  posted on the NEFMC’s website here . Online access, click here 14:35

New England: Fisheries research collaborative calls for new regional projects

The University of New Hampshire-led Northeast Consortium has been selected to lead a new collaborative research initiative on the groundfish stocks and groundfish fishery in the Gulf of Maine and Georges Bank. The NEFMC stated in announcing the new funding initiative, “The NEC’s excellent track record over the course of 14 years speaks for itself.  Read the rest here 09:01

NEFMC Groundfish Oversight Committee meet’s today to discuss shutting down the Cod fishery

nefmc logoThe New England Fishery Management Council is working on new management measures for the fish. The full council will consider the ground fish committee’s recommendation at its meeting later this month. Read the rest here 07:56

A Big One! NEFMC Groundfish Committee Meeting – Wed. and Thurs. September 17-18, 2014 – Listen Live

nefmc logo The meeting is scheduled to begin at 9:00 a.m. each day at the Double Tree by Hilton Hotel, 363 Maine Mall Road, South Portland, ME 04106. Webinar Registration: For online access to the meeting, please click here Meeting Materials: Please consult the Council’s website by clicking here You will find an agenda and copies of the materials to be considered.  Questions? call Pat Fiorelli (978) 465-0492 ext. 106, or email at [email protected]. Read this letter from David Pierce, Deputy Director NEFMC. Background, Serious Trouble Read it here Gulf of Maine Cod Stock Status and Needed Action 16:57

Listen in – 0800 September 15, 2014 NEFMC Scientific and Statistica​l Committee Meeting

nefmc logoMeeting: The public is invited to listen in to the September 15, 2014 Scientific and Statistical Committee Meeting (SSC). It is scheduled to begin at 8:00 a.m. at the Courtyard Marriott Boston/Logan Airport, 225 McClellan Highway, Boston, MA 02128. Listen by webinar here  Meeting Materials here  Press release here  18:11

Gulf of Maine Cod Peer Review Meeting – Live Streaming Informatio​n for Aug. 28-29, 2014

Scientists with the National Marine Fisheries Service say the amount of cod spawning in the Gulf of Maine is estimated to be three to four percent of its target level. They key food species is experiencing low catches in states such as Maine and Massachusetts.  Attend the meeting by webinar. Information is here  08:01

Out of Nowhere Comes an Updated Stock Assessment on Cod!

Some quips, quotes and communications of the new reformulated and deadly impromptu Cod Assessment from the good people at NOAA, and its under agencies. Read it, and tell me what you think. Our comment section is open! <Read more here> 17:16

It’s Day Three of the NEFMC Portland Meeting – Listen Live! Scallops, Herring

The public is invited to attend the June 1719, 2014 New England Fishery Management Council meeting. Revised June Council Meeting Agenda.  Register by clicking here to listen via Webinar. Meeting Materials: Meeting documents will be posted on the Council’s website at www.nefmc.org.  07:35

Meeting in Portland – The New England Fishery Management Council Commence’s it’s June 17-19 Jamboree

nefmc logoThe public is invited to attend the June 1719, 2014 New England Fishery Management Council meeting. Revised June Council Meeting Agenda.  Register by clicking here to listen via Webinar. Meeting Materials: Meeting documents will be posted on the Council’s website at www.nefmc.org.  19:09

It’s time to listen to the fishermen who are asking for more ecological protections for the fish, not less.

A quick overview of why this is necessary: In 2010, the council established groundfish “sectors:” groups of fishermen governed by an overall catch cap or limit, that allows annual trading of fishing quota. When they created this new management system, the council also eliminated inshore fishing protections that were part of the old system. The new regulations and lack of inshore protections resulted in a perfect storm of heavy fishing pressure concentrated in a very small area, followed by a stock collapse and numerous nearshore fishermen who, with nowhere left to fish, were put out of work. Read more here  14:26

CSF STATEMENT ON EXPERIMENTAL GBYTF FISHERY Presented to New England Fishery Management Council

viewer-call-to-action-e1381518852468Dr Rothschild stood before the NFMC yesterday, and read this statement. The status of groundfish stocks in New England is shrouded in considerable uncertainty.  This uncertainty often raises the question as to whether stocks that are claimed to be overfished are actually overfished or vice versa.  Uncertainty in this determination reflects in turn whether management regulations intended to correct these characterizations are effective. Read the Statement here  10:53

NEFMC – Herring Press Release

nefmc logoPlease click here for a copy of the NEFMC Press Release Measures to Promote Accountability in the Atlantic Herring Fishery. The Press Release provides
details about the Council’s April 22-24 Council meeting in Mystic, CT. 08:02

NEFMC March 27, 2014 meeting of the SSC beginning at 8:30 a.m.

nefmc logoThe SSC Meeting will be held on Thursday, March 27 at the Omni Hotel in Providence, RI Discussion Documents  Webinar Registration  07:39

East Coast Climate Change & Fisheries Governance Workshop March 19 – 21,

nefmc logo



Information, and Agenda here 11:14

NEFMC – Press Release – Draft Habitat Protection Rules Move Forward

nefmc logoDear Stakeholders and Interested Parties: Please click here for a copy of the NEFMC Press Release Council Moves Draft Habitat Protection Rules Forward for Pubic Review The Press Release provides details about the Council’s February 25-26, 2014 Council meeting in Danvers, MA.  Read the Press Release here  14:48

NEFMC – February Council Report

nefmc logoPlease click here for a copy of the Council Report http://www.nefmc.org/actions/council_reports/Council%20Report2%202014.pdf. The newsletter provides details about the Council’s January 28-30, 2014 Council meeting in Portsmouth, NH.  17:14

NEFMC priority lists spotlights groundfish – Editorial: Fish panel must heed community impact in changes

gdt iconFish panel’s priority lists spotlights groundfish – The New England Fisheries Management Council kicked off its three days of meetings here Monday and quickly fell victim to its own process, as council members debated which issues deserved to be on its list of 2014 priorities. [email protected]

Editorial: Fish panel must heed community impact in changes – Yet this council — a policy arm of NOAA that is supposed to bring the input of fishermen, federal government officials and the environmental community to the same table, yet too often fails the fishermen – could also bury small, largely independent fishing fleets such as Gloucester’s once and for all. [email protected]  01:05

Sam Novello urges eased whiting limits – Getting the bureaucracy run around

gdt iconNovello said he first approached National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency staff with his idea and was told to bring his proposal to the NEFMC. ”I think they were giving me a bit of the runaround,” Novello said. He then contacted the Newburyport-based NEFMC and said he was told no changes could be made to the area’s fishing schedule until 2015 at the earliest. ”That’s it,” Novello said. “That’s all I got.” Not so, said Andrew Applegate, NEFMC’s small mesh multi-species plan coordinator. Applegate said he did not shut the door on Novello’s proposal, that he instead told the Gloucester fisherman that the process for changing the regulations is a lengthy one, involving the development of new rules, the submission of the rules for review and then the actual implementation by NOAA Fisheries NMFS.  [email protected]  00:35

Rhode Island AG lends support to Mass. lawsuit seeking to overturn ‘Draconian’ fishing regulation

PROVIDENCE – Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin has filed an amicus brief with the U.S. District Court in support of the Massachusetts lawsuit against the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration seeking to reverse a federal regulation that reduces ground-fishing allotments by 77 percent.< em> [email protected] 13:45

Cart Before the Horse – Access and Diversity in Fisheries – NEFMC and Amendment 18

The council, one of eight  national bodies established in 1976 by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery  Conservation and Management Act, abandoned in 2009 its former Days at  Sea policy that strictly controlled the number of trips vessels could  take in search of their target species. They introduced a new regulatory  model based instead on catch shares that, through autonomous ?sector  management,? would reduce the competitive pressure to overfish. However, one of the consequences of sector management has been the  overaccumulation of catch-quotas by larger fishing fleets and the  subsequent decline of coastal fishermen who operate inshore vessels.[email protected] 12:10

It’s 2:17 – 1430 and I’m waiting for the public stakeholders “webinar” hosted by the NEFMC to begin promptly at 1:00 – 1300!

nefmc logoThe NEFMC has contracted an economic analysis of the Northeast multispecies (groundfish) fishery with the economic consulting firm Compass Lexecon. The purpose is to provide the NEFMC with an analysis that would help determine whether there are excessive shares of fishery access privileges in the multispecies fishery, and if so, what form those excessive shares take. Now, this might not interest everyone, but I’m interested n listening to the webinar that has kept me waiting! I can’t wait to hear why this well publicized webinar about this important issue is not being broadcast! BH Link 14:25

To NEFMC stakeholders – Groundfish Economic Analysis

nefmc logoThe NEFMC has contracted an economic analysis of the Northeast multispecies (groundfish) fishery with the economic consulting firm Compass Lexecon. The purpose is to provide the NEFMC with an analysis that would help determine whether there are excessive shares of fishery access privileges in the multispecies fishery, and if so, what form those excessive shares take. More detail’s in Public Notice’s 11:44

NEFMC Chairman C.M. “Rip” Cunningham rips Bullard monitor stand

gdt icon“Little, if any, justification is provided other than general statements that without higher coverage rates, ‘discard rates would be difficult to estimate because there is little catch history in these areas’ and the higher coverage would ‘allow (the National Marine Fisheries Service) to monitor whether vessels are interacting with protected species,’” Cunningham wrote. “Neither argument is convincing …” @GDT

NEFMC to NOAA on Closed Area Access: “Council Opposes 100% Observer Requirement” – “Your Arguments Are Not Convincing”

logoNew England Fishery Management Council Chairman C.M. “Rip” Cunningham has written to NOAA Fisheries Northeast Regional Administrator John Bullard expressing the Council’s opposition to NOAA’s requirement for the industry to fund all at-sea monitoring coverage for closed area access. Chairman Cunningham suggests this requirement may prevent any participation in the program. He notes that as a result of the fragile economic state of many participants, the increased costs to fund observers may not be affordable. He also noted that little, if any, justification for this requirement was provided other than two general statements which the Council did not find convincing. Read the Letter

East Coast Fishery Managers Sign Agreement to Coordinate Deep Sea Coral Conservati​on

Attached is a joint news release from the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, New England Fishery Management Council, and South Atlantic Fishery Management Council continued herenefmc logo

Government proposal to reopen ocean commercial fishing grounds draws criticism – It does nothing to help small boat independent fishermen

“It’s not like the closed areas are just a paradise full of fish. This is not a  panacea,” said Frank Mirarchi, a Scituate fisherman of 51 years. [email protected]

NEFMC Seeks Fishermen to Participat​e in an Electronic Monitoring Working Group

The New England Fishery Management Council is forming an ad hoc Electronic Monitoring (EM)Working Group. Its members will be asked to identify any existing barriers or necessary steps that would enhance groundfish sector operatnefmc logoions plan(s), in particular those plans that rely on electronic monitoring as a primary mechanism to achieve their stated compliance and catch attribution goals.  read more about this.

Nils Stolpe: A staggering loss to U.S. fishermen and U.S. seafood consumers. And while on the subject of press releases…. CLF and Earthjusice

NetLogoBackground500It was back in June of 2008 that I first became aware of Richard Gaines’ work in the Gloucester Times in a three part series exploring the interplay between fishermen, feds, ENGOs and the mega-foundations that funded them in a controversial move to close Stellwagen Bank to fishing (see http://tinyurl.com/n8m3voh for the first installment). A letter about the series I wrote to Times Editor Ray Lamont started “kudos to Richard Gaines for reporting what is going on behind the smoke and mirrors obscuring the struggle to maintain the historical fisheries that have thrived on Stellwagan Bank for generations. He couldn’t be more on-target when writing ‘Pew is associated with public information campaigns against fishing and fish consumption.’”  [email protected]

Excellent Article: Fishing the Gulf of Maine: Tradition at a Crossroads By Michael Sanders

When most of us go down to the coast, whether to walk or swim or fish or sail, we take for granted what we see before us. We see the lobster boats and the colorful buoys marking the strings of traps, the bobbing green and red cans marking safe passage, the gulls and other seabirds. In the larger working harbors like Portland and Stonington and Port Clyde, there might be draggers tied up, unloading fish they’ve caught far out in the Gulf of Maine and on Georges Bank. What we don’t realize,,,,,,,,continued

NEFMC to ask Congress in its rewrite of the Magnuson-Stevens Act to establish a certification program for seafood

gdt iconThe council voted 16-0 at the end of its three day meeting in Mystic, Conn., to ask Congress to include in its rewrite of the Magnuson-Stevens Act language establishing a certification program for seafood — similar to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s stamp of approval for meat, according to the debate at the council. continued

NEFMC Press Background​er – Update on Habitat/Gr​oundfish Actions

Read it here.nefmc logo

NEFMC – Press Release : Improved White Hake Stock, ABC could be increased by 13%

Attached is a press release regarding the Quota Increase for Groundfish Stock that will be the topic of discussion at the upcoming New England Fishery Management Council Meeting, April 23 – 25 in Mystic, CT. If you have any questions, please contact the Council office at (978) 465-0492, ext. 100. Read the press releasenefmc logo

Meeting Notice – NEFMC, Groundfish Oversight Commitee and Advisory Panel

March 6, 2013 – Groundfish Oversight joint with Groundfish Advisors http://www.nefmc.org/nemulti/meeting_notice/130306MtgNoticeWakefield.pdfnefmc logo

As Fisheries Struggle, Debate Heats Up Over How to Help

Russell Sherman stood at the wheel of his boat, the Lady Jane, as light faded and his crew prepared to dock for the night. He made $19,800 fishing last year, he said, and at 64 is afraid he will go into foreclosure. “People are on the hook for money, and they’re not going to be able to pay it off,” said Mr. Sherman, who is a founding member of the Northeast Seafood Coalition, an industry group that supports fishermen and has pushed against deep cuts to the industry. “Desperate situation.” Sadly, Read more here

End of the line?

It could be overfishing. It could be global warming. It could be the seals. It could be a lot of things. In fact, there are perhaps only two things that are certain when it comes to fishing off the shores of Cape Cod: fish stocks are rebuilding at a slower rate than expected. And they will not meet management targets to recover to healthy levels unless something changes dramatically. Read more here

New England – Drastic Cuts to Imperiled Cod Fishery

Rip Cunningham, chairman of the New England Council, told the Gazette this week it was a difficult process. “I continue to think it was a tough decision to make,” he said. “Given the circumstances, I think the council made the right decision. The council understands that when they make their decision there are real people that are going to be impacted. I certainly hope everyone is thinking that we have to do a balance between mitigating short-term impacts to the fishermen and the long-term impacts to the resource.” Read more here

Voices of the exterminators and the exterminated .The New England Ground Fish Fleet

Just three years ago, the industry was told that the Gulf of Maine cod stock was rebounding and was expected to be fully rebuilt by 2014. The following year, they were told the models had been wrong and the stock was actually approbullardaching
depletion. Fishermen continued to express concern with the science behind the stock assessments on Wednesday. “We’re not talking about, ‘Oh yeah, we’re going to have a tough year next year,’” “We’re talking about, you know, that’s it.’”David Goethel. Read more here

Opinion – Hard realities for New England fishermen

For decades the waters off New England have been subject to some of the most intense fishing pressure and environmental impacts of any body of water in the world. These impacts include shipping traffic, pollution, loss of habitat, and myriad other factors. Researchers at the University of California Santa Barbara’s Marine Science Institute determined in a study titled, “A Global Map of Human Impact on Marine Ecosystems,” that the Gulf of Maine and environs had suffered an overall degradation of more than 90 percent compared to their pristine state. The worst of this has occurred in the last 50 years. Read more here!

One fisherman’s tale shows plight of many -Richard Gaines – gloucester daily times

For a gillnet fisherman, these are trying times — with worse yet to come. Captain Don Smith, a 57-year-old transplanted Mainer whose family roots are in Nova Scotia and has fished commercially from Gloucester for more than 30 years, doesn’t need to be prodded to speak to that…… Making life more difficult for the small boats are the big boats; these “trip” boats that traditionally worked offshore on the more distant Georges Bank. But the catch share trading system imposed by federal regulators in 2010 has liberated them to acquire quota from non-participants or day boats, and — no longer limited by daily catch limits —they have been induced to chase the pulses of cod onto Stellwagen, where they flaunt their scale and have their way. Read more here