Gear-lending program has harvesters working through closures and trying ropeless fishing gear without commitment

Snow crab fishers in one area of Nova Scotia had a new visitor this season and found themselves closed out of their fishing waters. “We got a 37 percent cut in our quota and [Northern right] whales presented themselves in our zone for the first time ever so [it was] quite stressful,” said Marc Lefort, a snow crab harvester in western Cape Breton Island and a member of Area 19 Snow Crab Fishermen’s Association in Cheticamp, N.S. He’s been fishing for 19 years in the area. “It was a challenging season.” The Northern right whale is critically endangered and conservation efforts have targeted fisheries using fixed gear, or traps connected to buoys by rope. Because whales can be entangled in the fishing gear, fisheries for lobster and snow crab have been forced to think of new measures – and new fishing gear – to protect the marine mammals. >>click to read<< 12:24

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