Tag Archives: Northern shrimp

Northern Shrimp – If shrimp fishery reopens, Maine to get lion’s share

The Gulf of Maine, closed since 2014 to shrimp fishermen, will operate under strict state allocations when and if it ever reopens to shrimping. The Atlantic States Marine Fishery Commission, which regulates the fishing for northern shrimp in the region, approved the new amendment that allocates 80 percent of the total allowable catch to Maine, with Massachusetts and New Hampshire each receiving 10 percent. “This the final action and it’s now in place for when the resource recovers,” Tina Berger, ASMFC spokeswoman, said Thursday.The action, known as Amendment 3,  click here to read the story 08:19

Northern Shrimp plan changes advance

Meeting in Portland at the end of August, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission’s Northern Shrimp Section selected several final measures for inclusion in the latest revision to the Fishery Management Plan for northern shrimp. Known as “Amendment 3,” the latest version of the plan will bring about a number of significant changes to the way the fishery is managed — if indeed the northern shrimp fishery is ever resuscitated. Because fisheries scientists believed that the northern shrimp population had collapsed, commercial shrimp fishing on the Gulf of Maine has been banned since 2014 with only an extremely limited harvest for scientific data collection purposes permitted. click here to read the story 08:52

Maine fishermen, scientists combine forces with goal to save shrimp fishery

For more than 20 years, Dana Hammond made close to half his annual income shrimping. But his shrimping profits began to dwindle in 2013. That season, regulators were alarmed by the lack of shrimp biomass in the Gulf of Maine, and the amount he was allowed to catch was cut 72 percent. The fishery was closed entirely in 2014. It hasn’t reopened since and Hammond, who fishes out of Portland on his boat the Nicole Leigh, has been trying to make up the deficit from his other main source of income, groundfishing. But Hammond isn’t ready to let shrimping go. click here to read the story 09:22

Shrinking northern shrimp catch sparks worry for one of Eastern Canada’s most important fisheries

The northern shrimp population in the Gulf of St. Lawrence has dropped by 50 per cent in the past 10 years, according to Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Commercial fishermen brought in roughly 30 per cent fewer shrimp between 2015 and 2016. While the exact portrait of what is happening with shrimp stocks may be complex, the warming temperatures of the Gulf of St. Lawrence have been fingered as a potential problem for northern shrimp, a cold-water-loving shrimp species found in the northwest Atlantic. Another factor is the increasing number of redfish, also known as the ocean perch, a species that prefers warmer temperatures. Redfish compete with the shrimp for food when they are young, and feed on them when they are older. click here to read the story 11:08

Northern Shrimp quota slashed – Who will get the remaining shrimp quota? Who gets to financially survive?

The fights were starting to brew on Friday, as word spread of cuts to northern shrimp quota for 2017. Lean times in the Newfoundland and Labrador fishery are turning to desperate times. In response to declining shrimp numbers in areas off the province’s coast, the federal government has slashed quotas, with the result an expected wave of job losses. Shellfish shock is hitting the province. Shrimp is not the only consideration, with largely ecological factors including warming temperatures and a return of groundfish numbers also driving down crab counts (the province’s other big cash crop). Click here to read the article 10:50

Plan to reopen Maine shrimp fishery in the works

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission is seeking comment on its plan to reopen the northern shrimp fishery, which has been closed for three years. The Arlington, Va.-based regulatory agency’s plan includes options such as changing the way the quota system is managed. The agency noted that earlier proposals had considered establishing a limited entry program. The current proposal eliminates that option and focuses instead on “total allowable catch allocation programs, gear requirements, and other measures to improve management of the northern shrimp fishery and resource.” continue reading the story click here 21:14

FISH-NL calls on Ottawa to reserve northern shrimp quota for inshore fleet in light of expected dramatic cuts

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) is calling for an immediate halt to the fishing of northern shrimp by factory-freezer offshore trawlers in waters off Newfoundland’s northeast coast and southern Labrador until stocks rebound. “Priority must be given to the inshore harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador — the economic pillars of our rural communities adjacent to the northern shrimp resource,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “The inshore fleet is totally reliant on SFA 6.” continue reading the press release here 08:46

Shrimp fishermen facing catch crisis

Shrimp fishermen in parts of  northern Norway are reporting their worst winter ever, with catches down by  between  50 and 75 per cent. Some say that if the situation continues they may be forced to sell their vessels and turn to  something new. It is not just Norway which has problems. Some areas on the north east coast of Canada are also reporting a sharp decline in shrimp stocks. One prawn fisherman Lynne Prudence Sjåvik , based in Helgeand region, told the northern office of the state broadcaster NRK  that for every year that passes the situation just seems to he get worse. Read the rest of the story here 11:25

Northern Shrimp lovers lining up for local catch

Joe Jurek knew his catch would be popular. He just didn’t know how popular. Jurek, a Gloucester-based groundfisherman who specializes in yellow-tail flounder on most fishing days, now holds the rarified position as the only Massachusetts fisherman allowed to fish for northern shrimp in the Gulf of Maine. His tenure as shrimper-in-residence will last only two more weeks, much to the dismay of local northern shrimp lovers — including Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken — who literally have trooped down to the dock with buckets to try to buy the cold-water delicacies. The local shrimp have disappeared from seafood retail shops in the last four years the shrimp fishery has been closed. “Once people found out about it, it was like a bunch of seagulls,” said Romeo Theken, who along with a couple other dozen friends put in an order for about 230 pounds of the small, sweet shrimp. “Now people know the process, that they have to sign in at the auction and buy it through a seafood dealer.” Jurek said he’s averaging 350 to 400 pounds of the shrimp per fishing day, which he lands at the Cape Ann Seafood Exchange at an average off-the-boat price of about $6.50 a pound. continue reading the story here 07:28

Northern shrimp stocks still ‘critical’ – no improvement in spawning biomass

It’s the season to talk about the prospects for the shrimp fishery in Newfoundland and Labrador and the initial information for the new season does not look promising. In a media briefing this morning, Katherine Kanes, mathematician/stock-assessment biologist with Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) outlined the current picture from the most recent stock assessments, for northern shrimp in fishing areas 6, 5 and 4 — off the Northern Peninsula and the coast of Labrador. Data collected from the fall multi-species trawl survey by DFO, as well as information from fishers shows there’s not been much improvement from last year. In SFA 6 — the area that most inshore commercial fishers from this province depend on for their shrimp catches — the biomass of female shrimp is still in the critical zone, she said. Continue reading the story here 09:26

Gloucester fisherman chosen for Gulf of Maine northern shrimp research project

Joe Jurek is no stranger to the Gulf of Maine northern shrimp fishery, having incorporated shrimping into his annual fishing calendar even after moving to Gloucester about a decade ago to groundfish. “When sectors started in 2009, we would catch our groundfish quota as quickly as we could and then go fish the other fisheries, including the northern shrimp fishery,” Jurek said Tuesday. “I shrimped long before that, though. You could say it’s kind of my background.” Jurek, owner and skipper of the 42-foot F/V Mystique Lady, will be the lone Massachusetts representative in the upcoming Gulf of Maine winter shrimp sampling program that will produce the only legal shrimping in 2017 in the Gulf of Maine. The Mystique Lady is one of 10 trawlers participating in the sampling program, along with eight from Maine and one from New Hampshire captained by Mike Anderson of Rye. Read the story here 09:56

Participants in cooperative winter sampling program for Gulf of Maine northern shrimp announced

The program, coordinated by the Maine Department of Marine Resources, New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, and Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries, is designed to provide biological data on the shrimp fishery which is closed for the fourth year in a row. These Maine fishermen were chosen from over 60 applicants based on a random drawing of those fully qualified in each region. Preference was given to trawlers willing to participate in a test of a compound grate for harvesting. The sampling program will include the participation of 10 trawlers (eight Maine trawlers, one Massachusetts trawler and one New Hampshire trawler) and five Maine trappers fishing for eight weeks from mid-January to mid-March.  Read the story here 08:15

Utilizing sound technology, scientists assess northern shrimp population along the Maine Coast

shrimpThis winter, a small fleet of Maine fishermen will head out to hunt for northern shrimp, even though the fishery itself has been closed for three years. They won’t be landing the New England delicacy so it can be eaten. The fishermen will use acoustic transducers, and a few nets and traps, to help the Gulf of Maine Research Institute learn where these small pink crustaceans congregate in our near-shore waters over the winter, where they lay their eggs. Using sound waves to survey a species as small as shrimp is a new challenge for scientists. “We have found low-frequency sound waves are good at detecting big fish, like cod, and high frequencies are good at detecting small organisms like shrimp,” said research associate Adam Baukus of GMRI. “The technology allows us to cover a lot more of the ocean than we can with trawls or traps alone. With sound, we can do 40 miles at a time. … Traditional (trawl) surveys are lucky to cover a quarter mile.” Read the story here 11:34

A shrimp apocalypse? Anything is possible, says DFO scientist

maineshrimp_courtesyofC_SchmidtA scientist with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans is defending its bleak assessment of shrimp stocks off Newfoundland’s northeast coast and Labrador, and is blaming the resurgent codfish – which feed on shrimp – as a “driving factor.”  Katherine Skanes is also firing back at those questioning the status of the stock. “When the biomass was going up, they had confidence in our survey. Then when the biomass goes down, they lose confidence,” she said. Jaws dropped this past spring after DFO’s annual northern shrimp assessment revealed that the “fishable” biomass in Area 6 had declined by a staggering 41 per cent between 2014 and 2015. DFO blames environmental conditions and predation for the decline. Read the story here 10:46

Reactions to Northern Shrimp quota cut- ‘Mixed emotions’ and a ‘devastating effect’

hi-shrimp-852FFAW Union President Keith Sullivan and Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Steve Crocker spoke out Friday on the federal fisheries department’s decision to cut 42 per cent of the shrimp quota off Area 6. “The immediate effect for inshore enterprises and plants and communities, it’s around 25-million pounds and a rough estimate dollar wise, it’s possibly in the $70-million dollar range,” said Sullivan. “So it’s going to be absolutely devastating for our communities and harvesters, and certainly the communities that depend on that.” While the cut in quota is disappointing, there is some relief being felt that the controversial Last In, First Out (LIFO) policy has lifted. Read the rest here 17:25

Last In First Out policy ‘descriminates against Nunavut,’ says Nunavut Senator Dennis Patterson

Northern_Pink_ShrimpNunavut Senator Dennis Patterson is standing up for his territory’s shrimping industry. On Friday Patterson called on federal fisheries and oceans minister Dominic LeBlanc to consider Nunavut’s position when reviewing changes to the Northern shrimp quotas. Northern shrimp stocks dropped dramatically in 2014 and 2015, so it’s expected the quotas are going to be cut. Under the federal government’s “last in first out” (LIFO) policy, Nunavut would bear the brunt of the cuts because the territory’s fishing companies are the newest to have been given licences. Other fishing companies in the Atlantic provinces were operational well before Nunavut was even established in 1999. Therefore, Patterson says, the LIFO policy favours those companies and “discriminates against Nunavut.” Read the rest here 09:18

The northern shrimp problem — a brief history, Russell Wangersky

CPT109344364_hd-701x1024Perhaps it’s fitting this battle is over a creature that’s a hermaphrodite — because the ongoing battle over northern shrimp hinges on a fundamental change. The financial-valuable northern shrimp, Pandalus borealis, develops as a male, lives four to seven years as that sex, before going through an inversion and becoming female. Right now, a federally established panel is asking a crucial question: should the last players to enter the shrimp fishery — Newfoundland and Labrador vessels closest to the resource — be the first ones edged out as the biomass shrinks and the total allowable catch shrinks with it? So think of this as something of a shrimp primer. Read the rest here 10:39

Dire warnings in the battle for Atlantic Canada’s lucrative northern shrimp

CPT109344364_hd-701x1024Nova Scotia fishermen and politicians are warning Ottawa about a possible repeat of the political meddling that led to the devastating collapse of the cod stocks in the early 1990s. This time, however, the problem isn’t cod, it’s northern shrimp. A federal panel reviewing the quota for Newfoundland’s north coast wrapped up the last of six public hearings Friday in Halifax, where 150 fishermen, processors, industry representatives and politicians packed a stuffy conference room. With hundreds of millions of dollars at stake, the temperature in the room went up as the presenters traded barbs over the fate of a lucrative industry that is only around 40 years old. Read the rest here 20:56

LIFO panel gets personal stories at Gander hearings-Who will share the northern shrimp?

Northern_Pink_ShrimpGlen Best is a fifth-generation fisherman who lives on Fogo Island. Since 1990, he’s invested about $5 million in his fishing enterprise — buying new vessels and fishing licences, and transitioning his enterprise from groundfish to crab and, since 1998, to shrimp. He was one of about 100 people who came to Gander Thursday to present to the federal panel appointed by Fisheries and Oceans Minister Hunter Tootoo to review the (LIFO) policy on northern shrimp. Best’s story was similar to the one told by several other fishermen at the hearing. Read the rest here 11:28

DFO justifies Area 6 northern shrimp catch by offshore fleet

Northern_Pink_ShrimpFisheries and Oceans Canada is defending its decision to allow offshore factory freezer trawlers to catch northern shrimp this spring, even though its own scientists say the stock is vulnerable to collapse. Inshore fishermen have criticized the fishing, because 2016 quotas have not yet been set, and could be cut significantly. Glenn Best, who fishes shrimp off Fogo Island, said the so-called “bridging policy” should not have been applied in Area 6 at a time when stocks are under review. “The [cod] moratorium would be a walk in the park compared to what’s going to happen if we lose this shrimp,” he said. “This is the bread and butter. This is what sustains communities from Fogo Island to St. Anthony to southern Labrador. We need this shrimp. Why are we taking chances with it?” Read the rest here 10:10

The politics behind the northern shrimp – A quick look at two decades of decision-making

SHRIMP-master675LIFO (Last In-First Out) – The cool thing about the Internet is that it offers up reams of background reports, press releases and historical data related to government policies and political decisions. Sometimes, someone who was there — who was privy to some of the goings on within the inner circle — will pick up the phone to remind a reporter of some of the history of a particular issue.So it was last week that Gerry Byrne, who is the province’s Minister of Advanced Education, gave me a call to talk about northern shrimp. Strange, you say? Wouldn’t the provincial fisheries minister, Steve Crocker, be the one to reach out to a reporter on that ongoing issue? In normal circumstances, yes. However, in this instance, Bryne has the lead on background material. Read the rest here 17:01

Last In, First Out review sees duelling public campaigns by inshore and offshore shrimp harvesters

Northern_Pink_ShrimpThe Department of Fisheries and Oceans will review the Last In, First Out (LIFO) policy for the northern shrimp fishery and that has two groups of harvesters launching two very different public campaigns. Earlier this year the federal government announced it would temporarily suspend the controversial policy. Some fishermen fear a review will work against the smaller inshore boats as they were the last to enter the fishery. In an attempt to win favour by tugging on the hearts and minds of people in this province, both inshore and offshore supporters have released videos. Watch the competing videos here 09:16

External Review of the Department’s Last-In, First-Out Policy on Northern Shrimp

dfocrestThe Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard launched the Ministerial Advisory Panel to carry out the external review of the Department’s Last-In, First-Out policy (LIFO) for the Northern shrimp fishery. The Panel will provide advice on whether LIFO policy specific to the Northern shrimp fishery should be continued, modified or abolished. For more information on the purpose of the Panel, go to the Terms of Reference tab below. The Panel is planning to hold public consultation meetings with fishers, Indigenous peoples, industry and others to hear their views on the LIFO policy. For planning purposes, anyone wishing to attend a meeting will be required to register for that meeting in advance. The Panel is also accepting written submissions. Please note: While the Panel is independently carrying out the review process for LIFO, the Department is providing the Panel with logistical and administrative support.  10:05

Newfoundland and Labrador: Fishing — by the numbers

fishing by the numbersIt can make your eyes glaze over, I’ll grant you that. And if you’re not emotionally or financially tied to the argument that’s being hotly debated in the public forum, you probably have tuned out. So it is with the current, ongoing spat over northern shrimp. It’s the case of the duelling reports; with the Fish Food and Allied Workers on the one hand arguing the social and economic benefits of the inshore fishery, and the Canadian Association of Prawn Producers and their factor freezer trawlers on the other, with numbers to argue that they, too, employ local people and support the local economy. Both have statistics to support their cause. Both say the reports being used by their other side are flawed. Read the article here 09:38

LIFO suction – War between big fish and little fish, or perhaps corporations and small business

David-Vs-GoliathIf the controversy over quotas in Shrimp Fishing Area 6 doesn’t sound familiar, it should. Because it really is the same old song and dance when it comes to our age-old industry: too many boats chasing too few fish — or, in this case, one of the species those fish feed on. Pandalus borealis — the northern shrimp — has gone a long way towards alleviating some of the pain caused by the collapse of the cod fishery almost 25 years ago. But it, too, has come under pressure, and the science indicates quotas must be reduced. Read the rest, Click here 17:45

Large vessel owners accuse FFAW of ‘double standard’ – Fishing industry divided on how to handle northern shrimp

A union call to shut down the lucrative shrimp fishery off the northeast coast of Newfoundland and the south coast of Labrador because of declining stocks has other players saying that goes too far.  It’s a politically charged debate, with roots in the battle between huge factory freezer trawlers and smaller inshore vessels, about who will get a share of the dwindling resource. “I’m nervous,” Twillingate harvester Brad Watkins told the Central Morning Show Thursday, saying a shutdown could drive brokers and buyers to other parts of the world. “That’s a very scary thing to be thinking about. I think they are jumping too fast here,” said Watkins. Read the rest here 16:02

Atlantic States Marine Fishery Commission Northern Shrimp Research Set Aside Program explained!

maineshrimp_courtesyofC_SchmidtIn order to maintain a continuing record of biological data collected from the northern shrimp commercial fishery, the section approved a cooperative winter sampling program that will allow a handful of harvesters to land up to a total of 22 metric tons (about 48,000 pounds) of shrimp under a “research set aside quota.” The goal of the program, according to an announcement from the commission, is “to continue the wintertime series of biological data (e.g. size composition, egg hatch timing) collected” from Gulf of Maine northern shrimp fishery catches in the absence of a commercial fishery.Read the article here 11:57

Shrimpers wanted for Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission research program

maineshrimp_courtesyofC_SchmidtThe commission, which hopes to begin the test-tow portion of the the program in mid-January and the trap portion about a month after that, is looking for a total of four trawl vessels and two trap vessels from New Hampshire, Maine or Massachusetts. The $10,000 program is designed to catch the northern shrimp, Pandalus borealis, while they are in inshore waters to collect data on the timing of the egg hatch, as well as the size, gender and development stages of the shrimp. Read the article here 07:44

ASMFC Northern Shrimp Section and Advisory Panel meeting in Portland, Me. June 12, 2015

ASMFC SidebarInterstate fishery regulators will meet in Portland, Maine, this week to identify management options for the shuttered Northern shrimp fishery. Regulators are working on an amendment that focuses on the development of a limited entry fishing program. (privatize/eliminate/consolidate)  Read the rest here Location Westin Portland Harborview (formerly Eastland Hotel), 157 High Street Portland Meeting Materials & Supplemental Materials 16:00