Tag Archives: northeast-groundfishery

Gloucester Daily Times Editorial: NOAA fishing report just shows tip of economic iceberg

gdt iconYes, the numbers are grim. The latest NOAA annual report on the Northeast groundfishery shows that landings were down by 24.9 percent across the region, while landings and values both hit four-year lows in Gloucester, and overall values fell by nearly 25 percent from the previous year. Read [email protected]

Markey wants seafood inspected for mislabeling – WASHINGTON — Fish sold on U.S. retail markets are routinely mislabeled, harming consumers while threatening the livelihoods of American fishermen, Democratic Sen. Edward Markey of Massachusetts and Republican Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi said in a letter to President Barack Obama. (Ed Markey should pay attention to real issues that affect the fishing industry instead of shilling for Oceana) Read [email protected]  00:39

Fish consumers may not notice cuts that are hurting New England’s fishermen

Associated Press – To the 79-year-old, the decline of the industry has stolen jobs, community  spirit and opportunity. And it’s not over, Gilson said. This month , New England’s fishermen again saw a cut to the number of fish  they can catch, this time so deep that the historic industry’s existence is  threatened from Rhode Island to Maine,,, continued

In depth article: Climate Change Impacts Ripple Through Fishing Industry While Ocean Science Lags Behind

Huffington Post – With a limberness that defies his 69 years, Frank Mirarchi heaves himself over the edge of a concrete wharf and steps out onto a slack, downward sloping dock line bouncing 20 feet above the lapping waters near Scituate, Mass. continued

BULLARD, SHELLEY, and COD: or Fish Being and Nothingness – Featured Writer Dick Grachek

63338_485671558129923_2088140092_s dickyg“Returning Our New England Fisheries to Profitability”: “You’re doin’ a great job, Brownie” aka, Janie, Johnny, Petey.  You should be proud.  Mission Accomplished?

In her resignation email Lubchenco made the gravity-defying claim that she had made “notable progress” in “ending overfishing, rebuilding depleted stocks, and returning fishing to profitability”; but soon after, John Bullard “In an interview at the Times, Bullard said the telling figure was that the fleet caught only 54 percent of the allowed catch in 2012, and reasoned from that statistic that there is a dearth of inshore cod, a situation that warrants serious action to reverse.”  Richard Gaines March 8, 2013 Gloucester Daily Times, “NOAA head explains stock stand” 

Peter Shelley of Conservation Law Foundation explains the Cod Dilemma in a wormy little video he so humorously named “For Cod’s Sake”…..continued

Interview: Fishing Season Begins -Vito Giacalone – Tom Dempsey on WGBH

Can the small family-owned boats survive or will the remaining fishermen wind up as sharecroppers for someone else’s fleet?

By Rich Eldred – BREWSTER —  Just as big eat the little fish in the sea, Cape Cod’s fishing fleet is being  swallowed by larger pockets that are buying the available quota of cod and other  catch. continued

 

Three years into catch shares, fishing industry faces ‘Day of Reckoning’

sct logoNEW BEDFORD — Sharp new cuts in fishing quotas mark the start today of the fourth year of fishing catch shares and sector management in the Northeast, NOAA’s prescription for rebuilding fish stocks and streamlining the fishing industry. But the fishermen who now see their quotas of some fish cut by more than 70 percent, who see their livelihood evaporating before their eyes, who are losing homes to foreclosure, insist, without contradiction, that they have done everything NOAA Fisheries has asked them to do in the past three years, and years before that. sadly, continued

60 Massachusetts Lawmakers urge Governor Patrick to seek fishing aid from Obama, his personal friend from their Chicago days

A group of more than 60 state lawmakers, including many with districts far from the sea, asked Gov. Deval Patrick Thursday to appeal directly to President Obama, his personal friend from their Chicago days, to grant emergency relief from impending cutbacks in commercial fishery landings widely feared to render the commercial fishing industry “non-viable.”President Obama has kept a stony silence in the face of the growing crisis once he appointed Lubchenco to administer the nation’s oceans and fisheries. And he failed to respond to requests for her dismissal from Reps. Barney Frank, John Tierney, Walter Jones and Sen. Scott Brown. Frank, now retired, and Tierney, whose district includes Gloucester, are Democrats. Jones, who represents the Outer Banks of North Carolina, and Brown, defeated last November by Democrat Elizabeth Warren, are Republicans. continued

Warren hears from local fishermen about industry ‘under attack’

Wicked Local -“They want to get rid of the little guys, the people that know how to nurture  the resource, the people who do not care about getting rich,” Welch, a Scituate  fisherman, said. “We just want to provide for our families, and we want to work,  and we want to employ people.” continued

Lawmakers push to ease fish limits

Citing widespread evidence of an abundance of important commercial in shore fish stocks — and a scientific study that found flaws in the modeling methods used by the government to set catch limits — a contingent of state lawmakers led by Senate President Therese Murray is urging NOAA’s top fisheries official to delay dire cuts planned for May 1 and allow the fleet reasonable access to stocks while new studies are conducted into the vitality of the Gulf of Maine ecosystem. continued

Editorial: Division of Marine Fisheries chief Paul Diodati’s stand shows catch shares killing fishery

Noting that he shares the concerns of the relatively few state-permitted, small-boat fishermen, he made it clear that the shortage of fish within those fishermen’s usual grounds is due in large part to the fact that more and more big boats — “unencumbered by trip limits …particularly on Gulf of Maine Cod when they are aggregated for migration, feeding (and) spawning, has significantly contributed to declines in local abundance.” Read more

NOAA Regional Administrator John Bullard explains stock stands

NOAA Regional Administrator John Bullard said Thursday fishermen’s testimony he’s heard that the inshore waters are teeming with yellowtail has made him concerned about proposed draconian catch limits for the species of flounder. Yellowtail, cod, haddock, hake, and other flounders are found in close proximity, making up the Northeast multi-species groundfishery, and low allocations of prevalent stocks create the nightmare for fishermen who must stop work once they’ve come to their limit on any single stock. Read more

Editorial: Cape Pond Ice’s plight shows impact of fishery losses – Gloucester Daily Times

The Cape Pond Ice case shows once and for all that this economic disaster is not “just” about fishing.  It’s about the entire city’s economy – and a rogue agency of our own federal

government should not be allowed to bring it down. Read more

My View: Science, sense needed in fishing’s ‘human crisis’ – Scott W. Lang

The human crisis in the groundfishing industry is a real crisis. It is not contrived, it is not looming, it is not a threat, it is here.

Read more

Bycatch alert system growing for fourth year

sct logoNEW BEDFORD — New fishing grounds are being added to the highly successful system developed by UMass to avoid catching yellowtail flounder in the Northeast, it was announced Wednesday. Dr. Brian Rothschild, dean emeritus of the UMass School for Marine Science and Technology, said the program “has reduced the ratio of yellowtail to scallops and because of that it has been an economic boon to the fishery.” Read more here

Catch shares tied to cod losses – State fisheries chief cites lack of controls under NOAA system

The 2010 catch share commodification of the Northeast groundfishery, hailed by advocates including NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco as a sure path to restoring overfished stocks and profitability for the fleet, has had the opposite effect on Gulf of Maine cod, according to the state’s director of marine fisheries.

The habit of bigger offshore boats to accumulate catch shares in Gulf of Maine cod and capitalize on pulses of the cod with landings far larger than 800 pounds has “significantly contributed to declines in local abundance” of the essential fish for the day boats, state fisheries chief Paul Diodati said in a memo sent Feb. 5 to the Marine Fisheries Advisory Commission and obtained by the Times. Read more here

 

NOAA shielding key legal document – “That information is attorney-client privileged!” Ciaran Clayton, NOAA’s director of communications

The legal document underpinning the decision of NOAA’s regional administrator against easing the 77 percent cod limit cuts seen as a death knell for the industry starting May 1 will not be shared with the public, the agency has advised the Times. According to NOAA officials, the office of NOAA General Counsel Lois Schiffer submitted a legal brief to Gloucester-based Northeast Regional Administrator John Bullard last month that gave the legal reasoning behind his decision against allowing the Northeast groundfishery, declared a disaster in September by the acting commerce secretary, to be allowed a second year of interim emergency relief from extreme cutbacks in Gulf of Maine cod. Read more

 

John Bullard – No guarantees that fish stocks will come back

The big question is: Why has this happened? Over the years, quotas have been gradually reduced, but still the fish aren’t coming back as expected. It isn’t simply a case of overfishing. There are environmental forces at play such as predation from recovered populations of dogfish and seals, changes in ocean water temperature and increases in ocean acidity. So, while it may not be totally on the fishermen’s shoulders, it will be the fishermen who will have to pay the price. Read more

Fishermen look to White House – John Bullard, NOAA’s Northeast regional administrator based at Gloucester’s Blackburn Industrial Park, scoffed at that idea.

By default and past experience, what slim hope remains to relieve the declared federal fisheries disaster before it consumes the surviving core of the groundfishing fleet in Gloucester and other New England ports has shifted from lepcohanadership at the Commerce Department to the White House.  ”I have not heard one word about fisheries from the president,”said Paul “Sasquatch” Cohan, the Gloucester fisherman who announced at the Warren meeting in Gloucester that he had nothing left to fight with. “I wouldn’t give up, but now I have to give up,” said Cohan, who operated a gillnet day boat. Read more

Senator Warren hears the fears of a community poised to lose it all, the fishing community

An airing of grievances and an airing of fears rained down on U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren Tuesday in her first meeting with the fishing community since she took office last month. The grievances were those of business people, descendants of the nation’s earliest industry, who in one form of another had made their way harvesting the sea, but now find themselves trapped by government edicts and policy said to be posing as biology, according to Vito Giacalone, the local port’s best known and connected leader. Read more

Cod quota rollover is tightened, too – “we intend to allow just under 2 percent” John Bullard

NOAA Regional Administrator John Bullard has agreed to extend a 10 percent carryover of uncaught fishing quota to the new fishing year — for all stocks except the Gulf of Maine cod, for which a carryover and potential bycatch would account for fishermen’s total catch under dire new catch limits due to take effect May 1. ”For all allocated groundfish stocks, except Gulf of Maine cod, where the stock remains in poor condition and there is a high risk of exceeding overfishing limits, we intend to continue to allow fishermen to carryover up to their full 10 percent unused quota in 2013,” he said. “For Gulf of Maine cod we intend to allow just under 2 percent carryover in 2013 to avoid a risk of exceeding the overfishing limit. Read more

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

Editorial: Fishery shutdown would showcase economic impact

The senior counsel for the Conservation Law Foundation may be arguing for all the wrong reasons, but he makes a valid point: Read more here

Maine lawmakers urge help for fishermen – The state’s members of Congress join others from the region

WASHINGTON – Lawmakers from Maine and two other states are urging federal regulators to “exercise all authority under the law” to help the New England groundfishing fleet weather severe catch limits that many fear could decimate the industry. Rep. John Tierney, D-Mass., plans to submit legislation seeking disaster funding for the New England fishery as well as other U.S. fisheries. Tierney said his bill would tap money collected on imported fish to pay for the disaster relief and additional scientific research. 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

Our view: Bay State’s ‘Sacred Cod’ has become NOAA’s sacred cow

Yes, NOAA can show “scientific” data suggesting that these dire cuts — up to 77 percent for the Gulf of Maine cod catch — may be necessary. Yet NOAA also had 2008 survey data that showed many of the cod stocks were already rebuilt. And NOAA’s latest data is off an assessment model that did not include any input from fishermen, meaning it’s no more credible than the admittedly bogus data used in the “Trawlgate” fiasco of 1999-2000, when NOAA conceded its statistics were hopelessly flawed, yet still used them to set stock limits. 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!

Editorial – Save the fish, but also help the fishermen

This newspaper understands the angry response severe restrictions provoked among those whose families  have earned their living from the sea for generations  – “I’m leaving here in a coffin,” one fisherman from New Bedford, Mass., complained – but the council had no viable options…..We encourage NOAA to adopt the restrictions, as painful as they will be to New England fishermen, since they are the best way to give cod, now on the verge of extinction, a chance to replenish. Read more here at The Day

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

On the brink: New fishing restrictions — Frustration, anger and perhaps end of an industry –

John Bullard, regional administrator of the National Marine Fisheries Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, said an interim measure is only an allusion.“Fisherman don’t need allusions,” Bullard said. “They need a big dose of reality.” The interim action kept the fishery in business while addressing fish stock assessment numbers that were much lower than initially reported. Goethel said that discrepancy in stock assessment needs examination.“There should have been a real serious examination from outside the organization, not just from within,” he said. “We have to start looking for other underlying causes to this problem.” Read more here

Keep the Fishing Ban in New England – CALLUM ROBERTS, YORK, England

Where were the regulators through all of this? Always one step behind and perennially ineffective. Federal law delegated to the New England Fishery Management Council authority to manage the fishery from 3 miles to 200 miles off the coast, but the council didn’t see its job as speaking up for fish. This body was dominated by fishing interests, so when faced with a choice of fishing now or cutting back the catch to assure the fishery’s future, the council’s decisions often favored the short term. With such decisions, collapse of the fishery was inevitable. When it happened in the late 1980s, it was brutal and swift. By the early 1990s, all agreed that something had to be done. The council reinvented its approach to fishery management.Read more

New England panel approves 2013 cod limits with 77 percent cut

The New England Fishery Management Council voted Wednesday night to cut the Gulf of Maine cod fishery limits by 77 percent for the 2013 fishing cycle and to extend similar cuts for the 2014 and 2015, dealing a dire blow to the region’s fishing industry. Why this should be so became a sub-theme of the day, with the phrase “regime shift” used frequently to suggest a braid of environmental and ecological alterations —including millions of lobster traps that take an unknown quantity of cod as by-catch, large volumes of herring which eat cod eggs and seals which feed on cod, as well as the various forms of global warming that emanate from and absorb into the seas. Read more

Guest View: The end of “overfishing”? By Dr.Brian J. Rothschild (new england trusted)

Brian J. Rothschild is the Montgomery Charter professor of Marine Science and Technology at the UMass Dartmouth School for Marine Science and Technology.

The necessity of imposing the cuts is not clear. The council’s scientific committee has had difficulties reaching consensus on the management of key stocks. The Council is faced with a dilemma. If the stocks are down and the cuts are necessary, how do we mitigate the impact of the cuts on the people who work in the fishing industry and fishing communities, and then how do we plan for the future? At the same time, if the stocks are not down and the cuts are not necessary, how do we promote stability within the fishing industry and fishing communities, and then how do we plan for the future?

To understand the council’s short- and long-range plans on how to deal with its dilemma is crucial, particularly since the condition of the groundfish stocks may not be as bad as it seems.  Read More

Slow New England fishing raises questions on cuts

But Tom Dempsey of the Cape Cod Commercial Hook Fishermen’s Association, a council member, questioned whether the cuts would truly be catastrophic, since fishermen aren’t catching anywhere near their full limits, anyway. The real problem, he said, is that the fish being cut from the catch exist only on paper. “There’s a disaster in New England groundfish, but it’s because we can’t catch the quotas we have,” Dempsey said. “And in most cases, that’s because those fish just aren’t there.” Read More

Remember this guy? “Gloucester, New Bedford Mayors foolishly endorsing crazies in New England” a few fisheries malcontents??

SEAFOOD.COM NEWS by John Sackton (Editorial Comment) – June 15, 2011 A

Here is our editorial today, and a video.

Gloucester, New Bedford Mayors foolishly endorsing crazies in New England while the industry thrives, sickness has descended on the political class in New England that has  so tied themselves to a few fisheries malcontents that they have lost  sight of how they might really support their industry. Read and watch the video

NOAA study shows shrinking fleet – a perpetual struggle that will only be amplified in Fishing Year 2013,”

Keiley said she believes people are “frustrated” with the report because “they want to know two things:” “Are people making money … and how many people are working,” she said, “and those are two questions the report does not, and Salazar+MMS+Director+Testify+House+Hearing+enFuUMv-6cEcreally cannot answer directly.” She said she did not blame the Science Center because “they have presented everything they can.” “This is a situation where data is insufficient to provide the analysis people want,” she said. Keiley also pointed out that “revenue is not evenly distributed. The top 50 percent of vessels earned 90 percent of the total revenue, leaving the bottom 50 percent of vessels earning only 10 percent of the total revenue. Read More

Fish panel holds off on limit cuts – “I say if you’re going to take 1 damn percent (more), shut the whole God damn thing down!”

manatthewheelNew England fishing regulators Thursday delayed voting on a series of significant cuts to fishermen’s 2013 allowable catch in groundfishing stocks after repeated and emotional warnings that the reductions would finish off an industry already grappling with a federally recognized economic “disaster.” The New England Fishery Management Council voted 15-2 to put off deciding on new catch limits for various bottom-dwelling groundfish species until their next meeting, scheduled for the end of January. Read More

Flotsam and Jetsam – Nils E. Stolpe/FishNet USA December 19, 2012

According to Wikipedia“Flotsam is floating wreckage of a ship or its cargo. Jetsam is part of a ship, its equipment, or its cargo that is purposefully cast overboard or jettisoned to lighten the load in time of distress and that sinks or is washed ashore.”

They are used together to indicate potentially valuable materials floating on the seas’ surface.,This seems an apt title for periodic FishNets in which I address several issues that should be of value to anyone with an interest in oceans and fisheries in a somewhat abbreviated manner.

The forage fish fake out

Peter Baker gets a spanking.

And the Conservation Law Foundation is always there for the fishermen – just ask ‘em(Or better yet, ask a fisherman.)

Peter Shelley gets a spanking.

But then hope springs eternal

John Bullard steps up.

Jane Lubchenco – soon to be gone but not soon forgotten head of NOAA

So long, Dr Jane.

  http://www.fishnet-usa.com/Flotsam_Jetsam_2012.pdf   http://fishnet-usa.com/

The Big Green Money Machine – how anti-fishing activists are taking over NOAA  http://www.fishtruth.net/

U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee-$64 billion disaster assistance bill-includes $150 million-Northeast groundfishery and three other states

The bill’s impetus was relief for the superstorm Sandy disaster, but lawmakers have added a variety of other disaster relief measures, including farm drought relief. http://www.gloucestertimes.com/local/x1839366712/Some-Sandy-relief-for-fishermen

U.S. Court of Appeals Rules Against New Bedford & Gloucester et al- Sides with Feds and Special Interests

        The 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down every one of a number of arguments the cities and their co-plaintiffs in the industry made in their appeal. The court upheld a 2011 lower court decision in the suit brought by the two ports as well as fishermen and fishing groups. Broadly speaking, the court ruled that the government stayed within the letter and spirit of the 1976 Magnuson-Stevens Act, which was designed to end overfishing in the Northeast.

http://www.southcoasttoday.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20121129/NEWS/211290345

Court rejects Mass. ports’ suit against fish law-Cape Cod Times
BOSTON – A federal appeals court on Wednesday rejected claims by New England’s two largest fishing ports that federal regulators improperly enacted fishing rules that they say are wiping out local fleets.
Attorney Stephen Ouellette, who represented the New Hampshire Commercial Fishermen’s Association, “The fishery is now available to the highest bidder,”
Peter Shelley, senior counsel of the Conservation Law Foundation, which intervened on behalf of the government, said the plaintiffs’ claims “bordered on frivolous” and amounted to a “political sideshow.”

He said with two unambiguous court rulings in the government’s favor, there should be no doubt now that the fishing law is legal. “The challenge now is to get this fishery functioning in the way it ought to be functioning,” Shelley said.

http://www.capecodonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20121129/NEWS11/121129728

Read the official ruling here  Read the background on the case and appeal here

Fish quota limits spark debate GloucesterTimes.com

In May 2010, just at the moment NOAA put into operation a free trading commodity market for groundfishermen who were given an allocation and joined into a fishing cooperative, a perfect storm of constrictions began strangling the industry. The New England Fishery Management Council last week came to a consensus that the “disaster” made of the groundfishery required belated intervention — an attempt to preserve fleet diversity between big and little boats and regulate the free market to bar more of the $80 million industry from falling into a small number of big hands and external investors.

FLASHBACK! John Kerry – “Lubchenco is your friend,” February 2010 To leave the Fish Wars as Secretary of Defense?

Kerry released the following statement to the Times yesterday in response to a request about his position on Magnuson. “The status quo isn’t working, and I say that as someone who is passionate about the environment, but who can see plainly that people are hurting and there are legitimate issues that have to be fixed. “I’m going to be talking with fishing and environmental experts at the state and federal level to develop sustainable fisheries in New England and work with the New England delegation, as I always have, to keep federal assistance flowing into Massachusetts for our fishing families and to rebuild the fisheries.” http://www.gloucestertimes.com/local/x966804462/Kerry-to-fishermen-Lubchenco-your-friend

No offense Senator,,,,,,,,,,screw it, Senator Kerry, you thought then, as you do now, that its all about frittering out a few bucks to to the victims of President Obama’s US Commerce Department, the New England Fishing Industry. You have been ineffective Senator, and I’m done beating the drum for you. You have not delivered, Senator.

Please, John Kerry, just go away! http://bostonherald.com/news/columnists/view.bg?articleid=1061174640

 

Editorial: Lack of fishing ‘disaster’ aid paints telling picture Gloucester Daily Times

That shouldn’t come as a surprise. This “disaster,” after all, is hardly due to natural causes or “dwindling stocks,” as Blank’s declaration tried to push off on fishermen, lawmakers and taxpayers. It is chiefly due to NOAA’s chief administrator Jane Lubchenco’s job-killing catch share management system, which has enabled a relatively few large-scale fishing operations to gobble up more and more shares of the allowable catch. That change alone drove more than 20 percent of Gloucester’s smaller, family-owned boats to the sidelines in catch shares’ first year, an economic disaster in its own right, and verified through NOAA’s own figures. http://www.gloucestertimes.com/opinion/x121545279/Editorial-Lack-of-fishing-disaster-aid-paints-telling-picture

Fishing aid tied to fed budget talks Gloucester Daily Times

Overshadowed by the scale of the pieces in play on the national chess board — trillions in budget cuts, tens if not hundreds of billions in potential tax cuts lost and gained, and unspecified help for Hurricane Sandy’s victims and farm victims of drought — is a unified effort by the New England and New York congressional delegations to place a marker for $100 million for disaster assistance for fishermen and fishing communities.http://www.gloucestertimes.com/topstories/x257827572/Fishing-aid-tied-to-fed-budget-talks

“The fishing industry, in general, is in a very negative mood,” The Controversial Science of Counting Fish

At the meeting in Portsmouth on Friday, scientists detailed the complexities and uncertainties of counting fish that live out of sight. They also took questions from fishing industry advocates frustrated over what they say are shifting and incorrect population estimates that have led to lower catch limits and damaged their businesses http://www.seacoastonline.com/articles/20121112-NEWS-211120323

AUDIO: Highlights of NOAA’s Fishermen’s Northeast Groundfish Science Forum. Great Report from savingseafood.org

November 9, 2012 — Today, NOAA conducted a Fishermen’s Northeast Groundfish Science Forum in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, allowing fishermen and members of the public to interact with NOAA officials on groundfish science.
The following is a summary of the morning session.  A summary of the afternoon session will be published next week. Throughout the summary below are links to audio highlights of the day’s meeting. http://www.savingseafood.org/science/audio-highlights-of-noaas-fishermens-northeast-groundfish-science.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+SavingSeafoodRss+%28Saving+Seafood%29

LIVE – Northeast Groundfish Science Forum – Listen via Webinar set for November 9 begin at 8:30AM,

Registration is not required, but we are trying to get a headcount. To confirm your participation or for more information, contact Teri Frady at [email protected] / 508 495 2239.

Speakers have been added and the agenda has been further developed since the first announcement. The forum will also be available via webinar . An audio recording will be posted afterward. http://www.nefsc.noaa.gov/groundfish/meetings/

NOAA: New Opportunity Proposed for Groundfish Fishermen to Target Redfish

November 7, 2012 — NOAA Fisheries is proposing a new measure to allow members of the  groundfish industry to use smaller mesh sizes in their fishing nets in  certain areas to target healthy Acadian redfish stocks. 

http://www.savingseafood.org/regulations/noaa-new-opportunity-proposed-for-groundfish-fishermen-to-target-re-2.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+SavingSeafoodRss+%28Saving+Seafood%29

Fish council eyes December for ’13 limits By Richard Gaines Staff Writer GDT

The New England Fishery Management Council has set a special one-day meeting Dec. 20 to take final action on most groundfish allocations for the 2013 fishing year that begins May 1, and take near final action on Framework 48 which updates and refines Amendment 16 and its catch share maagement system. The special meeting was spun off the November council meeting set for Newport, R.I., due to the welter of issues. http://www.gloucestertimes.com/local/x1499658911/Fish-council-eyes-December-for-13-limits

Cape Cod’s fishermen fret over seals, dogfish and the future

Two areas, 35-miles south and 150-miles east of Chatham have been closed for cod  and other groundfish but the National Marine Fisheries Service is contemplating  re-opening to help fishermen because all fishermen are facing drastic cuts of 70  percent in cod and 73 percent in haddock on Georges Bank. But not all fishermen  are enthused.

Then there’s this insight by someone who can’t be very smart.

Wholesaler Andy Baler of the Nantucket Fish Company noted that huge mid-water  trawlers are catching tons of herring off shore while the National Marine  Fisheries Service looks idly on. “Cod and haddock feed on local herring but they’re starving. That’s why you  see fish so skinny,” he said. “The mid-water trawlers are going to suck every  bit of bait out there. You have one management system for some fish and another  management system that goes and kills all the fish they eat.” Bullard conceded the two plans are un-connected. NOAA takes a fish by fish  approach. “This port is crushed. We’re living on a few dogfish,” Baler declared. “We  need some help. Keep the herring here so we can fish the channel.”

Read more: Cape Cod’s fishermen fret over seals, dogfish and the future – – Harwich Oracle http://www.wickedlocal.com/brewster/newsnow/x1826353094/Cape-Cods-fishermen-fret-over-seals-dogfish-and-the-future#ixzz29O2eBrZ9

The relationship is this. The larvae of the bottom fish need to go to the surface of the ocean in order to obtain food – plankton – and light. While they go up, they become a feast for the pelagics. When those larvae that survive become codlThe relationship is this. The larvae of the bottom fish need to go to the surface of the ocean in order to obtain food – plankton – and light. While they go up, they become a feast for the pelagics. When those larvae that survive become codlings, they want to go back to their friends and relatives. While they descend to their native habitat, they become a second feast for the pelagics.

http://carmine3.newsvine.com/_news/2010/11/04/5408211-fish-and-future

http://jjthefisherman.newsvine.com/_news/2011/09/07/7650662-fish-in-the-northwest-atlantic-are-going-hungry-new-science-from-maines-department-of-marine-resources-helps-to-explain-why

 

Editorial: Inshore cod assault cries out for catch share reforms GDT

The grim ineffectiveness of NOAA chief Jane Lubchenco’s catch share fishery management system as presently carried out in New England may never have been more apparent than this week, when even NOAA’s new regional administrator and the Environmental Defense Fund, which pushed this system from the start, came out in favor of making key reforms to it. http://www.gloucestertimes.com/opinion/x1684125865/Editorial-Inshore-cod-assault-cries-out-for-catch-share-reforms

Cod war returns to Middle Bank – The Big Boys are Pounding the SNOT Out of it. ABOLISH CATCH SHARE RIGHT F* CKING NOW!

A large number of big commercial trawlers — 70 feet or more in length — from Gloucester and Boston have been drawn this week to the nearby inshore grounds of Middle Bank in pursuit of the season’s first pulse of cod, combing areas that are the usual domain of smaller, independent day boats from multiple ports, several sources told the Times Wednesday…….But since the advent in May 2010 of catch share fishing, predicated on the trading of allocated fishing rights between gear types and boat sizes — allowed to members of sectors or fishing cooperatives — the taking of inshore cod by offshore boats has been a persistent theme and complaint by dayboat fishermen that the only available source of their harvest and income has been subject to plunder by boats of a much larger scale…….A critical element in the pulse fishing for cod on Stellwagen was the elimination of daily catch limits for boats which entered sectors; these boats were given allocations and encouraged to catch as much as they were allowed at any time. The efficiency of the new system was one of its prime selling points.http://www.gloucestertimes.com/topstories/x674144460/Cod-war-returns-to-Middle-Bank

Crisis highlights running dispute over US fish law

Jay Lindsey once again tells us a portion of the story, and shame on Peter Baker for capitalizing on it, as is the usual for Peter Baker!

But Peter Baker of the Pew Environment Group said the law is not to blame for fish populations that have dwindled over decades, exactly what the law can fix. The law is pointed in the right direction,€™ he said.

Have the stocks dwindled Peter Baker? And what would you base that assumption upon? The reliable trawl data of the NESC? You have the information that everyone else has that pays attention to these issue. Of course, you wouldn’t recognize the weaknesses when they conveniently favor your ENGO crusade. If there actually is plausibility to the data, and I say that with doubt, would you also recognize that herring would be included as a predator, along with an exploding population of seals, dogfish and skates, hindering any recovery? No you would not! I base that on your narrow-minded herring campaign which can’t seem to be capable of connecting any dots! Isn’t it convenient to say the 2008 trawl data was flawed, while the revelations of the NESC that they are not using the industry designed equipment for the trawl survey as was specified during the creation of it?

I am disappointed with another Jay Lindsey half story again, and am disgusted with the Pew network.

httphttp://www.berkshireeagle.com/northeastnews/ci_21717557/crisis-highlights-fish-law-dispute

://www.boston.com/news/local/new-hampshire/2012/10/06/crisis-highlights-running-dispute-over-fish-law/0cje7CNwrUDdySAuqhLnRP/story.html

 

New Regionl NMFS fisheries leader hosted ‘listening session’ in Chatham Oct.2, 2012 – Hey Andy, herring eat too, ya know!

CHATHAM — At the town’s community center Thursday night, there was little animosity on display, as is often the case when fishermen square off in a room with an official from the National Marine Fisheries Service, the federal agency charged with overseeing the commercial fishery. Perhaps that was because of John Bullard, the newly minted fisheries service Northeast regional administrator, and his gentle manner as he listened to what Cape fishermen had to say about fisheries management. “You’re an even-tempered, soft-spoken man. You got that thing going on,” mused Provincetown fisherman Beau Gribbon………….Andy Baler, owner of the Nantucket Fish Company, said fishery managers needed to protect forage species such as herring that formed the basis of the marine food chain. “Herring feed everything,” he said. Baler advocated managing stocks not as single species but by placing importance on the relationships between species.

Andy Baylor has drunk the Pew Brew. He is blind to the FACT herring are now a predator specie, feeding voratiously on codling.  http://www.capecodonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20121005/NEWS/210050330/-1/NEWS11

Maine Voices: Diversity, versatility important to future health of fisheries

By PATRICK SHEPARD

In light of the recent disaster declaration for the New England groundfishery, fishermen and managers need to begin planning for the future of this important industry to ensure that affordable opportunities exist for young fishermen as groundfish stocks rebuild. Let’s fast-forward, for a moment, to when populations of cod and haddock are commercially abundant off Maine’s coast once again. What will this mean for local fishermen? The shocking, short answer is that most Maine fishermen won’t have the rights to be able to catch those fish. While there’s been a lot written about the high abundance and low price of lobsters this year, one thing that hasn’t been discussed is that most of the fishermen in this state don’t have the federal permits required to catch anything other than lobster.http://www.pressherald.com/opinion/diversity-versatility-important-to-future-health-of-fisheries_2012-10-05.html

Paul Cohan – F/V Sasquatch Shift of fishing closure gives hope

To the editor:

Hats off to John Bullard and the Northeast Seafood Coalition (“NOAA backs off gillnet closure,” Page 1, Gloucester Daily Times, Sept. 27).

How is it that the coalition, with far fewer resources and access to data, devised an acceptable alternative that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration grudgingly accepted with less than 96 hours to go before the closure went into effect? http://www.gloucestertimes.com/opinion/x708369977/Letter-Shift-of-fishing-closure-gives-hope

Watch Out! Here They Come. Nor’easter Men from the History Channel – Oct 4 – 9pm

NOR’EASTER MEN

OCT 4 | 9, 10, & 11PM!
From the quaint and rough-and-tumble seaside towns of Gloucester, MA and Portland, ME, come the daring men who toil at the nation’s deadliest trade – ground fishing.  They man the boats in America’s oldest working towns in search of adventure, for a chance to trade their sweat and toil for a small fortune. Young dockhands deckhands clamber to keep up the grueling pace of back-to-back 40-hour shifts, hoping to earn the respect of the rest of the crew, while seasoned veterans do their best to pass down enough wisdom and wits to keep these new recruits alive, and everyone else.

The HSUS Criticizes Federal Agency’s Decision to Delay Protecting Porpoises in Atlantic Waters

The National Marine Fisheries Service is legally responsible under the Marine Mammal Protection Act to protect harbor porpoises,” said Sharon Young, marine issues field director for The HSUS. “The agency’s step back from its own regulations and retreat from a compromise plan between the commercial fishing industry and environmental groups may lead to a larger number of porpoise deaths this fall.”

You must’ve missed this, Sharon. Have you heard about the slaughter that lies ahead for all those marine mammals we’ve been saving? Hmmm?http://www.humanesociety.org/news/press_releases/2012/09/harbor_porpoises_delayed_protection_092612.html

http://bore-head007.newsvine.com/_news/2012/05/03/11525810-so-hey-have-you-heard-about-the-slaughter-that-lies-ahead-for-those-marine-mammals-weve-been-saving

 

Bullard – Harbor Porpoise – Will Announce Decision Wednesday at NEFMC Meeting – Sept. 26 at 1:15 pm – LISTEN LIVE!

Mr. Bullard has stated that he will announce whether he has decided to change NOAA’s position Wednesday, Sept. 26 at 1:15 pm at a New England Fishery Management Council meeting in Plymouth, Massachusetts.

LISTEN LIVE https://www4.gotomeeting.com/register/423548903

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