Cape Sharp Tidal turbine removed from water – Fishermen, “For us, it’s a total vindication,,,”

The Cape Sharp Tidal turbine has been removed from the Minas Passage, but plans to conduct testing at another location farther down the Nova Scotia coast have been cancelled. The company had planned to move the turbine in April from near Parrsboro to St. Marys Bay to do some short-term hydrodynamic testing. But a mooring line became entangled in it, so the move was postponed. Cape Sharp spokesperson Stacey Pineau said the company now has no plans to resume the testing in St. Marys Bay. The proposed testing had drawn opposition from some fishermen, who said no environmental assessment had been carried out for that work.  Colin Sproul, of the Bay of Fundy Inshore Fishermen’s Association, said the removal of the turbine is “a positive development” because the company has not been able to monitor the equipment since the turbine was disconnected from the transmission cable two months ago. click here to read the story 18:52

At least three killed as Argentine fishing boat sinks off Chubut

Argentine Coast Guard found Sunday the dead body of two of the nine crew members missing after Saturday’s sinking of a fishing vessel off the coast of Argentina’s southern province of Chubut, it was reported, while one more sailor whose body is yet to be retrieved is also feared dead and seven more are still missing.  The fishing vessel Repunte sank about 80 kilometers north of the coast of Rawson, in the Patagonian province of Chubut, it was reported. On Saturday, the Coast Guard managed to rescue two survivors and detected the lifeless body of another. It all began Saturday morning, when the captain of the Argentine-flagged Repunte signaled the Maria Liliana, which sailed 16 nautical miles (about 32 kilometers) apart, that they were abandoning click here to read the story 18:06

New England Fishery Management Council meeting in Portland, Me. June 20 thru 22, 2017

The New England Fishery Management Council will be meeting at the Holiday Inn by the Bay, Portland, ME., June 20, 2017 –
June 22, 2017  To read the final agenda, click here  Register click here to listen live via webinar. 16:52

FISH-NL calls on FFAW President Keith Sullivan to apologize to members

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) is calling on Keith Sullivan, president of the FFAW-Unifor, to publicly apologize to his members after an appeal court ruled in favour of scallop harvesters who were deceived by the union. Further, FISH-NL is calling for the resignation of Dave Decker, the union’s secretary-treasurer, who was in charge of the funding, as well as the firing of Jason Spingle, the FFAW staff representative who helped orchestrate the deal. “It’s practically unheard of for a union to be convicted in court of misrepresenting its membership,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “Inshore harvesters have been saying for years that the FFAW no longer speaks for them — that the union is failing its membership — and this latest court decision proves that.” click here to read the press release 15:59

Conflicts of Interest Plague Fishery Councils

In a tremendous display of arrogance, Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council member David Walker of Alabama went on a rant at the June meeting of the Gulf Council in which he proclaimed that millionaire shareholders like himself are the only ones who contribute anything to the red snapper fishery. He was referring to the paltry 3 percent administrative fee that shareholders are required to pay to cover the expense of the catch share program that has made him rich. The fact that NOAA Fisheries acknowledges the fee doesn’t even cover the cost of the program (the shortfall is picked up by taxpayers like you and me) did not deter Walker from his outlandish claims. He went on to challenge recreational anglers to show what they contribute.,, The end result of efforts by groups like the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) to privatize public marine resources was on full display at this meeting. They may not have intended it, but EDF and their allies have created an entire class of spoiled, entitled bullies, ready to intimidate anyone who threatens their domain, from Council members to Congressmen. Click here to read the story 14:35

Can offshore wind revive America’s ports? This town hopes so

New Bedford – This salt-caked fishing port has been flush with wind prospectors ever since Massachusetts legislators passed a law for massive wind development in the shallow waters south of Martha’s Vineyard.,,, States up and down the Atlantic coast are rushing to become the capital of America’s burgeoning offshore wind industry, hoping the massive turbines will breathe new life into ports mired by a shrinking fishing industry and a flagging industrial base. Maryland officials last month approved renewable energy credits for two developments totaling 368 megawatts off their shores in a bid to transform Baltimore and Ocean City into the industry’s manufacturing and maintenance hub in the Mid-Atlantic (Climatewire, May 12). Lawmakers in New Jersey are counting down the days until Gov. Chris Christie (R) leaves office early next year, when they plan to restore their own credits for offshore wind developments (Energywire, June 9). In New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) wants to bring 2,400 megawatts of wind power online by 2030 (Energywire, Jan. 11). But few places are betting on offshore wind quite like New Bedford. click here to read the story 11:58

Georgia shrimping season spawns unusual crop: optimism

The rope that dangled down into the hold of the Jo Ann B from a small square opening in the deck suddenly went taut. The winch overhead hummed Friday as it strained, slowly raising a 55-gallon plastic can loaded to the brim with Coastal Georgia’s most-prized saltwater delicacy. The bounty of wild Georgia shrimp swayed high above the boat Friday morning, then swung over to the City Market docks. Jake Wilson took it from there, manhandling the huge bucket of white roe shrimp and dumping the catch into a spacious water trough for processing at the City Market plant on Brunswick’s East River. This process repeats itself many times before Capt. Joe Williams’ Jo Ann B had unloaded its plentiful catch for the day. Entering the third week of the 2017 shrimping season in Georgia’s state waters, the folks who ply the coast to bring the Golden Isles these delicious crustaceans are feeling something strange: optimism. click here to read the story 11:18

FISH-NL recommends Ottawa cancel 2017 sentinel cod program 

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) recommends that Ottawa cancel the 2017 sentinel cod program, a series of tests fisheries around the province first introduced when stocks were under moratoria. “The sentinel fisheries have become a waste of taxpayers’ money because the model was developed for the moratoria years, and the uncertainties in the data means it has little to no impact when it is used in the assessment model,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “It appears the catch data may have also been negatively impacted by the resumption of the commercial fisheries and other factors.”  click here to read the press release 10:48

Opinion: Rafael’s assets could fund observer program

Any discussion of fishery management nowadays — official and casual alike — is likely to include musings on what should happen to the assets forfeited by Carlos Rafael as punishment for his recent crimes. Mr. Rafael pleaded guilty to charges related to his falsifying landing records and laundering cash, and is scheduled to be sentenced in late July. The courts are working to untangle the IRS and fisheries crimes, dealing with them at one time. A careful distinction between tax penalties and fishing penalties must be made.  The penalties for the tax crimes will be arrived at through IRS rules and laws. The penalties for fisheries crimes are stipulated in NOAA regulations. They provide great latitude in application, from a slap on the wrist to a permanent end of fishing for Carlos Seafood. The defense is making an argument that Mr. Rafael’s influence on the fishery is so important — due to his size — that economic harm to others would be too great if he were to be sanctioned too severely. click here to read the op-ed 08:42

On the docks, no sympathy for deadlocked lawmakers

It’s a good thing our boats don’t have wheels,” Delay said, “because if they did, we’d be driving them through the front door of the Capitol.” Though he was speaking figuratively, Delay wasn’t being hyperbolic. Juneau gillnetters are frustrated. They start their season Sunday under uncertain seas: Not knowing what could happen in the event of a July 1 government shutdown, salmon management could be curtailed or shut down during the most lucrative part of the gillnet season. The Alaska Department of Fish &Game sets time limits and other regulations for salmon fishermen to ensure enough fish get upriver and past nets to spawn. Without those regulations, fishermen won’t be allowed to fish. click here to read the story 08:05

In a Bering Sea battle of killer whales vs. fishermen, the whales are winning

In the Bering Sea, near the edge the continental shelf, fishermen are trying to escape a predator that seems to outwit them at every turn, stripping their fishing lines and lurking behind their vessels. The predators are pods of killer whales chasing down the halibut and black cod caught by longline fishermen. Fishermen say the whales are becoming a common sight — and problem — in recent years, as they’ve gone from an occasional pest to apparently targeting the fishermen’s lines. Fishermen say they can harvest 20,000 to 30,000 pounds of halibut in a single day, only to harvest next to nothing the next when a pod of killer whales recognizes their boat. The hooks will be stripped clean, longtime Bering Sea longliner Jay Hebert said in a phone interview this week. Sometimes there will be just halibut “lips” still attached to hooks — if anything at all. click here to read the story 07:35

Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council meeting Honolulu, HI. June 19-22, 2017

The Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council convenes , June 19-22, 2017 at Fuller Hall, YWCA, 1040 Richards St., Honolulu. Fishermen, other stakeholders and members of the public are invited to participate in the meeting and decision-making for federally managed fisheries in the offshore waters of Hawai’i, the Territories of American Samoa and Guam, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and US Pacific Remote Island Areas. click here for information 22:34

Death of a dairyman: In the network of Maine farm families, Richard ‘Butch’ Clark was a common thread

On a gloomy Saturday afternoon in early May, the Canaan Fire Department shut down Route 2 in Canaan for a steady procession of tractors, dump trucks and vintage farm equipment. Up front was Karen Clark in a 1979 R model Mack truck. The Mack had been sitting in a field awhile  — seven years, she figures — but she made sure it would start and had given it a good wash because her dad loved the “iron.” This particular truck, one he’d used in the 1990s, had been his pride and joy because it never broke down. Her father’s ashes were in a red urn on the front seat next to her. The tractor parade to Fairview Cemetery, nearly 30 vehicles strong, might not be what you’d expect for a dairy man of steady modesty, but Richard Arthur “Butch” Clark had been hauling milk on these roads since 1968 and a driving tribute seemed in order. “This is Dad’s life,” Karen Clark said. Her Aunt Kathy, Butch’s sister, agreed. “That’s our redneck send-off,” Kathy Quirion said. “Those are the kind of people he touched. Truck drivers and farmers and people with tractors.” click here to read the story 16:33

Blue Wave: future fishing vessel

Following a passion for the sea and going fishing at seventeen, Jean-Baptiste Goulard only in his early twenties when the owner he was working for at the time gave him the chance he needed to own his own boat.Now he can see that change is needed and has been immersed in the Blue Wave project to develop a new vessel to take the place of the traditional groundfish trawler fishing from Brittany, and the first of these new trawlers is about to start taking shape.,,, Now 34, he has been the skipper and owner of his own trawlers since he was 23, and now the three trawlers employ seventeen people directly and support another dozen jobs ashore. Coppelia, Pax Vobis and Harmonie fish from Loctudy in Brittany, and with all three having been built between 28 and 32 years ago, he feels the time has come to consolidate and renew them. click here to read the story 13:02

Rafa Ortiz celebrates International Lobster Day, runs 70-foot falls on inflatable lobster

Most people celebrate international lobster day by … well, most people probably don’t actually celebrate international lobster day. Rafa Ortiz, however, chose to mark this year’s día de la langosta by descending a 70-foot waterfall on a lobster-shaped pool toy.  Ortiz, the star of the documentary film Chasing Niagara, emphasized the importance of this latest achievement, noting that Washington State’s Outlet Falls “has never been run before in a pool toy.” Watch the video here. 12:39

State of the kings

For the first time in years, king salmon are showing signs of making a stronger return to the vast wilderness surrounding Alaska’s urban heartland. While Panhandle runs continue to struggle, kings to the north appear to be coming back in reasonable numbers. No records are being broken, but there are enough fish the Alaska Department of Fish and Game has liberalized fishing in two of the state’s most popular roadside king salmon drainages – the Kenai River south of Anchorage and tributaries to the Copper River east of the state’s largest city. A near disaster had been forecast on the latter river, a big, muddy, glacial stream draining 26,500 square miles of Alaska near the Canadian border. A return of only 29,000 fish was expected, and with the spawning goal set at 24,000, the state imposed a host of restrictions on the fishery before it even began. Sport fishing was closed. Subsistence fishermen were restricted to a seasonal limit of only two Chinook, the more common Lower 48 name for kings. And commercial fishermen faced major reductions in fishing time and closures of areas that have in the past produced the biggest king catches. click here to read the story 09:37

On this special day, take time to thank your dad

Father’s Day – which is Sunday – almost seems to be an afterthought, compared to Mother’s Day. It’s like someone said, “We ought to do Father’s Day, too. It’ll give us a chance to sell some shirts and ties.” Father’s Day began in Europe around 1500 as St. Joseph’s Day, honoring the earthly father of Jesus. Spanish and Portuguese Catholics brought the tradition to the New World. Moms are important. They did carry us around for nine months … but Dad had something to do with that, too. Some fathers aren’t very good fathers, and others aren’t around at all, but a good dad is a treasure and can influence our lives in a way that we might not realize until he is no longer around to thank him. click here to read the story, and Happy Fathers Day.

Not your grandfather’s fishery

The harvesting is so different — bigger boats, bigger fishing effort, deeper-water fishing, so much further from shore on average, more ambitious in all respects. The boats themselves are equipped with everything under the sun to make the task more manageable.  The knowledge is much more substantial. We live in the Facebook Generation. Everything is visible and transparent, whether publishing a newspaper or determining the value of a lobster, there are absolutely no secrets.  And fish harvesters make it their business to know what a lobster is selling for in Thunder Bay on a Saturday night.  The world is smaller — direct flights from Halifax to Europe and Asia make transit time for premium quality fisheries a fraction of what was required previously. click here to read the op-ed by Stewart Lamont, managing director of Tangier Lobster Company 19:26

Asia Is Trawling for a Deadly Fishing War

THALVUPADU, Sri Lanka — Stanley Cruz, a fisher in this beachside village on the island of Mannar off Sri Lanka’s northwestern coast, stands with his bare feet in the sand, holding up a green net between his hands. “This is the kind of net, you see. Last week, we lost many hundreds of these. “It keeps happening over and over,” says Mary Subramali, an elderly woman who cleans and sorts the incoming fish. “The trawlers come to take our fish and cut our nets, destroying them with their propellers. My son just lost his for the second time.” She picks up a cold, slippery fish from a basket and severs its head and fins with ease. For her and others on the northern coast of Sri Lanka, losing nets has become a familiar story. Over 30,000 people from the minority Tamil community in Thalvupadu work as fishers, mainly on a small-scale, mostly earning less than $2,500 per year, about two-thirds of the islands’ average. Nets in these coastal societies are precious investments — even a small one costs $23, and the village has lost nearly 1,000 of them. A very good read. click here to read the story 18:28

Dutch Fishermen catch rare two-headed porpoise

A fishing vessel in the North Sea between the UK, the Netherlands, and Scandinavia found quite the catch last month: the first-ever documented two-headed harbor porpoise. The dead conjoined porpoise twins were caught up in the GO9 Onderneming fishing vessel’s trawl net on May 30, according to the Natural History Museum of Rotterdam’s journal Deinsea. The Dutch museum said the ship’s workers were “astonished” to find that the animal had what appeared to be two heads. They took pictures and then threw it overboard. The crew thought it would be illegal to keep the dead porpoise, so the actual specimen is now lost to the ocean. click here to read the story 16:22

Matt Bradley Of ‘Deadliest Catch’ Shows That Recovery From Addiction Is Possible No Matter What

Although I’m in long term recovery and I work in the treatment industry, I still encounter people whose recovery amazes me. Matt Bradley is one of those people. Matt caught my attention when I saw him on an episode of Deadliest Catch. He’s a fisherman who has crewed with Northwestern for over a decade. What intrigued me wasn’t just the drama and action of the fishing crew, but Matt’s openness and honesty about his struggle with substance use. A long time drug user, Matt didn’t encounter the serious consequences that so many people face until he was in his 20s. Although he grew up with normalized drug use—-stealing joints and alcohol from the adults in his Section 8 housing development—-he didn’t really think he had a problem until he started using heroin. click here to read the story 15:40

North Carolina Fisheries Association Weekly Update for June 16, 2017

Click here to read the Weekly Update, to read all the updates, Click here Seafood Lobby Day this past Wednesday was a tremendous success! 15:02

In This Alaska Family, Life Lessons Are Passed Down On The Water

We’re on the Alexa K, a 45-foot steel-hulled troller, with captain Charlie Wilber, 69, and his 27-year-old daughter, Adrienne, “heading out into the briny deep!” as Charlie wryly tells us. Charlie has been fishing these waters for nearly 40 years. “I never would have imagined I’d end up doin’ this,” he says. Raised in Omaha, Neb., he came to Alaska fresh out of college. He had a job as a smoke jumper, fighting fires near Fairbanks. But once he went out fishing with a friend, he “got the bug,” as he puts it. He’s been fishing ever since. And it’s always been a family adventure. Charlie says he bought the Alexa K because the boat’s bulwarks were high enough that his daughters, Adrienne and her younger sister, Berett, couldn’t fall off. click here to read the story, view 11 images 11:04

Salmon farms should be worried about more than just one species of sea lice

Migrating young sockeye salmon that are highly infected with parasitic sea lice grow more slowly, according to a new study from Simon Fraser University researchers. That matters, the experts said, because growing quickly can be the difference between life and death for vulnerable juvenile salmon. “Previous studies have shown that to survive to adulthood, young salmon need to get big fast,” said Sean Godwin, a PhD student at SFU and lead author on the study. “Those that grow more slowly — as we found, those heavily infected with sea lice — those fish are more likely to die.” Many people opposed to fish farms have raised concern over declining wild Fraser River sockeye and the potential for parasite transfer from salmon farms. click here to read the story 10:23

Ocean polluters seek to have convictions overturned

A father-son team that was convicted of polluting Puget Sound and the ocean have asked a judge to toss their convictions. In Seattle federal court on Friday, Bingham Fox asked the judge to throw out his conviction for violating the Clean Water Act.  His attorney accused the government of “prosecutorial misconduct.” Fox and his son Randall Fox were convicted of pumping oily bilge water from their 80 fishing vessel “Native Sun.” A deckhand provided the US Coast Guard with a video showing a makeshift pump that pumped engine oil overboard while the vessel was in Blaine harbor. Federal law requires commercial vessels to filter out engine oil and dispose of it properly on shore, which costs time and money. click here to read the story 09:12

A meeting with Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke – Concerns aired about Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument

Fishing groups from around New England met with Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke on Friday to air complaints about former President Barack Obama’s designation of the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument last year. The monument, the first marine national monument in U.S. Atlantic waters, protects about 4,000 square miles of ocean 150 miles southeast of Cape Cod. Fishermen say the protected area in which fishing is prohibited hurts their business and places an undue burden on an already heavily regulated industry. But Priscilla Brooks, vice president and director of ocean conservation at the Conservation Law Foundation, said the former administration did take fishermen’s concerns into account. Obama reduced the size of the original proposed monument by 60 percent and allowed lobster and crab fishermen a seven-year grace period to continue fishing there. “There was a robust public process,” she said. (BS!) click here to read the story 08:25

Zinke moving dozens of senior Interior Department officials in shake-up

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is reassigning dozens of top career officials within his ranks, a shake-up that appears to be the start of a broad reorganization of a department that manages one-fifth of all land within the United States. The decision to move members of the Senior Executive Service (SES) is legally permitted only after a political appointee has been in office for 120 days; Zinke won’t reach that mark until June 28.,,,The officials who received notices include Interior’s top climate policy official, Joel Clement, who directs the Office of Policy Analysis, as well as at least five senior officials of the Fish and Wildlife Service — nearly a quarter of that agency’s career SES staff. click here to read the story 18:46

A Message from John Bullard, Regional Administrator – There Is No Silver Bullet for Groundfish

The great philosopher Yogi Berra said, “You can observe a lot by watching.” You can also learn a lot by listening. I try to do a lot of listening. I think it’s the most important part of my job, and of all of our jobs at the Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office and the Northeast Fisheries Science Center. With all of the activity in the last couple of months, there has certainly been a LOT to listen to. For example, we held recreational roundtable meetings in New Jersey and New Hampshire and a commercial roundtable in New Bedford. We also attended the New England and Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council meetings and an Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission meeting.  click here to read the rest 16:14

Searching for Atlantic bluefin tuna larvae and more in the Slope Sea

The NOAA Vessel Gordon Gunter departed on June 10 from Newport, Rhode Island, and immediately headed off the continental shelf to water deeper than 1,000 meters (about 3,300 feet) known as the Slope Sea.  The Slope Sea is an area of the ocean that is bounded to the north and west by the northeast United States Continental Shelf and to the south by the Gulf Stream, whose dynamic currents provide a strong influence over the area.,,, In recent decades, the common view of Atlantic bluefin tuna was that they spawned only in two places, the Mediterranean Sea in the Eastern Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico in the western Atlantic.  However, in the summer of 2013 two cruises sampled the Slope Sea, both of them achieving noteworthy catch rates of early-stage bluefin tuna larvae.  These collections were consistent with a hypothesis first put forward in the 1950s that the Slope Sea was a third spawning ground for this species.  Follow up sampling in 2016 again achieved notable catch rates of bluefin tuna larvae. click here to read the story 15:37

FISH-NL applauds appeal court decision reaffirming FFAW failed its membership

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) applauds an appeal court decision today reaffirming the FFAW failed its membership. The union had appealed a March, 2016 Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador ruling in favour of scallop fishermen who took the union to court over a compensation fund for lost fishing grounds in the Strait of Belle Isle. In the unanimous ruling handed down today, the three judges with the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador, Court of Appeal, found that the “FFAW was clearly acting outside its usual role and did not appreciate the full implications of its behaviour.” Click here to read the press release 14:54